Land border sales in Canada show strong growth for April


After a difficult first quarter, national land border sales soared up in April. At $11.5 million, this is a 22% increase in sales compared to April 2016. This helped push January/April 2017 sales into solidly positive territory with approximately 2.94% sales increase compared to Jan/ April 2016, at a total of $36 million.

Airports also posted a good month in April. Duty free sales at Canadian airports totaled $33 million – an increase in sales of 11% compared to April 2016 sales. At $137 million, January/ April 2017 sales have seen approximately 8% increase compared to Jan/ April 2016.

While many regions across Canada showed decreased or flat sales YOY between January and March, in April sales were up across the board.

At $615,000, the Prairie region saw a YOY increase of approximately 5.80%, though January/ April 2017 remained slightly in the negative territory versus the same time period of 2016. Sales of $2.29 million meant a decrease in sales for Jan/ April 2017 compared to Jan/ April 2016 of approx. 0.04%

The Pacific region, which has had an especially difficult Q1, saw an increase of 6.95% in April 2017 over 2016. Sales for the month were $1.7 million, and for January/April 2017 sales were $5.7 million, for an overall decrease of approximately 10%.

The only region that has been consistently strong throughout 2017, Ontario showed a 27% increase in sales for April 2017 versus 2016, at $7 million. For January/ April 2017, Ontario’s sales of $22 million mean an increase for January/ April 2017 compared to the same period in 2016 of approximately 7.5%.

The Atlantic/Quebec region also saw strong double-digit increases in sales for April 2017 versus the same month last year. At $2.1 million, sales show an increase of 25% compared to April 2016. For January/ April 2017, Atlantic and Quebec regions also see modest 2.3% growth over 2016, with $6.2 million in sales this year.

Based on April 2017 numbers, these are the top categories for land border sales in Canada, in order:

Alcohol (liquor, liqueur, wine, coolers)

Tobacco, Cigars, Loose Tobacco

Perfume, Cosmetics, Skincare


Beer (beer, malt-based coolers)

Jewelry, Watches, Clocks

Accessories (purses, wallets, sunglasses, etc.)

Clothing (including hats, fur, leather)


Office and Travel Supplies

Glassware, crystal, china, figurines, porcelain



Electronics, Cameras, Binoculars, etc.