Why don't people want to ship to Canada? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 06:11 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I see it all of the time. "Won't ship to Canada." I know that you have to wait in line at the P.O., but you can order free customs forms at home and have everything all filled out. It must suck for the CA moms that want to participate in swaps/co-ops, but are discriminated against. :

Okay, stepping off of my soap box....for now.

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#2 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 06:52 AM
 
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I did request that once, after a bad experience standing in a LONG line at the P.O. with dd, who decided that was a good time to freak out. I ended up having to leave and come back because it just wasn't going to happen with her that day. I was actually technically shipping to a U.S. address, but it was really to a military address overseas, and thus required customs forms.
It's just so much easier to pay for shipping online and drop it off at a mailbox, or have it picked up-- than to go stand in line with a large box and a crazy toddler.

That said, if someone out of the country were to explain to me that my item was really wanted, I would still do it. I was definitely not trying to discriminate by my request to keep shipping w/in this country-- USPS just makes it a lot easier on me that way. I didn't know that I could order customs forms-- but I've only ever filled out that one and didn't really know what I was doing.

Sorry that it makes things harder for you. I'll remember this in the future!

Edit: just realised that *you* aren't even in Canada! How nice of you to think of those that are.

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#3 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 07:07 AM
 
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Cost.

I have no problem filling out a customs slip. No issue with waiting in line at the post office. It's the PRICE that gets me to second guess shipping to Canada. If I want something there within a week or two it's a LOT more than the cheapest method that can sometimes take up to 2 months. Not to mention if it gets stopped at Customs the person you are sending to won't know- and can sometimes think you never sent it or sent it way after the due date, etc etc etc.

Unless you are willing to pay more $$$ at the PO than usual a lot of people just can't do it. The same applies for those who live in Alaska and Hawaii.

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#4 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 10:18 AM
 
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I've done that in the past - said no Canada mamas. Last semester it was virtually impossible for me to make it to the PO when they were open. I ran a coop last semester and forgot to put that in. I ended up skipping my first class to wait for the PO to open. These days I'm more willing to ship to Canada than I am to accept money orders. We moved over the summer, but didn't switch banks. So now the closest branch is 45ish mins away. We happen to love our bank, plus have direct deposit and some automatic debits, and they are supposed to be building a ranch closer to us this year. In the meantime it's a total PITA to get the money back into my account. In the case of coops, I'm not getting anything out of it; I'm giving my time to get a great deals for others, so I'm going to limit it to where it's not a big inconvenience for me. Although if someone in an excluded category really wanted or needed in, I'd figure something out.
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#5 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 11:18 AM
 
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I sell on ebay occassionally and I have shipped to Canada. The first few times everything was smooth (I have no problems going to the PO) bbut the last 2 items I shipped there took literally 4-6 weeks to get to the recipient: No idea why. I was harrassed by the buyer threatening to file with ebay & paypal for non-reciept of goods. I don't blame the buyers- I would have been mad as well, but it wasn't me- it was the postal system. I won't ship to Canada again unless the buyer pays by MO and understands shipping will be 6-8 weeks.

Maybe I need to ship UPS to Canada instead of USPS...
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#6 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by sunflowers View Post
I sell on ebay occassionally and I have shipped to Canada. The first few times everything was smooth (I have no problems going to the PO) bbut the last 2 items I shipped there took literally 4-6 weeks to get to the recipient: No idea why. I was harrassed by the buyer threatening to file with ebay & paypal for non-reciept of goods. I don't blame the buyers- I would have been mad as well, but it wasn't me- it was the postal system. I won't ship to Canada again unless the buyer pays by MO and understands shipping will be 6-8 weeks.

Maybe I need to ship UPS to Canada instead of USPS...

It was customs. Sometimes Customs gets stupid and looks at something and goes "umm what is this?" and passes it down the line. If your parcel is one of the unfortunate ones to get opened, it can take a very long time..

