6 Best Shipping Companies in Canada (Updated: 2023)
Posted on: October 13, 2020
One of the most common problems new online entrepreneurs and small business owners have is choosing the best shipping in companies in Canada to work with. Canada Post is known for great pricing, but maybe not the fastest speed. UPS is known for speed, but if you’re looking to save, fees can rack up quickly. You get the picture.
Each shipping company has its pros and cons. Some offer great discounts for high-volume businesses, others guarantee short transit times when shipping locally, while some provide reliable services for businesses that ship overseas.
Each carrier can help your business, albeit in a different way. Let’s take a look at the best shipping companies in Canada and see what each can do for your business.
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Popular Service Options: Small business shipping, Larger-volume shipping, Regular pickups
The Best Shipping Companies in Canada (As of 2023)
Small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) ship from a few dozen packages to thousands of parcels a day, and ultimately, that translates to different shipping companies being the best options. Let’s take a look at a few of the most popular below.
A corporation owned by the federal government, Canada Post is among the largest shipping companies in Canada. They offer domestic and international shipping services at competitive prices.
Canada Post offers an easy-to-use tracking system, including international shipments. If you’re shipping to the U.S., your package tracking information will appear on USPS’s tracking option, maintaining visibility throughout the delivery process.
Canada Post is also known as being a cost-effective option for shipping services in Canada, but prices certainly go up on the international front.
For example, shipping a 8-pound package, measuring 8 inches on all sides, with 4-day shipping from Toronto to Pittsburgh can range from around $38, with tracking and delivery confirmation, or just over $60 with tracking, delivery confirmation, a guaranteed arrival date and the option for signature collection.
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Sending a package with the same dimensions domestically, however, from Toronto to Vancouver with Regular Parcel, can run from around $30 with a 7-day delivery window (and the added bonus of being carbon neutral fuel-efficient). More pricey options, like Priority, can cost nearly $100 for 1-day shipping.
Canada Post remains at the top of the Canadian shipping companies list because of its excellent coverage, reliability, efficiency, and shipping rates for national shipments.
UPS is currently the largest package delivery company in the world. With more than 220 nations and territories served, UPS delivers about 5.5 billion packages per year.
However, their track record in Canada is just average. Although they've been steadily improving their overall performance, UPS typically gets average, middle-of-the-road reviews. Usually because their services are often associated with unsatisfactory customer service.
That being said, UPS provides low shipping rates for national or US shipping. They also provide fast deliveries within Canada or to the United States.
Shipping a package of similar dimensions internationally, from Toronto to Pittsburgh, can run as cheap as $30, with delivery time in about a week. The fastest option, UPS Express Early to the US, arriving within 2 days, costs around $243.
FedEx is a shipping company founded in the US that’s internationally renowned for its overnight shipping services. The company was also one of the first to implement package tracking and real-time delivery updates, and it continues to deliver accurate information about your shipment at all times.
FedEx is a great option for businesses that rely on international shipping. The company provides swift, reliable, and efficient deliveries, albeit at slightly more expensive costs. However, when it comes to shipping for small businesses, FedEx’s services are well worth the extra costs.
FedEx also offers overnight shipping in Canada, though it can be expensive. If this is the option you need, make sure to check out FedEx’s First Overnight.
Purolator has one of the most extensive national delivery networks in Canada. They offer same-day and next-day delivery services that are second to none, guaranteeing that your package will reach its destination by a certain day and time.
Purolator also offers international shipping, but it relies on UPS to deliver the package from the Canadian border to its destination. However, this process works seamlessly and it doesn’t affect the end client in any way.
Thanks to its extensive national network and efficient deliveries, Purolator is a great choice for businesses that focus on domestic shipping.
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DHL Express is an international shipping company that was founded in the United States. Even though the company doesn’t have an extensive network in Canada or the US, its international network is considered one of the best in the world.
DHL Express offers highly competitive international shipping rates and provides swift, reliable international deliveries.
This shipping company can be a great option for businesses that ship internationally, especially for those that regularly ship to Asia, Africa, or Europe.
Canpar is a national shipping company with over 62 hubs in Canada. The company specializes in ground deliveries, but they also provide international shipping services.
This shipping company offers expedited service from Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver to the continental US, guaranteeing that the shipment will reach its destination on time.
Canpar can be a good option for Canadian businesses that frequently ship across the border to the US.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Top Canadian Shipping Companies
Now that you have a snapshot of some of the leading shipping companies in Canada, let’s address some of the most common comparison questions.
1. Which Business On the Canadian Shipping Companies List is Best for Shipping Nationally?
Among the shipping companies in Canada, Canada Post emerges as the best choice for shipping across the country.
