Can someone explain why sellers only say ConUS?
/forum/topic/1155976/0



zebster57
Registered: Feb 17, 2012
Total Posts: 37
Country: Canada

As a Canadian who buys gear from this site, it is frustrating when I either don't get responses for my offers to purchase or the seller simply says, sorry, only US. I don't understand why the issue, I have purchased gear all over the world and from sellers in the US on FM ... Is this a cost issue or lack of knowledge that we don't have delivery service? Maybe they don't understand currency conversion in PayPal and think I am going to pay in a foreign currency that is useless?

Any insight would be helpful so I can make future purchases. Thanks



borderlight
Registered: Dec 06, 2004
Total Posts: 1746
Country: United States

I sold to Canadian buyers before, but it is usually a pain. First off, most Canadians aren't aware of how expensive it is to ship to Canada, and once they are informed of the cost it seems to be a turnoff. Also, the seller in the US is forced to ship a package that meets postal regulations (size and weight). It's their way or no way. After that hurdle there is the time it takes to get there. The US post office can't give you exact dates. It could be a week or more, who knows. Exchange rates are usually calculated by PayPal if the purchaser in Canada is set up for that, and that's not always the case. I think there is misinformation about the laws governing both countries. A US seller is thinking "what if something goes wrong, and what personal expense must I incur to correct it."

OK, it's time for those who ship gear world-wide using UPS, or FedEx to inform us how easy, safely, and cost effective the whole process is.



Wahoowa
Registered: Feb 13, 2011
Total Posts: 1526
Country: United States

I'd like to add to what borderlight said.

I've done several transactions with Canadians. Actually, it's not that expensive if the package does not require insurance. However, for most items on this site, we need insurance. If we want it, we could either go with UPS/FedEx, but most Canadians probably want to avoid it because of their outrageous brokerage fee. (I'm definitive with UPS on this, but not 100% on FedEx.) Even without the fee, their shipping costs are still on the high side.

Now, let's take a look at USPS. If you want insurance, you can ship via USPS First Class International, which is the cheapest option, but you have to purchase insurance from a their-party company. Or you'll have to go at least Priority Mail International, which is not that cheap with full insurance coverage.

However, if buyer pays with Paypal and the item is over $250, these two USPS options are not feasible to comply with Paypal's policy--you need a signature confirmation that Paypal can verify online. And the only option that is possible is USPS Express Mail Internation.

Trying to explain everything to any potential Canadian buyers on top of this would be a pain. And then you'll have to go to the post office where the line is really really long in my city. I kinda understand why many people just want to skip it altogether.



Danpbphoto
Registered: Jan 03, 2004
Total Posts: 9832
Country: United States

In addition to what "boderlight" and "Wahoowa" have explained, I will mention that some of those Canadian buyers and sellers that I have dealt with are unfamiliar with the "crossborder" fees imposed by PayPal.

The USPS people are making it increasing difficult for Americans to ship to Canada. I should say more expensive....while I do not exclusively eliminate Canadians(via CONUS only) from my "FS" ads, and I should say that most Canadians will pay any and all "over-fees" to Canada on my items, it is a hassle but to those "old timers" on FM from Canada I will sell and have.

If all goes well fine but if there are problems.....it becomes a real nightmare.
Sorry!
Dan




zebster57
Registered: Feb 17, 2012
Total Posts: 37
Country: Canada

Thanks guys ... this helps and I agree, it would be great to have a definitive strategy for shipping. I recently puchased an $900 lens from Boston and the Photog used USPS, Priority was $58, so he sent it regular, it did take about 11 days. I would have preferred International Priority as it spends less time in Customs, but the seller didn't want to pay the additional, which I would have if given the option. Completely understand about UPS, got stung $80 extra for brokerage fees on a 580ex. There are options to get customs clearance on your own and UPS will waive the fee... at least in theory as our Customs guys explain.

I do agree it would be great to have a definitive strategy but this helps me understand a US Seller's position when I am trying to purchase in the US. I live a little over an hour from the border and there is a address that will recieve parcels for Canadians, I am thinking this may be the better option in the future.

thanks again for taking the time to respond!





mogud
Registered: Feb 13, 2011
Total Posts: 671
Country: Canada

There seems to be a lot of misinformation/confusion about shipping to Canada. I've made purchases from US based FM sellers without all the exceptions noted.

