How To Buy a Laptop or Smartphone from USA to India

Many people want to buy electronic products from the USA and have them shipped to India because of price differences (and sometimes better quality products). I get it. But the process of buying something from the USA to India isn’t easy. I’ve documented it here. For those of you looking to buy a laptop or smartphone from the USA to India, here are the guidelines.

How to buy a laptop from the USA to India?

First off, let me tell you that if you have someone living in the USA that is your friend or relative, then use them. They can be of big help. I’ll explain why.

My recommended way of buying a laptop from the USA to India is via Amazon. They have international shipping on many eligible products and it makes the whole process so much easy. Why? Go read this article as to what kind of hurdles you have to face when importing something from the USA to India. There are all kinds of things such as shipping address problems, customs duties, delayed shipment, etc.

With Amazon global shipping, these problems still exist, but Amazon will handle it for you, so you don’t have to worry over many things. You just have to order the product online, provide your international shipping address (Indian address), pay the customs duty, and wait for the product to show up at your doorstep.

So, let’s say you found a nice laptop that you need to buy. Let’s see how you can buy the laptop from the US and get it shipped to India.

Jump to How to ship iPhone from the USA to India here.

Step 1 – Find “International Shipping / Amazon Global” eligible laptops 

How To Buy Laptop USA to India

You do this by choosing the “international shipping” or “Amazon Global Eligible” toggle on t he left hand side. (See picture)

Step 2 – Compare the price and check out

How To Buy a Laptop or Smartphone from USA to India

Step 3 – Provide shipping address to Indian and give your KYC number

How To Buy a Laptop or Smartphone from USA to India

In check out, change the default address and add a new one, which is your international one (India). Don’t forget to add your KYC number (Packages will not clear customs without the recipient’s valid KYC ID Number. Please enter a valid Driver’s License, Voter ID, 16-digit Aadhaar Card or 10-character PAN Card number. The ID Number will be shared with Amazon’s carriers who will use it for KYC and customs clearance. They may reach out to you to collect your proof of address when necessary.

Step 4 – Checkout!

Once you fill in your details, you will be able to checkout like normal and make a payment. During this step, Amazon will ask you for preferred shipping and tell you an estimated customs duty.

For example, Amazon Global has three shipping options, and the price changes for each type. (See screenshot below)

– AmazonGlobal Standard Shipping (averages 9-12 business days)
– AmazonGlobal Expedited Shipping (averages 5-10 business days)
– AmazonGlobal Priority Shipping (averages 2-4 business days)


So, there you have it. Just by paying some additional shipping charges + customs duty, you can get rid of all the problems you have to go through like I mentioned here > How to buy things from USA to India.

Restrictions on what you can buy from USA to India

Keep in mind that, some items are restricted from Global shipping. Like cell jammers, plant products, etc. See the full list here. Also, there are restricted products by size. Standard shipping to certain regions is limited by the overall shipping size which includes a maximum length or girth of 108 inches and a maximum weight of 70 lbs.

How to buy iPhone X from USA & ship it to India?

Now, that the iPhone X has launched, I know many of you will be wondering how to buy one and get it shipped to India. Of course, in India, it’s going to cost you about 89,000 Rupees which is 24,000 Rupees more expensive than what an iPhone X costs in the US. So, how do you buy an iPhone X in the USA and ship it to India? Let’s look at the options.

Method 1 – Shipping it via traditional shipping agencies

The most obvious method is to buy an iPhone online and get it shipped via an agency like BorderLinx (see above), which will provide a temporary USA shipping address, and forward it to you in India. There’s a problem though. Their cost of shipping will include everything from tax and duty to insurance (optional). And for a single piece of iPhone X, you will need to shell out at least $450 additional to the price of the iPhone.

Here’s the breakdown.

Shipping cost – USD 49.32
Delivery Time – 2-3 business days
DDP – Pay Customs Now
Tax & Duty – USD 434.95
Insurance – USD 100
Total – USD 584.27
So your total price of buying an iPhone X from the USA and shipping it to India will be as follows.
Cost of iPhone X – $999 (will change on the version you are buying)
Cost of shipping – $500 (minimum)
Total cost – $1,500! (96,210 Rupees)

So, the total cost of buying an iPhone X from the USA and shipping it to India will be more than what you will pay for it in India.

– You will get the iPhone before others get it in India.
– There are no additional customs duties etc, as they are already paid for.

It is more expensive than getting the iPhone X in India.

Method 2 – Getting a friend to bring it with them to India

Now, the other method you have is to buy the iPhone X, ship it to a local address of your relative/friend in the USA and have it bring it down with him. There are different variables here. One, you need to have a friend/relative in the US. Second, he/she has to be willing to give you their address to ship the phone. Three, they have to be traveling to India, to be able to bring it down for you.

Provided you have all three figured out, this is the safest method for you. You don’t have to worry about taxes or customs duties. The only thing to remember is that you have to have the package opened and declare it as used at customs/immigration. Also, you cannot bring more than one or max two phones. But, this is economically the best way out.

