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Canadian Buyers Beware!


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#1 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:09 PM

I just saw this on another forum and it makes A LOT of sense now!
So I used to buy lots of toys from the states, but NEVER EVER had problem with customs. I know it can happen randomly, but usually very rarely.
Apparently, with Ontarios new HST, pretty much anything over $100 coming from the states, especially if its in a large package, WILL charge you customs. Which is a lot...

So it's recommended to try to make small orders from the states now, to avoid the customs wrath!

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#2 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:10 PM

Actually... I probably could have posted this in Canada (duh).
Can you move this please? LOL

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#3 Emmilyy

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:17 PM

All the more reason to shop from the canadian sites :) There are some really good ones out there! healthybird, olivers garden, and rosie toys are my fave.
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#4 sweetnlow

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:19 PM

I have been dinged by customs a few times. It takes the fun out of getting a good deal. The rule used to be, anything that is new and over $20 will have customs charges. If it is marked as a gift, it can't be over $60. If the item is used there are different rules but I am not sure. Thanks for the heads up :)

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#5 SallyQZ

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:32 PM

Yeah, customs can be a pain in the you-know-what. I sent my parents in Kelowna a coffee maker for Christmas one year, put the value on the customs declaration at $65. Customs held it back, charged my parents duty on it PLUS they had to pay $50+ to the customs clearing house that handled the transaction. So the duty & services charges ended up being more than the value of the coffee maker. :32:

So for future gifts, I just lied about the value of the gift and hoped like crazy that customs wouldn't open the box! :001_tt2:

#6 Neophyte

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 06:59 PM

Yeah, customs can be a pain in the you-know-what. I sent my parents in Kelowna a coffee maker for Christmas one year, put the value on the customs declaration at $65. Customs held it back, charged my parents duty on it PLUS they had to pay $50+ to the customs clearing house that handled the transaction. So the duty & services charges ended up being more than the value of the coffee maker. :32:

So for future gifts, I just lied about the value of the gift and hoped like crazy that customs wouldn't open the box! :001_tt2:

That's pretty much what I do. No problems yet. :)

#7 Poicephalus girl

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 07:29 PM

I normally order things from Canada because of Duty fees.
I've made the rare order from the States but normally keep the value of it under $100.

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#8 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 07:56 PM

Yeah! I prefer to order from the states but I was lookig and for some reason NONE of my usual sites had what i wanted... but I found one in Quebec thankfully! Phew!

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#9 Poicephalus girl

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 08:13 PM

Yeah! I prefer to order from the states but I was lookig and for some reason NONE of my usual sites had what i wanted... but I found one in Quebec thankfully! Phew!


Which one?

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It's a Poi world (blog) ~ Videos of my birds


Piper - 5 year old Lovebird
Shade - 4 year old Senegal
Joey - 5 year old Red-bellied parrot
Petey - 15 year old Meyer's
Zuri - 3 year old Meyer's
Pixel - 5 year old Red-bellied parrot


#10 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 08:23 PM

Boutique perroquet en ligne Oisellerie DJ: Nourriture, jouets, accessoires oiseaux exotiques, Roudybush

I was looking for a place that had TOPs pellets, as well as California Blend Roudybush so i don't need to make two orders. Everyone I looked at had the Roudybush out of stock!

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#11 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 08:27 PM

Whoops! Before I meant to say i prefer to order from CANADA lol.

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#12 shosh

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 08:30 PM

I order some homeopathic cat stuff from the states and they already KNOW about Canadian customs and ALWAYS have the smarts to label the value of the merchandise MUCH less than its actual value so I never pay a penny. That is something you might wish to consider asking whatever American vendor you deal with....if they can please lower the stated value of the product. It's no differnece to them. I'm also not totally sure what the sting value sits at...I know it used to be $20....might be higher now. Guess it's worth looking up.... It's such a double edge sword...oftentimes you can keep the shipping costs lower by ordering more but than you risk getting zinged by customs which is always quite high.

#13 sweetnlow

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 08:47 PM

I order some homeopathic cat stuff from the states and they already KNOW about Canadian customs and ALWAYS have the smarts to label the value of the merchandise MUCH less than its actual value so I never pay a penny. That is something you might wish to consider asking whatever American vendor you deal with....if they can please lower the stated value of the product. It's no differnece to them. I'm also not totally sure what the sting value sits at...I know it used to be $20....might be higher now. Guess it's worth looking up.... It's such a double edge sword...oftentimes you can keep the shipping costs lower by ordering more but than you risk getting zinged by customs which is always quite high.


For sure :) I shop from ebay sometimes and I always ask the seller if they will mark the value low or as a gift. If they don't, I don't buy from them. I hate it when you get a little speech on their listing about how customs charges are our responsibilities and they will always mark the value as retail. It not like it's our fault that our government has these regulations. It's bad enough that our selection of merchandise is so limited so we need to order out of country. Ok, rant over LOL

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#14 mingming

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 09:55 PM

For sure :) I shop from ebay sometimes and I always ask the seller if they will mark the value low or as a gift. If they don't, I don't buy from them. I hate it when you get a little speech on their listing about how customs charges are our responsibilities and they will always mark the value as retail. It not like it's our fault that our government has these regulations. It's bad enough that our selection of merchandise is so limited so we need to order out of country. Ok, rant over LOL


Hahaha! I totally agree!

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#15 Franciscus

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 10:32 PM

I normally order things from Canada because of Duty fees.
I've made the rare order from the States but normally keep the value of it under $100.

Plus you shop at a really fabulous store, right?

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#16 xafsmom

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 10:35 PM

I want to move to Canada. :(

Taking a posting break! On Hiatus! If you need me directly for help or questions, email! Have fun guys!



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#17 charliebear22

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 10:49 PM

My job is preparing customs paperwork for a manufacturer.
Please review HST exemptions, as there are sometimes loopholes you can get around.
To avoid brokerage fees ship USPS whenever possible... It transfers to Canada post over the border.
Review the Canada customs hs tariff list to determine duty rates on your items before ordering... Many times items can be classed in a lesser duty class based on the rules of interpretation loophole.
Alwys ask the shipper to class as a gift or samples, or downgrade the value...
And I have had things sent from a "relative" rather than a company if they are classed as a gift: return address will say from John doe charliebear, 123 any street, any town USA. Instead of from abc company at the same address.
That's all the hints I have. I haven't ordered any large birdstuff from the us simply because freight charges are way too much! But I do order all year long various smaller personal items. I've only ever had an order of printer ink get held by customs.
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#18 Poicephalus girl

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Posted 08 August 2010 - 10:51 PM

Plus you shop at a really fabulous store, right?


Hehe yeah I do and always try to go when the best employee is around ;)

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It's a Poi world (blog) ~ Videos of my birds


Piper - 5 year old Lovebird
Shade - 4 year old Senegal
Joey - 5 year old Red-bellied parrot
Petey - 15 year old Meyer's
Zuri - 3 year old Meyer's
Pixel - 5 year old Red-bellied parrot


#19 shosh

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Posted 09 August 2010 - 12:22 AM

great tips, Charliebear!!! Things to keep in mind....

#20 Guest_NotEnoughTime_*

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Posted 09 August 2010 - 01:22 AM

Moved to Canada section...

As charliebear22 says the cheapest customs brokerage fees are when you ship USPS - any other way of shipping (couriers) charge you huge brokerage fees. Brokerage fees from Canada Post are like $5...




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