How to Send a Gift From Canada to the United States

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Filling Santa's bag and sending him across the border from the Great White North? A whisper in Santa's ear about U.S. customs regulations can save money and trouble later on.

Things You'll Need

  • Address Books
  • Boxes
  • Address Labels
  • Marking Pens
  • Packaging Tape
  • Padded Envelopes
  • Check with U.S. Customs to make sure that whatever is being sent is acceptable - liquor, tobacco products and guns are examples of items that are not permitted. A good place to start is the U.S. Customs Web site (www.customs.ustreas.gov).

  • Choose your mode of shipping. In Canada, UPS is generally more expensive than the franchised Canada Post mail, but it may be worth it if you're in a hurry (Canada Post franchised outlets are located in many Shoppers Drug Marts and 7-Elevens).

  • Address your package clearly - and don't forget to put "U.S.A." after the ZIP code.

  • Check the "gift/cadeau" box on the customs slip and provide a full description of the objects inside.

Tips & Warnings

  • Choose gifts that are small and light - sending packages from Canada to the United States costs a lot more than you may expect, especially if you're used to U.S. postal prices.
  • Mail from Canada to the States usually takes at least a week and can take two. Don't forget to allow extra time because of the holidays.
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