Duty Free Allowances

 

If you’re crossing a border you can shop at a Duty Free store. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been away or how long you’re planning to stay. If you’re Canadian or American (or International), you can shop before you enter the U.S., before you enter Canada or both. Of course, we’d prefer you plan to stop at our Store on the way into the U.S. but if it doesn’t make sense for you this trip, well that’s okay, please come see us again soon.

The Duty Free Program was set up by the U.S. and Canadian governments to make shopping convenient for travellers, create additional jobs and to further bolster the countries’ economies. Typically, Duty Free Shops sell great brands at a significant savings vs. regular retailers, offer a selection of unique or hard to find products and provide great service at a convenient location. All Duty Free shops were not created equal and have different ownership so you may find some (vast) differences.

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How much you can buy tax and Duty Free depends on how long you’ve been away. The allowances are clearly laid out throughout our store and on our website, but you can also ask our staff if you’re not sure – they’re always happy to help.

Travelling into the U.S.

Any length trip:

  • 1 litre of alcohol (must be 21 years old)
  • 200 cigarettes and 100 cigars (non-Cuban) OR 2kg of fine cut tobacco

Returning to Canada

24-48 hours in the U.S.:

  • $200 CAD worth of goods per person
  • Excludes alcohol and tobacco - these are subject to duties and taxes

48+ hours in the U.S.:

  • $800 CAD worth of goods per person
  • 1.14 litres (40 ounces) of liquor OR 1 case of beer (24x355ml cans/bottles) OR 1.5 litres of wine
  • Plus 200 cigarettes (1 carton); 50 cigars; 200 tobacco sticks and 200 grams of manufactured tobacco

Read Scenarios

Returning to the U.S.

Less than 48 hours in Canada:

  • $200 USD worth of goods per person, tax and duty free
  • Any purchase of alcohol or tobacco products may be subject to duties and taxes

48+ hours in Canada:

  • $800 USD worth of goods per person, tax and duty free
  • Purchases may include 1 litre of alcohol, 200 cigarettes (1 carton), and 100 cigars
  • Family members can combine their tax and duty allowances

Tax and duty rates entering the U.S.

The following duty rates may apply to purchases in excess of your allowance:

Liquor - $2 to $2 USD per bottle*
Beer - $1.90 USD per case*
Tobacco - $10.07 USD per carton*

*Duty rates are approximate and are assessed according to alcohol content. 

Tax and duty rates entering Canada

You may return to Canada with amounts of excess of your allowance. However duty and taxes on excess alcohol and tobacco are considerable and it may not be advantageous to do so. If you'd still like to know the duty and taxes when returning to Canada, please contact us.

Click here to download the Duty Free Regulations & Allowances sheet.