So Canada, Have You Been Taking Advantage Of Cross Border Shopping?


With the high Canadian dollar I was wondering how many of our readers have been taking advantage of cross border shopping.  I’ve been over 5 times or so in the past year and I’ve been loving the savings.  Last week when I went to see Nicki Minaj and Britney Spears I popped in (read spent all day) at Great Lakes Crossing outlets.  I found so many great deals and sales. I kinda fell in love with Burlington Coat Factory. Nine West bags for under $20, Guess bracelets for $5. I was in heaven.  I also found an awesome Rocawear (Jay-Z label) shirt for only $5.  I was really excited about that one because I’ve wanted one of his shirts for so long, but wouldn’t pony up the $30+ here. 

Not only are some of the goods way cheaper, but I like the  variety.  A lot of stuff we just don’t get in Canada, so I always bring home funky finds for the kids. Including my favourite Cape Cod chips that aren’t available in Ontario anymore.  I also got all the kids supplies for back to school. 20 cent 24 packs of Crayola Crayons, 40 cent markers by Crayola and so on.

Of course you do need to be price savvy. Some prices are higher or exactly the same as Canadian retailers. It all depends what store, and what item.

Do you cross border shop? Or do you prefer to keep it local?

*This is an off topic post. Off topic posts have been posted on the Smart Canucks Blog since 2006.  If you do not want to read an off topic please kindly skip past, thanks 🙂

94 responses to “So Canada, Have You Been Taking Advantage Of Cross Border Shopping?”

  1. wifegriz says:

    HA! Love the disclaimer! Let’s see who takes offense to being told to skip past???

  2. coupon saver says:

    I am going next week Cross Border Shopping and hope to find some good deals. I also like to help out the Canadian markets.

  3. Sally says:

    They have an amazing selection of sugar free candies and such for diabetics. I could wander through all day.

  4. Twinmommy says:

    We go to Buffalo at least once a month. The price of milk alone is worth the drive! 😉 We spent the August long weekend in Pennsylvania at the Grove City outlets and it took us less than 24 hours to spend $800 on clothes and household items. It’s a bit of a longer drive, but the fact that you don’t pay taxes on clothes and shoes and the taxes are about 2% less than they are in New York State makes it appealing as well. I don’t feel guilty shopping across the border because I’m still doing the bulk of our shopping here in Canada. As a matter of fact when we got back home we went on the Best Buy website to buy the Tom Tom we couldn’t find at Target. It turns out Best Buy was having an online sale and we saved about $175 on the unit!

  5. Dayanara says:

    My husband is from the states and I am LOVING it! We are paying down is school debt much faster now, lmao.

    Hoping the trend continues and when we visit his parents in November for US Thanksgiving in Chicago I can get some awesome deals Black Friday shopping with a great dollar, hehe.

  6. Kate Sanders says:

    I love savings down there! The best thing I started to do, is coupon before we go across the border. I print out all coupons I can find, and do my best at extreme couponing! Love it!

  7. Tam says:

    we went to niagarafalls ny on monday and I have to say the milk was a great surprise.1.75 for 4 litres and also the 1 litre flavoured coffee cream for 2 bucks….the best store for groceries by far is aldi…spent most of my money there….was scared the guy at the border was gonna give us a hard time but no problems….cant wait to go again…

  8. Joyce says:

    Been cross border shopping without crossing the border! 🙂 Ebay

  9. Brooke says:

    I go over once, maybe twice a week. Milk is cheaper, gas is cheaper, they have spectacular coupons in their Sunday paper EVERY week. The bridge to cross over is minutes from my house so it worth it to me. I also get a lot of movies and children’s clothing over there. The selection is 100% better and way cheaper. I’ve got my daughter gorgeous dresses at Burlington coat factory and Kohls all for less than $10. Their end of season sales ate outstanding as well. I got disney and name brand bathing suits, short sets and other clothing for $4 and under the other day at Kmart and kohls for next summer.
    We buy rolls of bridge tokens so we save $2 round trip on tolls. I go to the corner store by my house every Sunday and get the newspaper. I check store websites (target, meijer, kroger) all have printable coupons you can usually stack with manufactures coupons. combine coupons with meijer or krogers 10 for $10 sales and you can get wicked deals. I love shopping in the states

  10. sally no.2 says:

    This is an offtopic post!! why is it here! this type of spam is NOT acceptable to the SC community!! :@

  11. Pam says:

    Yes, we usually go 3-4 times a year regardless of the dollar. We like the variety of items that just can’t be found in Canada. Also, my family loves Jif peanut butter which is no longer available in Canada. So we always stock up while we are there. Do I worry about not shopping Canadian? Nah, the majority of my dollars are spent locally.

