Pinching Pennies from the Post Office

When you retire, it becomes even more important to get the most for your money.  Something that more and more Canadians are doing to beat incredible post office rates on items coming into Canada from the United States, is to have goods shipped to a UPS store across the border.  For people in the Ottawa area, this store is in Ogdensburg.

On a Saturday morning, any time of the year, you can take a picnic lunch, hop in the car and have a nice little outing.  It takes less than an hour from Ottawa’s south end to cross the border and it’s just another 5 min. to get parked in the plaza where the UPS store sits.  You join the line-up (usually a good 30 meters long before the store even opens at 10:00 a.m.) and get prepared to chat with other Canadians doing the same thing.  Folks are picking up anything from small envelopes with T shirts, carefully wrapped chess sets, 72″ flat screen TVs, or sets of 4 winter tires.  There are more Ontario plates in the lot than there are New York plates.  Make sure that you have a printed copy of your receipt in case your seller doesn’t put one in the box; you’ll need it for coming back through customs.

You want to make sure you have just enough gas to get to Ogdensburg because once there, you will want to fill up your tank with cheaper gasoline as well.  Use cash or your debit card and you pay about 6 cents a gallon less than their already lower price.

You might as well pick up some groceries and save even more.  There are lots of nice places to have lunch during tourist season or you can stop along the St. Lawrence River at one of numerous parks and enjoy a relaxing picnic lunch.

Don’t buy too much, be honest going through customs, and even if you buy your lunch, you’ve saved money.  Good way to get used to the different traffic lights and speed limits, too, before getting into the road trip!

Ogdensburg, New York

Ogdensburg, New York (Photo credit: jimmywayne)

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About mysm2000

Having taught elementary school for more than 25 years and been involved in many amazing technology and curriculum projects, I find I've developed a myriad of interests based on literature I've read and music I've heard. I've followed The Wright Three to Chicago, Ansel Adams to Colorado, The Kon Tiki Expedition to Easter Island, Simon & Garfunkel lyrics to New York City, Frank Lloyd Wright to Fallingwater, Pennsylvania, and have only just begun.
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