Canadian's buying Internet Direct? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 10:04 AM - Thread Starter
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So I recently decided to purchase a pair of Sierra-1 speakers with all the glowing reviews I've read. I got a shipping quote and I was stunned. $130 for shipping, plus all the hassle with border crossing and potential for unfounded duty (even though it's built in the US, we know how CRA randomly charges duty on imported items). I can't imagine how much towers would cost to ship. Of course none of this is Ascend's fault, but I'm wondering how many other Canadian's have turned away from buy Internet direct because of cost / hassle?




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post #2 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 10:17 AM
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I think it happens more times than not.

A big factor, IMO, is the current exchange rate. Couple that with the fact there are very good Canadian brands such as Paradigm and PSB, and then shipping rates, then ID loses some or all of its value.

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post #3 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 11:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Do you think speakers are hit worse than others? Given the weight and size? Or you think amps and other items are equally effected?

I think as a Canadian, I'm okay with paying a bit more than a US customer if I could get it shipped locally.
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post #4 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 12:00 PM
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Having just left Canada (Oakville) after living there the last four years, I can say that I saved many, many thousands of dollars by having things shipped to the UPS store in Lewiston, NY and driving the hour to pick them up. The bonus was that I was also able to fill up on gas at a lower rate, rendering the gas cost of the trip zero and buy a bunch of groceries (milk, eggs and cheese) at a much lower cost so the trips actually saved me more again. Heck, I used to save $30 a bag on dog food getting it from Amazon and shipping to Buffalo vs buying in Canada.

I saved around $1,500 on a pioneer kuro alone by having it shipped to Buffalo. On one pair of ID speakers I bought, the difference between shipping to Oakville vs Buffalo was almost $300. None of these savings reflect not paying tax either. It is purely price and shipping savings. Retailers in Canada absolutely rape the consumer compared to the US.

Also, I've read a few times that it is actually cheaper to buy PSB speakers in the US than it is in Canada so check it out. I always did a comparison on costs and it was usually worthwhile to drive to Buffalo. You'd be surprised how much you save (groceries, gas, air travel, tires, etc.).

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post #5 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 01:52 PM
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I think Aperion offers the best deal for ID for Canadians, free shipping and you pay the taxes with them so it takes away all the hassle, I bought Sierra-1 on Monday and they still haven't shipped yet, so I'm guessing they won't be shipped till next week, I know they were at the ces but this does seem kinda slow.
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post #6 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryder125 View Post

I think Aperion offers the best deal for ID for Canadians, free shipping and you pay the taxes with them so it takes away all the hassle, I bought Sierra-1 on Monday and they still haven't shipped yet, so I'm guessing they won't be shipped till next week, I know they were at the ces but this does seem kinda slow.
They got back from CES on Tuesday night/Wednesday. Speakers are also assembled and tested when the order is received, which under normal circumstances takes a day or two. Give them a call, also check your spam buckets.

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post #7 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 02:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spincycle79 View Post

So I recently decided to purchase a pair of Sierra-1 speakers with all the glowing reviews I've read. I got a shipping quote and I was stunned. $130 for shipping, plus all the hassle with border crossing and potential for unfounded duty (even though it's built in the US, we know how CRA randomly charges duty on imported items). I can't imagine how much towers would cost to ship. Of course none of this is Ascend's fault, but I'm wondering how many other Canadian's have turned away from buy Internet direct because of cost / hassle?




spin

No turing away here...I bought my Sierra 1's NrT from Ascend and later upgraded to the Towers. So...yeah..I incurred addtional frees for delivery for both sets of speakers...the 1's cost an addtional $90.00(essentially added shipping fees) + HST....the Towers were slightly more(PM if you want to know)...being bigger and heavier of course and I have zero regrets...smile.gif

Re: Bill

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post #8 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 04:23 PM
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Receivers costs about half in the US of what they do here. I bought the last two on the net from the US.

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post #9 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 04:32 PM
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The higher prices here are not exclusively the retailers fault. For imported goods from a manufacturer such as Sony, the suggested retail price in Canada will be about 30% higher for a BD Player because the retailer's wholesale cost is also 30% higher for essentially the same model. While that may have been appropriate a few years ago when the CAN Dollar was worth 30% less than the US Dollar it certainly isn't anymore with both currencies being at par for some time.

We are getting ripped up here but it is slowly improving. In the past year I've made many purchases at Future Shop (Best Buy, Canada) when items are on sale for the same or less than US prices at times.

Interestingly, when researching purchasing an Asian built CUV several years ago, the prices for the equivalent model were as follows (in $US): US $30K; Canada $40K, UK $50K & poor old Australia $55K.

