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Old 02-19-2015, 08:08 PM   #1
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Buying at .81 Exchange Rate and importing to US

I'm a newbie here and trying to do the math on purchasing a 17 or 19' Escape.

I'm thinking if the 19' trailer is listed at $25,500 that's $20,655 US plus bank exchange and processing fees. Anyone done this lately and what was your experiene and actual cost? The thread on exchange rates was very useful but needs updating.

On a related issue, there is a $200 brokerage fee to have someone take the trailer through customs and take delivery in the US. Why couldn't you do this yourself? What paperwork is required? Do you have to use the broker to avoid paying the VAT and insure the trailer is for export only? Anyone done this?
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Old 02-19-2015, 08:30 PM   #2
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.....

On a related issue, there is a $200 brokerage fee to have someone take the trailer through customs and take delivery in the US. Why couldn't you do this yourself? What paperwork is required? Do you have to use the broker to avoid paying the VAT and insure the trailer is for export only? Anyone done this?
My experience consists of only crossing the border at Sumas to visit ETI. But, they were very, very familiar with ETI, refer to them pleasantly with a smile, because they see ETI crossings virtually every day. And, per reports on this forum, ETI personnel typically cross the border, do the paperwork, and are waiting for the owners to cross.
That in itself is worth $200 to me.
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Old 02-19-2015, 08:32 PM   #3
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It appears your math is correct, it may be a bit higher in US dollars due to fees and the fact the quoted rates for exchange are only available when you do multi-million dollar exchanges. Still, it would be within a couple of percentage points. There may or may not be fees for the payments, wire transfer or related costs of sending money across the border. Again not that much.

What you are reading on the forum, if it is dated in the past year is pretty current. The exchange rate is the only thing that has changed. It appears to me that there are two methods of paying: send a check drawn on US funds to Escape and accept whatever the exchange rate their bank offers or wire transfer Canadian funds via your local bank and pay wire and transfer fees. My take from the latest experiences by forum members is the US check works pretty well, I used the wire and it still had a lot of unknown in fees and exchange rate plus not every bank has the capability to do such an operation.

Having taken delivery in the past six months I am not aware of any brokerage fees. At this point in time Escape, due to national and provincial sales tax requirements and instructions from Canadian Department of Revenue, will only deliver a US bound trailer to the state of Washington, Sumas to be exact. No brokerage as they cross the border and assume responsibility for fees, if any. Having a trailer shipped to you may incur the brokerage fee as the shipper now has to take the trailer across the border and thus incur the fee.
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Old 02-19-2015, 08:32 PM   #4
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It's my understanding that Escape can get a better exchange rate than can you and I. Plus I would rather use their expertise on the import end, as they know what exactly to do and how to do it.

You could always contact your bank and then Escape and see which would offer the better rate for that day.

And Paul, Escape did start charging an import fee of $200 this year to cover their costs. And Escape will arrange for a trailer to be delivered about anywhere in the US you want.
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Old 02-19-2015, 08:41 PM   #5
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....
What you are reading on the forum, if it is dated in the past year is pretty current. The exchange rate is the only thing that has changed. It appears to me that there are two methods of paying: send a check drawn on US funds to Escape and accept whatever the exchange rate their bank offers or wire transfer Canadian funds via your local bank and pay wire and transfer fees. My take from the latest experiences by forum members is the US check works pretty well, I used the wire and it still had a lot of unknown in fees and exchange rate plus not every bank has the capability to do such an operation.
A check worked very well for us. We sent (registered mail from CA) a check for a substantial portion of the amount due, and ETI received and deposited it in their bank 13 days later. The exchange rate happened to be better that day than the day we sent it. Score!!!

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Having taken delivery in the past six months I am not aware of any brokerage fees. At this point in time Escape, due to national and provincial sales tax requirements and instructions from Canadian Department of Revenue, will only deliver a US bound trailer to the state of Washington, Sumas to be exact. No brokerage as they cross the border and assume responsibility for fees, if any. Having a trailer shipped to you may incur the brokerage fee as the shipper now has to take the trailer across the border and thus incur the fee.
So, the $200 brokerage fee on my build sheet must be for the currency conversion at Tammy's bank, and not part of the border crossing/export procedure.
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Old 02-19-2015, 08:53 PM   #6
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I'm a newbie here and trying to do the math on purchasing a 17 or 19' Escape.

I'm thinking if the 19' trailer is listed at $25,500 that's $20,655 US plus bank exchange and processing fees. Anyone done this lately and what was your experiene and actual cost? The thread on exchange rates was very useful but needs updating.

On a related issue, there is a $200 brokerage fee to have someone take the trailer through customs and take delivery in the US. Why couldn't you do this yourself? What paperwork is required? Do you have to use the broker to avoid paying the VAT and insure the trailer is for export only? Anyone done this?
We got an effective rate of 1 USD = 1.225 CAD. It's based on the rate that ETI's bank uses at the time the check is processed, and of course that includes a premium for converting it. Not a bad rate at all, although if you set up an XE account you may do slightly better. We didn't worry about it.
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:06 PM   #7
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When it comes to getting a license or registering a vehicle it seems no matter how hard you try, you are always missing something in the paper work of which makes for a miserable experience. ETI exports their trailers all of the time plus are probably on a first name basis with all of the border people. Two hundred dollars is a small price to pay to avoid a big hassle. I am already losing sleep just worrying about the big fight that is bound to come up at the Kansas DMV with a Canadian built trailer. Loren
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:17 PM   #8
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I think if you purchase in Canada and import it yourself, you have to pay PST and GST and submit paper to get your money back from Revenue Canada. There were some other hassles too for ETI.
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:24 PM   #9
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I had pretty good luck with the MO DMV and got my plate this week waiting maybe 40 minutes. There was a little confusion about Canadian vs. US dollars but I finally got the clerk to understand what was going on.