Canada Post is a time-tested, government-owned entity that provides exceptional services across the nation. It boasts an extensive network of offices and a well-integrated logistics infrastructure, ensuring that packages reach even the most remote corners of Canada.
With a proven track record of delivering parcels on time and in good condition, Canada Post has built a solid reputation for reliability and efficiency.
What sets Canada Post apart is its competitive pricing structure. Offering affordable rates for both individuals and businesses, it caters to a wide range of shipping needs without compromising on service quality.
Canada Post also provides an array of delivery options, such as Xpresspost, Expedited Parcel, and Priority, allowing customers to choose the best fit for their requirements. The company's user-friendly online platform allows for easy parcel tracking, streamlined shipment management, and convenient scheduling of pickups.
When you work with a shipping partner like Ship Expert, however, you’re guaranteed up to 70% in savings every time, including shipping with Canada Post.
Purolator stands out as the best logistics company, offering top-notch services for businesses and individuals. Purolator has grown to become a leading integrated freight, package, and logistics solutions provider, with a strong focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences.
The company's state-of-the-art facilities, advanced technology, and well-maintained fleet of vehicles contribute to its seamless operations, allowing it to cater to customer demand.
One of the key factors that set Purolator apart from its competitors is its commitment to innovation. By investing in cutting-edge technologies and adopting eco-friendly practices, the company continually enhances its services and minimizes its environmental footprint. This forward-thinking approach has earned Purolator numerous industry awards and accolades.
As one of the top logistics companies in Canada, Purolator offers unparalleled customer support. With a team of dedicated professionals, the company addresses clients' concerns and provides tailored solutions to meet their specific requirements.
3. What is the Cheapest Way to Ship Within Canada?
The most affordable option is Canada Post's Regular Parcel service. This service caters to businesses looking to ship non-urgent items at a budget-friendly rate.
With delivery times ranging from 2 to 9 business days, Regular Parcel offers a balance between cost and efficiency.
To save even more, consider consolidating multiple items into a single package or using flat-rate shipping boxes. Preparing your shipment with accurate weight and dimensions, and utilizing online tools for label printing and scheduling pickups can also help reduce shipping costs.
4. What Shipping Company is Used the Most in Canada?
Canada Post is the most widely used shipping company in the country, serving as the primary postal operator for businesses.
As a government-owned corporation, it boasts a comprehensive network of offices and delivery services across Canada, reaching even the most remote locations. Its extensive range of shipping options, competitive pricing, and dependable services make it the go-to choice for Canadians.
5. What is the Best Shipping Company in Canada for Small Businesses?
For small businesses in Canada, Purolator is an excellent shipping company to consider. Known for its efficient and reliable shipping solutions.
Their range of shipping options, including same-day, next-day, and ground delivery, allows small businesses to find the perfect balance between cost and speed. By offering a user-friendly online platform, Purolator makes it easy to schedule pickups, track shipments, and manage logistics.
Additionally, their strong customer support system ensures that any issues are promptly addressed, making Purolator one of the best shipping companies in Canada.
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6. What Are the Best Drop Shipping Companies in Canada?
When it comes to the leading drop shipping companies in Canada, SaleHoo stands out as the best company to partner with.
SaleHoo is a reputable platform that connects online retailers with a vast network of verified suppliers, including those based in Canada. Their comprehensive directory features over 8,000 trusted wholesalers and dropshippers, ensuring a wide variety of products for businesses to choose from.
With a strong focus on market research and analytics, SaleHoo helps entrepreneurs identify profitable niches and trending products.
7. What Are the Best Car Shipping Companies in Canada?
MVS Canada Logistics is one of the best car shipping companies in Canada. With over 20 years of experience, MVS Canada offers reliable and professional vehicle transportation services nationwide. They specialize in shipping cars, trucks, motorcycles, and recreational vehicles through various methods, including open and enclosed carriers, as well as rail transportation.
MVS Canada is known for its commitment to customer satisfaction, providing personalized service, real-time shipment updates, and competitive pricing. Their comprehensive insurance coverage ensures peace of mind for customers, making MVS Canada the top choice for safe and efficient car shipping.
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Greg Woo is a seasoned expert in the logistics and distribution industry, with a career spanning over two decades. He has a comprehensive understanding of shipping and distribution needs, and has extensive experience integrating with e-commerce stores as well as customer specific WMS (warehouse management systems) and ERP’s (enterprise resource planning software). His tenure in the industry and established courier and LTL partnerships have allowed clients to benefit from reduced shipping expenses, as well as improved operations through software and specialized integrations.
Greg is currently the Director at Ship Expert Inc., a role he has held since February 2015. Prior to his role at Ship Expert, Greg held significant positions at Juxto, a telecommunications and managed internet service provider.
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