Don’t Pay FedEx’s Customs ‘Advancement’ Fees

For a while now, FedEx has applied an ‘advancement fee’ of £12 to shipments arriving in the UK which have customs charges applied.

The reasoning for this is half-valid in my opinion. When a shipment gets off the ramp at the airport, if arriving from outside the EU, all need to pass through Customs (shipments from within the EU may be X-rayed, but aren’t liable for any import fees).

Rather than HMRC handling the shipments directly, FedEx employs their own clearance agents to work on behalf of HMRC (likely to expedite shipments), the wages of which need to be accounted for.

Also, unlike some other carriers, FedEx pays any fees immediately to HMRC, which enables them to deliver the shipment with minimal delays.

However, my reasoning against this fee though has always been that FedEx should factor in any clearance fees to the shipment cost.

So here’s a solution if you’d rather not throw £12 away in addition to your VAT. Important to note that Import VAT is legally required to be paid – there’s no reasoning for this to be avoided.

Their ‘advancement’ fee on the other hand is totally unenforceable, and quite cheeky in my opinion.

So simply put together an email (I’ve provided a template below, just add the invoice number and tweak parts as needed). Use the subject line ‘Customs advancement fee’ or similar, then send it to send an email to [email protected] (if you’re in the UK. Other countries will have a different email).

Dear FedEx,

This is in reference to invoice #xxxxxxxxxx.

After having bought xxxxxxxxxxx from China, I understood there would be the possibility of VAT due on receiving them.

I was however surprised to see an additional section for a clearance administration charge of £12.

Since China is outside of the EU, I of course will pay the VAT due.

However, I refuse to pay the clearance admin charge of £12, since at no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any terms and conditions which clearly stated that I would be liable for any such charges.

At no point in the transaction and subsequent delivery was any contract for a clearance administration charge made between FedEx and myself.

I paid the supplier for delivery, and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment.

If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially.

Therefore, I request that you update this invoice to reflect no admin fee, and once that has been done I’ll make immediate payment.

Please let me know when this has been done.

Kind Regards,

Adam

Note: The above worked for me on 5 consecutive occasions with FedEx, though I can’t vouch for it with other carriers. Definitely worth a shot though.

Let me know of your successes!

130 Comments

  1. It sucks that curriers do this kind of thing and you can’t chose to use or not use which ones you like. Definitely worth remembering this though!

  2. interestingly i just tried that. got this reply:

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised clearance procedure through GB

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the importation of the goods through GB

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    ——–

    i’ve asked them to break down exactly what these fees are and where i agreed to them.

  3. Letter works well .Recently purchased goods from Malaysia and then received £18.03 bill from Fedex. I then sent an email and within 24 hours they waivered their advance charge of £12. So thanks for the information Adam really good.

  4. Thanks for posting this! I just got a reply from Fedex after sending your email and got the £12 removed from a shipment I got from South Korea to UK.

  5. Hi Adam

    Thanks for your advice. I used your template letter and almost immediate success. Keep up the good work!

  6. Brilliant – used your template last night, reply from fedex today saying credit for advancement fee had been raised and I only need to pay the VAT

    Many thanks

  7. Worked perfectly, and so it should. The principal here, as you so excellently point out is that no contract exists that makes the receiver liable for any fees. To be absolutely strict, we are no longer even liable for the duty since FedEx “undertook” to cover this charge themselves. However, since we are nice human beings, we’re not taking it that far. In any case, they got back to me with the following:


    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 123456789

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 7.24 GBP

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

  8. I challenged the legality of both the VAT charge and the Advancement Fee. Fedex quickly issued a credit note for the Advancement Fee. I pushed them to explain a legal cause of action for which I would be liable to pay the VAT charge. They tried to rely on Article 13 of Montreal Convention, but that merely creates a lien. Whne pushed rather than respond on detail Fedex, in a somewhat cowardly act, fowarded the VAT claim to their credit control company. When I told them they could take me to Court for the VAT money because Fedex had no cause of action Fedex issued a credit note for the VAT charge too. End result nothing was payable.
    Fedex ought to let receiving customers know about the charges before paying them, that is what how the Montreal Convention works, but rather that acting properly it seems the company policy is to issue an invoice after the event and just hope that the invoice is paid.

  9. This template just worked for me too. Sent the email at midnight and received a reply less than 12 hours later saying they’d credited the advancement fee. Many thanks!

