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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 08-17-09, 02:14 PM   #1
leaftors
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For the Canadian Customers!!

Just wondering how much you got charged by customs for an order you got from the states. And what did you order?

I'm thinking of setting up a po box near the border in the states, and just driving there to pick it up.

It'd cost ~$80 plus gas probably $20

I'd be ordering a frame set, wheels, and some other parts.

Should i go through the trouble to set it up or just get it shipped to ontario?
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Old 08-17-09, 02:17 PM   #2
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Yeah, do it. I was told to expect 80$ brokerage charge on a wheelset. See if you can get some other people together to order some things... or find a BF member near the border and befriend them.
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Old 08-17-09, 02:24 PM   #3
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i bought a $220us wheelset and got dinged.... zero. which, i admit, surprised the hell out of me and which i attribute to either

a) clerical error, or
b) the realization by customs that if the various 'free trade' policies aren't going to charge a brokerage fee on all the jobs we've exported it probably shouldn't ding you for importing a wheelset... and what the hell national bicycle industry do we have to protect from imports anyway? cervelo? please!

i go with 'a'.

Last edited by frymaster; 08-17-09 at 02:25 PM. Reason: rm 'anyway'
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Old 08-17-09, 02:43 PM   #4
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good news! i called ups and they can hold a shipment at their main centres for free!

so if anyone wants to do the same thing.
heres the contact info:
http://www.ups.com/content/us/en/con...?WT.svl=Footer

here's the address for the main centre in niagara falls, ny.
6601 Packard Rd.
Niagara Falls, New York 14304

Mon - Fri 1-6pm

Just make sure the shipper puts a "hold for pickup + your name" sticker on the package.
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Old 08-17-09, 03:43 PM   #5
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Don't know about over the border from Ontario, but some of the border areas near Vancouver have mail box services set up for just that. The one we used when we lived there was in Point Roberts and charged $2 per item to receive and hold it for you.
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Old 08-17-09, 05:15 PM   #6
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Any tips for what to say when they ask you to declare anything? You can just say it's a gift right?
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Old 08-17-09, 05:20 PM   #7
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Any tips for what to say when they ask you to declare anything? You can just say it's a gift right?
you need the sender to mark as a gift. I've done this before to get stuff from canada. Don't know if any sellers will do this for you, as it is legally shady.
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Old 08-17-09, 05:23 PM   #8
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you need the sender to mark as a gift. I've done this before to get stuff from canada. Don't know if any sellers will do this for you, as it is legally shady.
I meant, if i were to drive down the border and pick it up, can i just say it's a gift? Obviously I'd unpack the items and everything. Can they still charge me if i say its a gift?
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Old 08-17-09, 05:25 PM   #9
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I meant, if i were to drive down the border and pick it up, can i just say it's a gift? Obviously I'd unpack the items and everything. Can they still charge me if i say its a gift?
I believe it is the senders duty to mark the item as a gift. Otherwise the recipient would claim everything as a gift.
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Old 08-17-09, 05:33 PM   #10
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I meant, if i were to drive down the border and pick it up, can i just say it's a gift? Obviously I'd unpack the items and everything. Can they still charge me if i say its a gift?

yeah man, just unpack it all and ditch the packaging and say you were visiting a buddy and he gave you his wheelset 'cos he upgraded or something.
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Old 08-17-09, 06:03 PM   #11
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If it's a frame... take some parts - wheels, post and saddle, stem/ bar etc... and put it on your car rake. Just visiting right? But this seems like a lot of trouble.

This works every time. Have the seller send it to your home with the following details... UPS standard ground shipping (tracking number a must). Marked as gift / No insurance (because you'll be charged according to that amount). Value = $40.00 / USED!!! No "business name" (return address, etc...) on the outer packing.

In Canada we are allowed $60.00 CDN free if it is declared a gift. UPS does not arbitrarily open packages at customs like the post office does, and you can track it every step of the way.

I have bought full bikes this way from many places in the US and paid "zero" at my door. But the seller must agree to ALL these terms.
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Old 08-17-09, 06:12 PM   #12
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You can say whatever you want, they can still ding you PST/GST. If the parts are made in the USA you don't pay duty. I always try to get USPS to avoid brokering fees, but packages with a frameset may exceed a maximum size or the vendor may opt for FedEX/UPS no matter what you want. If you do go across the border, do yes sir/no sir three bags full sir and you might get away with it. But seriously, you cross the border for an hour and come back with a wheel set and you expect them to think its a gift, yep, that's likely. Don't forget you need a passport to cross the border nowadays. Wouldn't want you slipping into the states and trying to live there illegally. A ha ha ha.
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Old 08-17-09, 07:52 PM   #13
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I am from Toronto and I get charged the equivalent of the federal plus Ontario sales tax, plus $5 processing fee.
And do not ever say that you have something to declare. It is that simple.
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Old 08-18-09, 08:25 AM   #14
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UPS and Fed Ex both have a scam going in which they will charge you a brokerage fee even if the shipped item does not have any duty on it, it's automatic. Bike parts are duty free but subject to sales tax just like a purchase made in your own province where of course the transaction originated from.

Use only USPS if possible and expect to pay sales tax.
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Old 08-18-09, 09:00 AM   #15
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UPS expedited/express brokerage fee is built in, so when you see ground shipping for $15 and express for $40, you go with express because you're going to get hit with a $50 brokerage fee (that's just the brokerage, plus duty, plus tax), so the extra cost to get express is worth it

fedex also have a more reasonable brokerage fee, although it's still higher than USPS/Canada Post

bike frames, bike wheels and complete bikes (worth over $1000) are not duty free, i believe bike frames and wheels are around 3-5%, and complete bikes are 10-13%, so if you imported a complete bike you would be paying tax (PST+GST) and duty, gets crazy.
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Old 08-18-09, 04:40 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leaftors View Post
good news! i called ups and they can hold a shipment at their main centres for free!

so if anyone wants to do the same thing.
heres the contact info:
http://www.ups.com/content/us/en/con...?WT.svl=Footer

here's the address for the main centre in niagara falls, ny.
6601 Packard Rd.
Niagara Falls, New York 14304

Mon - Fri 1-6pm

Just make sure the shipper puts a "hold for pickup + your name" sticker on the package.
Let me know how this works out, I am interested in this...
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