Authorities warn of longer wait times at Massena, Ogdensburg ports of entry due to Canadian holiday
Friday, August 1, 2014 - 5:33 pm

U.S. border authorities are warning of the chance of longer wait times at the Ogdensburg and Massena crossings as Canadians celebrate a three-day weekend with Provincial Day on Monday.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection advises travelers to prepare for inspection before arriving at the inspection booth. If you have a Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative or Radio Frequency Identification enabled documents, or your passport, they should be in hand before reaching primary inspection.

Travelers should declare all items acquired outside the U.S. People are advised to end cell phone conversations before arriving at the inspection booth. Travelers should also have their windows rolled down for inspection and remove sunglasses and hats prior to entering the inspection area.

It will probably be a good idea to allow for extra time and check border wait times in case of exceptionally heavy traffic. Travelers can easily obtain current border traffic conditions at the Advisories and Wait Times section on the CBP website, http://www.cbp.gov/travel/advisories-wait-times.

CBP encourages travelers to visit the Know Before You Go section of the CBP website (http://www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/know-before-you-go) so they can find out the difference between prohibited merchandise (which is forbidden by law to enter the U.S.) and restricted merchandise (items needing special permit to be allowed into the U.S.). To avoid fines and penalties associated with the importation of restricted or prohibited items become educated prior to traveling, including agriculture products.

Cross-border travelers are encouraged to participate in the NEXUS program. NEXUS allows pre-screened, low-risk travelers to proceed with little or no delay into the United States and Canada. Application forms are available on the Canada Border Services Agency website at www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca and travelers can apply online at www.cbp.gov. Additionally, NEXUS information is available toll-free at 1-866-NEXUS 26 (1-866-639-8726).

For more information on what to expect at a port of entry, document requirements, and prohibited or restricted items, travelers can visit Travel section of the CBP website.

A new downloadable checklist is also now available that can be accessed on your smartphone or device to help you travel smart when traveling internationally.