Understanding the process of shipping to Canada from a US business using USPS can be difficult, frustrating and time-consuming. This breakdown of US Canada Shipping will explain the process, challenges and an alternative approach to getting items from the US to Canada without the hassle using ReShip. This guide will breakdown shipping to Canada from US USPS and how it actually works.
The Canadian e-commerce industry is booming, and 67% of shopping done by Canadians is purchases made from retailers abroad. Canadians are the second largest purchaser group from the US making them the ideal target group for American businesses.
Many US businesses and online sellers only offer shipping to US addresses restricting Canadians eager to spend money. This is due to the process being time-consuming, unpredictable and unclear for the seller. For those who do ship to Canada, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is the most attractive choice as they guarantee no additional fees and surcharges unlike FedEx and UPS. Many retailers will also already have an account with the USPS for their nationwide shipping therefore using them for Canadian orders is convenient.
The actual process of shipping to Canada from US USPS is slightly complicated. As USPS is a US service, their jurisdiction only extends to territory inside the US and must hand over to the local service. The USPS will pick up a package from the US and deliver it to customs, once cleared it is then picked up by Canada Post who in turn delivers the package to the customer in Canada.
The USPS fees for US Canada shipping are the most attractive for the retailer as they are lower than companies like FedEX and UPS. Based on the size of the actual package and the desired delivery date, the USPS delivery fee can range from $1.15 to $70.54 for standard shipping. This fee however does not include duties, taxes and tariffs that are imposed on imported goods as they will be the responsibility of the buyer.
Based on the final destination in Canada, one of the following taxes may apply: the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the Harmonized Tax (HST) and/or the Provincial Sales Tax (PST). US retailers, while using USPS or any other shipping service, must ensure that this is properly communicated when providing a shipping quote to a Canadian client.
Many US businesses however get frustrated with shipping to Canada from US USPS as the process is unclear and they will often get complaints from customers whom have not received their packages yet. This frustration is due to USPS’s jurisdiction being limited to the US only. Retailers and customers not only have to keep track of their shipments on the USPS website, but they must also check the Canada Post website once the package has been picked from customs. The tracking numbers may change or not work on one site vs. the other. Many have complained that their packages have gotten lost in the US for several weeks before eventually being scanned again and shipped to the destination through Canada Post.
The most frustrating aspect of shipping to Canada from US USPS is the lack of control once the package arrives to customs. If there are any difficulties at customs, it is unclear if communication with the seller or the buyer will be coming from USPS or Canada Post.
Another aspect of US Canada shipping that is challenging is that there is no choice as to the courier once the item is in Canada. Canada Post may not be the preferred courier service for many Canadians as they often experience delivery service interruptions and do not always have a reliable arrival date.
This is further inconvenient for the customer if they have purchased more than one item from different retailers. Having to track on both USPS and Canada Post for multiple shipments can get confusing and frustrating. Even if items are shipped at the same time from the US, arrival to Canada may drastically vary.
Given the challenges and lack of certainty and control while directly shipping to Canada from US USPS, many retailers simply do no offer shipping to Canadians. Even when they do, shipping costs vary and can be upwards of $70 per item and given the difficulties and inconveniences faced by both retailers and buyers; Canadians are hesitant while shopping on US online stores.
A great alternative is using ReShip.com. Canadians can sign up for a US address becoming eligible for cheaper and faster USPS shipping, this will also give them access to many items that are not currently sold to Canadians.
A great feature of ReShip is that it also allows customers to have multiple items from various retailers shipped to their US address, and once they have all arrived consolidate them and ship them to Canada using one shipment. For US Canada shipping, this saves on hundreds of dollars in various international shipping fees and allows the Canadian customer to choose their shipping company of preference.
Another great feature of ReShip is that they offer Assisted Purchase. With this, customers simply tell ReShip what it is that they wish to purchase, and the rest is handled.
These features are a great alternative to having to manage US to Canada shipping directly from USPS. It removes uncertainty and allows all parties to be in control of their US Canada shipping whiles saving customers money and providing sellers with a larger consumer group. With a US postal address, shopping from American retailers has never been easier for Canadians.Back To Latest Shipping News