shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how? at

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Old February 12th, 2014, 01:01 PM   #1
Major Player
Join Date: May 2003
Location: new york city, new york
Posts: 531
shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

i might be selling a wireless audio kit to a seemingly nice fellow from montreal.

i am from metro nyc.

i have never shipped from nyc to montreal.

the gear is worth approx $625.

anyone care to share their insights how to effectively ship across border-customs-to insure that both parties to the transaction are pleased?

thanks in advance to any who care to share.

be well.

smalltalk productions/nyc
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Old February 12th, 2014, 03:47 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia (formerly Winnipeg, Manitoba) Canada
Posts: 4,086
Re: shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

UPS is my go-to for shipping when customs is an issue. USPS - Canada Post otherwise.

I'll never CHOOSE to use Purolator.
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Old February 12th, 2014, 07:26 PM   #3
Regular Crew
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Miami, Florida USA
Posts: 113
Re: shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

I've used DHL both to receive as well as ship items securely in and out of the US.
John DuMontelle - Freelance / Miami, Florida - USA
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Old February 16th, 2014, 11:49 AM   #4
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 1,482
Re: shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

What ever method you choose it may take longer than expected. Ten years ago I shipped three anvil cases full of racked AV gear into Montreal. I followed all of my shippers recommendations and added a couple days to that. I should have been golden. Wrong. The day before we were to set up the show the gear was still in customs. I made so many phone calls I actually spoke to a customs agent that could see my cases in front of him. I asked him if I did something wrong or if I could do anything to get them processed in time for my show. It was classic, he said "you didn't do anything wrong, we are just busy" to the second part he replied with a smug laugh "this is customs you are talking to, maybe they move, maybe they won't".

I went into back up mode and had to rent everything I shipped (as much of it as I could). My gear showed up at the venue an hour before I wrapped up the all day show. Expensive and stressful lesson learned.

I love Canadians. I lived in Canada for a year when I was a child. I have had nothing but good experiences there. The only exception being customs. For some reason unknown to me, they almost always take me out of line entering Canada and put me in a small room to go through my stuff. Video gear is a big flag to them. Or I have a big sign on my forehead no one else can see ;)


But hey, that was nothing like the machine gun escort I got in Switzerland!
Steven Digges
Still learning twenty years later.
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Old February 17th, 2014, 01:10 AM   #5
Inner Circle
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tucson AZ
Posts: 2,159
Re: shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

Last time I sold something to an LFF'er in Canada he was very specific about using only USPS priority even though it was more expensive than UPS/FedEx etc.

It seems all the usual suspects (Except USPS!!!) tack on rather enormous customs clearance fees and put a lot of obstacles in the way of the recipients doing the customs clearance themselves. The fees are sometimes more than the value of the shipment. These are clearance fees in addition to any customs duties.

USPS hands of to Canada Post and they only charge a flat clearance fee of around $ required duties if any.
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Old February 17th, 2014, 07:02 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Montreal
Posts: 388
Re: shipping gear from US 2 Canada-how?

As long as you emphasize the fact that it is being returned to the US (it is not an import) you should be able to get around importation fees. I have showed up to a UPS with my jib and just said box it up! They did and shipped it. In that case I paid no importation fees since it was already in Canada prior, but emphasize that it is to be sent and returned after the job is finished. If your coming up to work, your work visa paperwork would probably help with this.

*Edit* Just reread the post, if your selling it to someone... yep, they will probably tax you importation.
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