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crckwc1 Apr 23rd, 2013 08:33 PM

Going through customs at Toronto?
We will be flying CDG to DFW with a connection and layover in Toronto. Will we need to claim and re-check luggage and go through customs in Toronto?

MrNuke Apr 23rd, 2013 08:51 PM

Toronto is a U.S. Customs pre-clearance airport. So yes, you'll need to claim the luggage, go through customs, and recheck the luggage*. The good news is once you arrive in Dallas, you've already cleared Customs and Immigration and it is basically like arriving on a domestic flight.

*If the Dallas flight is on AA and not AC, you may have to clear Canadian immigration and customs as well. immigration and customs.

crckwc1 Apr 23rd, 2013 09:04 PM

Thanks MrNuke -- I was afraid of that. Yes, the connecting flight is on AA. So, I have to clear both American and Canadian customs and immigration? This is uncharted territory for me so I do hope someone will point me in the right direction and I hope that 2 hours 15 minutes is enough time between flights.

MrNuke Apr 23rd, 2013 09:20 PM

Yeah if you were staying in terminal 1, basically Air Canada and Star Alliance partners like US and United, you'd be able to skip the Canada Border Services Agency.

Since you are flying out of terminal 3 though; you'll need to claim the luggage, clear CBSA, drop the bags on the connecting belt (this step is nearly verbatim from the Toronto airport link below, I'm honestly not sure why you'd need to put the bag back on the transfer belt only to pick it up again in the next step), follow the "a" connecting signage, and pick up your bag at the Terminal 3 connections belt before entering U.S. Customs. After clearing US customs and immigration pre-clearance, you'll have to re-clear security.

Southam Apr 24th, 2013 06:23 AM

At Pearson and several other Canadian airports there are plans to streamline some of the transfers for Americans going home. When complete, US citizens will stay within secure areas without formally entering Canada and luggage will go through US screening without the passenger picking it up. But I don't know how far along this project is so I suppose I am confusing the issue.

MrNuke Apr 24th, 2013 07:32 AM

And Terminal 1 is incredibly streamlined. On a Europe-YYZ-US connection, if you are staying within terminal 1; all you have to do is get off the plane, and follow the signs for the U.S. connection area or "F" gates. You scan your boarding pass at a kiosk. When U.S. Customs and Immigration is ready your name appears on a screen and you go through customs and security.

The process is obviously not as streamlined for the OP flying out on American in Terminal 3.

crckwc1 Apr 25th, 2013 07:59 PM

Thanks again for all the very helpful information!

MrNuke Apr 26th, 2013 01:17 PM

No problem. I realize I forgot to comment on your timing worries. 2:15 should be plenty of time assuming everything is on schedule. Have a good trip to France!

crckwc1 Apr 27th, 2013 09:45 AM

Glad to know I'll have enough time to get this done. Thanks again, MrNuke!

crckwc1 Jul 21st, 2013 01:33 PM

Update - Well, we managed to change terminals, re-check luggage, etc., thanks in great measure to MrNuke's advice and the airport printout. That said, it still wasn't a fun-thing. For starters, we received wrong information from airport personnel all along the way and if we hadn't had the advice from this forum and the airport printout, we might still be in Toronto Pearson wandering about. Outgoing, we made our flight with time to spare. Inbound, though, was a nightmare. The luggage was very, very slow arriving at the carousel and our luggage was in the very last batch (luggage for 300 people!). This made us short of time for getting all the rest of the requirements done. Then we just missed the bus to the terminal for our flight home. More time wasted. Then at security, my contraband orange marmalade (all of 2 tablespoonsful) held us up until we were in real danger of missing our flight. When that final ordeal was over (they allowed me to keep the marmalade - lol), I grabbed my 15-lb. carryon along with my shoes which I had removed not knowing if was necessary or not, and literally ran barefoot down two moving sidewalks and along another two long corridors before reaching our boarding gate. We were the last to board. And, at age 74, I'm thankful I didn't have a heart attack from the exertion. So, thanks again to MrNuke for explaining the procedure. Lesson learned: don't connect through Toronto unless it's at the same terminal.

MrNuke Jul 21st, 2013 04:17 PM

Glad you made the connection!

walkdmx Aug 10th, 2014 02:29 PM

United changed an award ticket to AC via Toronto this Wednesday arriving 2:30 pm with an hour and 45 minutes to connect to Boston also on AC. Do you think I'll have any problems given the conditions now?

Any suggestions on how to expedite this? I will have only carry-on and can move pretty fast. Thanks!

johnnyomalley Aug 12th, 2014 11:16 AM

Where are you coming from?

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