CBP Offers Tips to Expedite Cross-Border Travelers During Busy Thanksgiving Week
ST. ALBANS, Vt. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers and agriculture specialists throughout Vermont and New Hampshire are providing guidance to assist cross-border travelers who intend to travel between the U.S. and Canada during Thanksgiving week and throughout the holiday season.
“These tips are designed to ease the crossing process for travelers while maintaining border security,” said St. Albans Area Port Director Casey Durst. “Our front-line CBP officers and agriculture specialists are here to assist you with your cross-border travels.”
In addition to the tips listed below, frequent cross-border travelers are encouraged to participate in the NEXUS program, which allows pre-screened, low-risk travelers to proceed with little or no delay into the United States and Canada. Travelers may apply online at the CBP Global Online Enrollment System website or the Canada Border Services Agency NEXUS website. NEXUS information is also available toll-free at: 1-(866)-NEXUS 26 (1-866-639-8726).
NEXUS currently provides more than one million members expedited processing at dedicated lanes at the border, at NEXUS kiosks at preclearance airports in Canada, and at maritime reporting locations.
For both NEXUS and non-NEXUS members, CBP officials are proactively reminding members of the traveling public that there are a number of steps they can employ to cross the border as quickly and safely as possible while avoiding violations of U.S. law. To assist travelers in their role and expedite travelers at the border, CBP has provided some basic border travel tips. For more information, please visit the “Know Before You Go” website.
1. Check out the CBP informational website
The CBP site has been completely redesigned to help users quickly access the content they need. It also is optimized for access by smart phones and makes use of a new content delivery network that will improve access internationally.
2. Beat the border rush
Cross during off-peak times, such as before 6 a.m. or after 3 p.m. Most lines at the border start building in the morning and carry on into early afternoon.
Monitor wait times for the ports of entry in Vermont. Information is updated hourly and is useful in planning trips and identifying periods of light use/short waits.
3. Keep travel documents handy
Make sure each passenger has the correct travel document accessible and ready to give to the CBP officer.
If you are a frequent international traveler and have not already become a member of a trusted traveler program, sign up now. For more information, please visit CBP’s Trusted Traveler site.
4. Know the contents of your vehicles and be prepared to declare all items
Travelers are required to declare all items being imported into the United States from Canada. If you are not sure about what to declare, do not hesitate to ask the CBP officer.
5. Know what food products can be imported
Many fruits, meats, dairy, and poultry products are prohibited from being imported into the United States from Canada. For more information, view Prohibited and Restricted Items.
6. Declare all firearms
Travelers are reminded that specific requirements must be met to import or export firearms and ammunition to/from the United States. For more information on the importation or exportation of firearms and ammunition, visit the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; State Department; and Commerce Department websites or contact Thomas Brashier, port director, Derby Line at (802) 873-3316 or Ronald Stanley, port director, Highgate Springs at (802) 868-2278.
7. Monitor the weather and road conditions
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.