Amazon ships internationally to more than hundreds of countries and regions outside of the United States. Likewise, Amazon marketplaces in foreign countries also ship to the USA. You can be living in Canada and ordering from Amazon.com(US). Similarly, you can also be living in the USA and ordering from Amazon.ca( Canadian Amazon marketplace).
However, the availability of items hugely depends on the seller. If the seller does not ship to the USA, you might have to go through the hassle of directly requesting them. This can be done either from the Amazon site’s Ask A Question section on the product page or by personally emailing the seller.
Now that you know you can buy from Amazon.ca if you live in the US, read on to find out how to order from amazon.ca and why.
Amazon.com vs Amazon.ca — What is the difference?
The difference between these two sites is pretty simple. Amazon.com is the US-based official and original marketplace of Amazon, whilst Amazon.ca is one of the many regional marketplaces offered by Amazon. These regional marketplaces are geared with products to suit the taste of the region’s shoppers.
Amazon.com is based in the US while Amazon.ca is based in Canada as the domain name hints. You can also find equivalents for other countries like Italy, Mexico, Spain, India and so forth. We have provided a complete list below.
So the only difference that should concern you is the products listings and their pricing. However, you can still find an extensive collection of items of all varieties from books, clothes, toys, baby products, health, personal care, cosmetics, stationery, pet supplies, shoes, sporting gear, software, video games, watches, tools and so on.
How to Order from Amazon.ca
Now that the query to “Can I buy from amazon.ca if I live in USA?” has been cleared, let’s look at a few pointers to help you shop easy.
If you are already a pre-existing member of Amazon US, you will be able to use the same credentials to log in to another country’s Amazon portal. After logging in, you can continue with your shopping as you would.
For instance, if you are registered on Amazon.us, you will be able to use the same login credentials on Amazon.ca or Amazon.co.uk.
There are only two exceptions to this rule — Amazon Japan and Amazon China. Amazon will create a new account for you if you try logging into these two countries’ marketplaces.
So, you will need to create a new account if you aren’t a pre-existing customer or you are logging into Amazon China or Japan.
If that’s the case with you, the following steps should resolve your situation:
How to create Amazon account in other countries?
Amazon has regional sites with the corresponding country codes as their domain name. Refer to the list below to find the domain name of the region you want to shop for.
Now that you know which site you want to shop from, here’s how you can create an Amazon account for international shopping easily in just 4 steps!
STEP 1: Head to the Amazon site where you want to shop.
Type the URL with the appropriate country code directly into the address bar(amazon.ca, amazon.in and so on). This is the fastest way to open regional Amazon marketplace websites.
Refer to the list above for the correct domain name.
STEP 2: Find your preferred language.
Don’t be baffled if the page’s content is written in a foreign language. This happens because Amazon automatically switches to the official language of that region.
The content can be easily translated to your preferred language with one click. To do this, click on the little flag icon near the Amazon website search bar and simply select the language you are comfortable with.
STEP 3: Sign in and create an Amazon account. Use your pre-existing credentials, if any, or set up your brand new account.
Along the top of the Amazon site’s homepage, next to the country flag, you will see a Sign in button. Click on this to proceed with creating your account.
NOTE: Although it may appear to you as if you are creating a brand new account with your pre-existing login email and password, your account information will automatically transfer to the new amazon account.
Again, the only exceptions are China and Japan.
STEP 4: Submit the details
Fill up the required blanks. It will mostly be basic information such as your name, email and password. Your account will be created after you have filled in all the fields and clicked on submit.
Now that you can make international purchases on Amazon, let’s take a look at a few tips for international shopping on amazon.
Amazon shopping advice for overseas purchases
Here’s some advice that you would want to note. Especially when it’s your first time making an international purchase on amazon, you would want to look before you leap. At Tecvalue, we have curated the best tips for you to maximize your savings when shopping internationally on Amazon.
1. Check Amazon Global store before Regional Stores
The Amazon Global store is a convenient way to filter the product list in a way so that it only shows items that ship overseas.
You should be cautious though, because Amazon Global filters may not be accurate all the time.
For instance, if you have set your location to Russia, all the products listed may not necessarily ship to Russia.
2. Keep an eye out for Region Codes!
There are a few items that have different region codes. These region codes make it simple to determine whether an item is compatible in a specific region or not. For example, DVDs have region codes which can tell you if they are supported by your country’s DVD player or not.
There’s little chance that you can play a DVD with region code 1( intended to be used in the USA) on a DVD player of any European country.
It’s better to be safe than sorry, so it’s advised to do your research on the item you are purchasing and its compatibility with your country.
3. Check Electronics for Voltage and Plug Compatibility
This is another thing that you would want to look out for when purchasing electronics from abroad. There are many sorts of plug setups around the world. You have to be prepared and aware when buying any sort of electronics with a plug from overseas.
