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Shipping Kits to Canada

Old 02-01-2004, 08:38 PM
  #1  
Glorystomper
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Default Shipping Kits to Canada

Hey all,

Been awhile since I've posted on RCU, but recently I found someone in the States that had a discontinued Royal kit that I've been looking for and they agreed to sell it to me.

I know this sounds weird, but I'm pretty anal about the condition of my things (ie if I buy a kit, I'd like it to arrive in the same condition that it was sent in) because sometimes I purchase items as gifts and I can't give someone a present that looks like it was found in the discount bin. I've experienced many instances where the items I've purchased were opened and checked by Canada Customs.. and in the process they've scratched up or tore the packaging etc.

Anyways, as long as the price of the shipping isn't more than the price of the merchandise (in this case around $200), can anybody suggest the best way to have this sent from the Portland, Oregon area up to Toronto, Ontario? I'll be asking the person to wrap it in a few layers of bubble wrap and then cardboard over that.. but is there any way that it can get past Customs Canada WITHOUT being opened and tampered with? (I can see why the package would be suspicious.. recently there was a newstory about a boy here that received a gun in the mail from his buddy from the States and the parcel was declared as an aluminum baseball bat).

I've heard that UPS is terrible, not sure about FedEX, and USPS has good recommendations too, but it seems that my parcels get checked every single time I use USPS.

Thanks,

Stompah
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Old 02-02-2004, 04:07 AM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

I was living in Ottawa for four years and bought lot of stuff from the States, Including model kits. I have never had my parcels opened by Canadian Customs. USPS priority mail or something like that, the item comes to you by Purolator. It is, if you are on a hurry. Regular USPS speed post just fine. Don't forget to ask your buddy in the States to write in customs sticker magic words - "Toy" or "toy parts", or "toy helicopter" or "toy model airplane". And no need for declared value more that $200, you can check this figure. Never been charged with GST/PST.
With UPS and especially DHL - always a nightmare. They will charge GST/PST for sure and one of them? do not remember who, will even charge customs brokerage fees!
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Old 02-02-2004, 08:27 AM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

Postal Express works very well. Check it out with your Post office.
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Old 02-02-2004, 10:43 AM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

I have used the USPS a lot and have never had a complaint from a canadian buyer.
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Old 02-02-2004, 01:09 PM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

Glory, I feel your pain. I've had to pay ($5) for a free gift [$20 book] form a US publisher. I've had to pay ($5) for a gift from the states [$20]. Second shipment from teh same place, no charges... go figure..

From what I've seen, Canada Customs will open packages at random. some they won't open, but you end up paying a fee to 'handle' the package (which I think is treally lame..) that is, not opening it, but just to 'verify' the paper work.. It's up to the individual who's desk your box arrives on..

It also depends on how it is labeled.. The law requires a 'customs tag' be placed on the package, and that can be misleading.. Also where and who it is comming from..

Have teh guy drive up to Vancouver, and have him ship it from there!!

Expect the package to be opened by Customs...
Expect to pay duties & taxes, and a brokerage fee, unless the carrier specifies that customs and brokerage fees are paid by them.. Have the shipper label the package with 'fragile' and 'do not top stack' [to ensure it does not get stuff piled on top of it..]

Another wonderful reason why I don't / rarely buy from teh States...
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Old 02-02-2004, 08:20 PM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

Dont get anything sent UPS.They will charge you a 30-35 $ brokerage fee and your parcel will be tied up for a couple weeks with them at customs. I've had parcels show up at my door in a few days just send usps with no fee.
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Old 02-03-2004, 09:22 PM
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Default RE: Shipping Kits to Canada

Yep. UPS are awful. I've spent 3 weeks trying to get copper sugar pot from New York that supposed to be in Ottawa in a 5 days. The pot costs 50 $ US and I paid $30 for shipping, 15% GST/PST, $30 brokerage fee (US dollars), spent the whole week calling each day, get tired to speak with them, and finally came personally to their station (out of town) for the pot.
Just use USPS and it will be fine.
I do not think the Customs checks parcels selectively - there are so many parcels! Customs clerks do not do their jobs just for no particular reason - they are doing that for results - they need to find something. They would get promoted, and could even hear - "good boy".
But they will check only suspicious parcels. Nobody likes to do work without success. If your parcel has all tags and whistles and shows clearly that it is a toy or toy parts - nobody will be interesting to open it. As I sad - it is so many parcels each day.
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