When your shipment goes “In Bond to Canada”

What does In-Bond shipment mean?

An in-bond shipment is an imported or exported shipment that has yet to be cleared by Customs. The in-bond shipment process allows for the goods to be moved or stored by the government, even if they have not been obtained approval by Customs.

In-bond shipping can be done for a number of logistical reasons or at the importer’s request and is considered an important part of trade between Canada and the US. Since in-bond shipments are still considered individual shipments, they must be accompanied by a bill of lading and shipping order, just like any other type of cross-border shipment.

What is an In-Bond Shipment to Canada?

An in-bond shipment to Canada is a type of cross-border freight shipping service that allows goods to clear easily through the Canada Border Services. The in-bond process begins when a carrier is required or elects to put the shipment ‘in bond’ rather than having it pre-cleared or otherwise released at the Canadian border.

Cross-border freight shipping between Canada and the US has become a routine occurrence for many businesses. Both US and Canadian Customs have many documents and protocols to streamline the process. If you are not familiar with cross-border shipping regulations, you can run into lengthy and costly shipping delays. One method of avoiding long delays is by utilizing the in-bond shipment process to allow goods to continue their journey past the Canada-US border or to hire a 3PL freight shipping company to handle cross-border shipping regulations on your behalf.

How does In-Bond shipping work?

Once the 3PL freight shipping carrier arrives at the border, they can declare the shipment as an in-bond shipment by reporting it as such on their ACI eManifest and presenting a Paper A form to the officer. Canada Border Services will then authorize the movement of the goods, allowing them to be delivered to a specified bonded sufferance warehouse or another CBSA office to await customs release. The in-bond freight carrier must then wait for a formal entry to be filed by the Customs Broker before the goods can be removed from the in-bond warehouse for delivery to the consignee. Only a bonded highway carrier is entitled to use the in-bond shipment process, so it is important that you select the right freight carrier when using cross-border shipping.

Important Note: If a freight carrier’s code begins with either a one or a seven it is not considered a bonded carrier and, therefore, cannot declare in-bond shipments to Canada.

Why does your shipment go “In Bond” rather than “border clear”?

In some cases, your freight shipment may be shipped as an in-bond shipment to Canada, even if you have not requested this as a sender. Some of the different reasons your goods may be shipped as in-bond freight include:

  • Your freight shipment has been selected for inspection by Customs prior to being released into Canada.
  • The customs broker is missing information to properly submit the shipment to Customs at the Canadian border.
  • The customs broker did not submit the information or is awaiting payment on the account.
  • There were no commercial invoices submitted to the 3PL freight shipping company or customs broker.
  • Incorrect customs broker given to the carrier or carrier did not submit prior to arrival.

Costs associated with in-bond shipments

The fees associated for in-bond shipments can vary depending on the size of your freight shipment and geographical location. Compared with a cross-border shipment, the in-bond shipment process can be time consuming and labour intensive. Below are some differences:

  • The freight carrier is unable to directly clear customs at the booth and has to park in the customs compound instead of proceeding to the consignee or company dock.
  • The freight carrier has to create an A8A bond and is subject to waiting times at the Customs Office.
  • The freight carrier has to directly report to an in-bond warehouse as the trailer is sealed.
  • The in-bond warehouse has to unload the in-bond freight and segregate it.
  • The freight carrier has to re-submit the in-bond information to the customs broker.
  • In-bond warehouse storage charges can apply while waiting for inspection or clearance.
  • The freight shipment has to be picked up and re-delivered once released.

This looks like quite a bit of information to take in, but the good news is that Moto Transportation is a bonded carrier and deals with the in-bond freight process, customs brokers, and border officials on a daily basis. Our customs department takes care of all the details, so you do not have to. If you have any questions, please feel to call us at 1-888-400-1681 or request online for further information.