Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Canada (
-   -   canada/usa border crossing id (

haveag8day Jul 24th, 2006 09:14 PM

canada/usa border crossing id
i have read several sights with information regarding what papers are required to enter canada/re enter usa. of course they all say photo id and passport/certified birth certificate. we all have certified birth certificate originals except my husband. he has a photocopy-no raised seal. some websites say that entering canada you will not be asked for this and some websites say that you may or may not be asked re entering usa for this but it is good to have your BC just in case. one says it may not be needed. before i freak out because we don't have time to get a n original copy ordered and delivered before our trip...does anyone have any words? i don't want to get stuck over a photocopy! thanks.

toedtoes Jul 24th, 2006 09:24 PM

As of last summer, if you have a passport, you don't need the photo id and birth certificate. If you don't have a passport, then you need both a photo id and a birth certificate. I just looked at the US customs website and it doesn't seem to have changed. I don't believe a photocopy of the birth certificate will be acceptable. If you're near where your husband was born, it is sometimes possible to go in and get a certified copy of the birth certificate - I did it, drove 1 1/2 hours to my home town and got a copy of my birth certificate within a few minutes.

haveag8day Jul 25th, 2006 06:10 AM

thanks. unfortunately we are not anywhere close to his hometown. my husband did find a copy of his birth does not have a raised seal like the rest of ours but his says "This certified copy valid only when original blue seal and blue signature are affixed" and it has the blue signature and seal. it is not a hospital record but a state certificate of birth so i assume that is as valid as a raised seal certificate?

toedtoes Jul 25th, 2006 07:20 AM

I believe that should be OK. As long as it says "certified copy" and has the appropriate parts, it should be as good as the original. If I remember correctly, my copy was the same way.

traveller69 Jul 25th, 2006 07:51 AM

If you are driving into Canada in your own car they are not nearly as worried about the ID as they are when you are flying. The fact that he has picture ID and a copy of the BC and is traveling with family who have Certified BC's I am sure you are fine. They are much tougher on single travelers when they are flying in. I wouldn't worry. Also if you are flying they will certainly let you know at check in (a little late) because you can't board the plane without adequate ID.

saltymuffin Jul 25th, 2006 10:15 AM

Keep in mind, the issue isn't just getting into Canada, but also getting back into the US! Make sure you have the proper documentation for both countries!

bob_brown Jul 25th, 2006 10:29 AM

On car crossings into Canada, I have yet to show anything.

On car crossings into the USA, I got the third degree because I had rented a car in Canada.

At all airport checkpoints, both going to Canada and coming home, a passport has made entry a lot easier in recent years.

You will undoubtedly get the most trouble from the US authorities if you don't have the right paper work.

haveag8day Jul 25th, 2006 02:48 PM

Well I couldn't stand the suspense so I called a telephone number i found online (called the American number) for the Peace Bridge. Spoke to an officer and told him what I had. He didn't seem very concerned at all about it. (the blue signature vs. raised seal as i mentioned above). I sensed he was talking about the Canadian side so I asked if ok for American entrance as well and he said he hoped so..should be the same. Like I said, he wasn't really concerned about my concern. I guess guarding the border was more important at that moment. :-) Anyway...trying not to be overly concerned so am going to go with what I have. If you don't ever hear back from me i am probably still sitting at the border holding room. haha. Thanks for all the help! I think we are about ready. I'll try to remember to let you know if I got any hassle from the USA side!

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:31 AM.