BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection began a pilot program this month allowing commercial trucks to prepay the single-crossing user fee online prior to arrival at a port of entry. The pilot will begin at the Buffalo, Detroit and El Paso ports of entry and last for approximately one year.
CBP requires all trucks crossing into the U.S. from Canada or Mexico to pay the user fee to offset border inspections costs.
Carriers or their agents will be able to make single-crossing user fee online payments through the Decal/Transponder Online Procurement System (DTOPS) website. The mobile-friendly DTOPS website design allows users to pay online using their smartphones. CBP is also developing a DTOPS app for smartphones.
Paying the single-crossing user fee online prior to arriving at the border reduces fuel consumption and wait times. Removing the cash/credit card payment process from primary inspection enables CBP officers to process vehicles faster, and decreases carbon emissions associated with heavy traffic. Online payments also enable CBP port management to optimize resources to facilitate trade and ensure the security of international travelers.
“We are extremely excited that Buffalo, the third busiest commercial land border crossing in the country, is a pilot location for this new payment option,” said Assistant Director Ann Marie Paul, of the Buffalo Field Office. “Drivers paying their user fee in advance will save 30 to 60 seconds per inspection, and reduce wait times for all commercial vehicles. Giving the trucking industry the option of paying in advance may reduce the majority of commercial border wait times to 15 minutes or less.”
To make a payment, users will set up an account in DTOPS, register their vehicle, select the single-crossing payment option and checkout with the secure online payment system. DTOPS will confirm payment by providing an electronic receipt. Single-crossing online payments are good until December 31 of the year purchased.
Cash and credit card payments will continue to be accepted at the border, but carriers who pay upon arrival may experience additional delays.
Once completed, the pilot will be evaluated for a 90-day period after which time CBP will determine whether to expand the program to all U.S. land border ports of entry that process commercial trucks.
The DTOPS mobile app does not collect any information regarding the identity of an individual or an individual’s device. CBP remains committed to protecting the user’s privacy.
More information about commercial truck user fee online payments for single crossings and for annual transponder purchases is available at https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.