Shipping from Canada to the US is an essential aspect of eCommerce. Studies show that customers often add more items to their cart when they know free and fast shipping is available.
Fortunately, there are many options for shipping from Canada to the US. The best option for you depends on your business needs and budget.
Taxes and Duties
The cost of shipping from Canada to US can vary depending on the mode of shipment, documentation, weight, and bilateral trade agreements between the two countries. A logistics company with a detailed knowledge of the process can help you avoid unnecessary charges and save money.
Customs duties or import taxes are imposed on goods moving across the border, and the rate depends on the country of origin and the product type. The United States Border Protection (CBP) enforces these rules and regulations. You can learn more by visiting the CBP website and using their online calculator. You must also know the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUS) code to determine the exact rates you must pay.
It helps you familiarize yourself with the restrictions and prohibitions on importing from Canada to the US. For example, items like vegetables, products made with dog or cat fur, and drug paraphernalia are prohibited. Additionally, some packages are deemed hazardous and must be marked accordingly with a unique label.
Finally, make sure that your package is in a safe outer container. This will protect it from unauthorized access and prevent the need for additional inspections. Additionally, it must be durable enough to withstand transit. A durable tin or cardboard box should work well.
You must know about customs duty and taxes if you ship goods from Canada to the US. This will help you avoid surprises at the point of entry when importing your products and ensure that you’re getting the best value for your logistics dollars.
The first step in the customs clearance process is documentation inspection. A customs officer will review the documents for your shipment to determine if it meets Canadian and American requirements. The most common documents required are a commercial invoice (CI) (stating the contact information of the shipper and receiver, date of export, a description of the cargo, and value), a bill of lading (BOL) or air waybill, a purchase order from a buyer, packing list, and certificates of origin (NAFTA or USMCA Certificates of Origin).
After your shipment is assessed and inspected, it will be delivered to you. You may be asked to pay any applicable duties and taxes, and you may also be required to provide additional documents depending on your business type, product type, and shipment value.
The good news is that many e-commerce retailers in Canada and the United States can apply for duty drawbacks to reduce or eliminate shipping costs. This is especially true if you partner with a logistics company that has experience handling cross-border shipments and knows how to navigate the complexities of US-Canada trade policies.
The US is one of the most popular and accessible international markets for Canadian businesses. The two countries exchange over $500 billion of goods and services annually. However, shipping to the US has its challenges. Whether you’re a small or large business, it’s crucial to understand all the requirements before you start sending your products across the border.
Other than ensuring that your products comply with US regulations and policies, it’s also critical to have proper documentation in place. The required documents include a Bill of Lading (BOL), Commercial Invoice, Import/Export Licenses, etc. Many shippers try to cut corners when documenting their shipments, but this can lead to costly delays, penalties, and even having your shipments returned.
When preparing your BOL, you must provide information about the shipment, including its country of origin, a description of the items, their value and HS code, and the shipping and receiving addresses. You can use an online BOL calculator or a freight carrier’s website to calculate shipping costs.
While the list of prohibited and restricted items will vary slightly depending on your logistics provider, there are some things that you cannot send into the US or Canada at all. These include cash and equivalent materials, such as coins, currency, endorsed stocks, and perishable foods.
The United States is Canada’s largest trading partner and is almost always a merchant’s first international market. As long as you know the rules and don’t ship banned items, shipping to the US can be affordable for many Canadian merchants.
Most major carriers offer shipping insurance as an add-on to their services. This allows customers to declare the value of their goods and ensure they are covered if they are damaged or lost in transit. These insurance options can be purchased during the online checkout process on their websites or at physical service locations.
Another option is to use a third-party provider that offers insurance for parcels shipped internationally. These companies typically provide several coverage options to choose from, depending on the needs of each merchant. This type of insurance is generally cheaper than the carrier options but may require more work.
An excellent choice for small firms needing to ship big loads of goods from Canada to the US is less-than-truckload (LTL) shipping. LTL carriers allow SMEs to bundle their freight with other shipments from other SMEs, which can help them get better shipping rates. CSA Transportation offers several LTL shipping services for business-to-business and consumer-to-consumer shipments, so we can help you reduce your shipping costs from Canada to the US.