Method 3 – Using a crowd-sourced shipping service

There are some crowd-sourced shipping services available today. Basically what they do is, find out if there are people flying out during the dates you want the item shipped, and have them carry along the item with them as they travel. They have online platforms like Manyship, that lets you find people willing to carry items with them during travel and it is easy using the service.

Check out ways to buy things from USA and ship them to India.

Also, it is very economical as the charges for such services are around $50 – $100 max.

The problem is, whether you will find willing people and on what dates. You will have to wait until someone willing to take your package is flying out. If you are lucky, there shall be takers around the time you want, otherwise, you need to wait.
So, there you have it. Three ways how you can buy an iPhone X from the USA and have it shipped to India. Let me know your questions.

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Mani Karthik

About the Author

Mani Karthik

Entrepreneur, Mentor & Blogger.
I help business grow & scale. Have helped 15+ companies scale in US, Middle East and India.
I share everything I learned on this blog, so that you benefit. Here’s more about me.

19 responses to “How To Buy a Laptop or Smartphone from USA to India”
  1. Mani Karthik

    No. Technically, used ones don’t attract duties but it’s a grey area. Officers assume that the shipment is new and charge duty by default. Proving them that it’s a used one is the challenge.

  2. Drona

    Found this blog to be very useful. Does Customs duty apply for used laptops when dispatched via courier or cargo companies? Are we required to prove that these are not new laptops? How are we supposed to prove it?



  4. Pritesh

    Thanks Karthik, my concern is whether customs will stop the packet as there will be no one there to explain I am returning company s laptop that was bought in India. Company is holding my full and finalk settlement untill I send this to office in Mumbai. Please suggest what should I do to ensure it reaches there without any issues by customs. I am in Calgary, Canada.

  5. Mani Karthik

    Right now, due to the unusual situation, you can expect some delays. But otherwise, you can send it via DHL like courier service. You’ll need to remove the battery though.

  6. Pritesh

    I am in canada and carrying my company’s laptop. Since I have resigned I have to send it back to mumbai. I am not sure how the customs works. Is it safe to send laptop back to India, will customs hold it.

  7. Mandar Dhamale

    Sir, I want to buy an iPhone x from USA to India.
    Plse call me.

  8. Mani Karthik

    Thanks for the clarification Venkata.

  9. Venkata

    Hi Mani,
    Firstly, thanks so much for the mention about ManyShip in your blog post. We are delighted to get a positive reference from a great blogger like you.

    Second, let me take this opportunity to respond to Zafir.

    Zafir, thanks for your genuine interest and question. We have taken some serious measures to safe guard our members (both members like you who send goods and members who travel and carry).

    Some of the notable measures are: 1. Facebook registration 2. Private messaging 3. Manual background checks.

    Most of our members register using Facebook and there is additional information available upon requesting them. Members can communicate with other members using our private messenger system. Once a member is satisfied with the responses from the other member, an order can be placed.

    In addition, we perform simple background checks and alert members when we identify any discrepancies.

    If you have any further questions feel free to connect with us at our customer service email.

    Last, but not least, we have a 100% positive transactions so far. We strive hard to keep our platform safe and reliable for all our members.

    Best regards, Venkata

  10. Mani Karthik

    You can check with their legal team. I’m not taking responsibility for it but I guess the risk is the same as in any courier service. Even though it’s a crowd sourced service, they have their support team and from my experience, they are responsive.

  11. Zafir Fadul

    Question about crowd-sourced services such as ManyShip and Proxymate.

    How do I trust that these people (carriers) wouldn’t just run away with my iPhone or laptop? Given that the iPhone X costs $1000 and the shipping fee I’d pay them to bring it to me to India is $100. I don’t see why wouldn’t they steal my iPhone and never call when they get to India?

  12. Mani Karthik

    Hi Sushanth,

    If you don’t mind the cost and want an iPhone as soon as it is released in the US, then using a shipping company that can provide you with a temporary US address is your best option. (See above for recommendations).

    If you want to wait and find someone who is ready to buy the iPhone for you, then try wither your friends/relatives or a service like Manyship.

    If you can wait further, and don’t want to spend any extra money, then buying it in India is the best way out. But it’s the iPhone so we can’t really wait, right? 😀

  13. Sushanth

    Hi Mani,

    What is the best way to buy an iPhone from USA to India? Via shipping agencies or?

  14. Mani Karthik

    Call up Amazon customer support and provide the KYC docs asap before they start shipping. That’s your best way out.

  15. Vinay

    I have ordered a product from to INDIA and forgot to add the KYC in the shipping address.
    Is there any alternate way to give my KYC details?

  16. Mani Karthik

    It depends on the laptop price. For regular laptops, say a Macbook Pro, you have to pay the shipping cost (which varies for each vendor) based on the weight and urgency. But you’d also have to pay for the customs duty.

  17. Niyanth

    what is the percentage customs charge in India for laptops and is it worth using third party to ship to India and what will be the exchange rate will they charge more than the present conversion rate?

  18. Mani Karthik

    I know the drill Sumanth, this makes it so much more easier now. Glad you liked it.

  19. Sumanth Dupuguntla

    Good to know that there is this option of international shipping..till not i am dependent on some one who comes back from US!!

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