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  1. #51
    Member Sergeant Major's Avatar
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    In the army we call this a cluster f uck.
    I don't have too many watches! I have too few wrists!

  2. #52
    Member JacobC's Avatar
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by DowningB View Post
    That would be on me since I specifically asked Stowa to put the crocodile strap on the watch. Obviously had I known that it could cause an issue with Customs, I wouldn't have done it. I assume that had Stowa known they would have warned me.

    Lesson learned, at least on my end. From now on, I'll just have all my watches internationally shipped with calf leather--apparently F&W doesn't care about little baby cows, lol--and purchase an alligator strap locally.

    Day 28
    Ahh I see. It's gotten to the point where some of my favorite strap makers won't even sell you anything but cow and house leathers just due to all the problems


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  3. #53
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by DowningB View Post
    Update: Yesterday the Fed Ex rep provided Sarah with Fish & Wildlife contact info. For probably the first time ever he didn't tell us that the package had been approved to return to sender, lol, so I'm hoping this means it's still in Memphis.

    Sarah said she emailed F&W.

    Day 27.
    It's interesting that when I was buying my Antea KS I wanted an alligator strap but there was a disclaimer that they couldn't send it to the United States so I decided on the regular strap. I just looked on their website and there aren't any warnings or anything like that written anymore.
    Last edited by nathantw666; 1 Week Ago at 05:02.

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  5. #54
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Wow, I so feel for you, what a bummer . . . just had a hold up of a Dornblueth watch at Memphis (FedEx) though it was for only for about a week. I had to provide an importer's form/statement/whatever which I was finally able to get from customs but even with this happening during Christmas week it got sorted fairly rapidly. Still, I was spitting curses at the powers that be for the short hold up and cannot imagine your wait time . . .
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  6. #55
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by JacobC View Post
    Ahh I see. It's gotten to the point where some of my favorite strap makers won't even sell you anything but cow and house leathers just due to all the problems


    Instagram @open_escapement
    I recently purchased a Longines and wasn't happy with the cow leather strap, so I trotted right down to my local watch shop and ordered a very nice alligator strap for it. I don't know if this particular alligator was home-grown or if the vendor had already taken care of any Cites paperwork, but in any case the strap arrived a few days later with no hassles.

    I had no idea that a croc strap on an internationally shipped watch could cause such a fuss.

    Hopefully Sarah hears back from Fish & Wildlife soon.

    Day 28.

  7. #56
    Member JacobC's Avatar
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by DowningB View Post
    I recently purchased a Longines and wasn't happy with the cow leather strap, so I trotted right down to my local watch shop and ordered a very nice alligator strap for it. I don't know if this particular alligator was home-grown or if the vendor had already taken care of any Cites paperwork, but in any case the strap arrived a few days later with no hassles.

    I had no idea that a croc strap on an internationally shipped watch could cause such a fuss.

    Hopefully Sarah hears back from Fish & Wildlife soon.

    Day 28.
    AFAIK it's importing it that's the problem, unless you live in California which I believe just banned the sale of a lot of "exotic" leathers domestically. I'm not that up to date on it anymore.

    Hopefully you hear back soon.


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  8. #57
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    I got up on Wednesday, New Years day, ordered a new Scurfa watch from the UK, they shipped it on Thursday the second, it left England Friday, tracked it thru US customs on Sat and Sun from entry at New York then to Cincinnati, it left Cincinnati at 1 am this morning and was in Virginia at 6 am and then DHL knocked on my door this morning around 9:30 am with the watch. /humblebrag

    No gators were killed in the manufacturing of my band (not that I would have been opposed to it).
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  9. #58
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    I wanted a pair crocodile skin cowboy boots in 2016. Cowboy boots from US (and Mexican/Canadian) manufacturers are generally a lot more expensive in Australia then they are in the US so I generally order boots from a major US based western outfitter. But... ...they were not able to ship exotic skin boots to Australia even though I could (and did) but the exact same boots from an Australian store for a lot more. Looking further into this I found that they couldn't even ship kangaroo skin boots to Australia even though thats where the skins came from in the first place (and yes, the same boots could be bought here). So I guess there is one set of rules for individuals and another set for importers.
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  10. #59
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by AardnoldArrdvark View Post
    So I guess there is one set of rules for individuals and another set for importers.
    That was part of the problem here. The Fed Ex rep kept telling me that as the importer I needed to submit the proper paperwork. I kept responding that I'm not a professional importer, I'm just a guy looking to buy a German watch so I had no clue what submitting the proper paperwork meant. I offered to give it a try if he would just fill in the details of who, what, where, when and how. The Fed Ex rep is a man of few words as all of his emails have been ten words or less, and even though I always respond to his emails right away he rarely sends more than one email every couple of days. For a couple of weeks even though Sarah and I kept asking he never offered an explanation of the paperwork details. Finally about a week ago he said Fish & Wildlife had not received the original cites. Aha, a clue!

    Luckily, Sarah from Stowa jumped on that. As a professional exporter, she apparently is familiar with the details and sent F&W an email along with what I assume is the "proper paperwork." That was last week.

    This morning, I received a copy of her email to the Fed Ex rep asking if there are any updates. No response yet. At least he's quit telling us that the package has been approved for return. Just to be safe, I'm sure, Sarah asked him once again not to return the package.

    Day 29.
    Last edited by DowningB; 1 Week Ago at 18:39.

  11. #60
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    Re: How long does US Customs get to play with my new watch?

    I feel your pain, DowningB, and hope this resolves soon in your favor.

    A year ago I bought a Credor from Japan. The AD shipped the crocodile band separately in case it was flagged as a CITES issue (the last thing I'd want is a Customs agent trying to take the strap off a Credor gem, can you say 'mangled lugs'?).

    Earlier this year I bought a Damasko DK105 that normally comes with an alligator strap - I asked the AD (WatchMann!) to order it with a Hirsch Paul leather strap instead, to avoid a Customs holdup.

    I'm sure the Stowa will be worth it - hang in there!
    JacobC likes this.
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