Well, I needed to order more red/cyan paper anaglyph glasses and since there are no suppliers in Canada (that I’ve found yet), I thought I’d try an order from Rainbow Symphony.
Now the glasses are relatively inexpensive – about $25.00 USD for 100, and would be enough for the classes I’m teaching this summer.
Two shipping options to Canada were available: UPS and USPS International. Every Canadian knows you would either have to be very wealthy or a complete idiot to chose the UPS option (they tend to nickle and dime Canadians into bankruptcy with their “fees” and “costs”) so I selected the second option.
The shipping cost popped up as $43.00 – yes, that is correct – $43.00. Apparently a $25.00 order of paper anaglyph glasses needs to be flown to Canada in a First Class seat on a private jet. Unless they are packed in a 50 lb steel case, I doubt they weight more than a pound or two so I have no idea why the shipping would be so outrageous.
Tip: If you want to sell your goods to Canadians, never, EVER give the only option as UPS. Always give an option for ground service with the USPS. Very reliable, reasonable cost and I have never had an order go missing yet. Sure, it takes 2-3 weeks (most of which is spent in Canada Customs, and then getting from Customs to its destination. Everything in Canada travels by Ox Cart, so make sure your customers are not in a hurry.
I had ordered 10 anaglyph plastic “aviator” style glasses from a company in Tennessee last year. The 10 glasses cost $50.00 USD with $53.00 shipping. This was for an art exhibition so I was paid an artist’s fee and the cost was covered. Unfortunately, these classes are volunteer and do not have a budget.
I’m already resigned to paying GST (Goods and Services Tax) for most purchases from the USA (this is where American companies are encouraged to charge Canadian customers a Canadian Federal Tax). I suppose this is a good idea especially if the Liberals win the next election (Liberals like to raise taxes or make up new taxes like the “Carbon Tax” and spend the money on Sponsorship programs payable to their buddies and give speeches about “proofs”.)
I would be perfectly happy to buy Canadian – if there was a supplier in Canada, but I suspect that even if I could find a supplier, the end costs would be about the same. I’ve had this experience with art supplies. I can buy items locally or order from a Canadian art supply store, but the price per item, taxes and shipping cost is sometimes more than ordering from the USA, even with added GST, shipping and duty.
So I’m not sure what to do – pay over $70.00 USD for 100 paper anaglyph glasses or try to find a Canadian supplier who would probably charge the same?
I’m thinking I just might have to cancel the classes….