Updated March 11, 2009
Why should I buy Canadian goods from Canada?
Buying a Canadian dollar is cheaper than buying a US$ . From being worth US$1.10 in the 1950's to being worth US$0.78 in today's currency, buying with American dollars means that an item that sells for CDN$3000.00 will cost you about US$2000.00 . Pretty good, "eh"?
Why should I buy American goods from Canada?
There is a feature known as "drop-shipping" where the manufacturer takes the responsibilty of shipping the goods to the purchaser. We have been able to take advantage of this in some unique ways. We can order the goods from some American suppliers and have them shipped directly to you, the customer in the US. The goods never even leave the US and you get the benefit of cheaper shipping and we don't have to inventory the instruments. It's not always available, some suppliers don't offer this service, but when it's available it works marvelously well.
Is it difficult?
Absolutely not! Nothing could be simpler. In many ways we act as if we are one country. No passports required (up until recently), no duties on Canadian goods, the largest undefended border in the world, etc., etc. In fact it's often been compared to crossing state lines. Due to the passing of the Free Trade Act, it is simply a matter of having UPS pick up the goods and shipping them to you. UPS does however charge a premium for cross-border shipments, but this is really minor and is often abosrbed by the dealer - me.
What about returns, if I'm dissatisfied?
This is no more difficult than dealing mail order with an American dealer. You must trust the dealer to do the right thing. In this age of Newgroups and E-mail Lists, a dealer's reputation can be quickly destroyed. Any responsible and intelligent dealer will act accordingly.
What do Canadians make that is worth buying?
' Thought you'd never ask!!
There are Canadian luthiers that are a match for the best in the world. Guitars and Mandolins by William "Grit" Laskin, Linda Manser, Judy Threet, Michael Heiden, Morgan, Larrivee, Peter Sawchyn, Northwood, Ted Thompson, Oliver Apitius, Mark Beneteau, Jamie Wiens, Julian Tubb, Jay Duncan, among others; and of course Calton Instrument Cases (the best in the world!!).
In fact there are hundreds of fine independant instrument makers all over the country, just as there are throughout the United States. It's just the value of our dollar, at present, that makes us seem inexpensive.
You should try living here and shopping for a Martin, add 60-70% to the price!!!!! This may, in fact, explain the proliferation of Canadian instrument builders.
What do I do now?
Why not give us an E-mail at The Acoustic Guitar Store.
We would be pleased to discuss it with you. We're becoming quite the experts at exporting.