3 – SET ASIDE ENOUGH TIME FOR THE PAPERWORK
We hear you! Paperwork is never a walk in the park—no matter where you go! However, Mr. Gendron explains that customs documents can be very complex and require some attention. Therefore, rather than relegating it to the last minute, factor in additional time to properly read the documentation and consult with your customs broker. “We often meet with new clients who have not filled out the right forms or left items undeclared,” Mr. Gendron said. “These situations can not only declare untoward delays but also an increase in costs if, for example, products that have finally cleared customs need to be shipped rushed to Québec City.”
4 – DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RETURN TRIP
The event ended up being a tremendous success? Congrats! But now is the time to plan for moving materials and people out of Canada. With respect to goods, Mr. Gendron suggests planning for outbound shipping from Québec City at the same time as inbound delivery. “Some countries, including the United States, have strict guidelines as to what products can come back on their home turf. Customs brokers can help weed through the details,” he said.
In addition, find out if there are any regulations for delegates travelling back to their respective homes. Naturally, event planners cannot be held accountable for providing customs information for every single country; nevertheless, encouraging attendees to verify entry rules and potential taxes or tariffs for any goods bought will go a long way in averting headaches at their borders.
Organizing an event in Québec City is definitely a worthwhile experience. As Mr. Gendron concludes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound in cure!”
This article was first published in the Québec CIty Convention Centre’s magazine Québec Centre.