Moreover, you should also check whether you can buy an adaptor that can be used to properly fit a foreign plug into your home socket.
Unfortunately, the hassle doesn’t stop just by purchasing an adaptor. You also need to check the voltage to ensure that your adaptor can cope up with the device. Mismatched voltages run the risk of frying the device and decreasing lifespan.
4. Fees on International Purchase from Amazon.com
Shopping internationally on amazon comes with strings attached. Although the prices on the international version of amazon may seem appealing, when you factor in all the shipping costs, it may turn out to be more of a loss than a steal deal.
So, simply checking the listed price of an item is not enough. You’ll also want to take note of:
- Amazon currency conversion rates
- Shipping costs
- Custom duty and import taxes
How to Pay for your International Purchase on Amazon
Making international purchases on Amazon is not too different from making a regular purchase from amazon. If you have gone through the section above, you are ready to buy your item. Here’s how:
STEP 1: Add to Cart
Go to the product page and click on the Add to Cart button. Now, the item will be added to your cart and awaiting transaction. Repeat this step for all the items you want to purchase.
Once you are happy with your shopping list, go to your cart by clicking on the ‘Cart’ icon. It looks like a trolly and is located at the top right of the page. There you can make adjustments to your cart as necessary.
STEP 2: Checkout
After you have scanned through and customized your cart you can then proceed onto checkout. To do this, simply hit on the Proceed to checkout button to start the payment.
You will be required to log in to confirm your identity. After entering your credentials you can continue with the payment processing.
STEP 3: Finalize your Order
After you click on Proceed to Checkout button, it’s time for you to input crucial details regarding the delivery of your items.
At first, select a shipping address. You can use pre-existing one or add a new one. Then follow on to choose the priority of your delivery. Note that this will result in various added charges corresponding to the type of delivery you have chosen.
You are given the choices of – Standard, Expedited or Priority shipping. This while affect how long your item(s) will take to deliver.
After you have finalized the shipping settings, proceed to choose your payment option.
You can use your credit card or debit card to pay. Furthermore, you can also link your Amazon account to your bank account and pay through online bank transactions.
Note that it can get expensive to use your card for international purchases on amazon unless you are using a borderless debit card. Otherwise, transaction fees and bad exchange rates can cause you a loss.
If you are using an international card to pay, be sure it exchanges money at a mid-market rate and has the fewest cost possible.
Also, make sure you don’t forget to choose your preferred currency to make payment.
It is listed in the Amazon Currency Converter official documentation, that you always have the option to pay in your local currency or in US Dollars. You can refer to it for more details on exchange rates and how amazon deals with them.
On the next page, when you’ve confirmed your payment information, you should see a detailed breakdown of expenses, including shipping costs. If you feel the current delivery option is exceeding your budget, you can change it.
If you are satisfied with all the settings and details, place your order. You will receive confirmation of order through email and a notification if you have the Amazon app installed.
Your order will reach you as per the estimated date. However, you should be prepared to wait for 2-3 days more depending on the shipping location.
Tips when using Amazon International Shipping
Here are a few pointers that will give you further clarity on how international shipping works on Amazon. By the end of this guide, you will also be equipped with workarounds that will have you shop smart and save a lot of money when shipping internationally.
How Long Does It take for Amazon to Ship Internationally?
There is no consistent time period within which shipping occurs. Some items may be delivered faster than others. This happens due to Priority Shipping.
On the contrary, if you opt for standard shipping, the very same item from the same location can take weeks to deliver.
If you need it on the earliest possible date, consider paying for premium priority shipping. However, it is recommended to opt for standard shipping and plan in advance, say a minimum of 2-3 weeks ahead of the order date, depending on the distance. In this way, you get your items delivered on the desired date without having to pay extra fees.
How to Save Money When Shipping Items Internationally?
As mentioned earlier, planning your purchase date ahead is a good way to save money on shipping. Furthermore, in case you are buying multiple items, you should plan ahead and order them at the same time. This way, Amazon will not charge separate shipping costs for each order that you make.
So, it is always advised to make as few individual orders as you can to save the maximum.
What to do when Amazon Does Not Ship to Your Location?
It may be the case that Amazon does not offer shipping for a particular item that you want to purchase. Or, the shipping cost for that item is beyond your budget.
If you face this kind of dilemma, consider looking for Forwarding services.
A company like that based in the location of the seller, can make orders on your behalf, ship the items to their address and then forward them to your home through international shipping.
Many companies offer such services, it will only take one google search and a complete list will be available at your fingertips for you to find one that suits your needs.
Opting for third-party services will obviously not be as smooth as you would like but it gets the job done.
Having said all that, we wish you the best of luck with your international purchase. We hope that the points covered in this article will make you a more informed and conscious shopper.