If you're a business owner in North America, you probably deal with cross-border shipping all the time. Maybe even every day.
But when you're new to the shipping game, or you are increasing your business' presence in Canada or the US, it can be an overload of information to understand cross-border shipping.
Especially when there are many different shipping companies that offer international shipping from Canada to the USA, including USPS, UPS and FedEx, that can claim to have the best shipping rates for small businesses as well as transportation companies that help businesses large and small with LTL and FTL shipping, and courier services, and freight forwarding.
We’re here to break down the essentials of shipping from Canada to US, as well as cover how the shipping rates from US to Canada are calculated so you can have the info you need to get things done, and done right, for your business.
How Much Is Shipping From Canada to US?
Finding out how much shipping costs from Canada to US can be a daunting task. There are plenty of factors that affect the cost of shipping, from size to mode of shipping, and they are important to understand and take into consideration so you’re not surprised by the bill at the end of the day.
To help you get your head around the complexities of international shipping, we’ve put together a list of factors that influence pricing, as well as some tips on how to estimate your shipping cost.
What factors impact shipping rates to Canada?
- The size of the package.
- The distance from the border.
- The carrier.
- The mode of transportation you select.
- The customs and duties.
Make sure you communicate with your transportation providers, and ask questions if you feel like you need a better understanding of your quote and its breakdown.
Shipping Cost From US to Canada
How Long Does It Take to Ship From Canada to the US?
One of the most common questions we get asked here at Moto Transportation is how long it will take to ship from Canada to the US – or vice versa. The answer, unfortunately, isn’t as straightforward as we’d like it to be. Though we can give you a few ballpark figures, there are a number of factors that can affect transit time, including weather, traffic, and even customs delays.
That said, shipping by ground from Canada to the US typically takes between 4-7 days. If you’re shipping by air, transit times will be shorter, but you can expect to pay more for shipping costs. And if you’re shipping from the US to Canada, transit times will be a bit longer, again due to factors like customs delays.
At the end of the day, the best way to get an accurate estimate for how long it will take to ship from Canada to the US – or vice versa – is to use our Transit Times Departures Schedule. Simply choose a starting location in California closest to you (Los Angeles, San Fransisco or San Diego), and then pick a designation and departure day. We ship to key locations in Canada such as British Columbia (lower mainland), Calgary AB, Toronto ON and more. And if you have any further questions, our team of shipping experts is always here to help!
How to Get the Best Shipping Rates Canada
To get the best shipping rates, you'll need to understand the shipping process and what factors influence shipping rates. With that knowledge, you can work with your shipping company to get the best rate possible.
Here are a few tips on how to get the best shipping rates from Canada to the US:
- Know the shipping process
The first step in getting the best shipping rates is to understand the shipping process. You'll need to know how shipping companies calculate shipping rates, and what factors influence those rates. Things like, whether or not you are shipping an LTL or FTL shipment, the density of your shipment, the weight of your palette shipment, and the pick-up and drop-off locations all help paint a clear picture as to exactly what it is you need.
Once you understand the process, you can work with your (or our) shipping company to get the best rate possible.
- Know the factors that influence shipping rates
There are a few factors that shipping companies take into account when calculating shipping rates. These include the weight of the shipment, the distance it needs to travel, and any special handling required. Some of these factors are included within our accessorial pricing documentation. Don’t worry though, just by picking up the phone, we will walk you through everything you need to know about this and other factors that might impact your shipping rate from Canada to the US or vice versa.
- Work with your shipping company
Once you understand the shipping process and the factors that influence shipping rates, you can work with your shipping company to get the best rate possible. Shipping companies want to keep you coming back, so it's important to let them know everything that they need to, do they can get you the best quote in Canada or the US and make sure that you have a great experience with them.
- Use shipping software to track your shipment
Shipping software can help you automate the shipping process and get the best shipping rates. Shipping software typically includes a shipping calculator that can help you compare shipping rates from different shipping companies. Moto Transportation has our very own shipping calculator that you can use to understand exactly how much volume your shipping and what corresponding shipping codes you’ll need for a successful shipping program.
