Border Travel

The Government of Canada recommends that Canadian citizens travel with a valid Canadian passport because it is the only reliable and universally accepted travel and identification document available to Canadians for the purpose of international travel.

Departure from the USA to Canada, and Entry to the USA from Canada

For Canadians who are permanent residents of the USA:

Although Customs and Border Protection will accept a valid Permanent Resident card in lieu of a passport, commercial carriers may have their own regulations. Should you wish to depart or re-enter the USA on your Permanent Resident card, please check in advance with your commercial carrier.

Note: should you be connecting from a U.S. domestic flight to your cross-border flight, please check in advance with each carrier being used.

Admission into the U.S. without the proper documentation is at the discretion of the Port of Entry.

Entry into Canada from the USA

For a full list of entry requirements into Canada for Canadian citizens, Canadian Permanent Residents, or US citizens, please visit the Canada Border Services Agency website.

Though the preferred travel document for all travellers is a passport, please note that Canadian citizens may enter Canada by personal motor vehicle with proof of Canadian citizenship (Canadian birth certificate or Canadian citizenship certificate) plus a valid government-issued photo ID (ex. state or provincial driver's license).

Children

Minor children 15 and under travelling by land or by sea may enter Canada with a valid passport or their U.S. or Canadian birth certificate.

We strongly recommend that children travelling across the border carry a consent letter proving they have permission to travel from every person with the legal right to make major decisions on their behalf, if that person is not accompanying the children on the trip. For example, children travelling alone, with groups or with only one custodial parent should travel with a consent letter. Please visit the travel.gc.ca website to download a sample letter of consent.

Criminal Admissibility

Consular Sections in the US cannot respond to any enquiries related to the admissibility of non-Canadians to Canada.

For varied reasons, the most common of which is possession of a criminal record, Canadians may be deemed inadmissible for entry into the USA.

Anyone with reason to believe they may be inadmissible should contact US authorities before attempting to enter the USA. Similar restrictions apply to non-Canadians who wish to enter Canada. See more Information about Canada's inadmissibility policy.

For additional enquiries please refer to the Visa and Immigration section of this website.

Other Useful Travel information

U.S. Travel Report

Up-to-the minute information about security, entry/exit requirements, health and important travel issues.

Emergency Assistance

Contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa anytime.

  • 1-888-949-9993 (from US and Bermuda)
  • 1-888-772-6448 (from Puerto Rico)
  • 1-866-600-0184 (from US Virgin Islands)
  • 613-996-8885 (call collect where available)
  • Email: sos@international.gc.ca