  10. Adam, many thanks.

    I paid the VAT only, then emailed Fedex using your email template. FedEx credited the fee back.
    Jim

  11. I’m going to try a slightly altered version of this letter. They delivered an item last week then I got a bill asking for Taxs + $60!!!!! in these admin fees.

    Fucking riddiculous, going to see how this will work out, I suspect they will take it since they can only sell to collections agencies for 20-30% of the original value, so they will likely prefer settling for a higher amount.

  12. Hi

    Just tried this and as predicted they autoamtically with no argument cancelled £12 fee.
    Rididculous that they put this charge on for basically doing nothing. Imagine how much they make out of folk that just pay it.

  13. Worked straight away, fee annulled. They are obviously just trying it on the cheeky wotsits

  14. Thanks – used today and had the fee cancelled.

  15. Thanks for the template, Adam.

    I emailed this template yesterday and haven’t got a reply, yet. When I phoned them today, they didn’t wave it off easily as expected. The saying is basically similar as the only unsuccessful example in the reply, the shipper says it is the importers liability, etc. Not sure if he managed to get his £12 back.

    I will provide an update once they replied. Successful or not, thank you very much for providing this information.

    Regards,
    Jinyu

    • Following my previous information, they replied as follows after 17 days. I am curious how they send reply to others. Will this be a one-off thing? They are going to charge £5 per day storage next time. I will definitely not using them again.

      email replied as follows

      The sender opted to utilise our international priority service which includes a door to door delivery service including standard customs clearance. The sender has not opted to pay for a service where we contact you prior to delivery to advise of customs charges levied.

      The administration fee of £12.00 is the only part of the charge which is purely a FedEx fee and is levied to cover the costs of the Customs clearance administration.

      If you import goods on a regular basis you may wish to have a deferment account with Customs & Excise. This would allow you to have credit terms with Customs and Excise. If you do not have your own deferment account, FedEx use their own account on your behalf in order to facilitate delivery of your goods, therefore our administration fee is charged.

      On this occasion we have cancelled the advancement fee as a one off goodwill gesture. We have also placed a hold and notify on your account for all future shipments to be held for payment before delivery. Please also be aware that a storage fee of £5.00 per package per working day after two working days with a minimum of £10.00 may apply to your shipments and will be payable before delivery.

      We hope this answers your query. Should you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us direct.

      Regards

  16. Challenged them on this, and they waived the charge. They’re still trying it on!

    • Hi Jay,

      Did you made the complaint by phone or email? How did they replied? Will this be a one-off thing or we can always do that next time?

      Regards,
      Jinyu

  17. I tried this on Fedex and it worked!
    Story behind mine is: My brother-in-law had bought me a gift from the universal studios website. With the warehouse being in Orlando FL. US and us being in Canada, he had already payed a crazy amount in shipping. Nearly a month after I received this gift FedEx sends me a bill saying I had to pay for their express services. They charged for 3 different taxes (which is fair, whatever, those only added up too$6.35) but they had also slapped a $10.00 CAD advancement fee!

    I used this template, got a quick response from Fedex. Mine roughly tried to explain what the fee was, but would forward my e-mail to the invoice adjustment people, to remove it as a one time credit.

    About a week later it had been approved and processed! I’m not sure if they are sending me another bill for just the taxes,but hey! saved myself $10! Thanks!

  18. The template email worked for me – had a reply within 2 days waiving the £12 many thanks

  19. I HAD A REPLY FOLLOWING.Did i fail to cut off the administration fee?
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________
    Dear Customer,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383303340 / AWB# 786282356619

    Having reviewed the above mentioned AWB, we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 3.59 GBP.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Vijayalakshmi Srinivasan

  20. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
    Your letter worked like a charm.
    Had a reply within 2 days and saved £12

    Cheers !!

  21. Did anybody challenge the taxes? I recently took up an offer for free item worth $37 with minimum spend and including free international delivery. So I bought 1 item, got the other free and was delivered by Fedex within 1 week. Now I received an invoice from FEDex for tax on both items AND tax/duty on the shipping costs of $75. So the invoice is for £25 duty + £12 Admin fee. Total £37.
    What really annoys me is that one of the items delivered was faulty, so when the supplier offered to fedex me a replacement, again with “free” shipping, I didn’t hesitate…(i hadn’t received the fedex invoice at the time) but now I’m going to end up with another invoice.

