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Old May 28th, 2011, 03:18 AM   #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pm-r View Post
Well, I for one would suggest that all the suppliers of all the devices you've purchased and done or about to do with your great reviews should supply you with a free unit for your use - and no returns required!!! Especially considering the coverage that that you have and can supply.

But why the $20 for duty???

Where did it come from and what happened to the "free trade" stuff that's supposed to be in place and to prevent such "duty"??
As much as possible, I would like to get products where I'm free to say whatever I want about the product, both good and bad. Some companies have expectations when they send you one for free, that you'll just say good things about it. I don't want that. I'm going to be doing a lot of reviews on products and I want to slowly build trust that when I say I like a product, I mean I really like a product. When I don't like a product, I'll say why I don't like a product.

In full disclosure, Elgato sent me the review unit for free, but they knew that if there was something I didn't like about the product, I'd say so. I said in the review, I was not a fan of the hardware remote that comes with it. It's not good. Fortunately, I think most people will end up using the software remote that comes on screen.

Another vendor has sent me a bunch of stuff to review, but I told them upfront, that I won't necessarily give the products a good review. Of course I'll be professional about it, and give reasons why I don't like something and where I think there can be improvement. I'm not going to give a "This product sucks" comment and just leave it at that.

A lot of items I review will end up as prizes. Some will stay in the arsenal. The GoPro for example, I specifically wanted as a second camera for doing video-casts.

About the duty, anything you commercially buy in the States and have sent over to Canada is subject to duty charges.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 04:00 AM   #72
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Thanks for the info your philosophy thoughts.

And I guess that regarding the duty, that the 'Free Trade" stuff is just some sort of an oxymoron.

BTW: When do some of you 'Easterners' ever go to bed and sleep at a normal time?? :-)
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Old May 28th, 2011, 05:17 AM   #73
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About the duty, anything you commercially buy in the States and have sent over to Canada is subject to duty charges.
Not always, depends on what type of item it is and where it was made. They are all subject to some taxes (GST and/or HST, again depending on the product) and depending on how you shipped it possibly a brokerage fee. That's one of the big disadvantages with shipping with the cheap method, is that lots of times they'll nail you with a brokerage fee for clearing the border and it totally nullifies the savings. Most times if you take the expedited shipping (for a few bucks more at shipping time) you save yourself the brokerage fee and at the end of the day it's cheaper in the long run AND faster to get it.

I used to review a lot of items as you're starting into doing right now Mr Mayor, and I was always very very up-front with the companies that sent them in that I would not be swayed by free stuff just to give them a good review ... if it was good I would say so, but if it was bad I would say so as well and almost all of them were fine with that -- there were a few exceptions and for those ones I just told them not to bother to send anything if they had expectations beyond getting their product reviewed (be it good or bad). Sadly most of the time with things like that you do have to give them back -- or at least anything that's expensive and cool
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Old May 28th, 2011, 11:01 AM   #74
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Not always, depends on what type of item it is and where it was made. They are all subject to some taxes (GST and/or HST, again depending on the product) and depending on how you shipped it possibly a brokerage fee. That's one of the big disadvantages with shipping with the cheap method, is that lots of times they'll nail you with a brokerage fee for clearing the border and it totally nullifies the savings. Most times if you take the expedited shipping (for a few bucks more at shipping time) you save yourself the brokerage fee and at the end of the day it's cheaper in the long run AND faster to get it....
Exactly the point I was going to make. However, depending on how it is shipped and how careful they are at the border you don't even always get charged for the taxes either. A while back I had two separate orders coming from OWC via USPS, one was valued at around $300 and the other around $65 I had to pay the taxes on the $65 order but nothing on the $300 order, so even on the taxes YMMV.

As for going the expensive shipping method to avoid brokerage fee's I don't agree with this. As long as you are using a commercial courier like UPS or FedEx you will almost always incur brokerage fees. In my experience the best way to avoid brokerage fees is to have the item shipped USPS, it is slower but there are no brokerage fees when it is shipped this way. I will not buy from companies in the US that will not ship via USPS as I learned the lesson the hard way by having to pay outrageous brokerage fees too many times.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 02:21 PM   #75
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Exactly the point I was going to make. However, depending on how it is shipped and how careful they are at the border you don't even always get charged for the taxes either. A while back I had two separate orders coming from OWC via USPS, one was valued at around $300 and the other around $65 I had to pay the taxes on the $65 order but nothing on the $300 order, so even on the taxes YMMV.

As for going the expensive shipping method to avoid brokerage fee's I don't agree with this. As long as you are using a commercial courier like UPS or FedEx you will almost always incur brokerage fees. In my experience the best way to avoid brokerage fees is to have the item shipped USPS, it is slower but there are no brokerage fees when it is shipped this way. I will not buy from companies in the US that will not ship via USPS as I learned the lesson the hard way by having to pay outrageous brokerage fees too many times.
Here's the UPS statement on it. I used one of the options they list there all the time and have never had to pay a brokerage fee with it to date -- you pretty much just have to avoid the cheapest ground shipment methods to avoid the brokerage:

UPS: Rates for Customs Clearance into Canada

Quote:
Entry Preparation Charges
UPS offers free+* routine customs clearance of UPS Worldwide Express Plus™, UPS Worldwide Express™, UPS Worldwide Express Saver™, and UPS Worldwide Expedited™. Use the chart below to calculate the customs brokerage fee for your inbound shipments.
And here's the Fedex statement on it:

FedEx - Canada - Brokerage Options

Quote:
Customs clearance is included with every FedEx Express international shipment, but you also have the option to use your own broker.