  12. silverbullet71 says:

    Shopping in the US is awesome. I’ve been doing it for 20 years now, and it’s always worth the drive. Their prices are cheaper for the same stuff, and when they have a sale, they have a REAL sale. Also, their sales tax is lower so it’s bargoon-city!! I find that even though stores have come to Canada, the selection and prices are still better in the US (i.e.: Old Navy, Abercrombie and Fitch, etc….)

  13. SALY#2 says:

    why is it here! this type of spam is NOT acceptable to the SC website! arggh Offtopic posts shouold be banned for life!

  14. Faith says:

    I wish I could go cross border shopping but no passport yet sadly. I used to go cross border to shop when it was required and the deals were awesome but I think I tended to spend more cause the selection was better too and you wanted to try more.

  15. DF says:

    What can I bring back on day trip duty free?

  16. Peppermint Patty says:

    In the long run over the years I have found there is next to nothing I can’t find here for a better price and better quality.

  17. Casey says:

    Hell Ya!! Cherry Coke and The Olive Garden!

  18. Erin says:

    I don’t actually think it’s that much cheaper or even cheaper at all if you factor in the costs of crossing the border – gas, train ticket, etc. I think it is better to shop local and support local businesses, especially smaller ones.

    Also, I think they still have Olive Garden restaurants here and you can get cherry coke out on the west coast.

  19. wavebaby says:

    We were there 2 weeks ago for the Brad Paisley concert and prior to going we said ‘ we are only going to be there for the day so $100 for Target should be fine’ $400 later in 2 hours lol…we also have the Target card and save the 5% right away then go to customer service and pay it off.
    We stopped on the way back at Tops (we were in niagara Falls New York) and i said to my boyfriend look the milk is a great deal…he said no…it was 2 am…we got back to Brampton and no milk in the fridge lol
    So short story long yes we cross border shop and love it!

  20. iwannadeal says:

    Yup, leaving tomorrow for a shopping weekend.

  21. ME says:

    Can anyone post some good sites for US coupons?

    I am going to Vegas in Sept and hope to hit a couple of stores along the way.

    I also agree with Erin though it would not be worth it for me just to make a trip to the US for grocery shopping, etc. I live too far from the border.

    Casey I live in Alberta and we have Cherry Coke and the Olive Garden, so does Saskatchewan and Manitoba as far as I know.

  22. Shannon says:

    I have tried cross border shopping with mixed results. I got GREAT deals last November at Children’s Place in Grove City, but then again, I can get great deals at Children’s Place in Canada with the right timing and coupons. For what I’ve gotten, I think it comes up even, when considering gas, tolls, duty if I have to pay it, etc. That said, sometimes it’s just FUN to do, and I have to remind myself that it’s okay to cut loose now and again (shopping as entertainment LOL) and not EVERYTHING has to be a great deal 😉

  23. LL says:

    WOW you guys are so lucky to be getting such great deals. && Are you kidding me!?!?!? $1.75 for 4L of milk!?!?! Why is milk so expensive in ON. Do we have like special cows?

  24. Shirley says:

    We no longer have Olive Garden here in Ontario, I believe it has been more than a decade. Lol!

  25. Allii says:

    I don’t have a car — or a pasport!

  26. Lily says:

    I alway fill up Gas at Buffalo on the way home. We normally eat at Applebee because Steak also included in 2 for $20 menu(2 entrees and 1 appetizer).

  27. Yuki says:

    if one was to go for the day… aren’t you technically not allowed to bring things home due to the monetary limit?

  28. Coupongrlca says:

    we have gone across twice this year doing a combined camping shopping trip. The prices down south are awesome from food and clothing to state park fees. While I would love to support Canadian business and Provincial parks I simply don’t have the extra funds to do it any more so I am changing my spending habits with more trips to the USA

  29. kayemar says:

    Ohhh yes! The Nexus lane rocks! We go down to the States on a weekly basis to gas up (we haven’t filled up in Canada since Feb/10) and pick up online purchases that we ship to Blaine Enterprises. We go down every other month to stock up on milk, cheese, eggs, meat, etc. at Costco in Bellingham. We may be taking our “business” away from the Canadian economy, but it’s the only way that we can afford for me to work part-time and stay home with our daughter…Vancouver is an expensive place to live.

