Tips for crossing the border this holiday weekend

Tips for crossing the border this holiday weekend

July 27, 2022 ctn_admin

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) reminds all travelers crossing the border this long Civic Holiday weekend of what to expect at the border during the busy summer months, as they return home in Canada or are visiting.

This summer, travelers are returning to a differently managed border with ever-changing COVID-19 requirements, which can cause delays during peak periods. The CBSA is working with government and industry partners to alleviate long wait times at the border, but there are also things travelers can do to make the process easier for themselves and others. travellers.

Travelers can help reduce border wait times by preparing and completing their mandatory ArriveCAN submission within 72 hours of arriving at the border.

The CBSA invests considerable effort each year in planning and preparing for peak periods, such as the summer months. The Agency is working with bridge and tunnel operators, airport authorities and travel industry groups to plan and review service requirements, opportunities for improvement and resources needed, so that together we can deliver the best service to all travelers.

The CBSA has also established modern processes to improve the traveler experience and manage volumes, such as the International-to-Domestic and International-to-International programs that significantly reduce connection times, as well as inspection kiosks primary and CBSA pre-notification. functionality with ArriveCAN. Key tips for all travellers:

  • Make sure you are eligible to enter Canada Foreign nationals must meet the eligibility requirements set out in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and provide the appropriate travel and immigration documents. Entry admissibility decisions are made by a border services officer at the port of entry.
  • Understand the rules regarding COVID-19. Border measures are still in place for COVID-19. They vary depending on who is travelling: foreign nationals, returning residents or Canadian citizens. Answer a few questions to find out what requirements apply to you and if you can enter Canada.
  • Use ArriveCAN. Whether traveling by air, land or sea, all travellers, regardless of their vaccination status, are obligatory submit their information in ArriveCAN (free as a mobile app or via website), up to 72 hours before entering Canada. ArriveCAN collects contact, health and travel information to protect the health and safety of travelers and expedite border processing. It’s the fastest, easiest and safest way for travelers to show they meet public health requirements.
    • Travelers should ensure they have the latest version of the ArriveCAN app (check Google Play Store or iPhone App Store).
    • Travelers should print or take a screenshot of their ArriveCAN receipt and bring it with them when travelling.
    • Travelers without a smartphone or mobile data can submit their information by logging online through a computing device. If travelers are unable to enter their information themselves, they can ask a friend or family member to enter it for them.
  • Statement. Air travelers landing in Toronto (YYZ) or Vancouver (YVR) and Montreal Airport (YUL) later this month, can use ArriveCAN (app or web version) to complete their Customs and immigration in advance of their arrival in Canada. This functionality will be extended to other airports in the future.
  • Prepare all your documents. Travelers should have the following items ready to present to the border services officer: their ArriveCAN receipt; passport or travel documents, proof of vaccination; and the identification of all persons on board the vehicle.
  • Plan ahead and check border waiting time. Travelers crossing the border by land are encouraged to plan to cross outside peak hours, such as early morning. The Monday of the long bank holiday weekends tends to be the busiest, with longer border wait times.
  • Entering Canada by water. Unless exempt, all travelers entering Canada by sea must report their arrival to the CBSA without delay. All travellers, including those entitled to entry (Canadian citizens, permanent residents and persons registered under the Indian Act), must submit their mandatory information in ArriveCAN before or upon entering Canada at a marine port of entry.
  • Be ready to declare. Travelers returning to Canada must declare all goods purchased and/or received outside the country. It is recommended that gifts not be wrapped as CBSA officers may need to examine them. Have your receipts handy for purchases made outside of Canada.
  • Know your exemption limits. Returning residents planning to shop or pick up online purchases across the border should be aware of their exemption limits. Be sure to consult the CBSA’s Duty and Tax Estimator Tool to calculate taxes on goods purchased in the United States and to help you make informed decisions when shopping abroad.
    • Residents can return duty-free and duty-free goods worth CAN$200 after 24 hours of absence and goods worth CAN$800 after 48 hours. There is no personal exemption for same-day cross-border shopping trips, so be prepared to pay taxes on such purchases and possibly duties. Alcohol and tobacco allowances may also vary depending on the length of your absence from Canada.
  • Declare everything food, plants or animals such as raw poultry products and by-products that are not fully cooked, to the border services officer. There are currently restrictions on the importation of live birds, bird products, and by-products from highly pathogenic avian influenza-affected states into the United States. Also declare all wood and wood products (including firewood and wooden souvenirs). Be sure to check the Automated Import Reference System to help determine any specific import requirements.
  • Declare all currencies and/or monetary instruments C$10,000 or more. It is not illegal to bring such sums into Canada, but they must be declared upon arrival.
  • Cannabis. Don’t bring it. Don’t take it out. Cross-border transportation of cannabis in any form, including any oil containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or cannabidiol (CBD), without a license or exemption authorized by Health Canada remains a serious criminal offense subject to arrest and prosecution, despite the legalization of cannabis in Canada.
  • Know the contents of your vehicle. Travelers can consult the CBSA website for information on firearms and other regulated and prohibited goods.
  • Use the latest technology. Upon arrival at certain major airports in Canada, travelers can use a primary inspection kiosk to check their travel documents, confirm their identity and complete an on-screen declaration.
  • Children. When traveling with children, it is recommended that the accompanying adult have a consent letter authorizing them to travel with the child. Border services officers are always on the lookout for missing children, and if the letter is missing, officers may ask additional questions to help them identify the relationship between the child and accompanying adult. .

For more information, visit the CBSA website or call us at 1-800-461-9999.

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