Dealing with goods crossing the border is always a crap shoot wrt duties & taxes being charged & sometimes not. Be aware of the bogus 'brokerage fees' that most couriers charge (USPS does not). Those fees will shock you if you're not expecting them. I won't deal with any US vendor that does not use USPS to Canada...

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post #10 of 18 Old 01-10-2013, 05:00 PM
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I use a shipping place in Port Huron MI (USParcel Pickup)which I am just an hours drive away. A lot of US companies will ship free within the lower 48, so it works out to drive 2 hours round trip to pick up the items.

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post #11 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-labdriver View Post

The higher prices here are not exclusively the retailers fault. For imported goods from a manufacturer such as Sony, the suggested retail price in Canada will be about 30% higher for a BD Player because the retailer's wholesale cost is also 30% higher for essentially the same model. While that may have been appropriate a few years ago when the CAN Dollar was worth 30% less than the US Dollar it certainly isn't anymore with both currencies being at par for some time.

We are getting ripped up here but it is slowly improving. In the past year I've made many purchases at Future Shop (Best Buy, Canada) when items are on sale for the same or less than US prices at times.

Interestingly, when researching purchasing an Asian built CUV several years ago, the prices for the equivalent model were as follows (in $US): US $30K; Canada $40K, UK $50K & poor old Australia $55K.

Dealing with goods crossing the border is always a crap shoot wrt duties & taxes being charged & sometimes not. Be aware of the bogus 'brokerage fees' that most couriers charge (USPS does not). Those fees will shock you if you're not expecting them. I won't deal with any US vendor that does not use USPS to Canada...

TAM

+1, Item on sale at Future Shop can have better price "before shipping and border fee" that amazon or ebay and that is very surprising... But they don't have all we want. And yes UPS is the king of extra charge for the border fee... I hate them. USPS is the way to go when the seller is flexible on the shipping method...
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post #12 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 09:37 AM
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For what it's worth, over the years I have crossed the border dozens and dozens of times to bring back my online purchases from a kinek point and I have never been charged duty. Tax yes, but never duty and it is common for me to declare 300-500 dollars worth of random stuff.
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post #13 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 11:23 AM
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Shipping, duty (if applicable), and taxes are just part of the purchase if you import from the USA. It's not a hassle, just part of the process. Find out the costs and factor into your purchase price and see if the value is there. I do it 15-20 times per year for personal and hundreds for business. Agree with posts above-USPS is the best way to ship small items (parcels). Speakers should come freight.
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post #14 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 11:41 AM
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If a US vendor declares 'Free Shipping', 99.9% of the time it will not apply to cross border customers.

The free shipping mostly applies to orders within the lower 48 states often not Alaska & Hawaii either...

TAM
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post #15 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-labdriver View Post

If a US vendor declares 'Free Shipping', 99.9% of the time it will not apply to cross border customers.

The free shipping mostly applies to orders within the lower 48 states often not Alaska & Hawaii either...

TAM

Hi Tam....I'd even go so far as too say that the "free shipping" in some way is already factored into the price. Unless one is clearing acting as their own agent ...that is willing &/or lucky enough to reside near the boarder making all the arrangments can be worthwhile....for me Lewiston or Buffalo NY is about ~2hrs drive and not worth the hassel of trying to save that addtional ~100.00 bucks or so , for US made products being shipped to me...for others YMMV.

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post #16 of 18 Old 01-11-2013, 01:01 PM
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Ya, my problem is a round trip ferry ride that would cost about $150 & at least a full day of travel That certainly negates any advantage of pickup on the other side for me.

It comes down to factoring in all of the costs & warranty implications to determine whether it or not it is all worth it - sometimes it is.

For example, I've been purchasing SACDs from ebay almost exclusively from US vendors. It takes about 10 days, USPS on small items is as reasonable as up here & taxes normally aren't charged as it is not worth the paperwork for Customs to collect the few bucks. Another factor is pricing with these guys up here. I got a blues SACD from a US vendor who's price was $7 plus $5 shipping. An Ontario vendor had the same disc on for $55 plus $5 shipping plus HST on it all - ridiculous...

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post #17 of 18 Old 01-12-2013, 10:05 AM
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One thing that I forgot to mention is currency exchange. It is largely negligible on small purchases but can add up dramatically on expensive items.

With all of the transactions that I've made that required exchanging currency, the CC company or PayPal takes their pound of flesh to the tune of 2.5%.

So to be truly at par for the purchaser, 1 of your dollars has to be at least $1.025 (when looking at the 'official' exchange rate that can fluctuate rapidly() to cover their fees...

TAM
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post #18 of 18 Old 01-12-2013, 10:30 AM
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Use www dot canadianforex dot com. They have great rates.

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