Which Brands Are More Expensive to Purchase in Australia?

Information verified correct on December 6th, 2016

If you've travelled overseas or shopped from international websites, you'll know just about every brand is cheaper overseas.

finder.com.au had produced an ever-growing list of brands that insist of having their products more expensive in Australia. Whatever the reason, whether it's GST, more expensive housing, distance from the rest-of-the-world or our higher cost living, practice your due diligence to see if you can find these brands cheaper elsewhere.

With the 'Netflix Tax' on the way, Australians will, yet again, be paying more than other countries for entertainment.

For the self-proclaimed 'lucky country' obsessed with a 'fair go', us Aussies sure have a bad habit of being ripped off on overseas imports. Once upon a time, it was only tangible goods that would be taxed, but these days even digital products are subject to the import tax and soon we’ll be paying more for streaming services thanks to Joe Hockey’s proposed 'Netflix Tax'.

And it's not just imports, three-hour parking in Sydney costs more than in London or New York, the average cost of ticket to the movies is higher than New Zealand, France and Germany and the same can be said for books and other digital media.

Let’s take a look at the many ways Australians are charged more for the same product.

What’s the difference between duty and GST?

Whereas the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is levied by the Australian Tax Office (ATO), duty is a tariff imposed by Australian Customs and Border Protection Service on goods imported to Australia.

How is duty calculated?

Depending on the tariff classification of your goods, duty rates payable fluctuate. These classifications are made to comply with The Customs Tariff Act 1995, which provides duty rates, interpretive rules, tariff classifications and information on preference schemes.

How is GST calculated on imports?

The Goods and Services Tax must be applied to imported goods also (with a few exemptions, mainly involving foodstuffs, medical aids and imports that qualify for duty concessions) .

GST is charged at 10% of the taxable importation value (see below).

How are duties and taxes applied to good I have purchased from the internet?

Besides alcohol and tobacco, low value consignments (anything under $1000 AUD) are free of Customs duty and taxes. Anything over that amount will be assessed and charged anywhere between 0% and 10% in duty rates. Most of the time, goods are taxed at 10% for GST and an additional 5% for import duty. The GST of 10% is calculated of the price paid for the goods, duty and the cost of freight and insurance.

Though we’re safe from being taxed on anything below $1000 AUD for now, Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg will soon be appealing to state treasurers to lower the threshold. Whereas his previous attempts at this have aimed at a $500 figure, many believe that his next target will be much more ambitious, possibly within the same ballpark as Canadians’, who are taxed for any import above $20.

List of brands that are more expensive in Australia

Jewellery and FashionCosmetics and personal carePublished MediaClothes, sporting equipment and toysSoftware and AppsComputer and electrical goodsOther products
GAPMACHachette Book GroupBrooks2K GamesBoseAlfa Romeo
L'OrealWarner Bros.BurtonActivision BlizzardDick SmithAston Martin
RevlonCarharttAdobeGibsonBentley
ClarksAppleGoProBig W
DickiesBethesdaHarvey NormanBMW
Doc MartensCodemastersPentaxDucati
GAPDeep SilverPolaroidFerrari
HasbroEAGames Workshop
Hype DCEB GamesFoxtel
LegoHumble StoreHarley Davidson
Levi'sOzgameshopHerman Miller Furniture
PlaypusNintendoHolden
PlaymatesNamco BandaiLamborghini
RideSEGAMercedes
SalomonSonyYamaha
Top ShopSquare Enix
Steam
Ubisoft
US PSN Store
US Xbox Store
Rockstar Games
Dungeon Crawl
Autodesk
Gamestraders

How much more are you paying?

BrandItemPrice in AustraliaPrice in AmericaAUDDifference
AppleMacbook Air Notebook 13 inch$1,399.00$1,088.91$1,378.371.47%
American ApparelLow Top Sneaker$108.00$81.75$103.484.18%
Games-workshopYarrick: The Pyres of Armageddon$42.00$30.52$38.638.02%
New BalanceHigh Roller 574$120.00$87.19$110.378.03%
NikeFree 5.0$160.00$109.00$137.9713.77%
Tiffany and Co.Diamond Wedding Band$3,900.00$2,643.25$3,345.8914.21%
IkeaHemnes Bed Frame$339.00$225.87$285.9115.66%
Razer BladePro$3,799.95$2,506.99$3,173.4016.49%
Microsoftxbox games (Halo 5: Guardians for Xbox One)$99.95$65.39$82.7717.19%
KitchenAidStand Mixer (KSM7581 Bowl-Lift Stand Mixers)$1,199.00$762.99$965.8119.45%
DellAlienware 13$1,599.00$979.91$1,240.3922.43%
Harley DavidsonMotorcycle (Iron 883)$14,995.00$9,154.91$11,588.4922.72%
LenovoL440 Laptop$1,079.10$656.29$830.7523.01%
KitchenAidStand Mixer$779.00$468.69$593.2823.84%
Mercedes BenzE250$106,676.85$58,396.75$73,919.9430.71%
LexusIS250$80,810.00$43,747.15$55,376.1431.47%
BMWBYO Car$144,974.16$77,444.50$98,031.0132.38%
Ticket to Ride EuropeBoardgames$80.00$40.32$51.0436.20%
MAC cosmeticsLipstick$36.00$17.44$22.0838.68%
Onkyo TX-NR636Network AV Receiver$1,299.00$543.91$688.4947.00%
MeguiarsCar care product (Deep Crystal® System Polish)$21.95$8.71$11.0249.78%
Levi'sJeans$139.95$54.50$68.9950.71%
Trend MicroAnti-virus (premium security)$149.90$54.45$68.9254.02%
Assumptions
  • 10% GST
  • 9% tax on American goods
  • 0.79 USD = 1 AUD

Best selling online products (local and overseas)

RankBest selling products from local websitesNumber of Australians who purchased (in the last 4 weeks)RankBest selling products from overseas websitesNumber of Australians who purchased (in the last 4 weeks)
10Men’s clothing277,00010Shoes/footwear150,000
9Alcohol278,0009Crafts/hobbies188,000
8Homewares and Manchester309,0008Travel (tickets/accom)200,000
7Supermarket shopping354,0007Men’s clothing229,000
6Music to download358,0006Computer accessories and software253,000
5Books383,0005Video games and consoles256,000
4Women’s clothing545,0004Music to download327,000
3Fast food/meals569,0003Women's clothing369,000
2Travel (tickets/accom)785,0002Books528,000
1Shows, movie tickets and events830,0001eBooks557,000

Australia's top 25 imports, goods and services

RankBest selling products from local websitesNumber of Australians who purchased (in the last 4 weeks)RankBest selling products from overseas websitesNumber of Australians who purchased (in the last 4 weeks)
10Men’s clothing277,00010Shoes/footwear150,000
9Alcohol278,0009Crafts/hobbies188,000
8Homewares and Manchester309,0008Travel (tickets/accom)200,000
7Supermarket shopping354,0007Men’s clothing229,000
6Music to download358,0006Computer accessories and software253,000
5Books383,0005Video games and consoles256,000
4Women’s clothing545,0004Music to download327,000
3Fast food/meals569,0003Women's clothing369,000
2Travel (tickets/accom)785,0002Books528,000
1Shows, movie tickets and events830,0001eBooks557,000
Know more brands that we need to add to the list? Let us know

Post a comment below to let us know about your experience. Have you been ripped off because you live in Australia?

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