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Jean
10-21-2005, 11:36 AM
For the canadian members who cross the border frequently to hike in the Northeast, here's a link that I thought you might find useful when planning your outings.

http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/general/times/menu-e.html

Double Bow
10-21-2005, 11:43 AM
Of particular interest, note that it does not include the Pittsburg, NH/Chartierville, QC crossing.

Last weekend when I was entering Quebec, no one was at the Canadian checkpoint. When they say "no delay", they mean it! :D

KayakDan
10-24-2005, 09:43 AM
That "no delay" applies to cars only. The commecial trucking delays are usually huge at Stanstead. Last Feb. as we were going through,the U.S. Customs officer asked me"how far back do we have commercial rigs?" I told him about a half mile,and his response was"oh,that's not too bad,thanks."

Solitary Hiker
10-24-2005, 01:11 PM
Are passports required of US citizens crossing into Canada? My daughter is interested in a couple of Canadian universities and since I haven't been to Canada in over a year, just was wondering what is required nowadays.

anita514
10-24-2005, 01:18 PM
no passports.. yet.

driver's license, any other photo ID, birth certificates = OK

hikingfish
10-24-2005, 03:07 PM
Are passports required of US citizens crossing into Canada? My daughter is interested in a couple of Canadian universities and since I haven't been to Canada in over a year, just was wondering what is required nowadays.

A smile is really all you need to get in Canada! :D

rdl
10-24-2005, 10:22 PM
There are some labor troubles on the Bridges near Buffalo/Niagara Falls. The Canadian Customs officials walked off the job today on the Peace Bridge which basically closed the bridge to traffic into Canada for several hours.

Not sure if the labor troubles exist at other crossings or not, but beware...

Raymond
10-25-2005, 03:04 AM
What about getting back into the U.S.? I thought they were going to start requiring passports to get back in. Not yet?

They hassled me both ways a few years ago when I had my son with me — said I needed a note from his mother, but they relented and let us into Canada then back home again. This was at the Niagara Falls crossing.

Pete_Hickey
10-25-2005, 06:43 AM
I've crossed the border many hundreds of times. Yesterday was the first time I ever had to go through US customs before LEAVING the US. At the border crossing at Messina/Cornwall, US customs were stopping and questining every car leaving the US, going into Canada. They had several cars pulled over, and were searching through them.

Is this a new trend starting?

five_head
10-25-2005, 06:59 AM
I went into Canada at the Champlain, NY crossing just a few days ago. No problems at all. Just had to show ID and answer a few questions.

Make sure you have birth certificates for any kids with you and if you are a dad travelling alone with your kids, a note from mom is advisable. Too many dads take kids away from mom when mom has custody. That is why you may get questioned if it is just dad and kids.

spaddock
10-25-2005, 08:22 AM
Yesterday was the first time I ever had to go through US customs before LEAVING the US. Is this a new trend starting?

This isn't new, I think it started after 9/11. It's happened to me a couple of times now.

The first time it happened I was really confused, it was about 1am after a long day of hiking, I woke up thinking my buddy driving had made a really really wrong turn.

I asked the US guard and he said it wasn't new. Since I didn't feel like asking a bunch of questions to them, I asked the Canadian guard after, she said they do it at random.


-Shayne

Mad Townie
10-25-2005, 08:59 AM
Make sure you have birth certificates for any kids with you and if you are a dad travelling alone with your kids, a note from mom is advisable. Too many dads take kids away from mom when mom has custody. That is why you may get questioned if it is just dad and kids.

This is so true. A few years ago (before 9/11/01) I was taking OUR kids through Canada to visit my parents in northern Maine, with a stopover in Québec City. I was delayed for quite awhile by Canadian Customs & Immigration while they checked to see if I was stealing them or something. The question that started it all off was, "Does their mother know they're with you?"

Then I had to explain to my kids why daddy wasn't in any trouble despite the fact that he was pulled over, asked inside and questioned by these people in uniform. I'm not complaining, though. I was happy to know that if my kids were somehow spirited away by unauthorized persons, there was a layer of protection at the border. The half hour or so delay was a small price to pay for that kind of safety.