I'm a Canadian Ebayer and I ship to the USA...and one time it took almost a month for someone to get their package, and it was US Customs that had their package for a while. I'm guessing one of the customs agents wanted to play a bit of RIFTS....

ANYWAY, if someone doesn't wanna ship to Canada, I ask first, and then if they still refuse I go look for the same item from another seller who does. No big. I figure, their loss, it's a free market.

Usually mommas on here are pretty flexible, especially on the TP, where I toss in an extra buck or two on top of shipping for the inconvinience.
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#7 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 11:29 AM
 
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You know what is REALLY stupid??? It is cheaper for me to ship OUT OF COUNTRY than within Canada! Usually by $1 or $2 more!

And yes, it sucks when I can't participate in a lot of things because I am in Canada.
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#8 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by babygrant View Post
You know what is REALLY stupid??? It is cheaper for me to ship OUT OF COUNTRY than within Canada! Usually by $1 or $2 more!

And yes, it sucks when I can't participate in a lot of things because I am in Canada.
yup now THAT is stupid.
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#9 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 11:47 AM
 
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i can see why family businesses and mamas won't ship to canada, but i don't understand why many bigger businesses won't. :
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#10 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by annabanana View Post
i can see why family businesses and mamas won't ship to canada, but i don't understand why many bigger businesses won't. :
It depends on what you're ordering. If you're ordering media (cds or dvds) it's a legally grey area regarding parallel imports. Lots of companies aren't really willing to take the chance.

My company ships about 20,000 packages a month. We only recently started shipping to Canada - it costs more, it takes longer, you have to deal with more customer service of cranky people looking for lost/undelivered packages, tracking isn't as comprehensive as it is for domestic mail, and a lot of times it just doesn't make any financial sense. We have a warehouse that we ship out of, post office picks up from us twice a day, a very efficient shipping department, and it still takes 3x as long for an employee to pack up an international order (including Canada). When you are doing profit & loss details for every activity done in your company, 20 extra cents of labor for someone to print and fill out a customs slip and do the extra work involved can eat away at margin and make the activity unprofitable very quickly.
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#11 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:19 PM
 
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I do ship to Canade but I'd rather not sometimes. For me it's the PO thing. Our PO is TINY and they never EVER have enough people working. Once I had to stand in line for like 30 minutes. It was crazy. I also hate having to guess on shipping. It's often more than I thought it would be and I have to eat the cost.

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#12 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:27 PM
 
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The costs, and the meltdown that my ds always has while waiting in the line are the clenchers for me. And I don't like that I can't track the package. I still do it on a case by case basis, though.

What really frustrates me, though is ebay. My dh has had two auctions in the past month where he specified that he would ship to the US only. And then at the last minute, bidders from Canada bid and won the auctions. Of course, he could cancel their bids and give it to the next person...but that would mean less money for the auction.
They did have to cover the higher shipping charges, but it was a big pain because we had to pay out of pocket and then transfer the money from paypal.
Doesn't Canada have their own ebay like the UK and other countries?
Sorry to get so off topic :
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#13 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:27 PM
 
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I'm Canadian - and after having a few TP packages go "missing" (if they were ever even sent), I absolutely refuse to take the chance with ordering from the US again.

I not only lost my items, but my money as well.

Canada Post is no help - they can't track a package sent via USPS.
USPS is no help - it costs an arm and leg apparently to get tracking to Canada.
Customs - heck, they'll ding you even for USED goods maked "gift".

Nope - NEVER EVER again.

Yes - I'm still bitter about the 2 boxes of diapers I ordered on the TP that never arrived.

Canadian mom to Boo (Aug '02), Bug (Aug '04) and Bear (Dec '06).
Jesse (July '09)
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#14 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:31 PM
 
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I've been hit by customs a LOT in the past few months. Used diapers, Christmas gifts from my mother, everything.