As you can see, shipping from Canada to the US doesn't have to be difficult or expensive.
How Get the Best Shipping Rates for Small Business Canada
If you’re a small business owner in Canada, you know how important it is to get the best shipping rates possible. After all, every dollar counts when you’re trying to run a successful business!
Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make sure you’re getting the best shipping rates for your small business. First, be sure to shop around and compare rates from different shipping carriers. Second, make sure that the cross-boarder shipping company you choose has accessorial pricing, insurance, and even a credit application to ensure that everything you ship is protected, and that you won't be getting a nasty and unexpected bill because something wasn't quoted properly.
Don't forget that for businesses shipping from Canada to the US, or vice versa, it’s also important to be aware of how the exchange rate can affect your shipping costs. Make sure to factor in the current exchange rate when you’re comparing rates from different carriers.
Cross Border Shipping US to Canada Rules
While there are many organizations that oversee and have a hand in regulating international trade, it's important to remember that each country has its own set of laws regarding what can be imported into or exported out of its borders.
Being aware of these rules and regulations is important to the success of your shipments, and understanding how they impact your business even more so.
Let’s get into the specifics for each country so you can get cross-border shipping right the first time.
Shipping From Canada to US Rules
If you're shipping from Canada to the United States, it's important to understand the rules and regulations involved. The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) service facilitates the trade of goods and keeps dangerous or illegal items from crossing into the United States. As a result, any shipments entering the U.S. must have appropriate documentation.
You will need to declare customs entry for your shipment in order for it to pass through customs without inspection. Otherwise, if you do not declare it could be confiscated by CBP or destroyed at their discretion.
There are three ways your goods can be classified when you are shipping from Canada to the US:
- Section 321 entry
- Informal Entry
- Formal Entry
US Canada Cross Border Shipping Rules
When you’re shipping into the US from Canada, you’ll be dealing with CBSA, or Canada Border Service Agency. This agency controls, regulates, and applies tariffs to goods entering the country. You’ll need to comply with these rules in order to have a successful shipment into Canada
Shipping From Canada to the USA Time
When shipping from Canada to the USA, there are a couple of different factors that affect how long your shipment will take to arrive.
The first is which method of transportation you choose. Depending on whether you choose trucking, air, rail or ocean freight, and where it is going, the speed will vary. Each has its advantages and disadvantages as far as speed and cost goes.
The second factor is whether or not you choose express shipping or expedited delivery services and whether these services are available to your destination city in the United States at all. If you don't need your package there immediately (or even within 24 hours), consider LTL, or less than truckload, freight instead. If you’re in a rush, you may want to consider FTL, or full truckload, shipping.
Is There a Customs Charge From Canada to the USA?
The answer to this question depends on the value of your shipment. A Customs entry from Canada to the USA can be declared as a Section 321 entry, Informal Entry or Formal Entry.
- Section 321: Shipments that are valued at $800 or less and are usually duty-free.
- Informal Entries: Informal Entries are valued over $800 but are less than $2,500. Depending on the item, and if you fill the paperwork out correctly, you may not have to pay duties.
- Formal or Commercial Entries: Complex shipments valued over $2,500 that require extensive paperwork before they're cleared by US Customs officials
What Are You Not Allowed to Ship to the USA?
If you're shipping anything that's potentially hazardous, we can't ship it to the US. The US has strict rules about what is allowed to cross its borders—and that includes Canada.
There is no short list of items you need to be aware of that are not allowed to in cross border shipping:
- Anything that is flammable or combustible
- Any item that contains a poison or is toxic
- Any item that is corrosive or oxidizing
- Anything radioactive
- Any counterfeit coins or currency
So there you have it – the rundown on shipping from Canada to US (and US to Canada). As you can see, there are a few things to consider when planning your cross-border shipment. But don’t worry, our team at Moto Transportation is here to help make the process as smooth and easy for you as possible. We offer some of the best shipping rates in Canada, so be sure to give us a call today!