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Coming to Canada: Guidelines for Visitors

By Johnny Mangiante

So, you’ve planned your trip to Canada. Your flight is booked, hotel reservations are made and your itinerary is set. But before you get too excited about riding to the top of the CN Tower, you should take care of a few other important details.

A) Prepare yourself for Canada’s entry requirements. Ask yourself the following questions:

1. Do I need a visa to travel to Canada?

While some travellers require a visa to travel to Canada, many do not. Persons lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence who have a Green card or can provide other evidence of permanent residence, British citizens and British Overseas Citizens who can be readmitted to the United Kingdom, persons holding a valid and subsisting Special Administrative Region passport issued by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China, as well as other particular individuals, do not require a visa to enter Canada. For a complete list, visit the Government of Canada web site.

2. What type of identification will I need to present to Canada customs?

Canada’s entry requirements entail that every visitor from out of the country needs a valid passport. However, your birth certificate or certificate of citizenship, and a valid photo identification such as a drivers licence will also be accepted. If you are a permanent resident of the U.S., don’t forget to bring your green card.

Also, if you are travelling with children, the customs officers may ask detailed questions about them. Parents who share custody of their children should carry copies of the legal custody documents. If you are travelling with a child who is not your own, you need a note from the guardians granting you permission to have the child with you.

3. Do I need a medical exam for travel to Canada?

A medical examination is required if you have resided for six or more consecutive months in a designated “red flagged” country/territory in the one year prior to your travel to Canada. Some of these countries include: Afghanistan, Bahamas, Armenia, Brazil, Cambodia, Ethiopa, Guam, Haiti, India, Iran, Iraq, and Mexico. A complete list of “red-flagged” countries can be found on the Government of Canada web site.

B) Get acquainted with the laws regarding Canada’s customs regulations. Here is a brief list of some items you are prohibited to bring into the country:

- firearms and/or offensive weapons

- drugs

- certain fruits and/or plants that could contain harmful pests and diseases

- meat

What about alcohol and tobacco?

As long as you meet the age requirements set by the province or territory you are visiting, you can bring up to 40 ounces of liquor, 52 ounces of wine, or 24 containers of beer. You can also bring 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or cigarillos, 200 tobacco sticks, and 200 grams of manufactured tobacco.

How much money can I bring to Canada?

You can bring as much money as you like; however, you must report all imports and exports of currency and monetary instruments equal to or greater than $10,000 CAN.

For more details concerning customs regulations, call (204) 983-3500 or (506) 636-5064 or visit the Canadian Government’s customs and borders site.

Once the details of your travel to Canada have been sorted out, you can relax. Arrive into Canada and have fun! Skate on the Rideau Canal, stroll through old Montreal, or ski down Whistler’s mountain. Either way, you will surely enjoy your stay!

About the author:
Johnny Mangiante is an online journalist . He is also the editor and webmaster for many websites. For more information on Travel Medical Insurance for Visitors to Canada see his website http://www.visitorstocanada.com/.

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