iPhone XR, XS Max to India from USA 2018 – Custom Duty, GST Tax Calculator

Anil Gupta  13 Sep, 18      413  Finance

Sending phone to India is expensive (custom duty + GST Tax) than buying in India. Mark as Gift does not help. Carrying and not declaring at Indian airport custom evades duty but not safe.


Cost of Sending iPhone Xr, Xs, Xs Max to India Calculator 2018

How much does it cost to send a new iPhone Xs Max to India from USA? Any idea?
We list all costs including shipping, insurance custom duty in India with GST tax for sending any phone including Google Pixel 3, Samsung Note, Samsung Galaxy to India with an example of iPhone.


Open Indian Custom Duty Calculator in new window

With the season of new mobile phone launches in USA ahead, the eagerness to import it from USA and get it in your hands before it is launched in India is pretty high.

But, wait, you may be paying much more for that device if you decide to buy from USA and ship it to yourself in India, the legal way.

Here are the sample costs involved for iPhone 64 GB & iPhone 64 GB Plus models:

iPhone XRiPhone XSiPhone XS Max
Basic Price (USD)7499991099
Sales Tax (@6.5%)496571
Free Shipping*000
Fedex/UPS – Standard shipping – 1 pound packet126126126
Transit Insurance (@2% of declared value)162123
Total (USD)9401,2111,319
Total (INR)(1 USD = INR 70)65,80084,77092,330

* I assumed that Apple offered free shipping or you picked up the phone from an apple store to keep this cost as zero.

Cost of sending iphone to India by Fedex
Cost of sending iphone to India by Fedex

Mobile phone Custom Duty and Taxes in India

Now, when this package reaches India, you will have to pay customs duties and GST tax. The mobile comes under the cell phones category.

For the purpose of customs validation, the CIF value is the price paid for the goods plus the cost of transportation, loading, unloading, handling, Insurance and associated costs incidental to the deliver of good from place of export to place of import.

All other charges are calculated on this CIF value.

In our example, this CIF value is the total money that you have spent for the item in USA including all expenses.

All in INRiPhone X (R)iPhone X (S)iPhone X (S) Max
ACIF value (Total cost to send from USA)65,80084,42092,330
BLanding Charges (1% of CIF)658844923
CSub-total (A + B)66,45885,26493,253
DCustom Duty (BCD – 20%)13,29217,05318,651
ESub-total (C + D)79,7501,02,3171,11,904
FGST Tax – 12%9,57012,27813,428
GAll other cess and charges000
HTotal (E + F + G) Final cost to you89,3201,14,5951,25,332
GTotal Customs (H – A)23,52030,17533,002

The above calculation might be a bit complex for a layman.

Hence, if you want to take a figure in your mind, you can consider about 34% of the CIF value as customs charges.

For example: If the total cost (CIF) in INR is 60,000 for a mobile, then add about 34% of 60,000 as custom taxes and charges.

Final price would be: 60,000 + 20,400 (34% of 60,000) = 84,400.

Does it make sense to buy iPhone from USA and ship to India?

With high custom duties and taxes on importing, I would suggest to buy directly from India rather than get into the hassle of paying custom duties.

If you carefully understand the calculations, you are approximately paying about 34% extra for the phone, if you import.

Indian government takes hell of taxes here.

Mark mobile phone package as GIFT to avoid custom duty tax?

This would be the next best advice you will get from any fellow desi abroad. Well, that is true, but to a certain extent. Remember, customs in India are also the same desi with same mindset! haha.

So, you can ONLY gift up-to INR 10,000 worth of single package and that too without bill. The value of 10K is converted value after applying relevant exchange rate.

Also, postal charges or airfreight or insurance is not taken into account to find the value of product.

NOTE: If the value of the gifts received is more than INR 10,000, the receiver has to pay Customs duty on the whole consignment, even if the goods were received free.

Who can be a sender of GIFT when sending Mobile?

Any person abroad can send gifts. There is no specific restriction that only relatives can send the goods.

Business associate, friends, relatives, companies or acquaintances can also send the gifts to residents in India. No proof is required.

Who pays the custom duty and taxes on imported iPhone and how?

The receiver pays the custom duty and taxes. Normally, when the shipment reaches India, your postal company would run it through customs. Custom officer would create a custom invoice and the postal company would either call you to keep the money ready or ask you to deposit the money first.

Once you deposit the money, you will be handed over your shipment.

Most of the companies these days like BlueDart, Fedex etc. have streamlined the process.

They would call you before coming to deliver the package and ask to keep the money ready. You pay the custom duty to the delivery boy itself.

What is the time frame to get iPhone shipped in India from USA?

As per the best estimates, the iPhone versions are shipped to USA resident in 5-6 days. Add another 5-6 days for shipping to India.

Is there any GST tax on imported goods/mobile in India?

Yes, there is GST tax under called Integrated Goods and Services tax that’s levied on imported mobile phones.

Is there any sales tax on imported goods/mobile in India?

No, no sales tax is charged on imported goods at this time.

I have made all calculations and provided information to the best of knowledge and research. Please correct or share more information about it if you had any experience of sending a mobile phone to India from USA.