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Thursday, February 24, 2011

~~~Crossing the Canadian Border with Ease~~~

Knowing that a lot of my RVing friends will be heading to Canada & Alaska this summer I wanted to help them NOT go through what we did... "STRESS"



Last year we took off heading for the Alaskan territory and knowing we had to cross over the Canadian border in our motorhome right away started giving us all a great deal of stress & worry... We looked up many sites on the internet checking out what we could and could not take over the border. Many of them had different do's & don'ts. Finally after much research, help from my Canadian friends & actually contacting the customs border here is what we came up with...
We crossed the border 4 times and never had any problems!


The most important things to remember are:

 When you pull up to the border patrol turn off your engine
 Remove your sunglasses
 Only answer the questions they ask…
 Do NOT offer any additional information .... repeat this advice again
 I made an inventory list of all the food I had in the coach but they never asked for it. (Thanks Sue for this advice)
 Have all shot records updated & current for your pets
 Passports up to date, signed and ready to hand to them
 Insurance card from your insurance company for Canada travel (yellow card) Ask your agent about it.
 They will ask where you worked and what you did

Weapons:

 We carry a hand gun with us... we pretty much already knew this was a big no no so we left it with our daughter in their gun safe. You can take rifles with some kind of permit but we were not hunting so this didn't apply to us.
 We also had a BB gun which if under a certain pressure could go. I think over 500 pounds of pressure but not sure... Ours was too strong so we gave it away to a lady in the last RV Park that we stayed in before entering Canada.


Liquor:

This was my greatest worry.... LOL LOL
 I have several bottles in a cabinet and just knew they were going to confiscate them... but guess what. If it is for personal consumption you have no worries... make sure they are open and at least 1 drink out of them. Now I did have a few new ones but I broke the seal I just told them they were all for personal use.
 Beer… I believe is 24 bottles or cans… we don’t drink beer so it didn’t apply to us.

Food:

 You can NOT take any food over the border with a pit in it….Period!
 I had a freezer outside full of meat … they never asked but from what I understood was if it was for personal use it was ok to have
 The fridge was stocked with milk, eggs, butter, everyday foods, some fresh veggies, potatoes and onions… I never offered info and only answered their questions.

 Pet food is ok... the dry food we kept the bag just in case they asked what brand it was but they didn't... we also took canned food.


NOTE: remember I did have a full inventory list of all the food & liquor in the coach in case they wanted more detail

Telephone: Just for your info ...

Turn off your AT&T... they do not have a great Canada coverage and it cost to much to add it. BUT with Verizon for $20 dollars you can add Canada coverage to your plan & then cancel it when you come back out!


Don’t be afraid… This is what worked for us. Neither our friends nor us were ever searched but another friend kidded around about how much beer he had and they search his rig… Hench do not offer info!!! Because they'll tear it apart BUT you have to put everything back… & they do not allow you in the coach when they are searching it which I wouldn't like….


I sure hope this might have helped someone... and I hope I didn't miss something! Just contact me if you have questions


Have Fun, Travel Safe & Stay Healthy!!!

18 comments:

Sue and Doug said...

way to go Donna!!..you remembered everything we told you!!!..glad it was with ease that you crossed into our land of Red and White..even though it caused some 'stress' before hand!..have a fabulous day, my friend!

FD5, Retired said...

Good info, thanks! We plan to go to Alaska one of these days hopefully in the next 3 years.

Stay Safe

Karen and Al said...

Good information but now I don't think I'll go to Canada any time soon. I would not want them searching my MH with the kitties inside.

Rick and Paulette said...

Apart from the guns issue, it sounded to me pretty much the same routine we face when crossing the U.S. border. We've had our 5'er searched twice and both times we had to remain outside the rig.

Everything else in your post was pretty much exactly the same for us.

Gail Durham said...

Great info, thanks.......

Picket said...

hey girl...oh my word...that would scare me to death...I'd be afraid to even try to cross..my heart would be racing so fast like in the movies where you just 'silently' disappear and no one ever hears from you again! lol lol I think I'll limit my road trips to just going over to the next county! lol lol Just wanted to stop by and say hellow sweetie and I hope all is well with you and yours...Picket

Romantic Dinner said...

Very nice location and great your thought . amazing this post and interesting .....

HOOTIN' ANNI said...

That is some great info. I imagine it's about the same if you went south of the border too [tho, who in their right minds wants to go to Old Mexico these days with the cartel and all?]....I did NOT know that about fruits with pits...Heck, we took Colorado peaches over the border before...but that was long long long ago.

I've been darned busy this week, and this is now a time I finally set aside visiting my blogging buddies!!!

Hope your day has been filled with all kinds of good stuff! Thanks for visiting me this past week!

PEA said...

I'll never forget the first time I crossed into the States, I was so nervous and I don't know why since I had nothing that was illegal to bring across! lol I remember the guard asking us all kinds of questions and then he started to joke around with us! I've since crossed often and you never know what kind of guard you'll get...some are very friendly while others you don't dare even smile at!! Glad you had no problems getting across to our side:-) xoxo

Jim and Dee said...

Thank you so much for posting. We're headed into Canada in the Eastern side in June.

Diana said...

This is definitely the best summary of advice for entering Canada that I have seen. I especially liked the liquor advice! Thanks so much.

Donna K said...

Good info here. We are planning a trip to Alaska in a couple of years. We have never had any problem crossing in a car but have never crossed the border in an RV. Wouldn't like them searching with me out of the car. Any tips on what it is like coming back into the USA??

dAwN said...

Thanks so much for all that great info Donna!

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Interesting information Donna. I really wish I was going to need this info. Sigh - maybe some day. I'll try to remember all of these hints if I ever get to make that journey again. We did go to Canada once, but it was very easy then. I'm sure that a lot has changed. laurie

Romantisch Hotel Brugge said...

Thanks For nice posting

Margie and Roger said...

Geeez, I wish I had read this before we crossed into Canada a few years ago. Well, actually I wish Roger had read it. When they asked him if he had any guns with him, he said, "No, but I have some back in Tennessee." Oh great, a hillbilly from TN that owns guns! Yep, we got pulled over to have the coach searched. Luckily we passed the search process - but being delayed was a pain. So, your advice to just answer the questions and not volunteer anything else is sound advice.

Note to Karen: If you get searched you have to step out of the motorhome and take all your pets with you - can't leave them inside.

SunshinecruiserTN said...

Sounds like great info. I'll refer back to it when needed. Don't think I'll be going to Canada anytime soon.

Sandra said...

It's too bad that stories about crossing the border in to Canada have made people so nervous that they are afraid to come here. The directions given here are good ones. Also give them a date that you will be leaving (within 6 months). If you stay longer than the date given, that's ok but they don't like wishy washy.

As Rick says, it's much the same crossing into the U.S. It's nothing to be afraid of. As long as you're not smuggling anything in or have any guns, pepper spray or mace, it's no big deal.

I think our government should know that fear of border crossing is hurting our tourism!

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