Canada Border Services Agency
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Importing by Mail

Duty, Taxes and Handling Fees on Items Mailed to You

Duty and tax exemptions

The CBSA can examine almost any item that comes to Canada by mail.

You may have to pay duty, the goods and services tax (GST) or the harmonized sales tax (HST) and the provincial sales tax (PST) on items mailed to you. If you owe duty and tax, it will be indicated on Form E14, CBSA Postal Import Form, which will be attached to your mail item when it is delivered.

The amount of duty or taxes you may owe on an item depends upon the following:

The item’s value in Canadian dollars

Under the provisions of the Postal Imports Remission Order, if someone mails you an item worth CAN$20 or less, you don’t have to pay duty or taxes on the item. If the item is worth more than CAN$20, you must pay the applicable duty, the GST or HST, and any PST on the item’s full value.

Items that do not qualify for the CAN$20 exemption include the following:

  • tobacco;
  • books;
  • periodicals;
  • magazines;
  • alcoholic beverages; and
  • goods ordered through a Canadian post office box or a Canadian intermediary.

Handling costs

To process goods imported as mail that are subject to duty and/or tax, Canada Post charges the recipient CAN$9.95. If the item is duty-free and tax exempt, no amount is charged.

All amounts must be paid at the time of delivery (by cash, certified cheque, VISA, MasterCard or your Canada Post commercial account).

Agreements and disagreements

If you disagree with the duty and/or taxes assessed, two options are available to you.