If I see something I really want, I might ask if a person will send it to me in Canada. My mother sends me stuff from the U.S. all the time and it doesn't seem any more expensive than when I send stuff to her.
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#15 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:37 PM
 
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Isn't it enough that they get to live in such a cool country like canada? They have to get access to all tp goods too????

Mother of 3, welcomed a new baby girl July 2011

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#16 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by sunflowers View Post
Maybe I need to ship UPS to Canada instead of USPS...
PLEASE don't! UPS has the WORST brokerage fees of any courier. They tack on a fee of US$25 for orders under $50 I believe and then it goes up from there. That isn't the duty or taxes, it is simply their fee for collecting the duty/taxes for you and remitting them to the government. In comparison, Canada Post charges $5 or $8 (depending on amount of package) to do the same thing!

I politely refuse to shop at companies who will not ship to Canada any other way but UPS (I always inquire if they will ship another way and if not, then I politely tell them why I won't shop with them and ask them to notify me if they ever change shipping methods).

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Tracking and unsure delivery times. There is no way to track a package from US to CA via USPS and that makes me leary. There is no way to prove that you sent something to someone in CA and there is no way of telling if it's going to be 2 weeks or 4 weeks or 8 weeks before it reaches its destination. That, and cost. I feel bad having to charge Canadians so much more in postage than I do US mamas.

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#18 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by babygrant View Post
You know what is REALLY stupid??? It is cheaper for me to ship OUT OF COUNTRY than within Canada! Usually by $1 or $2 more!

And yes, it sucks when I can't participate in a lot of things because I am in Canada.
Yup, it's stupid. For me to ship 4 diapers via "small packet" to the US (insurance included), it was going to be about $6.50. For me to ship ONE of the same diapers within Canada, was $8.36!! The diaper was too thick to fit through "the slot" and go via letter post, so it would need to be shipped via parcel post and that was the cost! Insane! The advantage to parcel over letter is insurance, but come one, one measly AIO and it's over $8. I just don't get it.

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#19 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:54 PM
 
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I am confused why people say there is no tracking from the U.S. to Canada? I've had many packages shipped to me with tracking and I can follow it both on USPS's web site and Canada Post's web site. I can't remember if it's Global Priority or Global Express (it might be both) that provide this option. Now, these options aren't as cheap as lettermail so perhaps that is why nobody is mentioning them. But tracking does exist, the buyer just has to be willing to pay for it.

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#20 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:57 PM
 
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Global priority and global express are *really* expensive. Usually at least $20 or so per package. I don't believe there is tracking available on airmail.
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#21 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by grace474 View Post
The costs, and the meltdown that my ds always has while waiting in the line are the clenchers for me. And I don't like that I can't track the package. I still do it on a case by case basis, though.

What really frustrates me, though is ebay. My dh has had two auctions in the past month where he specified that he would ship to the US only. And then at the last minute, bidders from Canada bid and won the auctions. Of course, he could cancel their bids and give it to the next person...but that would mean less money for the auction.
They did have to cover the higher shipping charges, but it was a big pain because we had to pay out of pocket and then transfer the money from paypal.
Doesn't Canada have their own ebay like the UK and other countries?
Sorry to get so off topic :
Yes we do, but it's a cross the board thing. If someone on Ebay.COM lists they ship internationally, then they get put on ebay.ca and ebay.co.uk

Or there are people like my DH that use ebay.COM because of the exclusivity like, he wants a samus figure, they SAY they dont ship to Canada, but he ALWAYS emails before bidding to see if the seller would work something out. And 9 x out of 10 they do. What's the harm in asking right? Sure it's a higher shipping fee, and you're made to take paypal's buyer protection but that's ok too.

Some things for sale on ebay.com don't show on .co.uk or .ca like some mcfarlane action figures...

that's why he goes there..
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#22 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 12:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by LizaBear View Post
Customs - heck, they'll ding you even for USED goods maked "gift".
I swear customs doesn't even read what the exporter writes on the form! That being said, I know that gifts only escape duty/taxes if they are under a certain amount (is it US$50 or US$75?). Anything over that and a gift is susceptible to duty/taxes.

