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Kent Cottle





Joined: 20 Dec 2006

Posts: 6

PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 3:39 pm    Post subject: A question about importing sword to Canada         Reply with quote

Has anyone here had trouble importing a sword to Canada? I am looking to buy my first sword and I want it to be a nice quality blade that I can have for years to come. For this reason I have been looking at A&A's selection and some of Albion's swords.
Something that alarmed me though is that on A&A's website, in the FAQ section they said they had some trouble with Canadian customs agency stopping a sword from getting through?
Has anyone else had an issue with customs in Canada? Or could share some light on what I need to do to make sure my order goes through.

Thanks,
Kent
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 3:55 pm    Post subject: Re: A question about importing sword to Canada         Reply with quote

Kent Cottle wrote:
Has anyone here had trouble importing a sword to Canada? I am looking to buy my first sword and I want it to be a nice quality blade that I can have for years to come. For this reason I have been looking at A&A's selection and some of Albion's swords.
Something that alarmed me though is that on A&A's website, in the FAQ section they said they had some trouble with Canadian customs agency stopping a sword from getting through?
Has anyone else had an issue with customs in Canada? Or could share some light on what I need to do to make sure my order goes through.

Thanks,
Kent


That would be for the flails that are considered prohibited weapons. No problem with swords. Still just check with A & A if you want to double check or want to custom order something.

I've imported numerous swords and knive with no problem.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Kent Cottle





Joined: 20 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 5:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Awesome. Thanks for the fast replay. Now my hardest decision is which sword to buy.
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Hugo Voisine





Joined: 25 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 5:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Same thing here, the only real problem being the prohibitives custom fees...
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Kent Cottle





Joined: 20 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 5:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hugo Voisine wrote:
Same thing here, the only real problem being the prohibitives custom fees...


Are you talking about the custom fees on prohibited weapons or the custom fees that are on all merchandise (including swords)
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Hugo Voisine





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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 6:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm talking about the fees you'll pay for a sword, not a prohibited weapon like, let's say, the so-good-looking-arg-I-want-one-germanic-fail from A&A. Happy

An A&A / Albion / Gus Trim retailer in Canada would be a very nice thing.
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Jean-Carle Hudon




Location: Montreal,Canada
Joined: 16 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 6:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kent,
I don"t know about Jean and Hugo, but the worst of it comes from the fees UPS charges for acting as a broker with regards to customs. The custom fees proper are not significant, it is rather the brokerage fees charged by the delivery service which gets us in the neck, that and the automatic sales taxes (GST and PST) which are added at the border. These are not to be confused with customs and excise taxes, which confusion is quite normal for the layman. I have found that american parcels delivered by normal postal services only charge the applicable taxes (GST and PST), thus avoiding the so called brokerage fees which are collected by UPS.
The first time I ordered from the States, as there was a fee for ''shipping and handling'' , and the full package was only worth about $150.00 US, I refused delivery from UPS who wanted to charge me about eighty bucks Canadian for customs, brokerage fees and taxes. The american supplier wasn't too happy to see me return the merchandise like that as he was assured by UPS at his end that all this was quite above bord.On my side, I figured that I had already payed for ''shipping and handling''. Well, in law they were right, the moment they act as brokers at the border, they are intitled to a fee, which they charge from the Canadian purchaser, but this is not known to the American vendor who figures that he really has covered the ''shipping and handling'', so you can't hold that against him...he's in good faith, just not knowlegeable about GST, PST and BROKERAGE FEES (Yes, I know, I'm shouting), but the taxes amount only to 14%, so you figure out how much the transport company was charging over and above what the American vendor, in good faith, had already payed to see his mechandise delivered. Caveat emptor now also applies to delivery services.
Hope all goes well for you.
Jean-Carle

Bon coeur et bon bras
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Fri 22 Dec, 2006 6:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kent Cottle wrote:
Hugo Voisine wrote:
Same thing here, the only real problem being the prohibitives custom fees...


Are you talking about the custom fees on prohibited weapons or the custom fees that are on all merchandise (including swords)



If the weapon was prohibited you couldn't import it: I think Hugo may have confused you by using the word " prohibitive "
instead of just saying " high " customs fees.

Technically, there are no longer custom duties on imports from the U.S.A. but you still get hit by Federal GST and the provincial sales taxes plus any brokerage fees by the shipping company.

