Goodbye HMV Canada

HMV Canada is closing all of its over 100 retail locations and everything is being sold at 30% off original ticket price at these stores.

They will be closing these stores by April 30th, 2017, permanently.

Saga Retires

Saga 2017

Progressive rock phenomenon Saga will be no more after 40 years.

Known primarily for 80’s hits “On the Loose”, “The Flyer”, “What Do I Know”, “Wind Him Up” and “Only Time Will Tell”, this Oakland, Ontario band had toured the world countless times, retaining a very successful career in Germany and Puerto Rico throughout the 90’s and early 2000’s.

Lead singer Michael Sadler will be rejoining the band this year, ten years after he had officially left the band, to perform on a farewell tour in Canada and Germany.

Bluewave – Wireless HiFi headphone amplifier

Have you ever thought your smart phone amp wasn’t strong enough ? Then the Bluewave may be a solution for you.

This wireless wi-fi bluetooth powered product is currently being offered through a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. And i’m interested because I tend to prefer wired Sennheiser headphones over wireless headphones, most of which sound flat or weren’t reliable.

Click here for details on this crowdfunding campaign.

Ebay Asks Canadian Users To Sign Petition

Ebay is asking Canadian users to support their petition to raise the de minimis threshold from $20 on postal importations for personal use.

Most postal shipments imported into Canada for personal use valued at less than $20 in Canadian funds are exempt from taxes and duties. And although this amount was acceptable when it was adopted in the 80’s, many nations have adopted higher de minimis thresholds since.

The current de minimis thresholds for American residents is US$800 and when European Union residents import merchandise for personal use their de minimis threshold is €150. Considerable amounts compared to the Canadian rate.

In late 2016, a petition had been submitted to the Parliament and the government responded by saying it is assessing their options :

“The Government is working to facilitate trade and streamline administrative burdens, and has undertaken concrete actions to facilitate low value shipments. In 2013, as part of the Beyond the Border Initiative, Canada and the U.S. harmonized processes to expedite the customs administration of low value shipments and waived the requirement for a certificate of origin for such shipments to benefit from preferential tariffs under the North American Free Trade Agreement. Furthermore, in 2011, three generic tariff classifications were introduced in the Customs Tariff to facilitate the processing of low value non-commercial imports arriving by post or by courier.”

Please consider signing this new petition by clicking here. Thank you.

Sad News For Vinyl Fans

Canada Boy Vinyl has closed their manufacturing plant in Calgary after only sixteen months of operations.

This plant had just opened in September 2015 and had expected to take advantage of a resurgence in vinyl’s popularity. But there weren’t enough orders to make the plant sustainable so Dean Reid, the founder and chief operating officer of Canada Boy Vinyl, decided to cease its operations.

Burlington, Ontario’s new Precision Record Pressing plant is now the only vinyl pressing facility in Canada.

Hopefully sales will grow to make a domestic industry in Canada viable.

Canada is 150 Years Old !

It’s New Years Eve and there are plenty of celebrations through-out the nation related to the 150th Anniversary of Confederation and 375th Anniversary of Montreal.

All the major cities have their events, some of which have already started and some of which will end in the early hours of the new year. And options in regards to transportation to and from these events have expanded this year.

Public Transportation : Many of the major cities are offering free public transportation. For example, people in the National Capital Region can take advantage of free fares from 4:30pm to 3am on OC Transpo busses. Consult your local public transit web site for similar offers.

Uber : This is a relatively new service in most cities in Canada and they can be convenient. But note that rates may be higher because of demand so try to take public transit or get a ride from someone that didn’t drink first. You can install the service’s app on iOS devices or Android devices.

Ride Sharing : There are also several local ride sharing services through-out Canada, some of which are partnered with taxi services. Look for ride sharing apps like eCab or Responsible Choice on your cell phone.

Taxi : Taxi services have always been great in my city. They’ll be pretty busy so be patient. And some taxi companies offer apps for your phone that help them find you, so you might want to consider installing one of those.

Operation Red Nose – These guys get pretty busy so they should be your last option. Click here for details on this service.

Have Fun – Be Safe