    So can this be right? do you have to pay tax/duty on shipping too?

  22. Hi Adam,

    You superstar. Fedex have responded with the below:

    “Dear Alistair,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383449446,

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 gbp aised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 3.79 gbp
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.”

    I owe you one! Worked – June 2017

    Thanks,

    Al

  23. It worked, thank you so much! 🙂

    They responded on the SAME DAY with:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 383478441,733246252928.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12 GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 4.52 GBP.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Harshini R

  24. Success!!! Just got an email from FedEx cancelling administration charge 😉
    Thanks Adam!!!

  25. Hi Adam
    A BIG thankyou got a bill this morning asking for £4.22 VAT and £12 for Advancement Fee. I sent your template and 2 hours later they have taken the £12 off. FedEx is obviously ripping people off. I wonder how many other people are being screwed by this? I have also informed my supplier and told them that in future they are not to send items to me via FedEx.
    Thanks again
    Graeme

  26. Thanks so much! Worked!

  27. Hello please advise me on how to waive similar handling fee with dhl…
    Do u have a email address for dhl as well where I can try this template…
    They have just told me that my customs only £5.52 and handling fee is £10.48 (so sick of them)

  28. Hello please advise me on how to waive similar handling fee with dhl…
    Do u have a email address for dhl as well where I can try this template…
    They have just told me that my customs only £5.52 and handling fee is £10.48 (so sick of them)

  29. Thanks a lot. Worked for me.

  30. just used this today and it worked 😉 Thanks

  31. I recently received a replacement part under warranty, sent from the manufacturer’s head office in Taiwan for a product i had purchased in the uk,
    A week after it was delivered they sent me an invoice totalling £16.00, I have spoken to HMRC and under the circumstances, i should be able to claim the VAT charged back from HMRC but not this rip off “advancement fee”
    Fortunately, after emailing the person who sent the part they tell me that they have spoken with FedEx, so i assume they have paid them, but should i get further demands from FedEx i will pursue this route because they won’t change their stance over the phone

  32. Worked like a charm.
    Thanks

  33. Worked for me too! Had a reply within hours.

  34. Worked perfectly, thanks.

  35. Thanks Adam, worked a treat!

    Got this reply after using your template…

    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Thank you for your query regarding invoice **********.
    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 6.04.

    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Senthamarai Anandraj

    Cheers
    Les

  36. Many thanks for this advice. It worked for me too. I had a reply in 8 hours saying they had canceled the £12 advance charge. I will pay the VAT of course.

  37. I’m in the US and had the same experience with the only international package delivered by FedEx. Never any bills or extra fees for any of the other international packages delivered by UPS, DHL or USPS. I was sent a wrong item from a UK seller and then sent the correct item after I shipped the return. FedEx sent me two bills for $74 each on a $430 item. I begrudgingly paid one but refused the other entirely because I wasn’t going to pay $74 and have nothing to show for it. I finally wrote a letter of protest, after already stating why I wasn’t going to pay it in a previous reply, and told them any further attempts would be considered harassment and they can serve me with papers and I would see them in court. They dropped it.

  38. I’ve emailed twice, it’s been 10 days from my first email and I’ve had no response whatsoever.

  39. Hey Adam,

    Just had my invoice through and was about to pen my own email when I found yours (saving me a lot of time etc!). Ordered some items from the USA and have no idea how companies are allowed to charge a fee which can be even more expensive than the customs duty due on items… crazy!! I’ll update when I hear from them… hopefully tomorrow 😉

  40. Hi , thank you for this. My fee was wiped but They are refusing to issue a new invoice ? Am I not entitled to a revised invoice? Can I refuse 5o pay if they refuse to give me a revised invoice?
    Also as I live in Ireland my currency is euro but they keep quoting my bill in pounds in their emails. My invoice was in euros .

  41. Hi Adam,

    Thank you for posting the formal letter to Fedex.
    It worked first time for me.
    They seemed very professional in their response and did not quibble in my case.
    Cheers and HNY!!

  42. Thanks for this….Tried the email template (with a couple of minor changes) and the £12 Advancement Fee was waived via email the next day.
    No grumbles about the VAT as it was only £5.09 and the item was from outside the UK.
    (From FedEx email: If your enquiry requires a claim or amendment to be submitted to the local Customs Authorities, we may need to contact you for further information before we can proceed. Please be aware that claims for clearance errors not caused by FedEx may incur an administration fee of £53.00 + VAT.)
    You could of course just go to the Gov.uk HMRC page and file the claim yourself if you have all the relevant information.
    Anyway – Thanks again! 😃

  43. Got a question about this part of your template:

    “If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially”.

