This weekend, I went cross-border shopping in Buffalo and Niagara Falls, NY. Cross border shopping is pretty much a national past time these days now that the Canadian and American dollars hover around par. And I know there has been a lot of debate about the prices of identical things, particularly books, that you can get on in both countries - with the Canadian prices almost always being much higher than their American counterparts. I learned just how bad the discrepancy is, unfortunately, this past weekend.
Right now, in both countries, Michael's has a sale on for all of their ink pads, 40% off. We all know how pricey Michael's can be anyway, and I hear from both Canadians and Americans that they usually wait for the coveted 40% off coupons that come out before buying the pricier items. So sometime last week, I headed out and bought two StazOn ink pads, originally priced around $15 each.
Fast forward to this weekend, and while shopping and realizing that I am right near a Michael's, I figure I'd go in and get a couple more, probably at a better price, and better still because of the lower sales tax. In I go, and what do I see? This:
Almost half the price. Half. HALF. What the eff???
The prices were all shockingly lower than their Canadian-priced counterparts.
More, and all about half the price. What gives? They're the same product, on the same racks, in the same stores, by the same companies. Some will say that there are tariffs or duties or whatever that ends up with the price differential. Okay, whatever, but does no one remember that there's this that should render that problem moot, but add this price differential on top of the difference in provincial sales tax versus state tax... Well. Let's just say I won't be doing much shopping at Michael's in Canada anymore. If they keep up this nonsense and go out of business here, I'm sure DeSerres or another Canadian competitor will pick up the slack. I certainly won't be funding this rape anymore.