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BREXIT: The UK has left the EU 


Brexit - Union Jack and European Union Flags 

The UK officially left the European Union on 31 December 2020. What does that mean for you as a customer?


UK Customers:

Billingham is based in the UK, therefore if you are in the United Kingdom nothing will change for you. You will be charged British VAT upfront on our website and will not have to pay anything extra upon delivery.


EU Customers:

If you are in the European Union and place an order on our website you will NOT be charged British VAT.

You will be charged local VAT (for example 20% in France, 19% in Germany) when your order arrives, plus an administration charge (averagely £10-£19) added by UPS. You will be asked to pay for this by UPS before your order is delivered.


USA customers:

Any advice on this page does not apply to the USA. 

If you are ordering from, your order will be shipped from California within the United States therefore no Brexit delays or advice will apply.


Hong Kong Customers:

There are no customs fees (or administration charges) on orders sent to Hong Kong.


Rest of World Customers:

If you are outside of the EU/UK/USA, nothing has changed. You will NOT be charged British VAT but you will be subject to customs charges (and a UPS administration charge) on arrival before your order is delivered by the courier.


Common Questions

How do I know if I am looking at prices on your website without British VAT?

The product pages on our website show prices including 20% British VAT. However, when you look in your cart, prices will display without VAT.

Once you have entered your address in the checkout, VAT will automatically be calculated based on your shipping address and you will therefore be charged the correct amount of British VAT (20% for deliveries to the United Kingdom or Isle of Man - 0% everywhere else).


I thought the UK/EU had a free trade deal?

Yes they do, but that just means that there are no 'tariffs' to pay on goods exported between UK and EU.

VAT is different, and now British VAT isn't being charged local VAT (20% in France, 19% in Germany etc) must be paid instead on delivery.

Before Brexit we charged British VAT on orders to the EU - this meant local VAT then didn't have to be paid on delivery.


How much is the UPS administration charge?

This is usually between £10 and £19 depending on the value of the order and the destination country (very large orders of multiple bags might be more than this).


Are you experiencing any delays to deliveries within the EU?

For most countries there is little or no delay - usually 2-3 days extra at most. However, some shipments to Spain are getting delayed by an extra 1-3 weeks. We expect this situation to resolve soon once UPS and the countries concerned refine their procedures.


I want to have a shipment delivered to friends or family in the United Kingdom. Why is the checkout adding 20% VAT to the price?

VAT is calculated based on the shipping address, rather than the billing address. Under British law, we have to charge British VAT (an extra 20%) on all shipments delivered to the UK. This applies even if the billing address is outside the United Kingdom.

British VAT is not charged on shipments delivered outside the UK - USA, Hong Kong, Canada, China etc.


If you have any further questions please contact us at


You can find extra information on delivery and taxes here:



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