    Does that still make sense for me to say as I use MyUS.com which gives me a USA address to receive items from USA sellers who only ship to the USA. I then paid MyUS.com for shipping to get the items delivered to my home in the UK and they use FedEx.

  44. Thanks – still works. Resolved in a day

  45. Hi Adam,
    thanks for template,its worked for me as well i sent the same message regarding £12 next they waived that amount once again thanks for giving information.

  46. Hi Adam, worked for me.
    Other forums people were telling to take a hit and pay it.
    Thanks for advice and template letter.

  47. Did used temple with minor changes.
    And looks like FedEx charges who they want and when they want.
    This is the email I have received from Senthamarai Anandraj.
    Which is same person that replay to other people.

    ***********************************************************

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Thank you for your query regarding the charge on invoice 384305460

    FedEx would like to inform you that the amount billed is an ancillary
    charge and these are raised on shipments that require a specialised
    clearance procedure through GB.

    Under certain circumstances additional fees are payable to FedEx for the
    clearance of goods, for example to cover fees paid to external agencies for
    border inspections or for non-standard clearances. The charge may also
    cover all other services not covered by the standard conditions of FedEx.

    The charges raised for this additional service are specifically billed to
    the consignee / importer rather than the shipper. The charges remain the
    responsibility of the consignee / importer as they relate to the
    importation of the goods through GB.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further
    queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

    Senthamarai Anandraj

  48. Hi Adam,
    Thanks for your useful blog. I just got below mail from Fedex after raising a query about advancement fee. I think Fedex are just minting money from customers of UK.

    Dear XXXX,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice 38429XXXX.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we are pleased to advise that a credit of 12.00 GBP has been raised.

    FedEx trust this concludes the matter, however should you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Yours Faithfully,

  49. George Wilkinson

    February 3, 2018 at 3:40 PM

    Thanks very much for this, you’ve saved me £12! I emailed them this morning using your template and they replied back in only a few hours, waiving the charge. I had to pay them the VAT (£15.72), of course. I expected to have to pay something like that, but not nearly £28. They must get this a lot, given the response I received is the same as the one’s posted above (other than the details).

    NOTE: I was initially confused about what to enter for “Invoice Amount” on the online payment system, but found you have to enter the amount listed on the paper invoice, not the amount after the “advancement fee” has been waived.

  50. Many thanks Adam. Like quite a few others, I used a slightly amended version of your letter and the £12 was credited back within a couple of hours.

    In my view, this practise is much worse than a ‘bit cheeky’ on FedEx’s part – it’s downright dishonest.

  51. I usually ship all the items I buy on US websites to my work address in UK under a different name. FedEx never had a chance to claim any VAT or admin fees back. *flips a finger*

  52. Worked, I knew it would.
    Thanks.

  53. Excellent thanks so much. Worked for me in less that 24 Hours. Just had the VAT to pay £12 saved in one email. Excellent thank you.

  54. It worked. Thanks Adam:)

  55. Just tried this for a fedex invoice my son recieved and it worked, thank you.

  56. Thanks so much for this, it just worked twice for me!!!!

  57. Brilliant. £24 saved on two invoices, which simply clarifies that Fedex are trying it on. This is shameful.
    Many thanks Adam.

  58. Cheers Adam, FedEx have credited £12 on the invoice within hours of sending them the email.
    Thanks!!!

  59. Thank you so much for your advice. I’ve just paid minus £12 advancement fee.

    Marj

  60. thank you so much it worked first time:)

  61. It worked, thank you! They got back to me the next day and waived the fee. Haha did not expect that at all. Kinda can’t believe they can get away with charging people this money!

  62. Awesome Adam, I took great delight in sending fedex your templated letter and within 24 hours I got an amended invoice minus £12 so I now owe them £6:96 vat.

  63. It simply wporked! Thanks!

  64. Andy Cornforth

    May 7, 2018 at 8:48 AM

    Just did this and it worked! Thank you soo much Adam!

    Though I was initially charged £14 advancement fee and not £12, as everyone else here seems to have been.

  65. It worked for me too. Just a thought..this is a genuine FEDEX thing isnt it and not just some elaborate scam to get £4 per person?