  30. Joyce says:

    Actually this is not really off topic since this is discussing deals. Sadly I have no passport either 🙁 Are Americans required to have a passport to enter Canada? Anyways I let the shipping companies spring for the gas since I find it is cheaper to send stuff to Canada than it is to ship outside of Canada. I also miss flavored coke, especially vanilla! Companies seem to think that Canadians are boring >:(

  31. neesci says:

    I love cross border shopping, its worth the 6 hour drive from sackville to bangor. I love to go to mardens and big lots. At mardens last time i was down which was back in may i got Birkenstocks (berkis) for 19.99!

  32. Stephania says:

    I’d go across-the-border more often, if my car had AC! It isn’t a long drive, but it can be a bit of a wait at the border.

    Gas is definitely cheaper, approx. $1/litre versus our $1.30!

    And the milk, not sure if it’s the same deal here, but I don’t trust the amount of hormones they pump into that stuff. No wonder Americans seem BIGGER!

    P.S. Thanks for clearing up things, re: the disclaimer.

  33. Sally says:

    To the poster that said its not worthy the gas, I guess it depends how far you are from the border. Its only just over an hour for us.

  34. moe says:

    Who Drives too shop anymore?
    Shopping in the US . . .that was back when the US actually made somthing, now they buy everything from the Same place we here in Canada all do CHINA
    So why drive to the US to by the very same thing we can buy right here in Canuck Land for Less????

  35. Katie says:

    I love going over the boarder to shop. I live about 45 mins away from the military mall in buffalo. I always stock up at the gymboree outlet for the kids for the following year’s season. I usually spend about $75 for about $400 worth of clothes.

    I have never grocery shopped over the boarder. I didn’t think you could bring produce back.

    My tip for shopping over the boarder is claim every penny to customs when coming home. You only have to pay pst IF they pull you over. I rarely get pulled over though.

  36. Judy says:

    last time we went shopping in US and the boarder charged us 13% tax =( even our groceries……good thing we only spend no more than a $100.

  37. christi says:

    I am from the US living here most of the year and I do all of my shopping when I go back. I have to buy groceries here and it kills me 🙂

    ME – regarding US good coupon sites. I use or have a good list of printable coupons and the latest good sale+coupon deals.

  38. Shannon says:

    Once I got burned cross-border shopping. I had done research on car seats, and found that the US Walmart was selling the seat that I wanted for $30 less than in Canada (then add our taxe$). I picked up 2, but the Canadian border refused to let them in because they didn’t have the appropriate sticker. So, we had to pay to cross the bridge again and return them. I was kind of ticked off, because the seats were the SAME, man! I get it, I get it, but jeez. Wish I’d done MORE research for that finer point. If anything, I get ticked off at some of these absurd price differentials. Like WHY are ear thermometer lens covers HALF the price in Michigan at Target than they are at Zehr’s in Ontario. Come on!!

  39. ME says:

    Thanks christi, those sites are like the american version of smart canucks, I love them.

  40. Cheryl888 says:

    So happy I live in Alberta…..
    Our tax is super low, thus our prices on things arnt all that bad.

    If I lived closer to the boarder, I might consider going over for groceries. But on the same note, I sort of consider time = money. It would take hours longer to do a shop, than just running to my nearby store with coupons lol.

    Clothes on the other hand are MUCH cheaper. But I again would rather shop from home, and pay the duty now, than waste a whole day down there!!!

  41. silverbullet71 says:

    If you just go for a day, I think the allowable limit is only $25. So here’s what you do, no matter how long you stay. You always have your passport ready with all your receipts inside. As you’re driving up to the booth, you stick out your passports to show that you’re ready. They LOVE this. With the receipts already inside, they know you’re not gonna be sneaky. When they ask you how much you bought, you give the total amount for the car. We rarely get pulled over, even when we tell them we bought $400 worth of stuff in a few hours. Here’s another trick: wear nasty clothes going to the US, pay for your new outfit on a separate receipt, toss that receipt/bags/boxes, then change in the washroom and leave your old clothes behind. That’ll save you some money.

