The Odyssey of a bouzouki

A/I Stathopoulos remains in NY for 3rd week!

As my A/I Stathopoulos bouzouki undergoing the 4th week (!) in transit, and as the USPS Tracking status states for the last 3 weeks:

- Processed Through Sort Facility ISC NEW YORK NY(USPS)
- Inbound Into US Customs NEW YORK NY,

I thought to write and share with all of you, some important and interesting information I collected regarding the route, usually musical instruments form Greece follow through JFK International  Airport in NY, to their final destination.

As a major international point of entry for both people and goods, John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) has a number of federal offices in and around its facilities.

1. Mail entering the United States from abroad first arrives at a U.S. Postal Service Sorting Facility.

Postal Service Sorting Facilities

2. The Postal Service then sends packages to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) for examination and to assess duty, if any is owed.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (JFK Area)
Building 77
JFK International Airport
Jamaica, NY 11430
(718) 487-2714

If CBP re-sealed a package due to examination, colored tape with the words "Examined by CBP" would be used.

Customs and Border Protection officer inspects a package inside the John F. Kennedy
International Airport mailroom. (Photo Credit: National Geographic Television)

Examined by CBP
If CBP has detained your package for some reason (for example, lack of a proper invoice, bill of sale, or other documentation, a possible trademark violation, or if the package requires a formal entry) the CBP International Mail Branch holding it will notify you of the reason for detention (in writing) and how you can get it released.
When you have fulfilled the requirements necessary to effect release, CBP will clear the package, note how much duty is owed, and return it to the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) for delivery. Usually, you will receive notification in a matter of days, but it can take as long as 30-45 days.

If your package is long overdue or you think it may be lost in the mail, you should contact your local post office and request that a Parcel Tracer action be initiated to locate it. The Post Office often advises callers to contact CBP, however CBP do not track packages into or out of their facilities, and unless you have a detention notice from CBP with a number to refer to when you call, they will not be able to locate your package even if it is being held by CBP.

In case a decision made by the  CBP inspector for the charge of duty on your musical instrument then the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States  for the 2014 year is:

9202 Other string musical instruments (for example, guitars, violins, harps):
9202.10.00 00 Played with a bow. . . . . . . . . . . No.. . . . . . 3.2% Free (A,AU,BH,CA, 37.5%

9202.90 Other:

9202.90.20 00 Valued not over $100 each, excluding the value
of the case. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . No.. . . . . . 4.5% Free (A,AU,BH,CA, 40%

9202.90.40 00 Other.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . No.. . . . . . 8.7% Free (A,AU,BH,CA, 40%

9202.90.60 00 Other.. . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . No.. . . . . . 4.6% Free (A,AU,BH,CA, 40%

3.If the inspector from  CBP has reasonable suspicion that your musical instrument carries materials which are under the protection by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) , then another federal office takes over the investigation.

Its name:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
70 East Sunrise Highway
Valley Stream, NY 11581
(516) 825-3950 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wildlife inspectors at JFK and other major ports of entry into the country inspect shipments of wildlife and wildlife products to uphold federal conservation laws and to prevent illegal trafficking.
If the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service inspector finds that your musical instrument falls under CITES violation, then your musical instrument will be confiscated and seized for good!

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service inspector

4. When your package clears from above agencies , then it will be send back to  US Postal Services for final delivery in front of your door.


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