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Old February 23rd, 2008, 09:01 AM   #16
Inner Circle
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,152
Originally Posted by Ernest House View Post
How anal do these inspections get? When I did my Carnet, I listed "Camcorder and Batteries" and said it was three pieces (I have two batteries). However, when I packed my camcorder, the lens shade and strap came off so technically, it's now 5 pieces. Are they going to get that picky?
They'll want the serial numbers listed and every item that isn't a built in part of camera - that includes the equipment cases and cables. They can get picky, but the most that usually happens is they ask you to show them something on the carnet list.

We got stopped once by a keen customs officer because the 1/4" audio tapes weren't on the carnet list, a more senior customs officer asked if they were used. He was told they were the sound rushes and he passed them as used tapes.
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Old March 1st, 2008, 04:01 PM   #17
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Boca Raton, FL
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Just a followup to say LAX and Singapore processing were a breeze. LAX had me open the ATA case and wanted to see the camera. SG just did the paperwork. We'll see how it goes in S'hai.
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Old March 1st, 2008, 05:34 PM   #18
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Let us know Ernest! I did a trip to China and then Tibet and didn't know about carnet and the Chinese held our gear for 4 days while we hired a customs broker and made a deposit on the gear. Not fun. We got everything back at the end but had to make major changes to travel plans. In India they stopped us but we were able to "persuade" the customs official to let us through. Europe was no prob. This was with an HVX package and some Kino Divas in a flight case. Lesson is: get carnet. Good luck!

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Old March 8th, 2008, 05:08 AM   #19
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Location: Boca Raton, FL
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One more followup from the road...Leaving Singapore, the Carnet was handled in the same office as the "GST Refund" and not customs. I was glad I had asked upon arrival.

I entered CN via PVG airport in Shanghai. I noticed the customs office next to the Red Line so I went there and they handled the Carnet. There was no inspection, just filling out the paperwork and stamping of the Carnet.

I have to say I'm glad to have the Carnet for the peace of mind of getting through these ports of call and all the different regulations they have. One factor is in fact my mind is typically mush after these long flights and the Carnet makes it pretty much mindless.
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Old March 15th, 2008, 09:30 AM   #20
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Location: Boca Raton, FL
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Final followup. Entering and exiting Shanghai was strictly an exercise in paperwork. I was unable to get the carnet processed until it was within 2 and a half hours of the flight. This may be universally true but it was inconvenient to have planned 4 hours to get things done and having it compressed to 2 and a half.

Returning to LAX was a zoo. They are under capacity and because of it was unable to make my connection with a 3 and a half our layover so beware.

In the final analysis, the only customs personel that did any kind of inspection was the departing LAX officer. All told, I was still glad I had it as there was enough to worry about without being concerned about clearing customs. Also, in all cases where I entered a country (except LAX where the carnet processing is done in the red line), the carnet processing was done before hitting the red/green line. With a stamped carnet in hand, I went thru the green line. Not sure if that was right or not but....
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