How Cross-border Shopping Can Save You Money
Having moved to my current city of residence three years ago and being a border city I often wondered about prices of things on the other side of the border. When we first moved here none of my family had passports. We never needed them because we didn't leave the country and so for three years we lived here without crossing over. More recently in the last several months we attended a concert that was across the border and so had to get our passports to do so.
A few weeks after we returned from the concert we decided to cross over to go shopping. We purchased gas, groceries and some clothing and were extremely surprised and also somewhat annoyed. Here on the Canadian side many of the groceries cost twice as much money, the gas is quite a bit more and when we went to McDonald's we paid a third of what we normally do and had leftovers.
Things like milk was about $2.29 a gallon whereas on the Canadian side it was over $5. We purchased a large turkey was $10, granted it was on sale but on the Canadian side a turkey the same size is about $35. Other items we purchased such as cream cheese at $1.00, TV dinners at $0.88 and many others we paid 3 - 4 times as much on the Canadian side.
When we went to MacDonald's we realized Mcchicken burgers were $1.00 whereas on the Canadian side they were $4.19, salads were twice as much on the Canadian side. When we reached the gas station and did the math we realized that we were paying about two thirds of what we normally do. Funny since a vast majority of the oil/fuel os coming from Canada now being sold to us at a lower price than on our own side of the border.
This understanding made me realize that for the three years that we had not been crossing to save money we were really wasting it. Now as the Canadian dollar is slightly below the American dollar and will possibly go lower still back to where it used to be it may not be as tempting. Although to beat those prices it would still have a long way to fall before it would matter much.
I have taken steps to cushion my expenses in the case of the Canadian dollar falling. Purchasing gift cards that you can load and reload for where we eat, get gas and buy groceries. I also was paid in cash through my online business by many of my US customers and so I will hold unto those bills until the Canadian dollar falls and then use those.
So to anyone who lives in or close to a border city do yourself a big favor and check out the prices on the other side. You may be saving yourself a whole lot of money.
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