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More on Canada

August 07, 1994

We've just returned from Canada and feel that Christopher Reynolds' article, "Weakening U.S. Dollar Still Finds Strength in Canada" (July 17), is way off base. Granted, our stronger dollar means that 28% discounts off Canadian prices should be in effect, but numerous stores and hotels across the border are giving tourists only a 20% discount. In addition, even after allowing for exchange-rate differences, many prices are at least 50% to 200% higher than in the U.S. due to high taxes and greed. Examples: Banff Springs Hotel and Chateau Lake Louise are charging $251, hotel dinners are running $178 for four without drinks, bar drinks are $4.55 to $6, a Big Mac at McDonalds costs $3.75 and so forth. Lodges on the U.S. side were $102 per night for lakefront. Tourists beware.

JOHN C. BIXBY, Laguna Niguel

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Reynolds says the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is not applied to meals, beverages, tobacco, rental cars, gasoline, airline and train tickets. Unfortunately, for both residents and visitors, the GST is applied on all those items. What you should have said is that the GST paid on those items is merely not refundable to visitors. I think this is what you were trying to say, but your wording leaves the impression that the tax is not applied.

CLIFF HODGINS, Burbank

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