How do I ship my bicycle from the US to Canada without having to pay duty?
September 24, 2012 12:12 PM   Subscribe

How do I ship my bicycle from the US to Canada without having to pay duty?

I've been living and working in the US for the past five years and will be returning to Canada soon. I will be driving across the Peace Bridge border but will be shipping my bicycle via courier before I depart. How do I explain on the customs form that I will be returning to Canada permanently and the bike is my "personal effect" hence, not subjected to duty? This is the only item not coming with me in my car. I have no furniture or bulky items, just clothes and some small household items. If it matters, the bike is worth about $2,000.
posted by Babushka to Grab Bag (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Is there any chance you bought the bike in Canada? Proof of that may help prevent duty.
posted by bilabial at 1:04 PM on September 24, 2012

Did you buy the bike in the US? If so, I would think you're probably out of luck. Try contacting the Canada Border Services Agency and asking them this question and see what they say.
posted by tckma at 1:39 PM on September 24, 2012

Best answer: When you come back into the country, you can make a declaration at the border with the Personal Effects Accounting Document form (link goes to Canada Border Services Agency) and declare that your bike is coming separately. If you're worried, it's probably worth your time to do your move back correctly and tell the border guard you have a declaration to make.

Typically (and I've done this more with having shipped stuff home while being on vacation in another country, but it should be the same), they will have you list the items not travelling with you on that form and then issue you a form that you can turn over on package delivery should you be charged duty for the package contents. The form also states that as long as you have owned and used an item for 6 months before bringing it back to Canada it's considered a "personal item" and not an imported good.

In addition to that, on the package declaration form when you are mailing the bike, there should be a bunch of boxes that say something "goods", "personal items" and "gift". Check the personal items one, declare the value for insurance purposes and it shouldn't be a problem.
posted by urbanlenny at 1:42 PM on September 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I should've mentioned that I bought the bike here in the US in 2008
posted by Babushka at 2:30 PM on September 24, 2012

The bike may have cost 2000 four years ago, but it is not worth that now. Why don't you get an appraisal from a bike shop for resale value?
posted by rockindata at 5:21 PM on September 24, 2012

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