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Shipping to Canada

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#1 ShawnPreston

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:33 PM

I'm going to be receiving an AP1200 mount next month, and am wondering whether anyone can give me an idea as to the import/customs/duty/taxes I can expect as this thing crosses the border. AP is calculating actual shipping costs for me, but I'm wondering what else I'll be paying.

Is it worth driving to AP and picking up the mount myself, to avoid shipping/duty/etc?

Thanks in advance,

Shawn

#2 guyroch

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:44 PM

Is the AP1200 built in the US? If yes their should be NO duty fee as per the North American Free Trade Agreement. You'll only pay the 13% HST + Broker fees + shipping.

For an AP1200... I would drive... I'm leaving right now :)

Guylain

#3 ShawnPreston

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:49 PM

I'm going to send them a copy of my drivers license so you don't try to claim my mount!

No duty, that's good news. No the question becomes whether I could look innocent enough that they won't search my car when I have nothing to declare!

#4 guyroch

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 04:09 PM

If you send them your drivers license I'll send them this post :)
:funny:

#5 mclewis1

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 04:25 PM

Shawn, The last time I looked (a couple of years ago) there was no Duty on telescope gear regardless of the source, just GST/HST, shipping charges, and any brokerage fees by the shipper. If you're going to pick it up yourself then you're still going to have to pay HST at the border. I would ensure that you have the appropriate tariff/duty documents already printed out so you can point to the specific subsection your mount will fall under (saves time). Make sure you know exactly how AP declares the mount (telescope accessory vs something like mixed machinery or parts).

Be helpful at the border but not too pushy and you'll be just fine. The more paper work you have already filled out the better off you'll be. The GST/HST will likely be something in the area of $1300-1500 (depends on what options you are purchasing) ... and make sure you know what type of payment Canada customs accepts (I don't think they take personal cheques) ... otherwise you may be required to leave it behind. Is the trip worth it to save the shipping/brokerage fees? Well I guess that depends on your gas mileage, and the value of your time.

#6 attckbvr

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 05:55 PM

Hi Shawn, I just bought a Lunt 100LS solar scope from Lunt in Arizona. All I had to pay was HST on the declared amount. Which was still $600 beans more. Hope that helps

Kevin

#7 stevew

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 02:22 AM

the question becomes whether I could look innocent enough that they won't search my car when I have nothing to declare!

You could try that,
but if you get caught you'll loose your mount :shameonyou:
Just bite the bullet, and pay the tax.

Steve

#8 skyguy55

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 03:12 AM

Is it worth driving to AP and picking up the mount myself, to avoid shipping/duty/etc?


Hi Shawn,

I'm out in Vancouver but this should work for you with a bit of searching on your part. I live about 45 minutes from the US boarder. Usually on the US side close to the boarder,there are many businesses that will accept mail or packages for Canadians that want to drive down and pick up their mail.
I was having a Celestron CGE mount sent to me from California. I found a business that would accept the mount for me and the holding cost was less than $30. All I had to do was to give them my name and email address and they would then give me a shout when everything came in. It was so simple I had to confirm the instructions with them several times just to make sure. The whole procedure was so fast I couldn't believe it! The seller told me when it was out of his hands and in TWO days, I got an email saying that my mount was in! I couldn't even mail a letter across the street in two days.
Make sure that you have all the documentation and you should only be paying the HST. If there isn't any lineups, 20 minutes tops and your on your way!
Nice purchase by the way!

Gregg

#9 guyroch

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 03:17 AM

the question becomes whether I could look innocent enough that they won't search my car when I have nothing to declare!

You could try that,
but if you get caught you'll loose your mount :shameonyou:
Just bite the bullet, and pay the tax.

Steve


He was just joking Steve... riding the joke I started.

Guylain

#10 CounterWeight

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 10:22 AM

Congratulations on getting a fantastic A-P mount :) !

