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Shipping from Canada to the US, trouble free?? Some help, please??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Dave Campbell, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. Dave Campbell

    Dave Campbell

    Jul 13, 2006
    I'm up in Canada on the west coast and I'm going to thin the herd, but rather than try to sell locally I'm considering braving it and maybe list some of my gear on the TB classifieds.

    The only hangup for me is, I've only ever purchased on here and Ebay, never sold. My concern is with brokerage, etc... I guess I just don't know how it works from this end.

    Canuck members... can you weigh in on this one for me? What has your experience been thus far sending items to the US?

    I've done OK receiving items from the states because often times the shipping is included in the price, but I've gotten around the brokerage by having the items sent to a freight forwarder. There's one which is located right beside the Victoria BC airport called Seawings. What would happen is I'd pick up paperwork from the Seawings office and walk across the parking lot to the customs office and pay the duty and taxes myself... a process Fed Ex and UPS charge a fortune for in some cases (in my opinion a total racket).
    I asked Seawings about the reverse process and there's quite a bit more involved, apparently.

    I suppose Fed Ex, UPS, etc would otherwise pick the item up from me and charge the end customer brokerage?
  2. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    When shipping internationally do not ship Fedex or UPS if you don't want the customer to get a bunch of mystery charges when it gets to their door. Ship with Canada post, it will be more upfront but less in the end, just like having stuff shipped up north via USPS. If the buyer wants to use Fedex or UPS that is their business, just let them know they are responsible for customs and duties and there will definitely be some. Depending on the value of the bass Canada Post/USPS will still have some kind of import fees, they will just be less. You need to hope the receiver doesn't throw a spit fit and refuse the item based on charges, otherwise it comes back to you with the charges I think, I have never done it or had it happen so I do not know exactly.

    It is the receiver who pays for the duties and customs, there is no way you can work it into your price or pay it in advance to my knowledge, and even if you did you would be eating money by this.

    Lastly, have you tried selling locally? TB tends to be a buyers market, not a sellers market in my experience.
  3. T-birdfan


    Jan 29, 2001
    Ontario, Canada
  4. Dave Campbell

    Dave Campbell

    Jul 13, 2006
    Wow, Canada Post... they would ship an item with those dimensions? Well that gives me hope. I will seriously look into that.

    I figured trying Talkbass because buyers here will generally appreciate the value of certain gear moreso than the general public... it seems to me this site is more specialty-minded.

    For example, I think I'd have a better chance at a reasonable sale on my '84 G&L L2000 that I'm going to want to put on the block, than if I listed on Craigslist for Victoria/Nanaimo/Vancouver. But then again, that might be an assumption on my part.
  5. I've shipped bass guitars via CanPost & they're great. Definitely use them when crossing the border.
  6. Flagg


    Jan 15, 2014
    I had a bass with a hard shell case shipped down to the U.S. from Ottawa by Canada Post. It was very straightforward and arrived fast and in perfect shape. If I recall it was just over $100. The weight was no problem, but the shipper had to be very careful about not over-packaging with bubble wrap and cardboard. The overall dimensions were a concern (L+W+D has to be under some specific number or cost is much higher due to requiring upgraded shipping). It was just barely under that cutoff.

    Anyway, that's the only way I'd choose if I had to do it over again.