Though it's rare, our Canadian customers are sometimes hit with annoyingly large brokerage fees, for the privilege of importing personal items from the US. Shippers like UPS and FedEx add big surcharges to the fees charged by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). (This hasn't happened with US Post Office Priority Mail – our normal mode for sending packages – only with rush 2nd-day and overnight air using USP and FedEx.) However, you are allowed to "self-clear" your purchase with customs.
If your package arrives with a COD charge, you can avoid the fee by requesting to your shipper that the package be marked "CLEAR OWN" (meaning that you will clear the customs fees yourself, thank you very much). You will still have to pay the Duties and Taxes, which will be a couple dollars, rather than $30 or $40.
The blogs below, for which we are not responsible, explain the process.
Note one sentence: If you value your time highly, find polite conflict distasteful or need the shipment by a quickly approaching date I would advise sucking it up, allowing the shipper to broker the customs process for you and paying the driver the billed amount.
You don't have to put up with this; instead, you get UPS to email you a copy of the waybill/packing slip, fill out a CBSA form at a Customs office that does Low Value Shipments Program clearance, then pick up your package from the UPS site where your package is held.
I'm terribly sorry for the inconvenience. If you're more than 2 weeks away from Passover, we can use another method that's slower but avoids these fees.
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