Amazon Now Offers FREE Shipping to Israel

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Tap, tap, tap. Is this thing on??

I’ve got a HUGE announcement for all my Israel readers: Amazon has announced that they are now offering FREE SHIPPING TO ISRAEL.

Join the KOAB Amazon-to-Israel WhatsApp group to make sure you know all about the very best deals that are now shipping for FREE to Israel!

While this is super exciting news, prepare yourself: There is some “fine print” that you need to know about.

#1. FREE Shipping to Israel is not two-day delivery like it is in the US.

(Will I ever get over not having my Prime two-day, or one-day, or now SAME FREAKING DAY delivery? No. No, I will not.)

It does look like most orders will arrive within 9-14 days. Not terrible, but not two-day. Sorry.

#2. You must place a minimum order of $49 to qualify for the free shipping.

Although Amazon doesn’t care how much you order above and beyond that $49, please also keep in mind that if your order exceeds $75, then you will have to pay ma’am (VAT), which will add 17% to your cost.

Your sweet spot is any order between $49 and $75.

#3. Not all items sold at Amazon are eligible for this free shipping offer.

(You knew that was gonna be the case, right?)

But as far as I can tell from looking around, a whole lot of them are. Like nearly every Amazon deal I’ve posted in the last few weeks are included!!

And what’s extra exciting is that the items are not being “marked up” when they qualify for free shipping to Israel. No hidden fees. You pay the exact same price that you’d pay to get it delivered to a US address.

Okay, now that you know the stipulations, here’s the process you’re going to want to follow to find those free-shipping items:

First – Set your delivery address to Israel

Second – Search for items that display the “FREE Shipping to Israel” tag by item price

Third – Confirm that you selected qualified items by making sure that AmazonGlobal FREE Shipping is pre-selected at checkout

I’ve been getting some questions about how to avoid VAT when you order from Amazon.

So the basic rule is that an order of under $75 is exempt from being assessed import tax when shipped. Orders between $75 and $500 are exempt from custom duties (with some exceptions, like cell phones or TVs — which are always assessed them).

HOWEVER, if you place an order (of less than $75) and then 30 minutes later place a second order (of under $75), that will be considered by ISRAEL as one “consignment” (i.e. order) — and hence, you will be assessed a 17% charge for VAT.

According to this Israeli government source, you should wait for 72 hours between placing orders.

“Two packages or more that are sent from the same supplier to the same customer within up to 72 hours will be considered a single consignment that was split, and import taxes will be calculated based on the aggregate value of all the goods.”

I’ve also gotten some questions about whether it’s the teudat zehut (which you have to use on Amazon when you place your order) or the address that triggers the powers-that-be in Israel to consider it “one consignment”. My sense is that it’s TZ, not address — but I don’t want to advise one way or the other, since I’m definitely not a lawyer (or a meches worker!).

Bottom line: Although the taxes.gov website says to wait 72 hours between placing orders to avoid bundling them for VAT, out of an abundance of caution, you may want to wait 72 hours from when the first order SHIPS (Amazon emails you when you order ships).

By the way, you don’t have to live in Israel to ship to Israel.

So if you have a child studying in Israel for the year, this is a great way to gift them with some fun Amazon goodies. (Or send them a new blanket because their dorm room flooded with the first rain and they can’t live without their favorite comforter.)

Just make sure to set your primary address to their Israel address – and then switch it back when you’re placing an order for yourself.

Who else is pumped with me??? Then, come join my WhatsApp Group!

Comments

  1. Just a heads up, a friend mentioned that if you order things too close together then amazon could bundle your purchases and you may get hit with VAT. Is that a thing?

  2. Julie Papier says

    Will it be going through the post office for pick ups? Or be delivered to your door in Israel?

    • I read all the fine print and couldn’t determine that. I’m fairly certain it’s the post office, b/c only DHL and courier gets delivered directly to your house.

  3. Soooooo excited!!!!! Thank you!!

  4. Linda Schlesinger says

    Best news I’ve heard all year! Thanks for publicizing Mara!

  5. You mean I don’t have to wait for my mother’s annual visit to order something on amazon!? This is life changing!!

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