Neil
10-25-2005, 09:28 AM
I posted THIS (http://www.vftt.org/forums/showpost.php?p=36272&postcount=1) a long time ago. It's only of interest if you,re going to or from Montreal.

prino
10-25-2005, 10:59 AM
I've crossed the border many hundreds of times. Yesterday was the first time I ever had to go through US customs before LEAVING the US. At the border crossing at Messina/Cornwall, US customs were stopping and questining every car leaving the US, going into Canada. They had several cars pulled over, and were searching through them.

Is this a new trend starting?


I'm wondering if Paul Martin's request for help (from the U.S. side)in controlling the illegal importation of handguns has something to do with this?

Mac
10-26-2005, 01:07 PM
As now proposed by the U.S., the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative would require all air and sea travellers — including U.S. citizens returning to their country — to have passports by Dec. 31, 2006.

People entering at land border crossings would need passports by Dec. 31, 2007.

Whiteman
10-26-2005, 08:33 PM
With my daughter at McGill, I have had the great pleasure of doing the border crossing with some regularity. We discovered the always empty crossing at Route 11, Rouses Point, NY. If you are coming from Vermont, as you hit NY, take that first right and you are right there. Don't follow the signs to Rte 15 though, just take the first left and follow that road (a couple of small zigs and zags) and it gets you to Exit 1 on Route 15 as mentioned in Neil's post. (I like google's maps: just put in Rouses Point and you'll get the details.)

We have gotten by the border coming back without any ID for 16 yr old son (though I think I sensed an eyebrow going up), and as mentioned above, a smile and a reasonable travel plan is just about all you need to get into Canada. But they seem to have gotten stricter on wanting the student permits in hand lately.

There is also the NEXUS program. If you give fingerprints, DNA, blood samples, family history, political dossier, voting history, political contribution history, and a few other things (I'm sure I'm a little off on the details) and a few $$$, and submit to the usual background checks, you get a pass which cuts the transit down to no lines at any crossing, a smile, a retina scan, and then the wave. At least that's the way it looked from the line at Lacolle when I was stuck there once.

Waumbek
10-26-2005, 08:57 PM
If you must cross at Calais/St. Stephen during rush hour, go west a few miles to the much quieter Milltown crossing.

Raymond
10-27-2005, 04:14 AM
Thanks for the information, Mac.

Passports are good for seven years, aren't they? So if mine expired in 1992, do I have to start over from scratch or do I pay the lower renewal fee?

Whiteman
10-28-2005, 06:01 PM
I saw in the news yesterday they will be requiring RFID chips in all new US passports sometime late in '06 and for renewals of expiring passports after that time as well. If you are freaked out by data collectors, you might want to get your passport sooner rather than later.

Pete_Hickey
10-28-2005, 09:25 PM
Passports are good for seven years, aren't they? So if mine expired in 1992, do I have to start over from scratch or do I pay the lower renewal fee?

10 years. less if you're under 16. There are no lower fees for renewal. The process is simply easier. I think you have 2 or 3 years after it expires, that you can send your old one in with the renewal application (I just went through it not too long ago.) You're going to have to prove who you are.

teejay
10-29-2005, 06:12 AM
If your last passport was issued less than 15 years ago, you may renew it for $55 (and you were over 16 when it was issued, and your name hasn't changed, except by marriage or court order, and you have your old passport). So you have 5 years after a passport expires to renew it. If you have never had one or your last one is over 15 years old or you don't meet the other conditions, you have to go through a new application which costs $97. (Edit: The federal fee is $55, new or renewal, I think. The extra goes to the county or town clerk where you file in person, at least here in NY.) (Edit #2: I just Googled DS-82, the form for renewing by mail, and the fee is up to $67.)

You will also have to pay for photos (and birth certificate with raised seal for a new appplication). You might get lucky taking your own picture, but the State Department is very fussy about the size and other requirements. I've been told it's not worth the hassle. Go someplace where they have experience.

You can renew an expired passport by mail. I don't have the links but if you go to the US State Department and find Form DS-82, you can print it out to file by mail.

teejay