This is a bit of a shot in the dark, but I know there are a fair number of expats and ex-expats on the board, so here goes:
I’m moving back to the US from Japan and the cheapest way I’ve found to get my books, etc., back to the US is through the Japanese mail. I know that since I’m a returning resident I don’t have to pay customs on household effects I’ve had abroad for at least a year.
I also (think I) know that I should fill out CBP form 3299, “Declaration for Free Entry of Unaccompanied Articles” to ensure the I don’t get dinged by customs when the boxes arrive. The thing is, though, that the form reads as if (unsurprisingly) it is meant more articles being sent by a shipping company. There’s a ton of information about the form on-line but that information is (again) provided by shipping companies. I can’t find any mention of this form being used with the mail.
Anyone know anything about this? I’m assuming that I can’t just mail my stuff and then (in the admittedly small chance) I get dinged by customs establish its duty-free status afterwards. I’m not moving anything large, it’s essentially all books but does also include my stamp collection which is worth a fair amount (and will be insured, obviously).