  66. I called first to argue the case over the phone and the call centre woman seemed like she wanted to be thickheaded and not listen to my argument as if she was just stating we process the item through customs for you, are you going to complete the paperwork i told her i wasn’t offered the chance as they had already processed it without agreeing it with me, I never get these advancement fees with other shipping companies. the first response reply from fedex was them attempting to clarify their charge, as if they used an auto answer to any query asking “what the Advancement Fee is”, i copied and pasted this and emailed it across to their first response, they then emailed back issuing a £12 credit note. this was 05/2018

  67. It worked! Thanks so much!

    I received a package with some goodies from my Brother in the U.S. (as a birthday present).

    FedEx sent me the corresponding duty and tax invoice.

    I contested it following your template via email and within 24hrs success! I had to pay VAT though. Very small amount 🙂

    • Boom Template success!……It worked for me…..credit note applied to Invoice within 24 hours.
      An obvious money making scam by FedEx!
      Power to the people!!!
      Thanks for the template

  68. Richard Sweet

    May 22, 2018 at 9:05 AM

    Worked like a charm, Microscope bought from India £35.89 to pay VAT but charge dropped at first try,
    Thanks

  69. Charles Gwillim

    May 23, 2018 at 4:10 PM

    Thank you very much, had the £12 admin charge waived and just paying the duty. Keep up the good work!

  70. David Bethell

    May 30, 2018 at 2:43 PM

    Hey Adam,

    Thanks for this and thanks for sharing. You’ve saved me that pesky £12.
    Wish I could buy you a drink.

    David 😀

  71. I cannot find an email address to send this to ! Can anyone help ??

  72. Worked for me!
    I just got the reply email waiving the £12 charge.
    Thank you so much.

  73. Email address won’t work for me

    • Jonny Blin

      Finally the email address worked and I can confirm I got my £12 back today. thanks for the help

      4th Jun 2018 14:02

      Dear Sir or Madam,

      Thank you for your query regarding invoice3xxxxxxx1.

      Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 UKL has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 13.41 UKL.

      FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

      Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on.

      Yours Faithfully,

      Suganthi R

  74. Top Man !

  75. Hi Adam,

    Thanks for this info and your email template. it worked for me, and was resolved within 12 hours of sending the email. I will of course pay the duty due but not the demanded 12£ which was 50% of the real value of the item shipped from India.

    Regards

    Kevin

  76. Thankyou! This has worked for me 4 times so far over the last 6 weeks. NO issues whatsoever. 🙂

  77. yes this worked for me too, the £12 charge was waived. Thank you so much!

  78. Worked for me, this is what I wrote:

    “This is in reference to invoice #xxxxxxxxx. After having bought something from the USA, I understood there would be the possibility of VAT due on receiving the item. I was however surprised to see an additional section for a clearance administration charge of £12. Since the USA is outside of the EU, I of course will pay the VAT due. However, I refuse to pay the clearance admin charge of £12, since at no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any terms and conditions which clearly stated that I would be liable for any such charges. At no point in the transaction and subsequent delivery was any contract for a clearance administration charge made between FedEx and myself. I paid the supplier for delivery, and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment. If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially. Therefore, I request that you update this invoice to reflect no admin fee, and once that has been done I’ll make immediate payment. Please let me know when this has been done.

    the reply was:
    “Thank you for your query regarding invoice xxxxxxxxx. Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 UKL has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 4.00 UKL. FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice. Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.”

    Thank you so much for advice on this AdamOwen.

  79. Worked for me 🙂

  80. worked for me mate cheers

  81. Just Confirmed today by Fede within 24 hours, thanks so much Adam

  82. Hey,
    Thought I’d give this a try and it worked!! So impressed! Thank you very much 🙂

  83. Worked for me for 1 paid and 1 unpaid invoice – TY

  84. WORKED !!! 🙂
    Hi Adam, Thanks for your blog post you saved me Fedex ripoff admin fee. I googled advancement fee and found your blog. I ordered a motherboard from China paid for airmail post. 12 days after delivery got a letter from fedex… They wanted £12 advancement fee and £9.80 vat. I wonder how many people just pay thinking its ALL customs fees. I emailed [email protected] in the afternoon using your template letter, the next morning fedex emailed me back giving me £12 credit and closed they invoice query. I paid the vat over the phone, using their automated payment system, the online version would not accept my invoice number ?????

