Direct Mail

USPS Shipping to Canada

By 14 February 2024April 29th, 2024No Comments
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USPS Shipping to Canada: What are the Most Ideal and Best Options?

Here’s a fun fact: In 2024, the US exports to Canada were worth $237.3 billion!

Though we are no Sheldon Cooper, we know this fact means a lot to many US companies and exporters. And it is why the US postal services have a load of international mailing services for USPS shipping to Canada and other countries.

secure mail delivery

These options vary according to costs, features, mailing speed, etc. Therefore, we have compiled this article to help you learn about every postal service for shipping to Canada USPS and decide the best one. 

Let us get started!

Does USPS Ship to Canada?

You may know about national mailing services by USPS and their costs.  But, many individuals and businesses remain confused about its international shipping solutions.

To solve their doubts, let us clear this: Yes, USPS ships to Canada! There are numerous USPS to Canada mailing services to select from, and the speed ranges from one to ten business days.

Hence, you can mail your envelopes and packages to your Canadian customers, partners, suppliers, etc., unless you don’t ship something prohibited.

Also, you may need to pay customs clearance and taxes, depending on the weight of the item and its contents.

How to Ship to Canada USPS?

As said above, there are many options you can select from, based on your choices and budget, including: 

Global Express Guaranteed (GXG)

GXG helps you send USPS mail to Canada within one to three business days. Most of your urban deliveries only take one day, making GXG an ideal option for shipping time-sensitive mailpieces!

The maximum weight cap is 70 lbs for USPS delivery to Canada, though some countries may have lower limits. You can get GXG stickers, labels, and envelopes for free from the USPS website. Only pay for the postage starting at $67.80 for items not over 0.5 lbs. 

Please note that USPS uses FedEx Express services for completing GXG orders at international destinations. You can claim a full refund if your items do not arrive at your mailing address by the specified date. 

Also, the GXG USPS ship-to-Canada option offers a $100 insurance cover and end-to-end tracking! 

Priority Mail Express International 

It is the second fastest ship to Canada USPS service and a little less costly than GXG. The prices start at $47.95 and vary for different destination countries.

You can ship packages up to 70 lbs and pay postage based on weight. Or you can use USPS’s flat-rate pricing to send envelopes weighing up to 4 lbs.

Like GXG, Priority Mail Express International enables you to send mail pieces to over 180 countries, including Canada, Australia, Mexico, etc. The delivery window for USPS shipping to Canada and other parts of the world is three to five business days.

Other features include USPS tracking, package pick-up, a money-back guarantee, and $100 to $200 insurance for specific items.

Priority Mail International

If you want to spend less and can wait a few more days for your mail to arrive, choose the USPS Priority Mail to Canada option!

Almost all of its features are similar to Priority Mail International, like USPS tracking, free package pick up, and $100 to $200 insurance. But, the delivery time frame is six to ten business days! And there isn’t a money-back guarantee—which means your mail can arrive later than the specified dates. 

Using Priority Mail to Canada, you can mail small boxes and envelopes up to 4 lbs and larger boxes up to 20 lbs using flat-rate pricing. The envelope rates begin at $29.60 for Canadian locations and increase with weight and mailing distance.

You can also ship packages up to 70 lbs at affordable prices starting from $40.45.

First-Class Package International Service (FCPIS)

It is one of the most affordable options for shipping to Canada USPS, with prices starting at only $14.85. You can send small packages weighing up to 4 lbs or 64 oz with a value of up to $400.

Also, you get delivery confirmation for select countries, and luckily, Canada is one of them! Hence, you can check your delivery details even though you cannot track your items from their origins to their destinations.

USPS does not mention a specific delivery estimate for FCPIS items because it differs for every location. However, USPS shipping to Canada may not take more than a week!

Additionally, FCIPS is eligible for add-ons, like Return Receipts, Registered Mail, and Certificates of Mailing, except when you use the E-USPS DELCON INTL service.

First-Class Mail International Service (FCMI)

FCMI is an ideal USPS-to-Canada service for sending postcards, letters, and other printed documents. You can use a single Global Forever stamp of $1.40 to send your 1 oz mail items anywhere in the world! These stamps don’t expire even if the postage increases.

Also, you may ship flats or large envelopes weighing up to 15.994 oz through the FCMI USPS mail to Canada option. But, the postage depends on the mailing destination and weight. You may need to affix more than one stamp to cover the postal charges to use FCMI.

Like FCPIS, you can purchase Registered Mail to get proof of mailing and delivery. However, there is no way to track the items, and the delivery times can vary widely.

Airmail M-Bags

USPS’s Airmail M-Bags is an excellent USPS shipping to Canada option to send items like:

  • Books
  • Sheet music
  • Magazines
  • Catalogs
  • Newspapers
  • Journals
  • Promotional matter
  • Directories
  • Commercial advertising, etc.

