CDN-USA Border US Port of Entry Reviews

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CDN-USA Border Reviews
Average Rating: 0.65 / 5
199 Review(s)
CDN-USA Border Review #15977. Entry: 2105-06-12

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cbaker284



Difficulty: Low

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Topic: Port of Entry Review

This review is for the Canadian-USA Border into New York State at Champlain St. Bernard de Lacolle.

My fiance and I picked up his visa in Montreal and drove to the border, arriving at 8pm on a Friday night. There was a significant backup in traffic due to the escaped convicts in the area. At 9:20pm our car reached the "toll plaza"and the CBP officer was very kind and friendly. We immediately handed over our passports and I held up the sealed envelope (from the passenger seat) so that he could see it. He noticed it immediately, before we could even say that we were here on a K1, and had us park the car and go into secondary interrogation. We waited about 45 minutes while our information was reviewed then we were called up to the counter and asked a few basic questions. (Have you ever been convicted of a crime? Have you ever been denied entry into the US in the past?) This was this particular CBP officer's first time doing a K1 so he made sure to go over everything in his procedure binder. He was very nice. He told us that everything was good and printed out a slip and stapled it into my fiance's passport showing how long the visa was good for and then sent us on our way. Entire thing inside took about an hour after we finally made it through the long traffic delay.

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CDN-USA Border Review #16372. Entry: 2017-05-28


KimchiLumpia



Difficulty: Low

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Topic: Port of Entry Review

I'm from Seattle Washington and my fiance is from Vancouver BC, which is about a 2.5 hour drive. We drove down from Vancouver into the US via the Peace Arch Boarder Crossing in Blaine.

We have read many of the VJ posts and reviews regarding Canadian entry into the US via vehicle. We had nicely boxed and loaded all my fiance's belongings into my pickup truck and made a detailed list of contents

Driving up to the border window booth, we were instructed to go inside of the immigration office to process my fiance's K1 Visa paperwork.

There were about 5-6 CBP officers working with no wait in line. We were called up rather quickly.

The CBP officer asked for my fiance's passport and sealed K1 Visa brown envelope. After processing her paperwork, he confirmed that we must get married with-in 90 days of entry and wished us luck and congratulations.

We paid a $6 USD fee for processing, and was on our way within 15-20 minutes.

As my vehicle was parked outside in one of the inspection bays, I am not certain if they had inspected our load while we were inside. I had the truck keys with me the entire time, but, was not asked to hand over the keys at any time. Even though they did not ask for a content list of my fiance's belongings, I would still make one just in case.

All in all, the process was very efficient, and the CBP officers were very helpful and friendly.

It made my fiance's experience entering the US very welcoming.

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CDN-USA Border Review #16374. Entry: 2017-05-09

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Klee



Difficulty: Low

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Topic: Port of Entry Review

This review is for the Detroit Windsor tunnel. I'm giving a longer review because I've seen that most people seem to enter at the Ambassador Bridge and there weren't many reviews of the tunnel when I was looking for them.

We left my house in Windsor around 1pm with my fiance and parents. My fiance and I were catching a flight at 8pm. I managed to fit most of my belongings in 4 suitcases that we checked and then used UPS to ship a few boxes. We left early to make sure we could get them mailed on the US side (much cheaper and less hassle).

When we got to the border, there were barely any cars. We pulled up to the window and the man scolded my dad for pulling forward too soon. He was a stereotypical miserable border agent. My dad gave over all the passports and from the backseat I informed him I was entering on my K-1 visa. The man then called on his radio for someone to take us to secondary and put a sticker on our windshield. When no one came he escorted us there himself.

I had never been pulled into secondary before so I didn't really know what the procedure was. A border agent came over and told us to turn off the car, put the keys on the dash and step out. We were to leave all our electronics in the car, but to take our money with us. He was also miserable. We were instructed to cross to the other side of the parking lot and enter the building there.

You walk down a long hallway and the man checks you in. There were 2 other groups of people in there before us. We sat down and waited until we were called. The agents in secondary were much nicer and humoured my dad as he asked if they'd ever been on an episode of Border Security.

We were called up after about 5 or 10 minutes and handed over our passports to the man at the desk. At this point I handed over my sealed envelope as well and he opened it. He didn't ask for it, but I mentioned that I had a manifest and gave it to him. He looked it over and laughed when he saw that I had listed my SNES and N64. He said that was probably the last thing he expected to see on a manifest. There was a little chatting, he explained what the I-94 was etc etc. and then had us sit down so he could finish up some paperwork.

After about 5 minutes or so of waiting he called us up again and this time I gave my fingerprints and he also took a picture of me. He asked a few questions, about how we met, what website it was and what thread. It didn't seem like he was grilling us, more that he was curious how we met since we both look very young. He called us adorable once or twice which was funny. I couldn't have asked for a nicer, more competent person to have helped us, honestly. At the end he handed back my passport with a stamp and my I-94 stapled inside of it then sent us on our way.

I expected that when we got back in the car that some of my sealed boxes for UPS might have been opened but everything was as it was. I think they may have sifted through my purse and they definitely looked under the hood and in the glove compartment but that's about it.

We were in and out of there in about 20 minutes or so and it was incredibly easy. The border patrol agents in the booths always seem to be grumpy but the agents inside were much friendlier and nice. I obviously can't comment on how the ambassador bridge is compared to the tunnel for activating a visa, but I had a good experience at the tunnel so don't let the lack of reviews scare you away!

