Canadians - Do you have to pay customs charges when importing discs?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Andre Bijelic, Jun 22, 2004.

  1. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    I recently ordered several discs from various retailers in the UK, France and Brazil and was wondering what to expect from Canada customs when they arrive.

    Are customs fees typically charged on orders? Does it depend on the price of the item? Any comments on your experiences would be much appreciated.
     
  2. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    I recently ordered several discs from various retailers in the UK, France and Brazil and was wondering what to expect from Canada customs when they arrive.

    Are customs fees typically charged on orders? Does it depend on the price of the item? Any comments on your experiences would be much appreciated.
     
  3. Gary Tooze

    Gary Tooze Producer

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    Customs charges me about 20% of the time, so now I only order from those they don't charge me - ex. Amazon (US). I actually have a friend in the UK who gets, repackages and includes a birthday greeting to avoid those ridiculous, inconsistent charges. I hate Duty.

    Cheers,
     
  4. Gary Tooze

    Gary Tooze Producer

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    Customs charges me about 20% of the time, so now I only order from those they don't charge me - ex. Amazon (US). I actually have a friend in the UK who gets, repackages and includes a birthday greeting to avoid those ridiculous, inconsistent charges. I hate Duty.

    Cheers,
     
  5. Andrew Chong

    Andrew Chong Supporting Actor

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    Canada Border Services Agency

    (snip)
    You don't have to pay duties and taxes if your mail item is: [all figures in Canadian currency]
    • a gift worth $60 or less; or
    • worth $20 or less.
    If the goods you import by mail are worth $20 or less, they are duty- and/or tax-free.

    When you import goods worth more than $20 that do not qualify for the gift exemption, you have to pay duties and taxes on the entire value. You cannot combine the $60 gift exemption and the $20 exemption for the same goods.


    A gift sent by a friend or family member abroad to a person in Canada is exempt from duties and taxes as long as the gift is worth $60 or less. The declaration should clearly identify the goods as a gift, and should include a gift card or tag to avoid any misunderstanding. For gifts worth more than $60, you have to pay duties and taxes on the amount over the $60 exemption.

    For example, if you receive a gift from overseas worth $100, only $60 of the gift's value qualifies for the gift exemption. You will have to pay duties and taxes on the remaining portion of the value, in this case $40.
    (snip)
     
  6. Andrew Chong

    Andrew Chong Supporting Actor

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    Canada Border Services Agency

    (snip)
    You don't have to pay duties and taxes if your mail item is: [all figures in Canadian currency]
    • a gift worth $60 or less; or
    • worth $20 or less.
    If the goods you import by mail are worth $20 or less, they are duty- and/or tax-free.

    When you import goods worth more than $20 that do not qualify for the gift exemption, you have to pay duties and taxes on the entire value. You cannot combine the $60 gift exemption and the $20 exemption for the same goods.


    A gift sent by a friend or family member abroad to a person in Canada is exempt from duties and taxes as long as the gift is worth $60 or less. The declaration should clearly identify the goods as a gift, and should include a gift card or tag to avoid any misunderstanding. For gifts worth more than $60, you have to pay duties and taxes on the amount over the $60 exemption.

    For example, if you receive a gift from overseas worth $100, only $60 of the gift's value qualifies for the gift exemption. You will have to pay duties and taxes on the remaining portion of the value, in this case $40.
    (snip)
     
  7. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    How are the duties collected? Is it C.O.D., so you have to pay upon delivery? Or is the shipment immediately sent to the post office, so that you have to pay when you pick it up? Or do they bill you somehow?
     
  8. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    How are the duties collected? Is it C.O.D., so you have to pay upon delivery? Or is the shipment immediately sent to the post office, so that you have to pay when you pick it up? Or do they bill you somehow?
     
  9. Greg Madsen

    Greg Madsen Second Unit

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    They may hold it at the post office or the mailman my collect. It depends on the area. Also, Customs charges a $5.00 fee on mail parcels which duty and or tax is collected. Duty is not charged on items that were manufactured in the US, only tax.
     
