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Old 01-16-2013, 07:48 PM   #16
Cdn Gal
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Next time don't go with your dad . Glad that you survived and got your juice. We go over at least once every two weeks if not more. We grocery shop, get our turkey and milk products over there since it is so much cheaper and always try and bring back some Florida oranges. Whatever you do, always declare what you bring back, they can do some nasty things to you such as confiscate your car and huge fines. We are a border town and know a few of the border guards, we hear all of the horror stories. We too have a US address and get great stuff shipped to us at a fraction of the price. Happy shopping!
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:28 PM   #17
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While I have been to the States twice in three years for vacations (and brought souveniors & things back via plane), I have not crossed the border for shopping in at least 20 years. So I was hoping some cross-border shoppers could answer a few questions please!

I realize nothing we (my dad & I) bring back will be duty/tax free since we are only going for 2-3 hours. But that's not a problem, is it? We'll be allowed to just pay the duty/taxes and bring stuff back?

We're not talking a huge amount by any means. An e-reader, a wii game and some books. My dad wants to pick up a bottle of rum. I would like to stop at the Wal-mart and pick up Mickey washcloths, bath rug & a wastebasket, maybe some scrapbooking/craft supplies. Plus some food items (juice, coffee, some snack stuff we do not get here).

That reminds me, is there anything I'm NOT allowed to bring back grocery-wise? I think I have read that fruit is not allowed across the border. Anything else I should know about?
I know your questions have already been answered and you are back from your trip - but for future reference, remember that due to NAFTA, anything that is made in Canada, the US or Mexico can be brought back duty free. You are still required to pay GST and Provincial Tax according to the exemptions, but there should be no duty, regardless of how long you were across. I bought a $50,000 made in the US vehicle, was only in the US for one day and only paid GST.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:48 PM   #18
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Cool, an SOB (South of the Border) Shopping Trip Report, complete with dining!

Sounds like you had a good trip. We go South often even for only an hour of shopping in Ogdensburg NY, but ofter over to Watertown for the afternoon. It is hard to get back without a few hundred in our US favorites. Mio water flavours - yes we can FINALLY get them in Canada, but only 4 flavours; there must be 15 flavors in the US. Also get lots of Gluten Free stuff for DS - there are more brands, and much tastier. For the longest time we could only get Betty Crocker Gluten Free Cake Mixes in the US, even though they were made in Canada!

Anyway, did you pay tax on any of the other stuff, or just the liquor? Usually if they pull you in, they hit it all! You got off lucky if they didn't.

As for the charge, go back to the vendor first before you dispute. Dispute with credit card issuer are only to be used when you couldn't resolve directly with the vendor, and you don't mention if you have done that yet. Most vendors are happy to admit when they have made a mistake and make it right. The vendor might agree to ship the rest of the way to you for free (although books can be tough at the border - some of the toughest import laws are for protection of our cultural industries, including publishing - that why amazon has a separate Canadian branch now.)
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:03 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Cdn Gal View Post
Next time don't go with your dad . Glad that you survived and got your juice. We go over at least once every two weeks if not more. We grocery shop, get our turkey and milk products over there since it is so much cheaper and always try and bring back some Florida oranges. Whatever you do, always declare what you bring back, they can do some nasty things to you such as confiscate your car and huge fines. We are a border town and know a few of the border guards, we hear all of the horror stories. We too have a US address and get great stuff shipped to us at a fraction of the price. Happy shopping!
LOL - it was more funny than anything. I knew before-hand but it was nice to get alone time with my dad. I got to hear about things in his past I never knew before.

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Originally Posted by cdnSpinalTap View Post
I know your questions have already been answered and you are back from your trip - but for future reference, remember that due to NAFTA, anything that is made in Canada, the US or Mexico can be brought back duty free. You are still required to pay GST and Provincial Tax according to the exemptions, but there should be no duty, regardless of how long you were across. I bought a $50,000 made in the US vehicle, was only in the US for one day and only paid GST.
Thanks! I will keep that in mind. My husband & I would still like to take a day or weekend trip (without the kids) and do some serious shopping one day.

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Sounds like you had a good trip. We go South often even for only an hour of shopping in Ogdensburg NY, but ofter over to Watertown for the afternoon. It is hard to get back without a few hundred in our US favorites. Mio water flavours - yes we can FINALLY get them in Canada, but only 4 flavours; there must be 15 flavors in the US. Also get lots of Gluten Free stuff for DS - there are more brands, and much tastier. For the longest time we could only get Betty Crocker Gluten Free Cake Mixes in the US, even though they were made in Canada!

Anyway, did you pay tax on any of the other stuff, or just the liquor? Usually if they pull you in, they hit it all! You got off lucky if they didn't.

As for the charge, go back to the vendor first before you dispute. Dispute with credit card issuer are only to be used when you couldn't resolve directly with the vendor, and you don't mention if you have done that yet. Most vendors are happy to admit when they have made a mistake and make it right. The vendor might agree to ship the rest of the way to you for free (although books can be tough at the border - some of the toughest import laws are for protection of our cultural industries, including publishing - that why amazon has a separate Canadian branch now.)
Isn't it amazing the variety available in the states?

Oh, it was not just the liquor. We paid tax on everything. I think my dad paid $15 on the Kindle Paperwhite. I paid only $20 on my stuff and I purchased around $225.

