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Montrealy

Flying vs. driving

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Hi all,

I am a USC and my wife is a Canadian. She is currently waiting for an interview in Montreal, with a case complete as of a few weeks ago. We live together abroad and would like to come to the US for a 2 week visit to see my family. Of course, we have documents showing proof of ties to our current country of residence. I know that what we have should suffice but that there's no guarantee and it depends on the IO.

 

I have heard (including on this website, on the "Yes, You Can Visit" thread) that flying is easier than driving, that IOs are more "lenient" and easygoing at airports than at land crossings. Is there any truth to this? We would like to minimize our chances of getting denied and if flying is better than driving we will do that.

 

Thank you

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I received case complete in May. We originally filed our I-130 n July 2018. Since then, I have visited the US maybe six times, and I never got any trouble at the border. I always traveled by bus and crossed in Detroit.

 

In one instance, the officer questioned me about our circumstances, whether my husband and I work, etc. After I explained it he said "ah yes I can see what here" (apparently he was able to verify that I was waiting for an interview by swiping my passport through the computer. Neat!) I have never flown to the US so I can't compare, sadly. Also every time I crossed was with our daughter, so maybe it got me sympathy points lol. One time they didn't ask to see inside my luggage while another passenger was detained and left behind, so I found that unexpected.

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Flying generally shows a itinerary with a return ticket.  But I think the land border agents are probably more lenient.   


You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.  - Dr. Seuss

 

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Both flying and driving should be fine, just ensure you have proof of employment or a lease or other ties to Canada showing you'll be returning, and do not over pack! If you drive with boxes of clothes or goods, or fly with 4 full checked bags with all your belongings for a week long trip it will be a flag in their system and they will scrutinize you more. Having an active visa application out there shouldn't make you more likely to be rejected for visiting, but they will be checking to make sure you're not trying to move early since your goal is to be there.

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