Headed To The U.S. For Labour Day Weekend? Come Prepared

Thursday August 28th, 2014

Posted at 4:32pm


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If you’re planning to cross the border this Labour Day weekend, come prepared, say border officials.

The Canada Border Services Agency says they anticipate an increase in cross border traffic and will be using all available resources to maintain service levels and minimize processing times, while ensuring the safety and security of Canadians.

They say there are a few things you can do to help make your border crossing experience a little easier

U.S. bound

  • Check U.S bound border wait times
  • Prepare for the inspection process before arriving at the inspection booth. Have your WHTI (Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative) or RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) enabled documents in hand. For a list of appropriate identification: www.GetYouHome.gov.
  • Follow @CBPGreatLakes on Twitter.
  • When travelling into the United States, travellers are encouraged to visit the “Know Before You Go” section of the CBP Web site. To avoid fines and penalties associated with the importation of restricted or prohibited items become educated prior to travelling; this includes agriculture products. Please visit http://www.cbp.gov/travel.
  • For more information on what to expect at a port of entry, document requirements, and prohibited or restricted items, travellers can visit www.GetYouHome.gov
  • Personal importations of fireworks are prohibited.

Canada bound

  • Have appropriate identification available — see Canadian entry requirements for returning Canadians and visitors to Canada.
  • Check Canada-bound border wait times by one of the following three ways:
  • For information on bringing alcohol and goods into Canada, consult I Declare.
  • Visitors to Canada should be aware of the requirements to import a firearm into Canada. Many weapons are considered prohibited and are therefore not allowed into Canada. All travellers must declare any firearms and weapons in their possession when they enter Canada. Anyone who does not declare them upon arrival can face prosecution and the firearms, and the vehicle used to carry them, may be seized.
  • For even more travel information, visit the CBSA’s Travel Tips page.

Cross-border travel tips

  • While it may be a bit late for Labour Day, cross-border travellers are always encouraged to participate in the NEXUS program. NEXUS allows pre-screened, low-risk travellers to proceed with little or no delay into the United States and Canada. Application forms can be downloaded or you can apply online at the CBSA NEXUS web site or USCBP NEXUS. Additionally, NEXUS information is available toll-free at 1-866-NEXUS 26 (1-866-639-8726).
  • Check crossing times and camera views at www.dwtunnel.com.
  • If travelling with children less than 16 years of age who are not part of your immediate family, obtain and carry a parental note of permission regarding cross-border travel. The note should include each child’s parental contact information and telephone numbers.
  • Other than essential luggage or vacation supplies, empty your trunk before the trip. Additional belongings in your car may add time to your crossing, as border officers may perform a visual inspection of the belongings in your car.
  • Turn off radios and cell phones when approaching the inspection booths and speaking with officers.
  • Remember to roll down the driver and rear passenger windows, remove sunglasses, and make eye contact with border officers.
  • Be sure to declare all goods acquired while out of the country including fruits, vegetables, plants and plant products, animals, birds, eggs, meat and meat products, as well as items acquired for personal use.
  • Be patient. Approach inspection booths slowly and follow signage instructions.
  • Do not drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

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