Importing Trailer from Canada - Fiberglass RV

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Old 07-29-2016, 01:56 PM   #1
Senior Member
Name: Lise
Trailer: Boler
Posts: 111
Importing Trailer from Canada

I recently bought and imported a 1977 Boler from Canada and wanted to share my experience in case it might help someone else.

The short story: It was easy, go for it!

The long story: The Boler was for sale near Vancouver BC and I live near Seattle.

I communicated enough with the seller that I trusted them and sent them a $500 CDN deposit through Paypal. They received it instantly and held the trailer until I could drive up to BC. Otherwise it would have sold long before I got there. This worked great for me, YMMV.

I brought
1. Photo of trailer, photo of registration from inside the trailer closet door (both from the seller's ad)
2. completed NHTSA Form OMB No. 2127-0002 (Google: Permanently importing a trailer into the U.S.)
3. $ in my Paypal account to cover the remaining price.

Upon purchase, the Boler owner gave me:
1. signed vehicle registration (scan below0
2. BC Transfer/Tax Form (scan below)
3. keys to the trailer!

They took their license plate off, helped me hitch it up, and I drove away (ssort of, see other advice below).

At the border (Peach Arch crossing) I told the CBP officer at the window I was importing the trailer. He had me pull into the inspection station. I brought the above items (except Paypal ) inside. The officer inside didn't want any of the stuff I brought, but I think it indicated I knew what I was doing. He took the registration and transfer form and the keys and inspected the trailer (and broke the 40 year old Bargman lock! ) . He gave me a signed form OMB 1651-0022 (scan below). There was no tax ("NAFTA covered it since the trailer was manufactured in Canada.")

Once back home, I brought the Canadian registration, BC Transfer Form and the US Customs form into the DOL (DMV). I paid the taxes (10% of the purchase price, ouch!) and registration fee, got my plates and the trailer became mine!

In terms of other advice, before you buy a trailer long distance, I'd recommend being prepared with:
1. height of trailer's hitch so you can get the right draw bar for your tow vehicle
2. hitch ball size needed so you bring the right size
3. Proper electrical connection for trailer (4 or 7 pin) or an adapter.
4. Chocks if seller not providing
5. 2 trailer mirrors
6. An adult to ride shotgun and help you with lane changes, etc.
7. Tire pressure gauge to check vehicle and trailer inflation
8. Inflate tow vehicle tires 2-5 lbs higher than recommended (don't exceed maximum)
9. Anything else you need to inspect the trailer (flashlight, electrical testers, rulers, levels, squares, etc.)
10. Patience and lots of time. Once we hooked up, it took us 5 hours to get on the road as the towing lights had a missing ground which needed to be traced to make them work.

Good luck! This was the easy part!
Attached Thumbnails
boler registration smudged.jpg   -Boler Border Form smudged.jpg  

boler transfer form smudged.jpg  

Lise in WA
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Old 07-29-2016, 02:01 PM   #2
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Bobbie Mayer's Avatar
Name: Bobbie
Trailer: 2011 Escape 15A
Posts: 3,242
Thanks for the detailed information.

As an unrelated aside- I had to pay the tax on my Campster when I registered it here as there was no record of sales tax ever having been paid in Washington (though it probably was) even though it was 45 years young and I was bringing it from California (I bought it in Washington). Luckily 10% of not much wasn't much!

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Old 07-30-2016, 09:23 AM   #3
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Name: Darral
Trailer: Scamp Standard 13' 2010
Posts: 1,508
For what it's worth, Escape trailers were/are delayed apx 8 WEEKS from importing from Canada to the US due to new US laws. I personally know a friend that this has happened to!
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Old 07-30-2016, 11:44 AM   #4
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Name: Francois
Trailer: Bigfoot
British Columbia
Posts: 1,004
no surprise there....

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Old 07-30-2016, 02:52 PM   #5
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Carol H's Avatar
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,729
Originally Posted by Darral T. View Post
For what it's worth, Escape trailers were/are delayed apx 8 WEEKS from importing from Canada to the US due to new US laws. I personally know a friend that this has happened to!
As I understand it the issue is in part do with a new requirement by the US border in regards to the Serial Number Sequences used on new trailers & a new form that needs to be sent ahead (may be wrong on the later) ..... which the US apparently forget to give manufactures on this side of the border a heads up on prior to enforcement date.

Do not believe the new requirements will impact the importation of older trailers such as the OP's. .
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