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How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

2 posts
1 review
How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

Hello all,

I'm flying from the U.S. with an engagement ring valued at about $5000. Because this is considered "goods exceeding R5000", the SARS guide suggests declaring it. Yet, my girlfriend will be traveling alongside me, and I would like to propose to her while we are in SA -- and keep it a secret until the special moment. How on earth do I declare the ring without her seeing? I do have to declare my medications coming in, so nonetheless, I will be filling out the TC-01 card.

Also, it appears if I bring a valuable into the country, customs may have me pay a 20% fee, that they refund upon exporting the good back to my home. That's $1000 deposit and I certainly canNOT afford that. Should I try to hide the ring?! Eek.

Please advise!

18 replies to this topic
Vienna
Level Contributor
184 posts
28 reviews
11. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

and what exactely is YOUR problem? Just let people ask what they want to ask, it is harmless. This forum is one of the nicest I have come across and yes, I should have ignored your posts, but no, I won't. Don't spoil things for people please, at least someone is happy and gets engaged.

Leigh-on Sea...
Level Contributor
4,638 posts
6 reviews
12. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

sars.gov.za/ClientSegments/Customs-Excise/Tr…

is this something new then?

I have never had to complete a customs form on entering SA, my husband does bring in a 2 months supply of opoids used for Pain Management. He always bring them in the original packaging together with a letter from his Pain Management Consultant and GP . To date, no one has ever asked to see the documents.

my son in law proposed with a plastic, tacky ring in Las Vegas and presented the real item on the return home. It seems to have not got in the way of romance as, 10 years on, a month ago they presented me with my first grandchild.

Francoise,

you raise an interesting point, I always appreciate advice given by locals .

Are you saying that women in SA do not wear their expensive engagement rings on a daily basis? I see many well heeled young women around, especially in Camps Bay. My daughter always wears her

engagement and eternity rings ( with many diamonds) in SA . I have given no thought of her being at risk of being robbed of the rings , I am more concerned about them being lost e.g.slipping off in the sea or swimming pool, being left on a sink etc.

Long Island, New...
Level Contributor
6,594 posts
21 reviews
13. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

I don’t think it’s new, gem. They’re narcotics so are “controlled substances”. No different than heroine except the drs are allowed to prescribe. I’m not sure, since they are on the prohibited list, how they handle it if declared. I’d play dumb and do as you do, bring it with all the paperwork.

I travel everywhere with or without my engagement ring. It never occurs to me to worry about it. It’s not like a necklace that is easy to grab. Do men worry about watches? Doubtful. If I wore a fake, how would a petty theif know it was fake?

Washington DC...
Level Contributor
4,783 posts
13 reviews
14. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

Regarding the question of narcotics and opioids, I'm guessing, after having read the list of prohibited items, that "Narcotics and habit-forming drugs" refers specifically to illicit drugs and their nonmedical uses (that's a common definition, but admittedly not the only one) and "in any form" refers to the physical characteristics (e.g., leaf, stem, extract, salt, ester, free acid) and not to an approved dosage form.

The information in the cite in Post 12, it seems to me, can easily be read to mean that one's prescribed medications (up to three months worth) are neither prohibited nor restricted...meaning, in fact, there is no need to declare them. The proof of the pudding it seems to me is that after 10 years reading these forums I've yet to read anyone having an issue with their prescribed medications. And let's face it, millions of us have entered SA carrying pain killers, cough medicine and whatever else containing opioids.

Edited: 01 February 2018, 16:08
Berkhamsted, United...
Level Contributor
1,804 posts
196 reviews
15. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

There used to be customs forms a few years ago, then they disappeared. My Googling suggest that they brought it back again at the end of 2017. That doesn’t mean automatically mean that the goods you have to declare has changed - just the way you declare them.

And I agree with a previous poster that plenty of very expensive looking jewellery is seen in Cape Town.

Edited: 01 February 2018, 18:10
Level Contributor
91 posts
15 reviews
16. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

Take it. Make sure you have it insured.

I hope she says YES!

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
265 posts
17. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

Only take what you can afford to lose when travelling anywhere. I had over 90k rands worth of stuff stolen in SA. Never had a problem in over 20 other countries. Roll the dice. Your choice.

Long Island, New...
Level Contributor
6,594 posts
21 reviews
18. Re: How NOT to ruin surprise of engagement ring if declaring it?

Why would anyone have R90k worth of stuff on holiday? Unless it’s a crazy lens/camera that should be insured for theft or damage everywhere.

But that does remind me - a ring that expensive should be insured. Stuff happens, even in your backyard.

https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/one-carrot-dia…

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