Duty costs for items shipped from Canada to U.S.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Steve T, Feb 26, 2002.

  1. Steve T

    Steve T Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm not sure this is the appropriate place to post this question, but I am looking at an amp currently being auctioned on Ebay, and the seller is in Canada. Does anyone know approximately what the duty costs are for items shipped from Canada to the U.S.? I would imagine the shipping alone would be very high.

    The seller is in Victoria, BC and I live in California.

    Thanks,

    Steve
     
  2. John Doran

    John Doran Screenwriter

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    steve,

    i'm pretty sure there's no duty - NAFTA established a free-trade regime between the u.s. and canada.

    i know that i don't have to pay duty on anything shipped from the u.s. to my home in toronto, anyway. just tax.

    but you should contact u.s. customs if you have any doubts at all.

    - jd
     
  3. Steve T

    Steve T Stunt Coordinator

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    In the auction description the seller says, "Successful bidder to pay actual shipping and duty costs."

    I have sent the seller an email asking about duty costs. Would the seller not know if duty costs apply until they actually ship the item?
     
  4. John Doran

    John Doran Screenwriter

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    steve,

    he or she may know, but not necessarily.

    also, the actual winner of the auction might conceivably be from a country where duty does apply.

    or is ebay only north american?
     
  5. Jeff Mills

    Jeff Mills Stunt Coordinator

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    Dont worry about the duty. Tell the seller to mark the package as a gift.

    I live in canada and recently sold an extensive car audio system to people throughout North America. Each and every one of the items I shipped, I marked as a gift on the customs form. Each person I shipped to, replied to me when they recieved the item. Not one of them mentioned anything about paying duty. I would therefore assume that they didnt pay any duty.

    If you are really interested in being 100% sure, try to find the US customs website. It should give you information regarding this.

    In canada, we pay 6% duty on electronics that are imported from the US. I would assume, that the duty to the US, if there is any, would be around 5 or 6% as well.
     
  6. Ned

    Ned Supporting Actor

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    You'll have to pay GST+PST and the fee charged by the shipper for doing the tax paperwork for you. You can do it yourself but it's a hassle and probably not worth the $40-50 that is typically charged (flat rate not %).

    e.g $1000 usd

    ~1600 cdn + 225 taxes + 45 fees = final price

    The taxes probably shouldn't be charged on used items but you know the government.
     
  7. ChristopherS

    ChristopherS Second Unit

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    American buyers do not have to pay any Canadian taxes when they have an item shipped to them from Canada. For duty you have to discover where the product is made (which country - there is no fixed duty for electronics, Malaysia has its own duty rate as does Japan, China ...etc. There will be no duty if the product is made in a country that has a Free Trade Agreement with the US) and then check with the US Customs (I have no idea what this is actually called in the US) to get the actual duty charge.
    When I imported my Sony STR-777ES into Canada from the US I had to pay PST and GST plus 1.8% duty plus a handling charge by the shipper. People are often scared when they hear there is a duty charge when in reality it is the handling charge that may cost much much more.
    Chris
     
  8. John Doran

    John Doran Screenwriter

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    when i was considering having something shipped from the u.s. into canada, i called canada customs, and they told me there was no duty 'cos of the free trade agreement with the u.s.

    however, you should be wary of what they called "broker fees", which is a fee some shippers (e.g. UPS) charge in order to bring the product over the border. these don't apply if the item is sent via mail.

    when i called UPS to find out what their brokerage fee was, it turned out it was a percentage of the cost of the item being shipped - i forget precisely what the percentage was, but it made the overall shipping cost pretty steep.

    anyway, if you're shipping into the u.s. from canada, you might also want to find out if there are any brokerage fees, or whatever they may be called.
     
  9. Mark McGill

    Mark McGill Stunt Coordinator

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    ChristopherS is correct. I am Canadian and live just south of the border in WA state. If something is shipped or delivered directly from Canada to the US there is no GST/PST charged. If you are charged those fees, then you are either being ripped off, or the vender does not know the rules. If you do get charged GST don't worry. Just go to the Government of Canada website and download a GST rebate form and follow the instructions. It takes a few weeks but you get your cash without any hassles or service charges. Hope this helps.
     
  10. Luke Zhang

    Luke Zhang Extra

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    What interests me is how much does it cost in total when purchasing through border for a Canadian.

    For instance, if I were to purchase a piece of $1000 worth of equipment from an on-line store in the States. What kind of overhead am I looking at?

    Original Cost = $1000 US

    US Tax = ?

    Shipping = ?

    Duty = n/a

    Canadian Cost = ?

    Candian Tax = ?

    Others?
     
  11. Ben Hanrahan

    Ben Hanrahan Stunt Coordinator

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    If you go to ecost.com they have a canadian checkout option which will show you a guaranteed delivery price right to your door, and a breakdown of all the costs,no hidden charges. By and large, there shouldn't be any duty on receivers.

    Ben
     
  12. ChristopherS

    ChristopherS Second Unit

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    Sorry Steve_T for hijacking your thread but I think there is some confusion here for Canadians buying from the US.

    First of all NAFTA, and the FTAA only apply to products manufactured in countries who are signatories to those treaties. For example if a Canadian buys a receiver from an American company, and that receiver is built in Japan, you are going to be charged duty. Go to the Canada Customs site to get the actual rate. There will not be any US taxes on the purchase because the product is leaving the country. If the product is built in the US there will not be any duty charges. This also applies to people in the US buying products in Canada that are built in Canada (Paradigm speakers, Energy, Anthem products, Bryston ... etc.)

    When the receiver crosses over into Canada the purchaser is going to be charged with GST and PST (unless you live in Alberta which does not have a PST). Usually the shipper collects this from you along with a "brokerage fee". Some shipping companies are quite reasonable (FedEx charges a $5/$6 handling fee plus the applicable taxes - UPS charges $50 minimun plus the applicable taxes). Therefore when buying from the US you should try to get it shipped by a company that has reasonable brokerage charges.

    The shipping charges themselves depend on what you buy (size, weight) and where it is going. I have never purchased anything from the US without knowing this charge ahead of time (when you get a 70 lb. amp shipped from California to Quebec, the shipping charge can be a surprise).

    Although this may sound like a lot of extra charges Canadians can still save alot of money buying products from US retailers but you have to be smart about it. When I bought my Sony STR DA777ES I saved over $700 CDN. Sometime s the warranties are null and void but not always. I have had my Sony receiver serviced in Canada by Sony under warranty.

    Hopefully this addresses some of the questions people are asking.

    Chris
     
  13. Wolfgang.K

    Wolfgang.K Agent

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    ChistopherS

    I could not have said it better myself.

     

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