U.S. Customs offers advice for cross-border Labor Day travelers in St. Lawrence County
Thursday, August 28, 2014 - 5:39 pm

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents are reminding St. Lawrence County travelers planning cross-border trips at Massena and Ogdensburg this Labor Day weekend to make sure they have the proper documents and to plan for a possible increase in traffic.

Customs officials say there are a number of steps that can be taken to facilitate their arrival into the United States.

Travelers are encouraged to prepare for cross-border ravel in advance and can obtain local border traffic conditions by visiting the CBP website at http://www.cbp.gov/. Wait time information is updated hourly and is useful in identifying periods of light traffic/short waits.

Travelers should familiarize themselves with the “Know Before You Go” section of the CBP website and consult the border wait times page (Know Before You Go) (Wait Times - Airport and Border). Travelers should have their approved travel documents available for inspection and be prepared to declare all items acquired outside or being imported into the U.S.

Prepare for the inspection process before arriving at the inspection booth. Have your WHTI (Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative) or RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) enabled documents in hand before reaching primary inspection. Travelers should declare all items acquired abroad. Additionally, individuals should end cellular phone conversations before arriving at the inspection booth. Travelers should also have their windows rolled down for inspection and remove any sunglasses and hats prior to entering the inspection area.

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.gov website.