What is the Cheapest Way to Ship to Canada?
The Ladingo Team
July 12, 2020
As a savvy, global-minded enterprise owner or manager, you’re always on the lookout for ways to scale your business. Penetrating new markets with your innovative products is high on your business plan – and Canada is one of those markets you simply cannot afford to ignore.
Towards the end of 2019 alone, 1.85 billion Canadian dollars were spent on retail e-commerce purchases by approximately 28.1 million Canadians. And by 2024, revenue generated within the country’s retail e-commerce market is expected to exceed the 33 billion U.S. mark.
But how are you to ship your large-scale orders to Canada and meet this growing market’s needs? What is the cheapest way to ship larger and heavier items to Canada?
The cheapest way to ship to Canada is not USPS
Does USPS ship to Canada? Yes. Is the United States Postal service a cost-effective or even logistically realistic option for your enterprise-level orders? No.
While USPS is hailed as the cheapest way to ship small and small-scale orders to Canada, it is not an efficient or affordable shipping method for businesses shipping large or large-scale orders cross-border. International shipping via USPS is typically 1-3 weeks but can take up to 3 months, which can place a serious damper on your customers’ satisfaction levels. USPS also has quite low size and weight restrictions and charges quite a bit to reach Canadian destinations, especially those classified as remote.
The cheapest way to ship to Canada is not via Amazon
Does Amazon ship to Canada? Yes. But if you want to sell to Canadians via Amazon, it’s probably better to become a seller on the Canadian platform, Amazon.ca and do away with cross-border shipping altogether. Yet, doing so would involve a whole other set of challenges linked to selling items in another country; permits, paperwork, warehouses, and more. And you’d still have to find a way to ship your items to your Canadian warehouses, so really, selling via Amazon.ca isn’t much of a workaround at all.
Freight forwarding – how to ship to Canada
Canada is a huge country – the second largest in the world, but has many access points via the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, making it an ideal hub for ocean freight forwarding. Ocean freight companies are better positioned for shipping large, heavy and large-scale orders. Large shipments of smaller items can be grouped together to fill a container, even if your order on its own is less than a container’s size. And larger shipments can fill containers on their own (FCL – Full Container Load), allowing for the most cost and space-effective solution possible that is efficient and safe.
How much does it cost to ship to Canada via ground freight? Unfortunately, the final cost isn’t always clear cut or fully transparent. Choosing the right freight forwarder in Canada that you’re comfortable with is just one aspect of the final tally. Other considerations include the size and dimensions of your order, as well as other services, such as labeling, tracking, customs documentation, clearance, and last-mile delivery. Piecing all these services and their costs together can rack up quite a bill. On the other hand, using a full-service logistics solution to calculate and manage your shipments to Canada can streamline processes, while significantly reducing the unknowns to zero, as well as the costs.
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