RECEIPTS & INVENTORIES
For on-line purchases and all new items Costa Rica requires that a "valid receipt" be submitted electronically at the time of declaration. They will accept them in PDF format.
WHAT IS A "VALID" RECEIPT?
In CR a valid receipt will almost always show either a method of payment or a balance owing of zero.
Customs wants to know that the receipt you are presenting is actually for the item you are importing. An "Order Confirmation" can be had without ever paying a penny. For example, a customer could print an order confirmation for a $300 BBQ as a "receipt" for their $2,000 stainless, built-in grill and then cancel their $300 order.
Most on-line vendors will send you the receipt by email. In such cases the particular email you need to submit will likely be, as noted above, the one that shows the method of payment or a balance of zero. In other cases, most notably Amazon, the vendor will make the receipt easily available in your account on their website. Rarely you may need to contact the vendors customer service department for a receipt marked paid.
HOW TO SUBMIT
Receipts can be easily submitted using our new "Receipt & Inventory Form". Receipts should be in PDF format.
For repacked boxes Costa Rica requires that a detailed inventory with line item valuations be submitted electronically at the time of declaration. They will accept them in PDF format or Microsoft Excel.
WHAT IS A "DETAILED" INVENTORY?
CR Customs expects a list of virtually everything in a repacked package. It is not necessary to count your forks however. It is sufficient to simply say "flatware set". On the other hand, your cookware would best be listed as "10 pots & pans with lids". Other examples might be "5 women's tops" or "assorted hand tools, rasps, clamps, screwdrivers, etc." or "assorted electronic cables, chargers and adapters/connectors". Electric tools and small kitchen appliances should be individually listed as should all consumer electronics (TVs, stereos, computers, monitors, UPS backup, etc.).
Each line item must be accompanied by a declared value. Most people simply use garage sale prices. If that doesn't suit you then put what it is worth to you, but it is important that you be realistic in your declarations.
Any new items in your repack must be valued at the receipt value and the receipt must be submitted electronically along with the inventory. Please see the receipts discussion in the other column for more details.
Unfortunately there is no always-right answer to any of this. We just want customs to be comfortable that you and not hiding any value. So, in general, more detail is better