    Cheers mate..

  85. Just tried it with your letter, got a response within 24 hours saying I had been credited for the £12. Awesome job, I didn’t think it was possible to get things like this refunded!

    Great job, thanks.

  86. Worked for me twice saved 24£ they cheeky no good ***** thanks for this saved me 24£ 24£ is 24£ at end of the day feel like I’m winning even tho paid 250£ in taxes n duty’s over 2 packages ,

  87. Dear Sir/Madam (Actually by name!)

    I am writing in response to your email that was sent to William Martin earlier this afternoon.

    I tried calling you and have left a voicemail with my contact details as I wished to clarify what the advancement fee charge is for and how it is billed based on the instructions of the shipper. As the advancement fee is deemed an import charge, if the recipient is selected by the shipper to receive the duties and tax invoice, this charge is levied against that invoice.

    I wish to confirm that as a gesture of goodwill on this occasion I have arranged for our back office billing team to credit the £12.00 advancement fee. A credit note should be supplied to you via email within three days for this amount.

    Should you have any further queries relating to the charge please do not hesitate to contact me. I have left my direct dial on the voicemail and it is also in my signature below.

    Regards

    Jim O’Brien
    Customer Relations Specialist / Team Leader UK & Ireland
    FedEx Europe, Middle East, Indian Subcontinent & Africa

    Tel: +44 (0) 2476 706 264

    I sent this to both email addresses: [email protected] then one to: [email protected].

    You know your stuff thank you sir for your talent it helped a lot! Also they should just scrap it altogether it is a half baked idea in my eyes. Hats off to you Adam.

  88. Thanks, Adam. I used your template (really helpful, thank you 🙂 ) and I just received this response:

    Dear Jon,

    Thank you for your query regarding invoice XXXXXXX

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00 gbp has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 9.17 gbp
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.

    Thank you for your assistance with this matter. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on XXXXXXXX

  89. Thanks, Adam.
    I sent this on 08/08/18:
    _________

    Dear FedEx,

    This email is in reference to your invoice # 385067965, addressed to my daughter, Rachel.

    When my daughter ordered branded clothing from Potlatch Ltd in Japan, we were advised we may need to pay VAT duty on receipt of the article. However, we were surprised to see an additional Fedex clearance administration charge of £12 on your invoice, received yesterday (6th Aug 2018).

    At no point in our transaction and subsequent product delivery were we made aware of any terms and conditions which stated that we would be liable for your clearance admin charges. We paid delivery charges to the supplier and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment. Surely if you need to make further charges for delivery or administration on goods you have shipped, they are due from the company who employed you to ship the goods initially.

    Please reissue us with your invoice, updated to reflect VAT only, and we’ll make immediate payment.

    Regards,
    ________

    We received the same reply posted frequently above, accepting VAT only to be paid on the original invoice. Also as stated above, the invoice payment wouldn’t go through online, but fine by phoning in card details.

    Maybe you can argue the VAT in some cases, but Potlatch Ltd had advised us at the time of purchase that VAT could be applicable, so didn’t try.

    Mike

  90. August 2018 – Fedex still trying it on. Sent a slightly modified version of the template and received the standard FedEx response:

    “Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 24.65GBP. ”

    Thanks a lot for your help Adam!

  91. Still working great in September. Thanks Adam

  92. Thanks for this Adam, worked for me too, so £12 saved.

  93. Worked a treat!

    Thank you, sir, for giving me to confidence to complain about this. It was particularly galling since the customs fees were only £4.66 in the first place!

  94. I just got a parcel from the USA
    Import duty £12.49
    Import tax £45.84
    Direct payment processing fee £32

    Didn’t no I would have to pay fedex an extra £32 what’s it for is that the advancement fee? As it’s not £12

    • Just got the invoice in the post
      Advancement fee £12
      Additional line items £20
      Not sure what the last one is for the items came from myus

  95. Hi Adam

    Many thanks for your blog advising against Fed-ex. Used your template and it worked for me. They obviously have a stereotype reply as it matches those already quoted. Scamming Bastards. Just waiting to see if the same thing happens with DHL as they are carrying the next parcel.

