Duty & Tax
It’s a common misconception that duties are exempted for goods coming from US or Mexico because of NAFTA. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) states that most American and Mexican manufactured items are exempted from duty. But what you buy from a US store does not mean the item was made in the United States. If the item was imported into the US, you may be charged duty when it comes into Canada. For duties, please read our article.
Unlike duties, GST, PST and HST are not exempted. But there are exceptions, please read our article on this subject.
Most Canadians take advantage of the duty free exemptions after they stay out of country for a period of time. When you return to Canada, you should note that customs officials are entitled to inspect your luggage; therefore, receipts from your purchases should be readily available for the officials. If a false declaration is made, goods can be seized and a financial penalty can be imposed. Be careful.