  42. zeekid says:

    I love shopping in Minnesota as they have no tax on clothing. Kohl’s is my favorite store to shop as they always have great sales.

  43. kerry says:

    I don’t have a passport and don’t like traveling,so I support my local economy by shopping at home.I find lots of bargains right here in Vancouver,and go to 10 to 15 different stores,wherever the the cheaper prices are,plus the savings from coupons.I used to go down maybe once a year or so,until they got stricter with the ID’s….

  44. lil e says:

    @moe obviously people would only drive to the states to SAVE money not to spend more money.. or they are going there because Canada doesn’t have what they are looking for. I’m sure if we could get something for less here, people aren’t going to drive there for that specific item.

    Not to mention you don’t have to drive there, I do a lot of online shopping and some things are cheaper online in the states (eg. designer clothes). Not sure if you have been up to date with the US/CAD currency, but it’s pretty good.

    I don’t live near the border, so unfortunately for me, I can’t drive there.

    @Cheryl888 I also live in Alberta, and I totally agree! I love our tax!

  45. Michelle says:

    I cross border shop whenever I can. Mostly because I can save a considerable sum on clothing, and the selection is amazing. I am also a teacher and since every teacher must buy their own classroom decorations and teaching supplies – I find incredible deals in the American teacher stores compared to here. I LOVE the dollar store there, too. The variety and quality is amazing at the Dollar Tree and the items REALLY are only $1 there vs. our so-called $1 store here. While I know it’s important to keep our money in our community, I got to do what i need to survive and provide for my family (and keep in mind i don’t get reimbursed for anything I put into my classroom). Besides, I don’t get across that often so my own community is still making a considerable sum off of me 🙂

  46. jopava says:

    Just saying a 1.75 USD a gallon milk has RSBT do a little research Canadian milk and meat is way much better !!! that’s why is so cheap!!!

    Recombinant BST made by genetic engineering not involving the cow

  47. Lori says:

    School supplies are WAY cheaper across. They don’t charge duty on the vast majority of items anymore, only the provincial sales tax. And only on anything over $50 (for a day trip) and usually not even then. I have never been charged for groceries. I have even claimed wine coolers that I couldn’t get in Canada and they let that go as well. I love the variety of EVERYTHING over there.

  48. Jill says:

    Just bought a ton of clothes for my kids in Montana and the staff at jc penny made sure I got every possible discount including a coupon in their flyer. Saving the sales tax alone makes it worth it.

  49. glamorousgirl says:

    I go two to three times a year. The last time we went to Erie, PA I bought a bunch of stuff for my 9 year old son who is very tall and hard to find clothes for. I bought him a Down Winter Coat, a belt, three pairs of jeans, 3 long sleeve shirts, 4 pairs of shorts, underwear, and 3 hoodies. I paid just over $100.00. We are going next week because he wears a size 6 shoe, good luck finding that. I have checked so many stores here. But it’s readily available in the States. School supplies, I spent about $10 last year for his stationary. Shoes for me, I’m a 10, easy to find there, and tall pants for me, again easy to find there. The selection is amazing. Here if you need a special size such as tall you are paying way more.

  50. ninna says:

    It’s a 45 min drive for us and it’s TOTALLY worth it for certain things- meat and cheese are way cheaper, gas is cheap, some electronics are cheaper (depends what it is) and linens and denim items are much much cheaper. Alcohol is also cheaper but I don’t risk it since I’m never away more than 24 hours. We go across and shop for a few hours then eat at Golden Corral buffet before returning home. 30 bucks feeds our family of 4 at an all you can eat buffet.

    Paper products are astronomical in the US though. (Makes sense when you think about it– all these trees in Canada). When we went to Florida, I nearly choked on the price of toilet paper. We paid as much for a 4 pack of crap paper down there as I would’ve paid for 20 double rolls here. No joke. It was unbelievable.

  51. Galsavings says:

    I get Cape Cod chips at Whole Foods in Toronto. Only place I’ve seen them lately, sometimes I find them at Sobeys!

  52. Casey says:

    I live in Windsor, ON and you can see the Detroit Skyline from my back yard lol. So Stateside shopping happens atleast once a month at my house! We do all of our grocery shopping there as well as clothes and such. We keep a lookout almost every other week for great sales and we’ll just pop over so often! One of the perks of living SO close to the border I suppose! 🙂

  53. Eric says:

    Not so much cross border shopping (as I’ve never been to the US, but I can’t get over the price differences on many items at vs

    Not to mention, no matter which site you order from, the item ships from Ontario, yet the Canada website has prices that are generally at least $10 in difference.