USPS / Canada Post is the cheapest on brokerage fees and I use that for the smaller stuff but UPS or Federal Express have better tracking of packages . Different vendors have their own preferences as to what seems to be the best shipper for them. ( Opinion on which shippers are the best or worse vary greatly. Personally I haven't had any lost or damaged shipments but A & A or Albion will insure the package and fix anything that goes wrong. )

The problem with the private shippers is that they will charge you a $40 ( Ballpark figure. ) minimum in brokerage fees to import a paperclip.
Evil But with a thousand dollar sword the minimum charge doesn't seem so bad for the better service. ( In theory better service. )

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Sat 23 Dec, 2006 1:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Just to chime in, I too have never had any problem getting my numerous Albions across the border, nor any of the stuff I ordered from A&A. I didn't actually realize flails were prohibited weapons in Canada; around 2001 I had one shipped to me from the UK that made it through the border no problem, though that's probably because no one in customs bothered to look at it.

I have a hard time understanding why a higher end sword is a legal weapon while a flail is an illegal one. The only thing is that I don't want to protest about the issue too much because knowing the Canadian legal system, they'll suddenly decide that they'd better make swords illegal too.

And yeah, the brokerage fees are pretty brutal. They can increase the cost of your weapon easily by $100 more than what you would have had to paid had it been sent by the US postal system. Unless you've got this kind of cash to throw around, make sure that you are absolutely clear when ordering weapons from a manufacturer that you want them sent by regular mail, rather than UPS.
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Kent Cottle





Joined: 20 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Sat 23 Dec, 2006 8:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for all the info guys, I really appreciate it. If I get my sword sent regular mail, it should be just as safe as with UPS? Has anyone had any trouble with regular mail?
I am looking at a couple swords right now, A&A's Black Prince and English longsword as well as Albion's gallowglass. I am trying to decide where to start my collection. Since they are going to cost me a pretty penny to buy I would very much like them to arrive in mint condition, but I also would rather not have to pay $250 to get them to my door or something rediculous (I have never bought online so that is the number I prepared myself for, so my jaw does not drop when they ask me for money)
-Kent
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Jason Daub




Location: Peace River, Alberta
Joined: 14 Jan 2005
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PostPosted: Sat 23 Dec, 2006 10:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kent,
I have brought quite a few things across the border by mail and have never had a problem, every shipper I have dealt with has charged out the postal insurance, so if anything happens you will be covered. At the least the fact that shipping a US made item under the FTA saves us Canadians a good deal of green. And since I live in Alberta and the GST is all I have to pay it doesn't really cost that much above the purchase price to have A&A or Albion items shipped.

As for the supposedly superior tracking service that the private carriers have, the last shipment I had came from Calgary UPS, the on-line tracking informed me that there was a departure scan done at 3:45 on 8 December in Calgary AB, when I did not see the item on Monday 11 Dec, I checked the website, no additional information, I checked Tuesday, same , departure scan only. I get a call at the office from my wife a half hour after I checked, UPS just delivered a package. Out of curiosity I checked the website again, departure scan, 3:45 8 December 2006, Calgary AB.

I personally just use insured mail now when I am paying the freight and accept the fact that I will have to wait two weeks for something to show up at the local post office.

On larger purchases I have never found the brokerage and duty fees exorbitant. The last thing that came across the border for me was a series of lectures from Virginia, the total purchase was approximately $750.00 US, UPS in Edmonton called, informed me the package was out for delivery that morning, and how would I like to pay the $38.00 duty and brokerage?

Hope my experiences prove helpful, Merry Christmas, Jason
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Sat 23 Dec, 2006 3:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Right! The brokerages is only VERY annoying for a small item where the fee can be more than the item.

And again, USPS / Canada post only charges $5 to $8 for brokerage. Larger fees could be justified if there is a problem that the Broker has to solve to get you your package: Most times it's just a question of something being rubber stamped with no issues.

I find tracking to be hit or miss with most shippers: It's never the same each time as far as timely accuracy ! Still the tracking has helped finding a package that was way overdue and misaddressed. ( Luckily my postal code was O.K. but there was an extra number in my street address: Without tracking I wouldn't have know that there was a problem and would just have waited and waited and waited. With the tracking a few phonecalls to the shipping company and shipper solved the problem. )

There have been time went the doorbell rang and the tracking was still saying that the package was in sortation or something.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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