NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB) — Canadian travelers are back in the United States and they are bringing their wallets with them. Tourists at the Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls say the deals in the U.S. are worth the drive.

“Today is our Canadian Thanksgiving long weekend and lovely weather. We are trying to enjoy the American side as well and also an opportunity for shopping,” Saker Chowdhury of Toronto said.

Monday marked Canadian Thanksgiving, which was a long weekend for most. This brought travelers from near and far across the border to enjoy destinations in Western New York, including the outlets.

“Shopping is a social activity and the Canadians love to shop,” John Doran, general manager of the Fashion Outlets, said. “Right now, we’re seeing sales increases versus 2021, versus 2020. We’re very encouraged with the amount of people walking through our doors and the amount of money they are spending.”

With few border restrictions remaining, many Canadian shoppers have returned to spend their money in the United States. Doran says he has not seen this many shoppers in the stores since 2019.

The Canadian dollar is worth less than $0.75 in the United States, which makes items even more expensive. Shoppers say they still want to shop here because they missed traveling during the pandemic.

“It’s a difference and we’ll see it when we see the exchange or on our credit cards. And its something different. Its something that we missed,” Sonya LeBlanc of Halifax, Nova Scotia added.

“It’s definitely more expensive to shop in the States because of inflation and everything, but it hasn’t been too bad I don’t think. There are still some things that are priced better here,” Michael Johnson of Hamilton, Ontario continued.

Gasoline is significantly more expensive in Canada when compared to the United States. On average, Canadians are paying more than $5.00 per gallon of gas, but Western New Yorkers are paying approximately $3.70 per gallon according to AAA.

“We filled up in Quebec and it was $118 for a tank of gas and then when we filled up here, it was $45 USD, which doesn’t equate to $118,” Luc LeBlanc of Halifax, Nova Scotia said.

Many shoppers say they calculate the conversion to make sure they are getting the best price in the United States.

“We have to calculate before buying anything. Am I gaining or am I not? For everything, if we see that even with the high price in American dollars still is worth it, than we are going ahead,” Chowdhury added.

With the busy holiday shopping season around the corner, local retailers are preparing for a spike in sales and for shoppers to frequent their stores from near and far.

Tara Lynch is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team as a reporter in 2022. She previously worked at WETM in Elmira, N.Y., a sister station of News 4. You can follow Tara on Facebook and Twitter and find more of her work here.