Upcoming changes to U.S. and international shipping – Here’s what you need to know

2 minute read

Electronic Advanced Data (EAD) is an essential part of shipping internationally.

It gives customs officials in foreign destinations all the information they need to complete their inspections and allow your parcels to travel beyond Canada’s borders.

On January 1, 2021, Canada Post will be required to transmit EAD on all barcoded outbound parcel shipments to the United States and other international destinations. This means that as of December 26, 2020, Small PacketTM – Air and Surface items sent through post offices will need to have EAD captured during the transaction at the counter.

We’ll outline everything you need to know about these changes, including how to ensure your deliveries aren’t interrupted by the switch to the new standard.

A better approach to international customs

Faster to fill, easier to manage and more efficient for customs, electronic customs forms are becoming a new standard. Regulatory bodies around the globe are following the same path: mandating that postal organizations collect and transmit package content information in advance of shipping.

These new regulations will apply to all barcoded outbound parcel shipments, including:

  • Expedited ParcelTM – USA
  • International ParcelTM – Air and Surface
  • XpresspostTM – USA and International*
  • Tracked PacketTM – USA and International
  • Small Packet – Air and Surface (USA and International)

* Keep in mind that Xpresspost – USA and International prepaid envelopes will be discontinued for purchase as of July 12, 2020, but you can continue to use previously purchased prepaid envelopes until December 31, 2020.

Prepare your business for the change

Make sure your business stays ahead of the curve by ensuring your shipping process allows you to send customs information electronically.

Exploring how to expand your business beyond Canada?

Learn more about shipping internationally

Customs forms can already be managed online for all your international packages. With Canada Post, it’s a simple matter of completing an online form to generate a barcode you can bring to any post office location. Whether you’ve printed the barcode or saved it to your mobile device, once the clerk scans it, all customs information surrounding your shipment will be automatically sent to border officials before your parcel is shipped!

As of January 1, 2021, any barcoded items where the customs data has not been transmitted in advance may be refused entry to the foreign destination.

Shipping at scale?

If you’re shipping worldwide on a regular basis, manually filling out every customs form is inefficient.

Streamline the process by completing customs forms with Snap Ship. Complete forms within the tool to streamline your processes, print labels and schedule pick-ups from one dashboard.

Don’t miss important information!

To ship internationally within the postal network, you need to provide the following information on your customs form:

  • The address of origin
  • The destination address
  • The number of items being shipped
  • Item descriptions
  • The weight of your items
  • Total value of the items

The country of origin, or where the product was manufactured, and the harmonized system (HS) code are both optional. Keep in mind that the information criteria may be different if you choose to ship with a commercial shipping company, such as UPS or FedEx.

When completing your customs form, be sure to provide as much detail as possible regarding the contents of your shipments to help facilitate the inspections process and get orders to your customers as efficiently as possible. Understanding the customs process and preparing your orders carefully will open up a world possibilities for your business!

Find more tips on shipping across the border.

Learn how a Canadian small business with big boxes found huge success through international shipping.

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