Canada Border Services

Entry Requirements for Canada

U.S. Citizens and U.S. Permanent Residents
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) recommends all U.S. citizens and permanent residents of the U.S. carry a valid passport for all travel abroad, including visits to Canada from the United States. A passport may be required by your airline or alternative transportation authority, as it is the only universally-accepted identification document. 

For U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are members of the NEXUS or FAST programs, you may present your membership cards to the CBSA as proof of identity and as documents that denote citizenship, when arriving by land or marine modes only.

Travel document requirements are subject to change. Therefore, to ensure that you have the correct documents to travel to Canada, please consult the Canada Border Services Agency site for current requirements. In addition, be sure to check the U.S. Customs and Border Protection site for current requirements for re-entering the United States after your visit to Canada. 

International Visitors

The Government of Canada requires that all international visitors carry a valid passport to enter Canada. In addition to your passport, you may also require a visa. For current entry requirements, please visit the Canada Border Services Agency site.


Starting in March 2016, nationals from visa-exempt countries who are flying or transit through Canada will need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). The exception is for U.S. citizens and travellers with a valid visa for Canada. The online authorization process only takes a few minutes and costs CAD $7. The authorization is valid for five years or until your passport expires. To find out more, please visit the Canada Border Services site here

Visitors from some countries still need regular visitor visas, as well as those intending to study or work in Canada. For information regarding visas and entry requirements for Canada, please visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website or call 1.888.242.2100 (in Canada). From outside Canada, please contact the nearest Canadian embassy or consulate in your region. 

Customs & Duty Free

Canada Border Services Agency requires that everyone entering Canada must declare the goods they’re bringing into the country. This includes personal baggage such as clothing, sporting and camping equipment, toiletries, and electronic equipment such as cameras and laptops; but you also have to declare items that you will leave in Canada, such as gifts. Depending on how you enter Canada, this declaration could be verbal or by filling out a CBSA Declaration Card. 

Each visitor over the age of 19 may import, duty free, a maximum of 40 ounces (1.1 litres) liquor or wine, or 288 ounces (8.5 litres) of beer or ale; plus up to 50 cigars, 200 cigarettes and 8 ounces (200 grams) of tobacco. 

The import of certain items is restricted or prohibited. Revolvers, pistols, and fully automatic firearms are prohibited entry into Canada. Non-restricted firearms (which must be declared) are a regular sporting rifle or a shotgun with a barrel over 470 mm (18.5 in.) with a maximum overall length of 660 mm (26 in.). There are also restrictions placed on items such as fireworks; certain food, plants and animals; and consumer products. For full details please visit the Canada Border Services Agency site, or call 1.800.461.9999 (North America) or 1.204.983.3500 (International).