Welcome home. Now what do you have to declare?
Dec 18, 2015
Why travellers prefer Blue Cross
Dec 18, 2015
No one likes going through customs, but there are ways to make it easier. You nervously reread your declaration form, feeling slightly confused, while a dozen people crowd around and all you can think of is getting home as soon as possible. To avoid unpleasant surprises you need to know what you have to declare.
If you got carried away and bought a little too much, you’ll have to face up to the unfortunate facts: there are limits to what and how much you can bring into Canada:
• Goods with a value of:
- C$200, including alcohol and tobacco, for a 24-hour stay
- C$800, including alcohol and tobacco, for a stay of over 48 hours
• Alcohol – One of the following:
- 1.5 L of wine (two 750 ml bottles)
- 1.14 L of spirits (one large bottle)
- 8.5 L of beer (around 24 355 ml cans)
• Tobacco – All of the following:
- 200 cigarettes
- 50 cigars
- 200 g manufactured tobacco
- 200 tobacco sticks
There’s nothing worse than watching items you’ve purchased being thrown away. To find out more about exemption limits and duty to be paid if you go over, refer to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) website.
Make sure you have all the necessary travel document. Remember that there are restrictions on foods, plants and other items and don’t forget to declare the following:
When in doubt, declare everything, and then discuss matters with the border services agent.
If the value of the goods you’re bringing back to Canada exceeds your exemptions, you’ll have to pay duty on the excess amount. GST, PST, and HST are charged as well. An agent will help you determine what you owe, and it can also be helpful to use the CBSA Duty and Taxes Estimator.
To ensure your return is a happy one, follow the rules. Adopting the right attitude will help make going through customs a faster and smoother experience. Finally, if any of your bags fail to make it to their destination as planned, you’ll be glad your travel coverage includes baggage insurance. Welcome home!