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Taxes on online sales to Canada

Discussion in 'Canada' started by evil_umbrellacorp, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. Oct 19, 2010 at 5:59 PM
    #1
    evil_umbrellacorp

    evil_umbrellacorp [OP] Noob

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    Steve
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    So I just ordered a set of PIAAs and Spidertrax from 4Wheel Parts and I'm having them shipped to The Letter Carrier in Point Roberts. Free shipping within the States. Since 4WP have a store in Washington State, they are required to charge tax on any purchase that ships to Washington even if the buyer is a BC resident. Too bad for me. Now, if I were to have them ship it to me in Victoria, I would have to pay for shipping, plus UPS would ding me for customs brokerage, but I would not have to pay Washington sales tax. So after a little more research, I found that if I were to buy from an online retailer in Oregon instead of Washington, I would not have to pay sales tax. This is what I should have done. Too late now though. I guess I'm not that experienced when it comes to cross-border online shopping.

    So next time I order something, this is the way I will do it:
    - Use an online retailer based in Oregon (or other sales tax free state).
    - Use free shipping, ship to U.S. address (The Letter Carrier, Ship Happens etc).
    - Clear customs myself to avoid UPS brokerage, pay the damned HST.

    I don't recommend not declaring goods at the border. It's just not worth it if you get caught.:canada:
     
  2. Oct 27, 2010 at 8:57 PM
    #2
    kite

    kite Well-Known Member

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    FYI:
    -You should never have to pay US sales tax if shipped to Canada.
    -You won't have to pay brokerage fees if you ship USPS or UPS Expedited to Canada.
    -Duty will be charged if the item is not made in Canada or the US (for most things at least).
    -Sometimes you can carry up to around $150 worth of stuff through the border without getting charged duty or tax.
    -Much of what you're charged at the border is up to the discretion of the CBSA officer.
     
  3. Oct 28, 2010 at 10:37 PM
    #3
    evil_umbrellacorp

    evil_umbrellacorp [OP] Noob

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    UPS Expedited doesn't charge brokerage? I don't think I've ever used expedited, but every time I've used UPS to Canada I've been dinged with brokerage. I ended up not being charged taxes at the border, so it worked out very well for me.
     
  4. Oct 28, 2010 at 10:44 PM
    #4
    OZ-T

    OZ-T Quite an experience to live in fear , isn't it ?

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    I am pretty sure you do pay brokerage , but you pay it up front as part of your cost for shipping , so no suprise fees on arrival .
     
  5. Oct 28, 2010 at 10:47 PM
    #5
    rab89

    rab89 Well-Known Member

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    Great info! thanks!
     
  6. Oct 28, 2010 at 11:10 PM
    #6
    ilg

    ilg VanCity Taco.

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    Subscribed.
     
  7. Oct 28, 2010 at 11:27 PM
    #7
    squamish VFR

    squamish VFR Well-Known Member

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    No Duty if it's made in Canada, U.S.A or Mexico. Additionally, for Wa state: You do not have to pay sales tax in Wa if you can prove you are from another state or province that does not have sales tax (i think it was 1% or less) ie: Alberta. Drivers licence will due. Ran ito that with my Leer canopy bought at Canopy World. Some that I know do up a bit of an order and make a trip out of it or are planning a trip and make an order out of it. Helps to live near the boarder.
     
  8. Oct 28, 2010 at 11:29 PM
    #8
    84Hilux

    84Hilux Well-Known Member

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    If you have the item shipped to Canada you have to pay PST and GST and brokerage. If the brokerage is built in to the shipping price you will not see it on the bill. I usually drive to Blaine to pick up items. Get cheap gas while down there to mitigate costs. At the border they will not usually hit you up for taxes if the item is $100 or less- (I think one of the previous posts said $150). That being said they cannot charge duty on items manufactured in North America (NAFTA). They can still charge sales tax at the border. Also US Parcel Companies charge a lot less to deliver to a US address- might be the brokerage.
     
  9. Oct 29, 2010 at 10:20 AM
    #9
    squamish VFR

    squamish VFR Well-Known Member

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    These companies at the border like Ship happens etc, does one need to set up some kind of account with them to recieve your shipments or do they just recieve every thing and hope someone shows up to pick it up?
     
  10. Oct 29, 2010 at 8:04 PM
    #10
    evil_umbrellacorp

    evil_umbrellacorp [OP] Noob

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    You don't need any sort of account, you just have the shipper address it to the receiving business like Ship Happens and put your name on it as well. They will hold it for a certain length of time and charge you extra if you take too long to pick it up. I've used Ship Happens and they were great. I usually use The Letter Carrier in Point Roberts because it's closer and there's never a much of a wait to get across the border.
     
  11. Nov 4, 2010 at 3:03 AM
    #11
    84Hilux

    84Hilux Well-Known Member

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    I have used Hagens of Blaine. They charge 2.50 per parcel plus 1.00 for a call to let you know when it arrives.
     
  12. Nov 12, 2010 at 10:48 PM
    #12
    evil_umbrellacorp

    evil_umbrellacorp [OP] Noob

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    Hula girl on dash, that's it.
    It's good to have options. THanks.
     
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