    Many thanks

    Richard

  96. Work for me but eventually. Got stock answer back from first email to which I sent another asking for copy of a signed agreement. Obviously they could not provide it and sent back yet another stock email. So I resent you template restating my argument to which they cancelled the fee. Beware though the claim my address has been put on a “hold” data base:

    “Thank you for your emailed response regarding Invoice xxxxxxxx.
    On this occasion we have cancelled the advancement fee as a one off goodwill gesture.
    We have also arranged a hold and notify on your address to request payment before delivery of any costs due at which point you can refuse the charges if you do not wish to pay and the package will be returned to sender.
    We hope this answers your query. Should you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us direct.”

  97. Thank you! Didn’t even occur to me to challenge the ‘advancement fee’ until I read this blogpost. I customised your email template and have just received this:

    “Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a partial credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of 5.65GBP.”

    Thanks again.

  98. Had a package from South Africa, no VaT attached only about 30 pound in value, received an invoice from Fedex 6 – 8 weeks after delivery requesting £18.65, 6.65 was customs and 12pound advancement. Sent letter and customs charge cheque which has been cashed and now received a debt collecting letter from Control Account for 12pounds plus 2.50 admin fee.
    sent back again waiting Oct 2018

  99. Hi thanks for the help in this got the £12 removed no issue it appears they have a standard format for replies so must be a regular occurrence for them. I would imagine there are so many people get caught on this and pay up. But thanks to you Adam I am not one of them

    Cheers.

  100. This worked for me for two invoices.
    Thanks so much, Adam 🙂

  101. Hi Adam,

    Thanks so much for the template. Sent it off to FedEx a couple of days ago and got a reply this morning. Happy to say that it worked and I now only have to pay the customs fees (which were less than the ‘advancement fee’).

    Thanks again!

  102. Hi,
    Thanks for the template.
    Just had a reply and the £12 has been waived.
    Disgusting how they do this / how many people will just pay it

  103. Thank you. Worked for me. Most grateful 😊

  104. This worked for me, was about to pay the invoice, had cheque written out ready to post. Feeling quite cross ,as my purchase from the States was going to cost £16.46 more than I had thought, I decided to find out online if it was a legal charge. Came across this fantastic blog, copied the template with a few adjustments and emailed it off, replied a couple of days later as per the above posts, it bought down my payment due to £4.46. Happy days! Shame on you Fedex for conning people out of this extra charge, and thank you Adam for sharing this with us all.

  105. Thanks Adam glad came across this as sent letter of got a reply back this morning saying the standard so no longer have to pay the £12 only the customs fees (which were less than the advancement fee)

    thanks again

  106. Cheers Adam
    Your template letter worked a treat , the £12 advancement fee was waived next day .
    Bandits !!

  107. Thank you so much! I came across your post when I was unexpectedly billed by FedEx 3 weeks after delivery. I tweaked your template to suit my details and yes, they waived the advancement fee of £12 so only had to pay the £4.65 VAT duty charge. You are awesome for sharing this!

  108. Can confirm this worked today (16/01/2019) and has saved me £12.
    Thankyou so much for the advice!

  109. Thank you so much for creating the template letter. I emailed it to FedEx with a couple of amendments and within 24 hours the bill was reduced from £16.77 to £4.77. Now just paying the VAT.

  110. Worked today (21/1/19). I just e-mailed them and got the reply a few days later. Weird because I tried it before Christmas by just paying the VAT and leaving a note on their website and then got sent a letter saying they were about to send my information to a debt collection agency so I got scared and quickly paid it. So this proves you just have to be persistent and make sure the message gets through.

  111. It worked! (UK – 24/Jan/2019) Thanks Adam!
    I received a text first, which I totally ignored because I expect a to receive a bill if I’m going to have to pay for something. On receipt of a posted bill, I saw the ‘Advancement Fee’ of £12, and then found your advice online.
    I emailed them a version of your letter, but I changed parts of it that I wasn’t comfortable with, and two days later they have wiped the ‘Advancement Fee’, no questions asked! Only the VAT to pay, which I’m happy to do :¬)
    Thanks again!

  112. Just to add my thanks to others, emailed the template on Monday – confirmation in email today (below) that the £12 fee has been cancelled.

    Having reviewed the above mentioned invoice, we can now confirm that a credit of 12.00GBP has been raised, leaving an amount still due on the invoice of xxxGBP.
    FedEx will not issue a revised invoice and therefore we look forward to receiving payment for the remaining balance on this invoice.
    Result!

  113. I tweaked it to reflect my received gift from the USA and they took of the £12 ! This along with your experience and all those on this site, that is is NOT a legitimate practice of business !!

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