I did e-mail AND phoned (answer machine, left msg) the vendor TWICE before heading to NY. I wanted a tracking number so I could see where the package was and when it arrived. They never responded and I never received the books. I checked with usaddress on Wednesday, and I'm waiting for a reply today to see if the package showed up. If not, I will e-mail & phone the vendor, letting them know the books never showed up after paying extra for fast shipping. Then if no reply, I will contact them again for a refund before calling the credit card company. I have kept all copies of e-mails sent to them, as well as usaddress e-mails.

Since the books were being shipped from a NY address to another NY address, they should have arrived without problem. I did not realize that I could have issues once I was at the border though. That's interesting.

Ohh, something I completely forgot about but was confusing. Gas! I'm so use to pumping, then going inside to pay. There you have to pay first. We wanted to pay cash. So I asked inside how it works. We wanted to fill the tank, but how do you know ahead of time how much it will cost? The cashier told me to over-estimate and she would give me the difference back. So I paid $80, we pumped $62 and she gave me $18 back. I'm so glad we do not have mandatory pre-paying here! At least, yet.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:05 PM   #20
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I hope you all don't mind me reading over here. It's so interesting to hear how others live and shop.
California did away with pumping before paying years ago as people were taking off without paying. I think you can still pump first in the middle states until about Arizona where it's a pay first.

Most people I know have figured in their head about how many gallons they need, round it off to the nearest dollar (3.84 a gallon, $4 a gallon x needs 10 gallons= $40). I know I always try to figure a little short so I don't have to go back in.

On a trip to Detroit years ago, I had to go over the border to a grocery store to see milk in bags LOL Human nature I guess to see things that aren't "normal" to you. It always has amazed me how many times I have heard that there isn't that many flavors/brands, etc there. With the US, it's marketing and all marketing with more and more.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:12 PM   #21
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Here we can still pump gas before paying ... and Root Beer Popsicle's are number 1 . You cant buy beer at a gas station here.

That's what i love about traveling ... it is so interesting to see and learn stuff!
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:38 PM   #22
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UPDATE --> I e-mailed usaddress to check one more time, and gosh darn it - the books have arrived! I guess whoever shipped them goofed and didn't realize we paid $6 extra to have the books arrive before we did.

I guess a trip back to Niagara is in order. I can't just send my husband as the books are in my name, darn it. Maybe this is a good time to start talking about that overnight stay we always meant to do with the kids at Great Wolf Lodge. A planned weekend stay at GWL in 2010 turned into a 10-day WDW trip instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sasywtch View Post
I hope you all don't mind me reading over here. It's so interesting to hear how others live and shop.
California did away with pumping before paying years ago as people were taking off without paying. I think you can still pump first in the middle states until about Arizona where it's a pay first.

Most people I know have figured in their head about how many gallons they need, round it off to the nearest dollar (3.84 a gallon, $4 a gallon x needs 10 gallons= $40). I know I always try to figure a little short so I don't have to go back in.

On a trip to Detroit years ago, I had to go over the border to a grocery store to see milk in bags LOL Human nature I guess to see things that aren't "normal" to you. It always has amazed me how many times I have heard that there isn't that many flavors/brands, etc there. With the US, it's marketing and all marketing with more and more.
Hi and welcome! You're right. It is interesting. And surprising because I keep feeling it should be pretty much the same for all that we're two different countries. I guess a lot of American tv content makes it feels like it should be the same.

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Here we can still pump gas before paying ... and Root Beer Popsicle's are number 1 . You cant buy beer at a gas station here.
WHERE do you find root beer popsicles?? I love root beer and root beer flavoured hard candies. I would love to try a RB popsicle! Gee, and I always thought I was lucky that I can still find banana, lime and cherry popsicles at the corner store in the summer.
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:07 PM   #23
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Since someone mentioned possible issues about importing books, I wanted to chime in. I've ordered tons of books from the States over the years, and most of them were delivered to em in Canada. I used UPSP/Canada Post, so Canada Post managed the brokering. Nothing stopped at the border. And since I paid taxes on the books many times, they new what was in the package, so it's not just chance. I'm pretty sure you won't have any issues with your box of books at the border.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:03 PM   #24
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Since someone mentioned possible issues about importing books, I wanted to chime in. I've ordered tons of books from the States over the years, and most of them were delivered to em in Canada. I used UPSP/Canada Post, so Canada Post managed the brokering. Nothing stopped at the border. And since I paid taxes on the books many times, they new what was in the package, so it's not just chance. I'm pretty sure you won't have any issues with your box of books at the border.
Good to know, thanks! My husband is waiting for another shipment of books from that States that does deliver to Canada. Should be here soon.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:32 PM   #25
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I was in Buffalo yesterday and filled my tank at the gas station by Tops near the Outlet Mall. They had a button 'pay inside' so I chose that and paid inside. Easy.

Just to add about cross border shopping...
We use an address in Lewiston as many others have addresses here also. My daughter shipped luggage to us (from NYC) pre Christmas. We watched it online with Fedex as it was destined to our home here. It left NY ..went back to NY...left again..ended up back. Seems there was an issue with the paperwork at the border. So we called Fedex, said please, ship to Lewiston NY. It was delivered the next day-I picked up yesterday. We also just bought all new family room furniture there in Nov. Made in Nth Carolina...picked up this past Saturday. No probs at all..paid HST at the border and that was that.

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