#11 mclewis1

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 11:15 AM

Hi Shawn,

I'm out in Vancouver but this should work for you with a bit of searching on your part. I live about 45 minutes from the US boarder. Usually on the US side close to the boarder,there are many businesses that will accept mail or packages for Canadians that want to drive down and pick up their mail.
I was having a Celestron CGE mount sent to me from California. I found a business that would accept the mount for me and the holding cost was less than $30. All I had to do was to give them my name and email address and they would then give me a shout when everything came in. It was so simple I had to confirm the instructions with them several times just to make sure. The whole procedure was so fast I couldn't believe it! The seller told me when it was out of his hands and in TWO days, I got an email saying that my mount was in! I couldn't even mail a letter across the street in two days.
Make sure that you have all the documentation and you should only be paying the HST. If there isn't any lineups, 20 minutes tops and your on your way!
Nice purchase by the way!

Gregg


Gregg, What exactly would Shawn save by doing it that way? There is not Duty, he knows he has to pay HST, there is still shipping charges ... the only savings I can see would be the brokerage fee and maybe a bit of the shipping charges. This would be offset by the holding fee, gas, and time to drive over the border. Depending on his location, and the location of the holding agent I'll bet in this case it would work out close to even or maybe even a bit cheaper to have it shipped.

Your suggestion would certainly save money if you were comparing a purchase from a Canadian dealer vs. a US dealer (for example buying a Celestron product) but Shawn is making a US purchase in US Dollars in the USA, and then having the product shipped to Canada.

#12 skyguy55

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:12 PM

[/quote]Gregg, What exactly would Shawn save by doing it that way? There is not Duty, he knows he has to pay HST, there is still shipping charges ... the only savings I can see would be the brokerage fee and maybe a bit of the shipping charges. This would be offset by the holding fee, gas, and time to drive over the border. Depending on his location, and the location of the holding agent I'll bet in this case it would work out close to even or maybe even a bit cheaper to have it shipped.

Your suggestion would certainly save money if you were comparing a purchase from a Canadian dealer vs. a US dealer (for example buying a Celestron product) but Shawn is making a US purchase in US Dollars in the USA, and then having the product shipped to Canada. [/quote]

I agree with you but the biggest thing he could possibly save is time with his new mount! ( I don't know the brokerage fees on a $10,000 item)Once your product crosses the boarder into Canada it goes into a holding zone where it could be sitting around in customs for who knows how long. Also the fewer people that handle it the better as far as I'm concerned. That's just my opinion, yours may be different. If Shawn lives a far distance from the boarder then maybe it isn't practical. For me it was.

#13 ShawnPreston

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 07:20 PM

Thanks for all the comments guys. I'm only 45min from the border, but the hassle of having to find a respectable holding agent in the US, coupled with the likelihood of my goofing up the paperwork makes me think I'll stick with Plan A... have AP ship directly to me.

Shawn

#14 Danno2006

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 09:28 AM

I would suggest a second look at the holding agent given how close you are to the border. AP may be able to recommend someone. I have driven across the border after having bought a telescope. All you need to produce is the bill of sale with your name on it. The Canadian Border agent directs you to the building where you pay your HST and you are on your way. Pretty painless actually. Same deal with anyone of the millions of Candians that cross the boder to do some US shopping. As long as the merchandise is legal in Canada, border agents really don't care what it is.

There have been some nasty surprises on brokerage fees from Canadians importing astro stuff and using UPS, FEDEX, Etc. I just want to make sure you do not get hit with that.

I suggest if you still want to use broker, get a quote up front first if possible.

#15 dawziecat

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:30 AM

I don't have a lot of experience shipping across the border but what I have had has been pretty negative.

Case in point: About ten years ago I ordered approximately $1000 worth of photo gear from B&H in NYC. They shipped it immediately. Next contact I had was a message on my answering machine from a broker for a courier service . . . don't recall which. It led to a lot of delay. The upstart was a delay of about 3 weeks and a considerable charge.