  54. Sally says:

    I have the reciepts ready to grab but I dont hand them to them unless they ask. Passports are always ready turned to the page they need.

    Knock on wood I got nabbed once for duty on a $69 dollar purchase. Uusually I get waved through when I’ve spend up to 1000. I think the boder agent was just grumpy that day, he was sending everyone lol!

  55. KLUV says:

    Is there anywhere that lists stores in kind of “bargain order”? I know in Canada to go to Winners or Liquidation World for great deals on clothing…. Costco or Extra Foods for cheaper groceries…. but in the states I just don’t know all those department stores…. which are bargains, which are the fancy stores?

  56. Jadespade says:

    Here’s the site on duty.

    If you’re gone less than 24 hrs, you get $0 exemption. You only get $50 exemption when it has been more than 24 hrs. A border guard reminded us that we weren’t supposed to bring anything back from the
    States when we were out for a couple of hours. But, he let us go.

    We often go to the States and spend around $250. We love Ross, Target, Costco, Big Lots and Michaels in Bellingham. Everything is so much cheaper there with more selection.

  57. Jessica says:

    Love cross border shopping! Went 2 weeks ago to Watertown and we spend about $450 between the two of us, which included beer! Where else can you buy an 18 pack of bud light lime for $14.97? Declared everything and border guard waved us through no problems.

  58. . says:

    I live close, and my school is closer – if there’s traffic, it’s actually faster for me to cross the border and drive through the states to get home. Gas is -much- cheaper (I save 40-50 bucks filling up my truck), and the outlets are great. I’m actually going down on Sunday with my best friend who is pregnant – the Carter’s outlet is amazing, and it’s only about 45 minutes from the border. Less than an hour away to save 90 percent? Yes please! We’re going with a group of five people and splitting the gas, which will make it better.

  59. . says:

    Also, a heads up… the disclaimer seems kind of petty. People’s problems aren’t that there are off topic posts (even though this isn’t really off topic). The problem is that they’re sometimes offensive, and that they disrupt from the flow of the site. It would be awesome to have posts like these on a separate tab, or maybe a tab that has -just- deal posts for those people who don’t wantt o read these.

  60. tudorchick says:

    most off topic posts are great.i don’t see the need for disclaimer..regardless this is on my rss feed… in regards to the over the border shopping,i have no opportunity where i live unless i want to drive 5 or so hours,but i can understand people living in toronto or anywhere near the border.i have so wanted to go to the states to take advantage of coach purses and stuff like that…what about food? i am kind of unknowing to how food is dealt..are we not allowed to bring food over or how does that work…because sometimes i see some great deals food wise

  61. tudorchick says:

    do we have to get american coupons for over the border or is it ok to use canadian coupons,if you are just across the border…

  62. Sally says:

    I throw up random disclaimers for my off topics all the time. Probably at least 10 times in the past year.

  63. Lori says:

    @Jadespade Thanks for the link. I’ve been very lucky then, I’ve never been charged on a day trip. I usually spend just under $50 at Kmart and buy unlimited groceries. Also, does anyone know if you have to claim gas when you fill up across? The officer asked us that last time.

  64. tudorchick says:

    i messaged you privately…

  65. Anon says:

    Just an FYI also… when cross boarder shopping (I think someone mentioned it above) you need to remember that the health and safety standards are different. For food, and other items. Things like child car seats… there are huge differences in safety laws, so what may be ok there, is considered not safe in Canada.

  66. liberty says:

    if you cross for less than 24 hours, technically you have no exemption from the duty, so if they let you back without paying it- they doing you the “favor” but, even if you have to pay duty, the selection in america is SO much better then anything we can get in canada. if you stay over for 48 hours it jumps to 400$, so if you have friends or family to visit, you can really do some shopping.
    i see some people who say that there is no benefit to shopping in america, so right away i know that they have never shopped in america. there are so many things you just can’t get here, and i can’t do without them! i have to cross to get simple things- jiff peanutbutter, nestle tollhouse chocolate chips, mrs butterworth syrup just for starters. recently, our walmart started carrying bush’s beans, so thats one thing off my list. but, also the selection of things like rice a roni and the frozen collard greens make my trips so worth it.
    walmart canada only recently started carrying their garanimals line, but it small and much more expensive then in america, and the pjs i get my kids for 5$ in the us stores are awesome, and anytime someone around here sees them they want them, so i know they a good deal- where else can i get thomas pjs for 5$? and underwear for my toddler- 12$ for a 5 pack here and an 8 pack in mi was 4$ and the socks, pays for the gas right there!
    and the laws and safety concerns are not an issue, the company that makes these items makes the same item and sells it in both countries. in canada we have such a small market, they are not making special items for us- just special packaging- which is also going away due to costs, and we are now seeing english french and spanish on more packages. and the saftey laws are not that different, ours really mirror theirs in most respects.
    there are a couple of items that are not worth the time, diapers are one on that list, but, the savings on the clothes, toys, and personal beauty items make it so worth the trip. before the kids we went all the time, we have to plan it out more now, since the kids hate to sit on the bridge- which can back up for hours, we try to get over and back before noon, which limits our trips to about every 6 weeks, or when we go visit my best friend and stay the weekend so we can really get some shopping done- she lives minutes from the birch run outlets!

  67. Natalka says:

    Too far from the border to do this, would love to for lots of things (not food!).

    # 23
    LL says…
    August 4, 2011 at 5:29 pm

    WOW you guys are so lucky to be getting such great deals. && Are you kidding me!?!?!? $1.75 for 4L of milk!?!?! Why is milk so expensive in ON. Do we have like special cows?

    * The use of artificial growth hormones or hormones to increase lactation (RBST, BST, RGBH or any other artificial growth hormone) are illegal in Canada. They are legal in the United States..

  68. Moi says:

    Awesome Thread! Never knew MILK was a HOT DEAL in the U.S…..:)

    To (ME) that stated “”going to Vegas in Sept and hope to hit a couple of stores along the way, need US coupons deals/site”

    Premium Outlets (Las Vegas)
    -click on the TOP right ‘VIP’…free to join and get coupons emailed to you

    Fashion Outlet (Las Vegas)
    -sign up for coupons and you can print some also

    UNITEDSTATES sites offering daily deals:
    Thrifty Northwest Mom
    -Cool blog offering deals, coupons (just like Smart Canucks:)

    Thrifty Coupon Couple

    There are more of course, but I forgot them
    Maybe others will post their favourties here 🙂

  69. olivercat says:

    I got stateside about 6 times a year–really cheap gas (bought on the local native reservation–read no tax!) I do print and use US coupons. ‘Tend to buy mostly things we cannot get in Canada –crossing back can depend on where you cross–different border crossing have agents with different attitudes! In the late spring and into summer, you can also have ‘summer student’ agents who can be a bit over zealous! Remember, both sides of the border have their own way of handling entry–that includes looking at the vechicle your driving (old– can mean smuggling vechicle); your passport history (short crossing –1 hour or less raises a red flag!); your race (despite equal rites –it makes a diffence!).
    Little things can help–turn your radio or backseat DVD off!, ask your kids to be silent, raise or remove your sunglasses, be polite… happy shopping!

  70. Hungry says:

    I was in Chicago for the July long weekend and hit up a Fileans Basement. Found a Ralph Lauren Suit for $65 US taxes in. I mean common even with a few adjustments and tailoring this was a steal!!!!
    I couldn’t even get it this cheap in Asia!

    Not only that but I was able to hit up an outlet mall while there and they had a NorthFace Store!!! I was amazed at the price difference!
    I was able to find a NorthFace Gortex Shell that regularly goes for about $350 to $400. It was priced at $170 with an extra 30% off. After tax and Canadian Visa Payment I paid approx $120 all in!!!! Just nuts… how can they charge us sooo much more in Canada while just a few hrs away its significantly cheaper!

    Even paying with your visa in the US, gives you the option to pay the Canadian Dollar, which already converts for you and is decently cheaper then the US Dollar!

    Absolutely Nutz!
    I’m huge on deals and there were way tooo many to let go!
    Happy Shopping!

  71. Joanie says:

    I go every September in Buffalo and clean up the leftover summer stuff for dirt cheap. Old Navy is usually one of the best deals. Last year I picked up shirt for $2.49, pants for $5, etc. JC Penny and Burlington Coat Factory are also usually great. And…not always the greatest quality but if you just need a few “wardrobe stretchers” try Fashion Bug.