If you do receive items where you were legitimately not to have been charged duty/taxes, you can fill out a form (available on CBSA's web site) to request a refund. It's a bit of a pain, but at least you get your money back!

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#23 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by TechnoGranola View Post
I am confused why people say there is no tracking from the U.S. to Canada? I've had many packages shipped to me with tracking and I can follow it both on USPS's web site and Canada Post's web site. I can't remember if it's Global Priority or Global Express (it might be both) that provide this option. Now, these options aren't as cheap as lettermail so perhaps that is why nobody is mentioning them. But tracking does exist, the buyer just has to be willing to pay for it.
I'm getting a BH MT and I just recieved shipping confirmation thru PP.

It's Global Priority that has tracking, because I got the tracking code n everything in that email.

I heart BH!!!!
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#24 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by TechnoGranola View Post
I swear customs doesn't even read what the exporter writes on the form! That being said, I know that gifts only escape duty/taxes if they are under a certain amount (is it US$50 or US$75?). Anything over that and a gift is susceptible to duty/taxes.

If you do receive items where you were legitimately not to have been charged duty/taxes, you can fill out a form (available on CBSA's web site) to request a refund. It's a bit of a pain, but at least you get your money back!
Gift has to be a declared value of under $20 CAD to escape the GST monster.
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#25 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by grace474 View Post
Global priority and global express are *really* expensive. Usually at least $20 or so per package. I don't believe there is tracking available on airmail.
:
And who is willing to pay that for a diaper? Or a onesie that you buy off the TP?

, , , mama to Ross , Reagan (8/29/05), Joshua (from Haiti...here NOW due to the earthquake!), and Elijah , born safely 9-8-09.
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#26 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by TechnoGranola View Post
I am confused why people say there is no tracking from the U.S. to Canada? I've had many packages shipped to me with tracking and I can follow it both on USPS's web site and Canada Post's web site. I can't remember if it's Global Priority or Global Express (it might be both) that provide this option. Now, these options aren't as cheap as lettermail so perhaps that is why nobody is mentioning them. But tracking does exist, the buyer just has to be willing to pay for it.

bingo.

Between that and customs fees, it just makes for cranky customers, and that leads to MORE costs on the customer service end.
I can't tell you how many customers we have that

1. email us asking us to mark "gift" on the customs slip and then go off on us when we say we can't do that. Sorry, that's illegal, and as a large company we'll get nailed for it, not the buyer.

2. email us screaming that they had to pay customs fees at their post office. That's why it says "BUYER PAYS ALL CUSTOMS FEES" in giant letters on every screen they see when they order.
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#27 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:01 PM
 
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Global priority and global express are *really* expensive. Usually at least $20 or so per package. I don't believe there is tracking available on airmail.
You are correct.
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#28 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:02 PM
 
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Well, I usually ship to Canada unless it is something really heavy. But I have to say it makes me very nervous because in my experience, things are a lot more likely to get lost if they make a trip over the border.

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#29 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:07 PM
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Well, I usually ship to Canada unless it is something really heavy. But I have to say it makes me very nervous because in my experience, things are a lot more likely to get lost if they make a trip over the border.

Lost? how about Customs official goes "hey that's so cute! I want that for my kid! Yoink"
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#30 of 61 Old 01-04-2007, 01:42 PM
 
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Lost? how about Customs official goes "hey that's so cute! I want that for my kid! Yoink"

Wouldn't surprise me one bit. Not with the number of packages (in general, not just from the US) that have made their way to me having been opened, rifled through, with items missing (with a "sorry" note taped onto it).

Someone, somewhere, got a box with a dozen prefitteds and some fitteds and wool for free. I paid for them, but I never got them. They are out there somewhere.

Canadian mom to Boo (Aug '02), Bug (Aug '04) and Bear (Dec '06).
Jesse (July '09)
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