Why is Canadian Shipping Charged in US dollars?

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Tourist
4 0 2

Maybe it is just me and no one else has this issue but I was wondering if someone from Shopify could answer this for me.

When I ws looking for someone to host my online store I wanted to support a Canadian company.  Part of my reasoning was that if I had issues etc.  I would be able to talk with someone from my own country that might understand better what my issues were.  I also was hoping to avoid having to deal with currency conversions to US dollars as you always lose exchanging money.

I was quite upset to find out that even though I had signed up with a Canadian company and I live in Canada that I was being charged US dollars.  Why?  Can a Canadian company not charge it's Canadian customers in their own currency?

Now there is a new shipping App for Canada Post.  It is really nice how they have integrated this into my webstore but I was frustrated to find out that all my shipping I do in Canada with Canada Post in Canadian dollars Shopify then switches into US dollars when they charge me so that I will have to pay the surcharge to convert my payment to them in US dollars? 

So I guess the long and the short of it is why can't a Canadian company, Shopify, charge it's Canadian Customers in Canadian dollars for the services that it delivers?  Why when as a Canadian working with a Canadian company and buying Canadian postage does this Canadian Company have to charge me a Canadian in US dollars?

Maybe I am just having a bad day but business in Canada is tough right now and losing 2-3% everytime I have to pay fees in US dollars just doesn't help.

 

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Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
48 0 34

Hey Jonathan,

Chantal, Shopify Guru here!

We have merchants in more than 150 countries, of which the United States is our largest market. We price our offerings in USD so that we are in the local currency of most of our merchants.

As a global platform, we ultimately had to make the decision to administer our fees in a currency that carries the least worldwide "friction," and many international banks don't charge the same exchange rates for it that they would for other foreign currencies. For us, this means that the US Dollar offered the best chance at being as fair as possible to every storeowner on the platform.

Hope this answers your question!

Chantal, Shopify Guru

Chantal, Shopify Guru
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Tourist
4 0 2

Hi Chantal,

This may explain why the store funds are charged in US dollars, although I feel this should be better displayed being on a Canadian site but this does not explain the issue with Canada Post entirely. 

Why can we not pay our Canada Post fees in Canadian dollars?  It would simply. Be a small amount of code having to be written on your side?  From my side it makes for a huge headache trying to reconcile my books for Revenue Canada as for every shipment there is a discrepancy on the amount paid.

When shopify payments pays me through Shopify Payments they pay me in Canadian dollars just as they have collected but yet for some reason are incapable of this when it comes to Canada Post. 

The Canada Post App isn't used around the world so that excuse can't be used here.   So why can't shopify switch my billing to to Canadian dollars using the exchange rate at the time and Bill my usage through Canada Post in the same currency it is collected in?

Sorry about venting, perhaps this is just because I had to file taxes with BC a couple of days ago. 

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New Member
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Jonathan is 100% correct. It makes no sense for Shopify to charge Canadian customer in US dollars for trransactions with Canada Post. What is worse is when you factor in the exchange rate, Shopify cutomers are getting charged more to ship with Canada Post that someone who walks into the post office and wants to ship one parcel per year. (even thought the labels are clearly being bought in bulk through Shopify).

The only explanation can be that Shopify views the bulk discounting and skimming of exchange rates as a major profit center, which in my view is completely unacceptable. 

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New Member
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Definetly agree on this. Need this in CAD. I think we need CAD prices across the board for Monthly fees and etc. Time for Shopify to make the change.

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New Member
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I had no idea that this was the case -- as I am just about to launch my store. So thank you for posting this information. I am at the point where I am just going to go with a flat rate for shipping and then free shipping at a certain threshhold (likely $125). I will start this way and see how it goes. 

Can I disable Canada Post entirely and only offer the two options noted above and then UPS as an option (as I am planning to open an account there). I will work directly with UPS to avoid the problem you noted about Shopify profiting on Canada Post exchange rates of its customers.

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New Member
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Thinking about this more, does Canada Post even allow someone to resell postage for a profit (which is effectively what Shopify is doing if they are charging US dollars for a Canadian-dollar-denomited postage fee. The profit would be quite large. Maybe instead of opening a Shopify store we can resell postage in US dollars (dollar for dollar). I am surprised that Canada Post Corporation allows this to happen.

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New Member
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Good Point - how about an answer - Shopify?

 

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New Member
9 0 0

Hi Jonathan,

I 100% agree with you!  This is completely misleading and for a company that allows us to charge our customers in multi currency shopify should too.  OR at the very least the Canada Post Shipping app should be quoting in USD so we at least have a better idea if we are charging enough for shipping.  Quoting our rates in Cad then charging in usd is sneaky  For a smaller store shipping is a huge cost, let alone having to pay usd exchange rates.  I talked to a guru today who also basically said "for less friction." For our monthly fees I can maybe be a little more forgiving but for Canada Post, for shipments shipped within Canada and all Canadian companies/customers involved, how does it possibly make sense to charge in USD other then the fact that Shopify is making money off our shipping.  Would love to see a change here with Canada Post.  

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Tourist
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Hi Rychelle,

I tototally agree with what you are saying.  When I chose to go with Shopify it was because it was a Canadian company but I guess Canadian companies do there best to screw Canadian merchants as well.  I do question the legality of a Canadian company charging Canadian merchants in US dollars.  Perhaps it is not illegal but I consider it quite unethical.  Especially as we get screwed everytime they convert from Canadian dollars to US dollars and then back again.

 

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