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Old 11-12-2011, 15:34   #1
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Canadian Buying a Boat in US . . . How to Get Your Gear Down?

Hey everyone.

For the Canadians who have purchased boats in the US, how did you get your gear down through customs? Do you just show them your invoice for the boat and you're good to go? Can you ship some stuff down simply enough?

I'm planning to buy a boat in California and sail out from there. I'd like to equip the boat with a lot of stuff I already have, like fishing, snorkeling gear, clothes, camera equipment, etc.
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Old 11-12-2011, 15:37   #2
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

Isn't all that stuff what you usually take on a vacation?
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Old 11-12-2011, 15:58   #3
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

We put that kind of stuff in big boxes, took it all to UPS and shipped it to the brokerage office that handled our sale. Then we stuck the cat in a crate and got on a plane to Seattle. Homeland Insecurity is a whole 'nuther subject but all the times we've crossed the border the least of their worries has been the "stuff" we're packing along with us so I can't see why driving it over would be any problem either. Unless you had so many household items that they thought you were moving into the country I guess. Like I said - who knows with them.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:33   #4
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

If you are the only occupant of the car and a single male of working age the US officials at the border seem to take more interest in you.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:35   #5
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

I have some professional camera/filming equipment though because I want to document the trip. Plus, since I'm living on the boat for the next 8 months to a year while sailing around, it's more than what a vacation would require. The border folks are pretty tight at the border these days. I hauled a trailer load of stuff down last February when I went to film school in LA for 5 months, but I had a student Visa. Without that, it might be tricky, especially to California.

Hopefully proof of boat ownership will be enough, provided I can convince them I'm sailing out, but then I have a truck to deal with and they won't want me leaving that in the country.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:40   #6
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

You can register the equipment you own and are taking with you with Canadian Customs so that when you come back into Canada you wont have the hassle of paying duties/taxes.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:54   #7
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

Vasco. Exactly. They seem to be very paranoid one might want to move to the US. LA is okay, but I prefer Vancouver and the strong Canadian economy as a place to live. Our film industry here is just fine as well.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:56   #8
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

Hi DeepFrz. Yes I've done that and am not worried about it. I'm more concerned about getting it down to the US so I can load up the boat and head out. Sailing back to Vancouver from CA to load is NOT an option.
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Old 11-12-2011, 16:56   #9
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US. How to Get Your Gear Down?

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Vasco. Exactly. They seem to be very paranoid one might want to move to the US. LA is okay, but I prefer Vancouver and the strong Canadian economy as a place to live. Our film industry here is just fine as well.
The secret is to enter via the southern border.
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Old 11-12-2011, 17:50   #10
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Hi DeepFrz. Yes I've done that and am not worried about it. I'm more concerned about getting it down to the US so I can load up the boat and head out. Sailing back to Vancouver from CA to load is NOT an option.
Maybe I am naive but I don't see the drama. For a bunch of used stuff they are not going to charge you duties.

Declare it, especially the high value stuff, and its age and unless you have 20 brand new Nikons in new packaging, I am sure they will wave you through.

Now dont bring pirated videos or any of those low cost Canadian medications or you will be shot on sight - LOL

One year I came home on leave. The customs guy said, "did you buy anything overseas?"

" well, yes. I live overseas so basically my clothes toiletries, shoes. I guess everything in this suitcase. Oh, and the suitcase too."

"get outta here Mr. smartypants"
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Old 11-12-2011, 21:45   #11
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US . . . How to Get Your Gear Down?

I wouldn't drive it all through. I probably would get turned around at the border without a Visa, unless they accepted my boat sales agreement. I was more concerned about shipping all of my stuff from Vancouver to California and have US customs hassle me. When we order something from the US to be delivered in Canada, quite often it's opened and they will try to collect duties and taxes whenever possible. Perhaps it's easier shipping things down. I'll certainly try though, care of my broker as suggested. Thanks guys.
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Old 12-12-2011, 23:15   #12
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US . . . How to Get Your Gear Down?

Why not buy a boat in Canada ,load it up and sail down ?Lots of nice pilothouses for sale and being out of the weather makes it easier to shoot,sometimes.

1981 Hughes Northstar 8020 Ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

personally this kind of Woodie would make a much better show

1971 Carius Pilothouse Ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

Having a Canadian documented sailboat will let you be legal anywhere in the world that you are shooting some film.Lots of tax and grant bonuses-here- there you or your accountant should know about ? I do.A friend of mine was a cameraman on a show like what you are trying to sell.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0278867/

And most people in this world still think of us as peacekeepers.

So they wont be shooting at you when you are shooting at them.

I think your expertise is in film and direction.That's what separates you from everyone else who only knows how to sail a boat.

You have any partners?

You should.

Cheers-you will do well
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Old 12-12-2011, 23:38   #13
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Re: Canadian Buying a Boat in US . . . How to Get Your Gear Down?

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Originally Posted by LoveMyWoodie View Post
Why not buy a boat in Canada ,load it up and sail down ?Lots of nice pilothouses for sale and being out of the weather makes it easier to shoot,sometimes.

1981 Hughes Northstar 8020 Ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

personally this kind of Woodie would make a much better show

1971 Carius Pilothouse Ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

Having a Canadian documented sailboat will let you be legal anywhere in the world that you are shooting some film.Lots of tax and grant bonuses-here- there you or your accountant should know about ? I do.A friend of mine was a cameraman on a show like what you are trying to sell.

The Last Frontier (TV Series 1987) - IMDb

And most people in this world still think of us as peacekeepers.

So they wont be shooting at you when you are shooting at them.

I think your expertise is in film and direction.That's what separates you from everyone else who only knows how to sail a boat.

You have any partners?

You should.

Cheers-you will do well
I agree that for wildlife, diving or documentaries, a pilothouse might be better, but this is a bit different. We'll be doing a lot of our shooting off the boat, or on the boat when moored or anchored, plus on a variety of different boats. Most of the shooting while moving can be handled with GoPro Hero HD cameras that are waterproof. That will take care of much of the reality portions of what we film as well. I'm looking at getting enough footage to get at least four different genres of TV shows, all targeted towards different demographics depending on content, editing and narration.

I'm aware of some of the local grants, but haven't really pursued them yet. I'm aware of some of the grants in different countries, but we won't be staying in most long enough or using crews there, so it's tough to say.

And no I don't have any solid partners yet. I'm working on that now and hope to find a Producer and Production Manager to help secure additional funding, help sell the show and get some sponsors for product placement and brand integration. I have many volunteers so far, will be doing a campaign, speaking with some contacts in LA and if nothing else, financing the trip myself. If I run out of money, it will have been a good run.

I'm not big on sailing from Canada. If I get financed and can sail back later, I will, and then I'll do some travel episodes all through the Pacific Northwest including BC, Yukon and Alaska.
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