For FedEx® International Priority and FedEx® International Economy service shipments, you have the option of using your own broker for shipments to more than 120 countries, including the U.S.
(^^ in other words any FedEx Express International service gets free brokerage, but FedEx Int'l Priority or Economy don't (the cheap options). You either use your own or pay their (high) fee for using their brokerage.

Try it out next time you place an order from the US. Typically on a light order the difference may be only a couple of dollars more for the express options but you save on the brokerage. Most of them, when they do their own brokerage, charge an arm and a leg too ($20-25 even for a small/inexpensive item!)

I have been charged brokerage with USPS packages on occasion ($5) but most times they don't bother... I think the posties dealing with it just don't want to do the paperwork most times I think that's why sometimes you pay tax and sometimes you don't as well.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 02:22 PM   #76
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Also forgot to mention, if you have your own FedEx account and ask the shippers to put it on your account you won't pay brokerage for any level of shipping, that's part of the deal with using an account, free brokerage.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 02:37 PM   #77
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Originally Posted by mguertin View Post
Here's the UPS statement on it. I used one of the options they list there all the time and have never had to pay a brokerage fee with it to date -- you pretty much just have to avoid the cheapest ground shipment methods to avoid the brokerage:

UPS: Rates for Customs Clearance into Canada



And here's the Fedex statement on it:

FedEx - Canada - Brokerage Options



(^^ in other words any FedEx Express International service gets free brokerage, but FedEx Int'l Priority or Economy don't (the cheap options). You either use your own or pay their (high) fee for using their brokerage.

Try it out next time you place an order from the US. Typically on a light order the difference may be only a couple of dollars more for the express options but you save on the brokerage. Most of them, when they do their own brokerage, charge an arm and a leg too ($20-25 even for a small/inexpensive item!)

I have been charged brokerage with USPS packages on occasion ($5) but most times they don't bother... I think the posties dealing with it just don't want to do the paperwork most times I think that's why sometimes you pay tax and sometimes you don't as well.
Well thanks for the info mg and I will bear it in mind.... However, relative to the price of USPS, if you can wait, it is still much cheaper via USPS:

Here is an example from OWC for a $210 item....

USPS First Class Mail International Package (no brokerage fees, where you may or may not even pay the taxes): $5.03

UPS World Wide Saver (no brokerage fees, but you will definitely pay the taxes): $44.64

On a $210 item the difference in price at a minimum (depending on whether or not you get hit for taxes) on the final price is 15.6%...

FedEx International Priority is cheaper than UPS for "Customs Cleared" items (not sure if that means no brokerage fees or not) at $28.39 but even then, USPS at a minimum represents a savings of 10% on the final purchase price.

Not to mention if I am not home, which I am not far more often than I am, I have to go to either the UPS or FedEx handling station which for me in my situation means a 1/2 hour drive in either situation, one way, for a round trip time of 1 hour at least. Whereas if I am not home for a USPS delivery I can pick up the package at my closest Can Post location which is 5 minutes away. So not only am I paying more for UPS and FedEx delivery up front it means wasted time and gas expense for the item....

So like I said, if you can wait a few days USPS is the way to go... hands down IMO.

ship_cost.jpg

Last edited by screature; May 28th, 2011 at 04:24 PM.
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Old May 30th, 2011, 08:00 AM   #78
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Old Jun 4th, 2011, 01:04 PM   #79
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Yesterday I went a little hog-wild and bought a 21.5" 2.7GHz iMac and a 64 GB 3G iPad 2. My 5 year old MacBook will be retired, or at least semi-retired as soon as I transfer my data. I haven't taken the iMac out of the box yet, I still have some travelling to do before it gets to its semi-permanent location. So far the iPad is pretty cool. You never know I might have to back to an iPhone. (I had a little snit a year or so ago and went from iPhone 3G to Blackberry )

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Old Jun 4th, 2011, 04:16 PM   #80
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I just got a brand new 17" MacBook Pro, arriving yesterday by UPS only 3 days after it left the factory in Shanghai, and I only chose the free standard shipping.

I configured it online, bumping up the processor to the 2.3 GHz Core i7, and getting the anti-glare matte screen. I ordered it with the default 4 GB of RAM, and bought 8 GB from CanadaRAM, which arrived a few days before my new Mac did. Popped the replacement sticks in, and now it really screams!

Also picked up a couple of Macally HD enclosures this week, a 2.5" and 3.5", both with Firewire 800. Great quality enclosures. I don't know why more places don't sell these, that I had to order them online. Love that they match my MacBook Pro perfectly.
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