    We usually turn it into a three day event. The hotels are cheaper on the American side.

    A GPS really helps!

  72. caroman says:

    I love shopping in the U.S. It is actually part of my regular routine since I go over ever couple of weeks. You can’t beat the price of school supplies and I buy milk there because it comes in jugs and is $2.49/gallon (you can find hormone free). Like Sally says Burlington Coat Factory is awesome for inexpensive brand names.

  73. mickeymouselam says:

    OK for starters I do cross boarder shop. I do buy milk (marked hormone free at aldi) and clothes. I do fill up the tank for allot less than up here. If the government was giving enough to people who are on disability to cover the basic needs than yes I would keep more of the dollars up here but to survive that cannot be the case. Another few items to watch for that are way cheaper are eggs 1.25, boneless skinless chicken Brest 1.99lb. my favorite stores to shop in are Aldi wegmans(doubles coupons up to .99) Walmart( doesn’t double coupons though) JC penny they have a awesome big and tall section for my fiancee. overall if we had the price and selection up here or the government raise the rate they gave us to the poverty line than maybe i would shop more up here. Until than stateside here i come!

  74. Wilson says:

    This is NOT of topic, at all!

    I have family state side, so I enjoy the variety when I go visit and usually stop by a Kroger and snag some junk food, unavailable in Canada (and it is a good thing because we’d be as fat as our Southern neighbours).

    Generally, I find they simply have better SALES, but the prices are about the same (except on things like books and movies).

    I’ve been taking advantage of the ONLINE deals with the dollar doing so well. Since I have relatives in the states, I can ship anything to their house and pick it up the next time I visit, or they bring it to me the next time they visit! I’ve snagged some amazing online deals this way!

  75. sue says:

    $50.00 per PERSON for a one day visit. You are supposed to have separate receipts for each person. Having said that, we went on Simcoe Day (Ontario’s civic holiday), three of us and spent a total of nearly $400 dollars, claimed it all, and didn’t pay duty. The only question we’ve ever been asked was “any tobacco or firearms?”. ROTFLMAO! You really do need to know your prices and have the ability to convert otherwise, like many said, prices are often the same. The only time we were pulled over at the border was on our first visit to Port Huron, on a Sunday, when we literally went for a Sunday drive. The Canadian border guards just could not understand that concept. We did tell them we wanted to eat lunch at the Cracker Barrel but were unable to find it – giant highway billboards and all. Hubby, daughter and I couldn’t stop laughing while our car was searched…all because we couldn’t find the Cracker Barrel!

  76. Michnty says:

    I just got back from a 7 day trip to the U.S.. It’s amazing to see how much cheaper the prices are there, especially the taxes. We shopped till we drop in New Hampshire, as they have absolutely NO taxes!! That’s a lot of savings combined with the way that the exchange is right now. 🙂

  77. Vancouvet says:

    Over here in BC… Gas is so expensive I save over $30+ on my truck alone. Cosco has items we dont even have here. Last weekemd was the huge outlet sales (hookup your email and they’ll send you the sale dates). Milk, cheese and eggs are almost half price. Also have nov black friday booked off work. Its their bihgest sales day of the year amd i get ALL my vhristmas shopping done in two days. I would support locally but witj 3 kids under 10…price and quality with variety are deciding factors. RE VEGAS POST. The Ross store is beside M&M store, the Fashion Mall has Macys and other great stores. You can book a cab to the outlets…print your coupons online before you go. And enjoy! Try to see KA. Just went 2 wks ago even kids loved it.

  78. Colin says:

    I love cross border shopping! Like many others said, the variety is great! And the prices on dairy and meat are much better than home.

    @wavebaby – above you said you have a Target card. I have been trying to get one for years without success (I want to save that extra 5%!) They try, and then say it won’t work for Canadians. How did you get one??

    On my last trip they have changed their answer to “it won’t work for Canadians until we open Targets in Canada in 2013”. Progress!

    But if you know a way to get one now, please share!

  79. Fab says:

    To the experienced border crossers.

    If I say I’ve been away for 24 hrs (when actually it might be 12hrs, 7am-7pm)… do they (or can they) check ??

  80. Sally says:

    Natalka, I was thinking that too about the milk. Their milk has lots of unwanted “goodies” in it. However you can buy their organic milk cheap down there as well, so I guess thats an option.

