As a Canadian citizen I am getting frustrated in my search for fair and reputable pricing. It is so tempting to see harps on sale on websites like L&H Prelude 40 lever at $4490 or a Salvi Ana $3999 remaining stock. In reality the exchange rate, GST and PST, shipping and handling and customs fees make the $4490 Prelude come out for us at a little over $6000. It would be so great if we could also get a good deal on these great harps as well. Having searched the Canadian sites, westcoast harps, east coast harps, Remenyi, vixen and classical academy,and the gramophone, not many have any of these in stock and then an order to the factory in California or Chicago then adds to an even higher amount.
How does a Canadian buyer benefit from a so-called ‘sale’? The markup for example at one place for a Prelude 40 is $5900 plus gst and pst. and I was the one who had to tell them about the $4490 US intro sale price!
Is there anything I can do as a Canadian to avoid all of these extra fees and costs so a $4000 instrument won’t come out as $6000? I certainly would like to buy one of these harps I mentioned above if I can find a good price.
Thanks for replying.
You raised some good points here. Yes I did ask to match the US price and they said they could not do that because of the exchange rate, customs fees, and shipping/handling/delivery into Canada.
I will still look around–I am not going to give up yet!
You need to complain to your government. it’s not like Canada has a thriving harp building industry that needs protection. And you can’t expect dealers in Canada to match prices in the US. After all, they have to pay all those fees and taxes too. You’ll never get a harp across the border from the US because the Canadian authorities will demand that the person driving it across the border put up virtually the whole cost of the instrument. They will be assuming that the American is bringing the harp into Canada to sell it, and they want to get their money up front. Maybe you can get someone to stick the harp in a boat and move it across the St. Lawrence in some remote spot. Or better yet, have the harp disassembled and brought across in pieces, one piece at a time, then reassembled in Canada.
Thanks for all of the replies. I did get in touch with L&H and they told me that there would be a fee of $226.88 US to have it shipped to a bonding shed close to my home. I would need to do the paper work to get the harp–duty, bonding fees and taxes. Insurance is $48.00 US on a $4000 harp. I would have to get in touch with Canada customs to know if there are any other taxes involved.
And that is what I am going to do today–get some questions answered and if it is worthwhile, take a look at L&H CPO once more.
and hey Carl, do ‘you’ have a boat to get a harp for me across the border??
After spending most of the afternoon at the computer sending more emails for info about harps for sale and chatting with Customs Canada I was pleasantly surprised by the info I learned.
In one scenario, if I buy a L&H CPO or new or any other US made harp, what I pay is the exchange rate first, then the insurance and then the shipping cost to the company/shop owner, and when it gets into Canada, because the instrument is made in the States, there is no duty to be claimed. I would pay the taxes GST and PST.
So at least I am getting some answers to my questions…
PS. all of this info is really valuable for canadian buyers who want to pursue their dream of owning a harp and taking lessons–even though all of this has been extremely frustrating, at least now, others from Canada will know about the necessary steps to get a US made instrument into Canada!
re crossing the Canadian Border –
in the late 90’s (granted – this is before 9-ll) I had a family wedding to play for in Vancouver – I tried to rent a good pedal harp there and had no success – I ended up air freighting my Paragon from San Antonio Texas to Seattle, rented a Ford Windstar, and drove across the border with the harp laying on the folded down seats – never was questioned either way – I also took my McKay harp cart on the plane with me as carry on luggage and stashed it up near the front bulkhead – no problem there either – In retrospect, I think maybe I was just plain lucky – – – –
Actually, my worst problem was getting lost regularly once I was across the border as i didn’t pay attention to the fact
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