I had a more interesting time sending a cashiers check to ETI. It arrived in Vancouver in 9 days, then got accidentally put in a bag for Japan. It had to clear customs there and finally made it back to Vancouver and then to ETI after a total of 17 days.
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Old 02-19-2015, 10:23 PM   #10
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The $200 is exclusively for the border import, you'll pay a fee on top of that for the exchange, but it all depends on the rate for that day.

I sent a registered cashier's check to ETI from Utah and it arrived 30 days later. It seems that registered takes much longer because of all the extra scans, etc. - at least that's what the international rep for the US PO told me. That was for my first trailer. This time, I decided to wire the cash and not worry that it was lost.

And registering the trailer in Utah was a piece of cake. The clerk had to call headquarters with a question or two, but it went smoothly and quickly. 15 minutes max.
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:40 AM   #11
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registering the trailer in Utah was a piece of cake. The clerk had to call headquarters with a question or two, but it went smoothly and quickly. 15 minutes max.
Wish it was that easy in Texas! Sheesh! A VIN inspection by a member of the Texas Auto Theft Task Force? Really? On a new trailer for which I have insurance, a certificate of origin and a Bill of Sale? Unfathomably stupid. Oh well, its all good though once we're out there camping.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:04 AM   #12
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Wish it was that easy in Texas! Sheesh! A VIN inspection by a member of the Texas Auto Theft Task Force? Really? On a new trailer for which I have insurance, a certificate of origin and a Bill of Sale? Unfathomably stupid. Oh well, its all good though once we're out there camping.
You should create an App for that and license it to the government. Works for prisons.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:24 AM   #13
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Wish it was that easy in Texas! Sheesh! A VIN inspection by a member of the Texas Auto Theft Task Force? Really? On a new trailer for which I have insurance, a certificate of origin and a Bill of Sale? Unfathomably stupid. Oh well, its all good though once we're out there camping.
Consider yourself lucky. Or try to import and legalize a trailer over here in the Netherlands.

Ahh well, in the end, when everytrhing is said and done you tend to forget the battle's you had to get it on the road.

Remember, once your battling with your DMV, the end is near and after that you can start to enjoy.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:32 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by dbawden View Post
I'm a newbie here and trying to do the math on purchasing a 17 or 19' Escape.

I'm thinking if the 19' trailer is listed at $25,500 that's $20,655 US plus bank exchange and processing fees. Anyone done this lately and what was your experiene and actual cost? The thread on exchange rates was very useful but needs updating.

On a related issue, there is a $200 brokerage fee to have someone take the trailer through customs and take delivery in the US. Why couldn't you do this yourself? What paperwork is required? Do you have to use the broker to avoid paying the VAT and insure the trailer is for export only? Anyone done this?
ETI used to have to get the paperwork out of owners that ETI needed for the tax situation and whatever else. Now ETI takes the trailers across the border and gets the paperwork they need themselves. Americans do not pay Canadian taxes on an Escape and technically speaking, you need to take possession of the trailer in the U.S. So that taxes are not due, apparently.

There is no one I know of who buys an Escape for anywhere near the base price. There are lots and lots of absolutely necessary options.
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Old 02-20-2015, 08:35 AM   #15
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Consider yourself lucky. Or try to import and legalize a trailer over here in the Netherlands.

Ahh well, in the end, when everytrhing is said and done you tend to forget the battle's you had to get it on the road.

Remember, once your battling with your DMV, the end is near and after that you can start to enjoy.
Severinus, considering all the mods you had to do to both the truck and the trailer, my issues are pretty trivial. I also agree that once we're out there, it'll be forgotten. I guess its just my inborn hatred of needless bureaucracy. Texas thing.
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Old 02-20-2015, 09:46 AM   #16
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We brought a bank cashier's check with us, gave it to ETI when we arrived, and that worked really well for us.
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Old 02-20-2015, 10:54 AM   #17
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I sent a personal check for an amount that was $500 less than the balance due and let the exchange rate do whatever it wanted. I was just looking to get it close enough that I could settle up via credit card.

Worked just fine, though the pony express from Colorado to BC took 3 weeks.
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Old 02-20-2015, 11:59 AM   #18
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Severinus, considering all the mods you had to do to both the truck and the trailer, my issues are pretty trivial. I also agree that once we're out there, it'll be forgotten. I guess its just my inborn hatred of needless bureaucracy. Texas thing.
Needless bureaucracy is in more places than we would care to admit. So I assume that you did not get your license plate and will have to pull the trailer home without one. Loren
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:24 PM   #19
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Severinus, considering all the mods you had to do to both the truck and the trailer, my issues are pretty trivial. I also agree that once we're out there, it'll be forgotten. I guess its just my inborn hatred of needless bureaucracy. Texas thing.
No problem, i have the same issues with our DMV. I know what you're going through.

Hang on, it's only temporarily, after that you'll be the laughing one.
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Old 02-20-2015, 06:00 PM   #20
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We've all been there with mission creep. Looking over the accessories, I do not see anything I would immediately add except perhaps the larger fridge. Most I can add later on should I find it moves up the food to chain to "must have". Although new to the idea of trailer life, my wife and I have been life-long sailors on our 36' sailboat and have had to add, fix, or replace just about everything.

I live only a few miles from the factory and will make a run up and chat with the reps about delivery dates and what they have on their lot.

I appreciate each of your timely and thoughtful responses.
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