  81. Alexa19jm says:

    We shop across the border at least 4 times a year, if not more. Shopping is one of my hobbies 🙂 . We typically end up in Buffalo 2-3 times a year and at Birch Run in Michigan 1-2 times a year. This year we did a full day of shopping in Las Vegas, and last year I spent 4 days with a friend doing Great Lakes Crossing / Birch Run / Frankenmuth.

    I do most of my Christmas shopping in the USA and buy most of my clothes there too. I know I should support the Canadian economy, but the quality and price of goods in the USA is by far better!!

    A few of my more recent examples: $117.00 swimsuit for $24.99 at Ross’, men’s Speedo swimtrunks $14.99, Nine West purse $24.99, 5 pairs of “Barely There” brand underwear $2.99 for the pack! , Nike running shoes $39.99, etc.

    I can’t deal with paying $100 for a bathing suit, $75.00 for a pair of jeans, or $80.00 for a half decent purse here in Canada knowing that a short drive away I can get a swimsuit for under $30, a purse for around $30, and jeans for around $20-$25.

    My favorite stores: Ross Dress for Less, Syms, Marshalls, TJMaxx, Macy’s, Nordstrom Rack, Off Saks 5th Ave., Neimann Marcus Last Call, etc.

  82. sue says:

    they have your license plate when you cross – that’s what the camera is for. that’s why we don’t bother to lie. it’s all on the screen in front of them. We have a Kohl’s card – apparently, the majority of Kohl’s card holders in Port Huron are Canadian……

  83. Sally says:

    Lol @ couldnt find the Cracker Barrel. Its so crazy close after you cross the border in Port Huron we’ve drove right by it “not finding it” a few times. Its on the right hand side and you just pull off where it says to. Its kinda hidden behind a bush and a building.

    I heart cracker barrel.

  84. SUE says:

    @ Sally – but but but I bet you didn’t get pulled over by the Canuck border guards when you TOLD them you couldn’t find it! Six years on in London, we still haven’t been there….there’s lots of bushes on the right hand side 🙂

  85. Sally says:

    Hehehe Sue!!

  86. ME says:

    Thanks Moi, singned up to the Vegas Outlets, the premium outlets have some great coupons.

  87. Brad says:

    I love shopping over there, I am a large guy, so unless I go to George Richards I can`t buy clothes here, in the states almost every store stocks 3xl

  88. Sandra5 says:

    Sally, where are you picking up those sugar free candies? I’m getting desperate, the selection in T.O. is crap!

  89. Sally says:

    Target, Meijer and Walmart all have tons of sugar free stuff, even turtles! Just look in the candy aisles.

  90. Sandra5 says:

    Thanks, Sally!

  91. abk says:

    If you have just been gone from Canada for the day then technically, you are not allowed to bring anything back without paying taxes. If the officer lets you go without making you pay taxes, that is their discretion. Your exemptions are as follows: 24 hrs – $50/person, 48 hrs – $400/person, 7 days – $750/person. You have to have been gone at least 48 hours to bring back any alcohol or tobacco, regardless of where you purchased it (eg. alcohol from Meijers is subject to taxes just as it is from the Duty Free store).

    If you are required to pay taxes, in Ontario you are paying the 13% HST and keep in mind that it is supposed to be charged on your total purchase price, including your taxes so you are actually paying tax on tax. In addition, while most of the times you will not be charged a Duty Rate, most goods are not made in North America and are subject to a Most Favoured Nations Duty Rate of approx. 17%. Children’s clothing is taxed at the border the same as it is in Canada, only the PST is applied.

    As for groceries, real groceries items like milk and bread are allowed to come in tax free. But junk food is not considered groceries and may be taxed. The best way to think about it is if you would pay taxes on it in Canada you pay taxes on it brining it across the border. You can bring produce across, although technically apples, potatoes and onions are inadmissible. Certain items have a limit, for example dairy (milk, cheese, etc) is $20/person and chicken is $20/person.

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  93. Sharon C says:

    I use some of the local tour companys for weekend shopping trips to Erie and Grove City. It’s a mini vacation and lots of fun.No hassels at the border and no worries of driving and parking.They do day trips as well for a lower cost than driving yourself.

  94. Heather says:

    @Sharon – May I ask which bus companies you’ve used? I’ve contacted a few and gotten no responses! 🙁


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