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Ecuador Customs

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by rcheing, Mar 14, 2016.

  1. rcheing

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    Hello everyone, I'm an Ecuadorian citizen living in the US. I'm planning on taking a flight down to Guayaquil, Ecuador and was planning on taking my P3 out there to film the Galapagos Islands as one of cousin lives there. I was wondering if any members have had any experience bringing their P3 to Ecuador. I have seen some members in Ecuador commenting in other customs thread but never anything specific to the country of Ecuador.

    Thanks in advance.

    Regards,
    Ricardo
     
  2. Omniround

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    There is a customs form to fill out when leaving the country. You state on the form what equipment you have, serial numbers, etc. The intent is when you bring the equipment back into the US they won't question that you are trying to avoid duty on something you bought outside the US.

    Customs in Ecuador was very lax when I flew in and out of these about 10 years ago.

    When I entered Jamaica, I did a similar form for them so they wouldn't question what I was leaving with. Of course their customs didn't give me a copy and they "lost" their copy. I felt they were trying to coerce me out of some $ but as my flight got nearer to departing and they saw I wasn't going to be intimidated they let me go.

    These examples are expensive camera equipment but the same thing should apply to other expensive, serialized equipment.
     
  3. rcheing

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    Thanks, didn't even think about the form leaving the US. I just flew out to Ecuador in December of 2015 with my Nikon D3300, lenses and a GoPro camera and did not have an issue entering Ecuador. However, I keep reading that some countries impose an import tax on quads. In Ecuador, I believe these can be as much as 30% the value of the item. Though, it is in my opinion that the P3 be classed in the same category as my Nikon, just as SquareTrade placed them in the past for insurance purposes.
     
  4. Omniround

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    I haven't heard of a duty specific to drones. Would be surprised if that was actual law vs. a greed customs agent.

    Here is the info for what you need to do when leaving the US:
    Registering equipment, computer, camera, laptops, etc. prior to traveling

    They suggest you contact the embassy or consulate here before leaving to avoid surprises on the other end:

    " To determine the requirements for entering a foreign country with these items, you will need to contact the Embassy or Consulate (of the country in question) nearest you."
     
  5. cheebs

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    I know for sure they won't let you fly in the Galapagos. There's a general ban on UAVs on all of the islands. I've also read of people having trouble coming into Guayaquil and getting their drones seized and then returned upon leaving. It really depends on who you get at the exit and what mood they're in.
     
  6. rcheing

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    Not sure if they updated the Galapagos ban, but I was thinking they do because of this page at the Galapagos Conservancy site and I also saw this Youtube video. However things are always changing on the fly in Ecuador so I wanted to hear member's experience. The seizing of the drone in Guayaquil in particular worries me a lot.
     
  7. dos_ovnis

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    I live in Ecuador and I don't know if you can fly in Galapagos, but they will MOST LIKELY make you pay the import taxes for the drone which can be up to 100% of the retail price, be very careful! Even though you don't live in Ecuador and you will take it back to the US the customs here are trying to find an excuse to charge everyone whatever they can. Also you mention that you are an Ecuadorian citizen so that could play against you too. As you probably know in Ecuador they are trying to stop imports for various economic reasons so they charge stupid taxes on most items, even though it is ridiculous for your personal items and specially for non-citizens who come here for vacation. I bought my P3A in Ecuador (double the US price) and I took it to my home country for vacation and I had to declare it as a "temporary export" and pay $40 for a certificate so when I came back to Ecuador I wouldn't have to pay the taxes again even though I already have the invoice that says I bought it in Ecuador so it already payed all their import taxes.



    In Quito when you pass customs to leave the immigration area they x-ray ALL your bags, and they found my drone. Luckily I did the procedure mentioned before so I had all the paperwork and didn't have to pay the taxes again. I asked the customs agent how much would I have to pay if I didn't do the paperwork and he said close to 100%. I also told him why they let you bring in a camera, laptop, ipad, etc with no problem but not the drone, and he said they don't consider the drone a camera, so they don't treat it as part of your personal items. Also there's no chance you will pass with luck without them finding it. When I put my bags on the x-ray they immediately recognised the item in my bag, they told me you are carrying a drone in your bag (they didn't even ask what I was carrying).

    Look at this post too:
    Traveling with Phantom : custom policies
    Also look at post #31, they didn't allow flying in Galapagos.


    Maybe if you are a pro photographer/videographer and are working with your drone and have a contract or something to show them that it is an instrument for your line work you MIGHT have a chance, if not be ready to pay.
     
  8. Omniround

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    This is a problem begging for a solution....I have IT!!! International Phantom Network! Around the globe Phantom owners can rent out their Phantoms. The renter would have to put down two payments. One would be some sort of certified funds for an agreed upon value of whatever it is they are renting, and then the second payment is the rental fee itself. Based on need and greed, each renter can name their price, haggling is expected.
     
  9. rcheing

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    I think you're onto something! Checked the classifieds and there is someone wanting to rent a battery in Phoenix, AZ!!!
     
  10. Omniround

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    I told him to go to the classifies and to the southwest forum as he posted his request in the support forum which wasn't the best fit for his ad.
     
  11. rcheing

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    There was a terrible earthquake in Ecuador this week. However, this video of a drone capturing footage of a convoy effort to supply needed items to the affected areas has me curious.

    The video is shot at a warehouse located at Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport (the main airport in Guayaquil, Ecuador) along the perimeter of the main runway there. While there was no visible air traffic, it makes me question the drone regulations in my country.

     
  12. MartyPilot

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    I may be lucky but I've brought my Phantom 3 from Canada to Ecuador without problems. Here's what was my day arround getting it "IN"

    I was carrying it in a black GPC Flight Case
    It was locked using 2 "NOT TSA" padlocks because the TSA that they where selling in my town where all too small to fit ...

    In canada, they (Copa) see that pelican plastic case and asked me what it was. I said "Aerial Video Camera Platform". I don't remember if I used the word "Drone"

    They tell me to go to the "OverSized" section to get it scanned and properly tagged and they put it through a seperate treatment way (as it was already scanned I would think ..)

    When we connected in Panama, we didn't touch our luggages so I don't know where it goes and if it had been scanned again

    When we arrived in Guayaquil on april 19th, we get to the customs and there is a place where they are filtering peoples and I came to be in the "let pass" filtering categories so I don't had been questionned or checked by the customs guys ... so maybe I've been lucky

    I hope that will be so easy at my exit but I'm carrying my canadian invoice for that bird with me in case of problems