Since that incidentI have avoided ordering costly items from the US. It is frequently annoying and costly. The HST is not the issue. It is rather high shipping costs and brokerage.

Good luck with your gorgeous AP1200. Whatever the pain in getting it into Canada, it will be worth it.

#16 silverking

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 10:42 AM

DO NOT let them ship it UPS to Canada.

UPS brokerage charges are the joke of the industry.......up to 1/3 the value of the item being shipped depending on "terms and conditions" known only to UPS.

Either FedEx or the USPS are the only way to ship from the U.S. into Canada.

#17 canukLX90

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 01:11 PM

Hi Shawn,

I recently went thru the same issues as you are now facing
in getting my AP900GTO across the border.

If you go to the UPS web site it gives all the details
about UPS charges etc.

If you have your mount delivered UPS Expedited there will
be no extra charges by UPS and there is no duty on the
mount as it is made in the USA. However, you still have
to pay the HST. If you contact UPS, when Astro-Physics
advises you that they have shipped the mount, and pay the
HST to them, UPS will not charge any brokerage fees.
Astro-Physics will give you the UPS package tracking numbers
and waybill number so when you talk to UPS they will know
about your shipment.

So, total cost should be mount + shipment cost + HST.

The people at Astro-Physics were very very good to work
with regarding shipping. The customer service is THE BEST!

Enjoy your new mount....they are so sweet!

PJ

#18 ShawnPreston

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 07:24 PM

Thanks PJ. Did you have to ask AP to ship UPS Expedited, or is that generally how they ship? Also, when you say to call and pay the HST to "them", do you mean UPS, or AP?

Shawn

#19 canukLX90

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 12:23 PM

Hi Shawn,

I don't know the standard policy for shipping by Astro-
Physics. I just did some research and then after
considering alternatives, I decided that considering the
value of my shipment, UPS Expedited was the best way to go.

You pay Astro-Physics for the mount and the UPS shipping
charges. You pay UPS the HST.

I assume that Astro-Physics has notified you by email that
your mount will be coming to you as I was for mine.
I just replied back advising of my shipping preference.
Once the mount was shipped and Astro-Physics emailed
me the waybill number I phoned UPS and payed the HST by
credit card. Delivery only took a couple of days once it left
Astro-Physics. No fuss...no worries!

Happy observing...

PJ

#20 ShawnPreston

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 06:58 PM

Thanks PJ. I called and spoke to UPS today, and the advised me that on normal ground shipping, the brokerage fees (based on ~$12000 mount) would be a couple hundred dollars. Very reasonable. There is no brokerage on UPS Expedited shipping.

Shawn

#21 Kenny2004

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 07:01 PM

Another option is to use US Global Priority mail, which is handled by Canada Post. The 'brokerage fee' is very nominal, and i think it's set at $5? All one would pay for is HST.

#22 mclewis1

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 10:59 PM

Another option is to use US Global Priority mail, which is handled by Canada Post. The 'brokerage fee' is very nominal, and i think it's set at $5? All one would pay for is HST.

This is very true for smaller items, but I don't think USPS or Canada Post will handle an AP1200 mount.

#23 Mike Clemens

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 02:10 AM

I've heard of Mexican drug tunnels under the border, but never Canadian telescope tunnels... just an idea.

#24 Bill Barlow

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 02:47 AM

I shipped a Meade 10" ACF OTA from Kansas City to Ontario last summer with the box weighing around 40 pounds. I used USPS and found the charges very reasonable. The clerk also told me that they will not ship anything to Canada weighing over 70 pounds.

Bill

#25 mclewis1

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 08:25 AM

I shipped a Meade 10" ACF OTA from Kansas City to Ontario last summer with the box weighing around 40 pounds. I used USPS and found the charges very reasonable. The clerk also told me that they will not ship anything to Canada weighing over 70 pounds. Bill

That's the number I was trying to remember ... thanks Bill






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