Imagine you are a magazine publisher based in the US with many national and international subscribers! Or you are a student in Canada and want to get some journals from your friend in the US. Airmail M-Bags is the perfect way to package and USPS ship to Canada at affordable rates.

The postage starts at $52.80, and you can mail items weighing up to 66 lbs. Delivery windows vary for every destination, and you don’t get the option to track your packages.

All the above options help you ship to Canada USPS conveniently and effectively! Furthermore, you can use PostGrid’s direct mailing services to automate your mail preparation and shipping tasks—to save time, money, and resources. Also, you get several helpful features, including tracking, API integrations, address verification, etc. More on that a little bit!

Also Read: How to Send Mail to Canada from USA

Can USPS Ship to Canada Post Office Boxes?

The answer to this question is- yes, you can ship to Canadian PO boxes using USPS’s mailing services! The process is the same, and you don’t need to take extra steps to mail something.

Luckily, all the USPS shipping to Canada services we mentioned above also help you to mail to locker bags, PO boxes, etc.

However, the delivery might take place a little differently. Sometimes, Canada Post puts a mail collection receipt in the recipient’s PO box instead of the package if it is too big to fit. The recipient can take the paper slip to the Post Office and retrieve their items.

Tariffs and Taxes on Shipping to Canada USPS

Like most countries, Canada also imposes taxes and duties on imports from the US and other countries. It is best to mention the details of these additional charges to your customers before they pay for an order.

Typically, there are three types of taxes on Canadian imports. You may need to pay a 5% federal tax, also known as the Goods and Services Tax (GST), on items you sell to customers in Canada. However, GST only applies to goods for domestic consumption, so you need to differentiate your products clearly when USPS shipping to Canada and other countries!

Next is the Harmonized Tax (HST)- enforceable in a few Canadian provinces to combine the general and provincial sales taxes.

The other territories or provinces that do not impose HST while shipping to Canada USPS have another tax type- the Provincial Sales Tax (PST), ranging between 5% and 9.75%.

Also, you may need to fill out the customs form available for USPS to Canada mailing on the USPS website. Ensure to provide all the details correctly to avoid potential problems.

Fortunately, you don’t need to worry about customs or paying taxes when you use PostGrid’s direct mail API! You can make your selections online- select what you want to send and where, and PostGrid makes your items mail-ready in only two business days.

Also, PostGrid allows you to mail via the best USPS mail-to-Canada service at all-inclusive pricing. You can pay-as-you-go with our flexible pricing plans and conduct successful campaigns whenever you need!

Challenges You Might Face in USPS Shipping to Canada

Many businesses face challenges and complications while shipping packages to Canada with USPS. First, you must understand that USPS has only jurisdiction in the US. Retailers and customers must keep tracking their shipments on the USPS and Canada Post websites. These are some common challenges that you might face while shipping to Canada with USPS;

Lack of Control and Power

It is one of the most frustrating aspects of shipping to Canada with USPS. Once the package arrives at customs, users lose control over their shipment. If your item faces a problem at customs, there's no guarantee that you will get communication from USPS or Canada Post to inform you about the delay.

The Dilemma of Delivery Times

USPS may provide international delivery services to ship mail and packages to Canada. Yet, the exact delivery times can heavily depend on factors like distance, customs clearance, and local postal services.

You cannot get a clear delivery timeline for international shipping to Canada. At the same, this timeline is transparent when delivering within the country. USPS will estimate delivery times; delays can occur beyond their authority.

Tracking and Lost Packages During Transit

You may get international tracking services for your mail and packages going to Canada. Yet, the tracking updates will provide limited updates once the item leaves US soil and enters Canadian territory. Some packages can face delays or get lost in the transit process. It becomes challenging to guess their exact location in the mailing journey.

Restrictions and Prohibitions on Several Items

Due to legal and security reasons, some items have restrictions and prohibitions for shipping across borders. USPS provides specific guidelines on what you can ship internationally, and Canada also has its list of restrictions.

We recommend you properly check the USPS and Canadian websites to become compliant with regulations and avoid any problems.

Here is a list of USPS-restricted items that you cannot ship internationally;

  • Firearms
  • Intoxicating liquors
  • Knives and sharp tools
  • Liquids, powders, and odor-producing compounds
  • Motor vehicle keys and locksmithing devices
  • Controlled substances and drugs
  • Unsolicited promotional samples
  • Construction material
  • Animal-fighting ventures
  • Cigarettes and smokeless tobacco

Language and Addressing Challenges  

These two issues are common for international USPS deliveries. Yet, language won't be an issue while sending items to Canada as they are also English speakers.

Address formats could bring critical challenges when unfamiliar with how to write Canadian addresses. Ensure you enter the correct format, address, and postal for each recipient. The country recommends writing addresses in English or French as per its guidelines.

We recommend using our Address Verification API to verify, standardize, and fix addresses according to local standards.

