what kind of ID do we need

Aug 20th, 2006, 02:36 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 18
what kind of ID do we need

We are going to the Niagara Falls area and need to know what kind of ID do we need to enter Canada. We do not have passports.
hersey is offline  
Aug 20th, 2006, 02:57 PM
Join Date: Dec 2003
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If you are American, you need proof of citizenship and a piece of government-issued photo ID. For most Americans that means a birth certificate and a driver's license.

The beauty of a passport is that it is proof of citizenship and government-issued photo ID all in one. Also, they tell us that everyone is going to need passports to cross the US-Canada border in due course.

But at this time you don't need a passport to enter Canada at a land border (provided you're a US citizen).
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Aug 20th, 2006, 03:57 PM
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In my experience, getting into Canada has been fairly routine. Getting back into the United States was not always so simple.

I had my passport the last four times, and that helped.

What is very difficult is to rent a car in Canada and drive it across the border into the US. You virtually need a letter from the president of the rental car company stating that he has given you his personal permission to drive the car!!

On the two occasions I have rented a car in Canada and crossed into the US, I had a prolonged conversation with the US guys.

The discussion started with this question: What's an American doing driving a Canadian car? It mattered not that I had my rental contract in hand for all to see.

Driving an American car into Canada never raised a question from the Canadians. The most I was ever asked other than the normal questions was to remove my sunglasses. It was a very bright Montana/Alberta day and I forgot I even had them on!!

bob_brown is offline  
Aug 20th, 2006, 05:20 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
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Starting in September or October, US citizens must have passports to enter Canada or Mexico -- there was a thread on the Europe Forum on this awhile ago. I would doublecheck it.
Fidel is offline  
Aug 20th, 2006, 05:26 PM
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Fidel: You should doublecheck this as your information is incorrect.

Here is the correct information:


laverendrye is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2006, 10:37 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 2,470
Geez, these people are misleading.

Firstly, Bob Brown fails to underscore his citizenship.

If, SAY, you are from Australia, and rent a car in either the U.S. or Canada, you would hardly raise an eyebrow from either border patrol when crossing. The rules are far more strict for a citizen of one side renting a car on the other side and then bringing it back to his home country.

If they didn't have those rules, then what would prevent those who live opposite our southern border from signing on to rent a U.S. car and just driving it back home for a year, or six?

And Fidel is just plain off in terms of his understanding.

For land travel you won't need a passport to go either way (US-CANADA) until at least Jan. 1, 2008, and that is likely to be delayed until Jan. 1, 2009 if not eliminated entirely before that. Originally, for air travel, it would take place a year earlier, but I'm not up to speed on the status of that.

To the OP, (if a U.S. citizen) you need only your driver's license and a certified copy of your birth certificate (cost less than $20, typically, at the county court house in the area where you were born).

Hope this clears up the confusion.
NorthwestMale is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2006, 04:30 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 10,190
I think NorthwestMale clarified things pretty well regarding ID requirements.

I will add that regarding rental cars, you need to read the fine print for the chosen rental company. At least 2 rental companies do not allow a Canadian citizen to rent a vehicle in the US and drive it into Canada, however, they do allow a US citizen to rent a car in Canada and drive it into the US. Most don't allow crossing the Mexican border in a rental car.
toedtoes is offline  
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