Regarding PayPal, the Cdn purchaser pays in USD from their PayPal account. The fees are usually 3.9%(not 3%)and there is no PayPal gift option for cross-border transactions. The US seller should PM the Cdn purchaser and request any small difference(if any).

The best way to ship to Canada is USPS Priority International or USPS Express International. The box size options provided by USPS will be the right size to ship even a Canon 100-400 to Canada. The USPS website gives the seller the option to purchase insurance at a very reasonable cost and there is no need to buy third party insurance. The only difference between Priority and Express is shipping days and both shipping options have a tracking number which tracks each time the shipped package is scanned enroute. With USPS, there are no brokerage fees. The Canadian purchaser is responsible for HST and the Canada Post fee of $8.

As a word of caution, Canadian purchasers should avoid purchases more the $1600. These purchases are flagged and held by Canadian Customs until the purchaser hires a broker. The broker will then be able to complete all required forms for packages imported into Canada considered "large dollar" packages. This exception has nothing to do with the seller.

The other alternative for Cdn purchasers is to have a US address. I live in the Toronto area and have a US address in Lewiston NY. US sellers can easily ship to this secure address with proof of delivery provided to the purchaser and seller.

US FM sellers should be upfront with Cdn purchasers and charge a little extra for shipping and insurance. US FM sellers should not shy away from dealing with Cdn FM purchasers. If the purchaser has positive feedback and has purchased large dollar gear, the purchaser is probably aware of the best shipping options.



BenV
Registered: Jan 01, 2008
Total Posts: 7828
Country: United States

I don't normally ship out of the USA, I have before, but I avoid it. Someone always try to screw you over. I have an item listed for $500 shipped and paypal'd, I find a buyer, they send the money and I notice its out of the USA. Then get mad when I return their money. I will take care of normal shipping and fees, but the extra cost and energy shipping to Canada isn't worth my time. So I only do ConUS.



zebster57
Registered: Feb 17, 2012
Total Posts: 37
Country: Canada

Thanks BenV, I would hope Canadian buyers, like myself, would understand shipping is a higher cost and pay the extra, if not, you have to move on. I always ask up front if they have a problem shipping to Canada if they don't stipulate ConUs. I will continue to try to purchase in the US, at least I have a better understanding and perhaps that will help me when I find an item I want.



normster
Registered: Oct 15, 2012
Total Posts: 19
Country: Canada

ALl i can say is it sucks for buying gear to be CDN.

UPS pushes people to claim 100 value even on things LESS, because once it's claimed 99 or more, they can hit you with the brokerage fee's + tax on top of that. If you send something worth 20 and tell the teller, they will still say "might as well put it as 100, you are covered for up to that anyway". It's just a cash grab at brokerage fee's. No clue how they continue to get away with it. USPS is hit and miss with taxes/dutys/fees. Basically if it's less then 50 or 100 theyd otn bother, and if it's worth more then that they are hit and miss as well. USPS tracking numbers work in canada post tracking system as well, so you can sorta see what's going on. But i totally understand if people dont want to deal with Canadians. I just missed a spanky new 35 1.4L today due to being born here



borderlight
Registered: Dec 06, 2004
Total Posts: 1746
Country: United States

Nevermind



borderlight
Registered: Dec 06, 2004
Total Posts: 1746
Country: United States

I just missed a spanky new 35 1.4L today due to being born here

Count your blessings, man. If America takes an extreme right turn on Nov. 6th, we'll be joining you.

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/borowitzreport/2012/10/canada-tightens-border.html?mbid=nl_Borowitz%20(32)



tanglefoot47
Registered: Oct 12, 2004
Total Posts: 14825
Country: United States

I have sold many times to up north and it always seems it cost me more never figure the shipping etc, the pain in the ass of filling out the custom forms and the last time I sold to up north was not good. If you ship and declare the value the friend up north gets pissed because of the taxes. I hate shipping anything without insuring but then the declared value? But tell you the truth some of the best people I have sold to are Canadian



useakme
Registered: Oct 26, 2011
Total Posts: 54
Country: Canada

Good thread. I used to wonder the same thing and never figured it was a bit of a pain to send up here from the U.S. Doesn't sound too bad but I can see how some sellers are turned off.