  10. Greg Madsen

    Greg Madsen Second Unit

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    They may hold it at the post office or the mailman my collect. It depends on the area. Also, Customs charges a $5.00 fee on mail parcels which duty and or tax is collected. Duty is not charged on items that were manufactured in the US, only tax.
     
  11. Brian Thibodeau

    Brian Thibodeau Supporting Actor

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    Like Gary, I usually paid duty on about one in every 5 packages, sometimes less, so I don't thinks customs follows their rules to the letter. Sometimes they might just feel generous or overburdened with parcels. I've been charged duty etc. on some parcels, yet nothing on others that cost more. I always paid the fee at the post office when I went to claim my packages.

    Ironically, without exception, the only parcels I paid duty on for the final year that I imported stuff into Canada were packages marked as gifts from Hong Kong's DDDhouse.com, most of which did exceed the $60 gift limit, while other equally-valued goods, not marked as gifts, came through unmolested. Weird, I say.

    Since the extra charges, when they were applied, often ate up the savings on the overall order, I decided right then and there to open a U.S. mailbox. I live in a border city with a sister city on the other side, so I'm probably lucky. But If you're anywhere near the border, Andre, and can do that, I highly recommend it. Just remember to tell your credit card company that the box is ALSO one of your mailing addresses so they know you've authorized the shipments to the box. This way, you can always conveniently, uhhh, lose the packaging and the receipts (if necessary) and declare whatever value is appropriate to get you through the customs plaza. From experience, I can safely say that the customs officers in the booths at my particular crossing are much more lenient than the ones who used to inspect my parcels, wherever they were.

    Suprisingly, I find very few of the receipts and invoices I get with parcels from online companies actually contain the monetary value of the goods anyways, which does me no good with my poor memory and all...[​IMG]
     
  12. Brian Thibodeau

    Brian Thibodeau Supporting Actor

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    Like Gary, I usually paid duty on about one in every 5 packages, sometimes less, so I don't thinks customs follows their rules to the letter. Sometimes they might just feel generous or overburdened with parcels. I've been charged duty etc. on some parcels, yet nothing on others that cost more. I always paid the fee at the post office when I went to claim my packages.

    Ironically, without exception, the only parcels I paid duty on for the final year that I imported stuff into Canada were packages marked as gifts from Hong Kong's DDDhouse.com, most of which did exceed the $60 gift limit, while other equally-valued goods, not marked as gifts, came through unmolested. Weird, I say.

    Since the extra charges, when they were applied, often ate up the savings on the overall order, I decided right then and there to open a U.S. mailbox. I live in a border city with a sister city on the other side, so I'm probably lucky. But If you're anywhere near the border, Andre, and can do that, I highly recommend it. Just remember to tell your credit card company that the box is ALSO one of your mailing addresses so they know you've authorized the shipments to the box. This way, you can always conveniently, uhhh, lose the packaging and the receipts (if necessary) and declare whatever value is appropriate to get you through the customs plaza. From experience, I can safely say that the customs officers in the booths at my particular crossing are much more lenient than the ones who used to inspect my parcels, wherever they were.

    Suprisingly, I find very few of the receipts and invoices I get with parcels from online companies actually contain the monetary value of the goods anyways, which does me no good with my poor memory and all...[​IMG]
     
  13. Harminder

    Harminder Second Unit

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    Damn customs. [​IMG]

    The only time I get charged are DVD's coming from Japan or Korea and once from Hong Kong.

    However, most of the time from Hong Kong, I don't get charged.
     
  14. Harminder

    Harminder Second Unit

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    Damn customs. [​IMG]

    The only time I get charged are DVD's coming from Japan or Korea and once from Hong Kong.

    However, most of the time from Hong Kong, I don't get charged.
     
  15. ChristianB

    ChristianB Stunt Coordinator

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    I have only been charged tax on packages from Amazon.
     
  16. ChristianB

    ChristianB Stunt Coordinator

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    I have only been charged tax on packages from Amazon.
     
  17. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for all the replies.

    Seems like it's very much a hit-and-miss thing. I don't mind paying the duty so much - I just wish there were a way it could be included when placing an order.
     

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