PostGrid Tips for a Smoother USPS Shipping to Canada Experience 

As direct mail experts with a presence in both USA and Canada, we would like to recommend the following tips;

Conduct Proper Research on Customer Regulations

To avoid delays and complications, you must familiarize yourself with Canada's and America's customs regulations to understand which items have restrictions or prohibitions.

Adhere to Packaging Guidelines 

We recommend you follow USPS packaging guidelines to avoid non-compliance and complications. Always use sturdy materials for packaging to protect your items from damage.

Give Accurate Declarations 

You have to be transparent and truthful to the customs about your item. It will help you avoid potential delays during the customs clearance process. Many companies lie on customs forms and land complications.

Ensure Insurance and Tracking 

Wise businesses will always consider adding insurance and tracking facilities while shipping items to Canada. This way, they can keep an eye on the mail and ensure peace of mind during the mailing journey.

Plan Out with Delivery Time Estimates 

USPS might give you an estimated delivery timeframe. Yet, you should remember even a minute issue with customs procedures can sometimes result in delays. Thus, we recommend planning accordingly and a spare window for possible lags.

Streamlining International Shipping Processes

Small businesses shipping to Canada should integrate USPS shipping tools and software into their daily operations. They can automate various processes, generate labels, and streamline customs documentation. That's what we call a good time and effort saver!

Explore Bulk Shipping Facilities 

Business users often have to ship multiple shipments to a specific location. USPS provides plenty of bulk shipping services, such as Click-N-Ship, for businesses. With these options, you can send numerous shipments simultaneously to save money and simplify shipping.

Learn About Shipping Zones 

The US and Canada have many shipping zones and associated transit times. It will help you familiarize yourself with them to optimize your shipping experience. The shipping costs and delivery times may vary depending on your destination address in Canada. You should plan accordingly to estimate delivery times and reduce shipment lags.

Value-Added Services Businesses Can Consider for USPS Shipping to Canada 

Apart from the standard international mail delivery, you can also consider these options for better peace of mind;

Delivery Confirmation

We understand that you don't want to live in a dilemma about the delivery status of your item. For this reason, consider taking USPS' delivery confirmation service for your shipments to Canada. With this service, you will get proof of delivery and assurance that your package is finally with the recipient.

Registered Mail  

We recommend using USPS' Registered Mail service to send valuable or sensitive items. It will give you added security and protection for your mail items. This service provides tracking updates and insurance and needs a signature upon delivery.

Returned Receipts

There could be instances where you need proof of delivery and the recipient's signature. Thankfully USPS also provides a Return Receipt service that gives physical or electronic records of deliveries. Businesses can have complete peace of mind and a documented acknowledgment of receipts.

Understanding International Returns and Refunds 

If you must process a return from Canada to the States, USPS gives options for international returns. Always consider adding a return label or providing instructions for the recipient to start a return process. With USPS, you can generate prepaid return labels or provide return postage for your customers in Canada. This service is a must-have to simplify the return process and improve customer satisfaction.

More About PostGrid’s Direct Mail Services for USPS Shipping to Canada

Our automated direct mail solutions for shipping to USPA Canada are apt for all industries, including healthcare, financial services, real estate, etc. Here are some of our use cases to help you understand how PostGrid can help your business grow:

  • Transactional mailing: You can use PostGrid to send crucial letters, invoices, statements, notices, checks, etc., to your customers or third parties.
  • Demand generation: Our direct mail API helps you to send marketing mailers to skyrocket leads. Businesses can ship items like early bird invites, referral offers, giveaways, etc., to attract new customers. The best part is that you can use our USPS mail to Canada solutions to reach prospects overseas!
  • Employee experience: PostGrid offers the best ways to improve employer-employee relationships! You can now print and mail appreciation cards, onboarding letters, custom-made gifts, etc., to motivate your employees and boost their morale.
  • Corporate gifting: Sometimes, you may need to send corporate gifts, like branded notebooks, t-shirts, mugs, personalized photo frames, etc., to high-end clients. Such efforts enable you to form emotional bonds and win over prospects. PostGrid’s online services for USPS shipping to Canada and other global destinations help you prepare and ship such mailers at the click of a button!
  • Bulk mailing: We understand that you may need to send items in large volumes using USPS to Canada options. Thus, we offer on-demand and bulk mailing to enable you to send any number of mailers anywhere.
  • Sales engagement: Use PostGrid to set yourself apart from the competition and push potential customers to the bottom of the funnel. We help you mail high-quality marketing items to impress your prospects and onboard them immediately.

To Summarize

Not surprisingly, US businesses first expand their business to Canada when they want to reach the global market! Thus, it makes sense for the postal services to offer affordable, fast USPS shipping to Canada options.

If you need to mail something to Canada, you get numerous options with varying features and costs. Of course, you still need to spend tons of money preparing your mail items and paying taxes. Luckily, PostGrid’s direct mail services make the process effortless and cost-efficient!

You can sign up here to see how PostGrid allows you to employ USPS shipping to Canada in a few easy steps!

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