Oh, Canada.

A great hue and cry has been rising up from the northlands, primarily from Vancouver and Toronto, with honorable mention to Calgary and Halifax, asking the following:

“WHY DOES IT COST SO MUCH TO SHIP TO CANADA?  WE’RE RIGHT NEXT TO AMERICA!!!”

Some of you used very colorful metaphors, explicatives, imperatives, and biological impossibilities.  I understand people getting emotional about BBotE and Steins of Science, I really do, but I’m glad Funranium Mom has not been giving the task of mail reader.  She has a delicate constitution and can’t take such maple crazed imagery.  Strangely, a similar declaration of vexation has not come from Mexico and the Caribbean.  Go figure.

It is the same answer as why it is so expensive for everywhere else in the world: Customs and, in the case of BBotE, perishability.

As far as the United States Postal Service is concerned, London, Ontario is no different than London, England.  They only really start getting concerned when I ask them to ship something with tracking and insurance to the dark heart of Africa (quote: “3-5 days?  To Kinshasa?!?! You gotta be kidding me.”)  Slower shipping works for the steins, but BBotE must go global express to get to you in a timely manner.  And no, UPS and FedEx are decidedly not cheaper.

So, what is a Canuck in need to do?  Speaking from my experience taking several liters of delicious alcohol and BBotE to Australia and New Zealand, evidence suggests that Immigration & Quarantine officers are somewhat uninterested in bottles of hypercoffee, though they are very concerned by sausages.

Step 1 – Make a friend in an American border town.

Step 2 – Have said friend purchase delights on your behalf.

Step 3 – Come to America and pay said friend for their trouble.  I also suggest buying them a beer.

Step 4 – Return home where the beavers and bison frolic freely.

In so doing, you are reversing the Bronfman Montreal liquor trade from the Prohibition Era but with caffeine.  Really, it’s only fair.

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