Online cross-border shopping explained

As online shoppers go global, more Canadians wonder about the process… and the fees. Here’s what you need to know

Whether it’s to access a greater selection or to source a hard-to-find item, Canadians do a lot of cross-border shopping – and with the advent of e-commerce, more of that shopping is taking place online. For instance, 44% of Canadian online shoppers buy products from the U.S., with almost 20% of them planning to increase their spend next year.
But what’s the process of bringing parcels across the border? Who determines if duties should be applied, and how much? These are just some of the common questions we get asked.
The infographic below explains Canada Post’s role in global e-commerce shipping, from start to finish.
For more information on prohibited goods, duty and taxes, please visit the Canada Border Services Agency website at