Canada Border Rules

Canada Border Rules
Since September 11, 2001, the rules for crossing the border into Canada have become more stringent and are more strictly enforced. Review these guidelines before leaving, as rules and regulations will occasionally change.


Generally this process is straightforward, but lines can be lengthy. To counter this, avoid traveling at peak times, such as public holidays or the end of a work week.


As of June 1, 2009 any visitors entering Canada by any method are required to have a passport. Rules have changed, now even American citizens must provide a passport.


If you are stopped for inspection, be honest and direct. Do not answer questions rudely and remain calm.

Common Questions

Officials will often ask about your destination and how long you plan to stay in Canada. Even if the time frame isn't set, give a specific amount of time.


Be prepared with proper documentation if you're driving across the border, including registration and insurance information. Border agents are on the lookout for stolen property, or those trying to avoid duty fees.

Rental Cars

If you're driving a rental, keep a copy of the agreement with you and make sure you have permission to cross the border from the rental company.

Article Written By Sara John

Sara John is a professional writer and copy editor living in Des Moines, IA. She has worked professionally for seven years, and written articles for the Long Beach Press-Telegram, as well as other local publications. She is a graduate of Grand View University and holds a B.A. in journalism.

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