Some local merchants are disappointed that so many Canadians are spending money south of the border, despite retailers' efforts to keep them at home.

Wait times at the Canada-U.S. border near Metro Vancouver stretched to an hour at times Boxing Day and the lineups continued Thursday.

Alaina Cloke, who has owned Crush Clothing in South Surrey for 10 years, says her business has been defined by the cross-border habit.

"We're always looking at prices at places like Bellis Fair

[mall] and Seattle, and we take a big cut on a lot of our stuff," she said.


Boxing Day shoppers line up at the Pacific border crossing in Surrey, B.C. (CBC)

Cloke says she keeps the markup on her stock low so she can compete with American competitors.

Boxing Day is the biggest day of the year for Crush Clothing, but despite the deals Cloke offers, she knows some potential shoppers can't resist the pull of American stores, American brands, and American deals.

According to B.C. Stats, travel from B.C. to the U.S. has steadily increased in recent years.

The number of trips originating in B.C. is now around 12 million per year, which is still well below the 16 to 20 million trips made annually in the early 1990s when the loonie was at 85 cents USD.

With files from the CBC's Chad Pawson