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CDN-USA Border Review #16356. Entry: 2017-05-04

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Difficulty: Low

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Topic: Port of Entry Review

So I got to the Queenston border at about 11:40am. It took about 15 minutes to get up to the booth window. Once we did, the officer in the booth asked my parents (who were driving me in the front seat) what there purpose was. I unrolled my window so he could see me and my dad explained they were taking me across for my K1 visa. The man turned to me and asked when we're getting married, I answered June 10th (almost a month from now) and he took all of our passports and kept them for the main office. He asked me if everything in the car was stuff belonging me. I said yes, and he asked what all was in there. I said "a very thorough list" and handed my prepared inventory. He reviewed it and returned it to me, then asked if I had any alcohol or tobacco. I said I had 2 bottles of flavor liquer and he didn't seem to care.

After this, he directed us to the building on the left of the entry lanes and we were guided to a parking area by an officer nearby. When we got out of the car she directed ALL of us (I was happy to have my parents come with me for company) to glass double doors leading to the office area. We kind of walked in not sure what to do so we sat and waited for someone to call us (they had our passports so they knew we were around). A big burly dude with the name tag Abbey was patrolling around the main waiting area and noticed us. He said "Immigrant Visa?" and I said "Yeah". He said "get comfortable this will take a while. I could recognize that envelope from a mile away". He sounded a bit grumpy, like he knew the envelope because it was an annoying process that was gunna eat up his afternoon or something.

So we waited for about 5 minutes when a friendlier seeming officer at the counter called me up to take my package, then had me sit again. He passed the package to another male officer. Another 2 minutes or so passed, and I was called up by name by the most recent officer to acquire the package. When I got up there he asked me if the photo was of me and I said yes. He jokingly said "are you lying?" (I havent changed in the slightest, there was definitely no confusion) and I said 'No, I'm not lying, and neither are your eyes!', which I immediately decided was a stupid joke, but whatever. He fake laughed and was good about the whole thing.

Next he was trying to confirm the address I was going to be moving to. My fiance lives away for school but gets his mail at his parent's house so there was some confusion about which address I was going to, but it was easily sorted (he said he needed to be knit picky because it was where my following immigration papers would be sent, not because he doubted me).

Once that step was sorted, he returned all the papers into their original pile. I noticed when he re-stacked the papers that the top page where the petition expiry was had a ton of red pen saying things like "DATE CHANGED. REVALIDATION UNTIL AUGUST 2017. REVISED." This was a big deal for me because I was anxious about my original petition having been expired but the red pen made it very clear it had been renewed when I passed my interview and they automatically wrote in the new extension without a request on my part. So I was super calm for the rest of the process, which was finger prints of only my left hand, and stapling the updated visa status into my passport.

Right before handing me the passport he said "I don't think we charge for this..." and checked with someone in a back room. He came back and explained the $6 processing fee, I paid with exact change (though I've read it doesn't have to be), and he left me carry on through the POE into my new home!

Overall, I had been extremely nervous to begin with. Once I got into the office the first impression was a big scary grumpy guy but all the people who processed my paperwork were friendly, made light jokes, laughed at my bad jokes, and made the experience quite easy to deal with. It was pretty clear that everybody knew about the process but not necessarily how to do it because they were referring to instructions and requesting more information from co-workers and such, but it didn't slow things down at all. Because it was around lunch hour on a Thursday, the whole place was pretty dead and I went from the border booth to the US highway in about 25 to 30 minutes.

Finally, I'm settling in my new home and can stop stressing about immigration until I get my marriage certificate to continue with adjustment of status!!

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CDN-USA Border Review #16333. Entry: 2017-03-11

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kevd321



Difficulty: Low

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Topic: Port of Entry Review

POE was very smooth and while I was slightly nervous on edge, the two border guards at the Blaine, WA, Peace Arch crossing were very personable.

When I pulled up to the border crossing in my car full of my personal belongings with my US fiancee in the passenger seat, I let the agent know I was entering on a K1 Visa and would also like to import my car. From there I was given a piece of paper and told to go park in secondary processing and to bring the slip of paper inside to and wait for an agent to call me up.

Once inside it felt very much like check-in at the airport. We arrived at the border at about 8:45pm and waiting about 15 minutes for the a few other people ahead of us in the queue.

Eventually I saw the same agent that I had initially spoken with in the car walking towards the desk with another agent.

At this point they called me up and let me know that one would be handling the processing of my K1 entrance while the other would be handling the importation of my car.

The agent assisting with the K1 processing asked me and my fiancee a few questions such as when we intended to get married and jokingly asked if we had opened the envelope from the consulate which is VERY clearly marked DO NOT OPEN.

All in all the processing of the K1 entrance took about 10 minutes including finger printing as well as a brief explanation of the rules regarding leaving the USA before receiving the green card as well as the AOS process.

The agent stamped my passport with date of entry and also made it clear that the Visa was a 1 time entry. He then stapled the I-94a departure record into my passport and let me know I was done with K1 processing and I would just have to wait a few moments for my car importation to be completed.

I had forgotten to bring in my car registration so I had to run out and grab that from the car which was no trouble. I did that while the border agent completed some paperwork which he had me verify for accuracy upon my return.

As my car is a 2002 Totota Echo that was manufactured in Japan I had to pay an import tax, which came to about $42.

To ensure the process was smooth I was also sure to call Toyota a few months in advance to have them email me an official letter of compliance as I found out from researching online in this forum as well as other sources.

Once I confirmed all the details on the importation document were accurate the agent walked us over to the Cashier where we paid the import tax on the car as well as a $10 processing fee for the visa and we were on our way.

The whole process took somewhere between 30-50 minutes.

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