Passports and booze - Canada

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Smoky

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OHHHHHHHHHHHH!  Betty!  Sharon and I are following along and you are making us want to go to Alaska.  Something we swore we would never do.  Mainly because of not wanting to cross the Canadian border and also because of rumors of primitive Alaskan roads.  Guess maybe I will have to leave my Browning somewhere and cross that border.  ;D

The photos are awesome!

Is there a limit on how much liquor can travel with you?  As anyone who has visited our coach knows, we are a traveling bar.  Do we have to go very much on the wagon before entering Canada?

And Lorna, what is this about passports.  I thought passports for Canada or Mexico were not necessary until 2007.  Did they jump the schedule?  What is the easiest way to get passports?

Your trip is filling us with excitement AND questions!  Wow!  Thanks for doing this journal!!

 

Tom

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Smoky,

For more info on crossing the northern border, click the Library button above and select RVing in Canada.

Passports - try Passport Agency in your phone book for the nearest office.
 

Wendy

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Don't know about big cities, but in Cortez, you get your passport at the local post office.
 

Tom

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Thanks Wendy. Each time we've got ours we've gone to the PA in San Francisco. Looks like we could have saved ourselves a long drive.
 

Betty Brewer

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Smoky said:
Is there a limit on how much liquor can travel with you?? As anyone who has visited our coach knows, we are a traveling bar.? Do we have to go very much on the wagon before entering Canada?

Smokey,
I went  to the Canadian Government website  www.inspection.gc.ca prior to our crossing to get a refresher on what is allowed in.  It changes daily.  For example, we were advised via website that NO potatoes from Idaho were allowed.(Some pesky bug in question)  But no one checked or even asked.  I'm not real good at metric conversions but we were allowed  1.5 litres of wine each.  1.14 litres of alcohol( 40 ounces) 8.5 litres of beer. I'd say if you have large amounts of  alcohol in coach before crossing you would not go on the wagon, you would go on a binge and make first stop in Canada a liquor store. :)

Glad you are enjoying the photos.

Betty
 

Wendy

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Betty Brewer said:
1.5 litres of wine each.? 1.14 litres of alcohol( 40 ounces) 8.5 litres of beer.

Doesn't seem quite fair that you can have 6 times as much beer as wine. Guess I'd have to leave my 5-liter box of wine behind.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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I'd say if you have large amounts of  alcohol in coach before crossing you would not go on the wagon, you would go on a binge and make first stop in Canada a liquor store.

Don't stock up too much at the Canadian store.  Remember, you will be crossing back into the USA as you enter Alaska and the USA has the same limits of duty-free import of alcohol.  And if you stop in places in the panhandle like Haines or Skagway, you will enter the USA from the Yukon and then exit back to Canada again when you continue on your way towards Alaska proper.

The Canadian border posts cut us slack on the booze when we went back and forth across the border to visit US tin the Alaska panhandle, but it's strictly up to the individual gaurd if he/she chooses not to hear you when the amount you state is over the limit. The US guards did not seem any where near as hospitable, but perhaps that was my imagination?
 

Smoky

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Betty:

I checked that web site, and unless I made a mistake it appears to be some kind of a food inspection site.

I am interested in more basic info, especially regarding passports.  Are they required already (I thought it was 2007)?  And have you or anyone here recently obtained one?  I am interested in the process, how difficult is it, are there ways to keep the cost low, how long does it take, and any other practical tips from those here who have done it.  Especially from the special circumstances of full-timers or most-timers.  I am thinking we may have to wait until we go to the southwest for the winter, unless there is a way of starting the process here and getting the result out there?

Tonight I just learned I can plot a route in MSFT trips and then seamlessly email it as a picture to someone else, even if they don't have MSFT trips.  If anyone in your group has set up a route in MSFT trips it would be fun to see the route.  Don't know if a route picture can be posted here as a message attachment?
 

Tom

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Wendy,

I just remembered that the last time I renewed my passport my secretary had a courier visit the PA in SFO.
 

Betty Brewer

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Smoky said:
I checked that web site, and unless I made a mistake it appears to be some kind of a food inspection site.
I am interested in more basic info, especially regarding passports.? Are they required already (I thought it was 2007)??

Smoky,
The site is accurate . ?You just have to search the side pages. ?Look for FAQ or for the ?information brocheres to be ?printed. ?It is not easy to follow. ?Nor is there a "this is what you need to know page." ?I really had to search to figure it out. Canada only requried picture ID's to enter to prove your citizenship ?but a passport is an easy one. ?Better than carrying my birth certificte around.

The 2007 requirement is for US Citizens to return to US. ?This is not a Canadian requirement. I got my passport a few years ago and can't recall how it was done. The fee was a standard one. ($40 to renew when I did it.) ?It does take a while and I think you could have it mailed to ?our "address."

Betty
 

Smoky

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Maybe I could have it mailed to 248 Rainbow Drive you think?

I wonder what happens if some one crosses over to Canada next year without a passport?  Will it be like the Kingston Trio MTA song?  :eek: 
 

Alaskansnowbirds

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Smoky said:
Betty:

I checked that web site, and unless I made a mistake it appears to be some kind of a food inspection site.

I am interested in more basic info, especially regarding passports.  Are they required already (I thought it was 2007)?  And have you or anyone here recently obtained one?  I am interested in the process, how difficult is it, are there ways to keep the cost low, how long does it take, and any other practical tips from those here who have done it.  Especially from the special circumstances of full-timers or most-timers.  I am thinking we may have to wait until we go to the southwest for the winter, unless there is a way of starting the process here and getting the result out there?

Tonight I just learned I can plot a route in MSFT trips and then seamlessly email it as a picture to someone else, even if they don't have MSFT trips.  If anyone in your group has set up a route in MSFT trips it would be fun to see the route.  Don't know if a route picture can be posted here as a message attachment?

Smoky,

Go to any U.S. Post Office and ask for a passport application. Fill it out and send it in with your pictures and your check. You can get passport pictures taken at places like Kinkos or ask at the post office when you pick up the application where you can get your pictures taken. They should know some place locally. Passports are good for 10 years if I remember right. You pay the fee on the application. There are no discounts of any kind that I have ever heard about. No matter where you send the application from the passport will be mailed to your address on the application. I would do it as soon as you can. As the deadline when you have to have one nears, the time it takes to get one will only get longer.

When we have crossed the border in the past I've found that they were mostly concerned about unopened bottles. I've crossed with lots of booze but they were partial bottles.
 

Smoky

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Don:

Thanks for a most informative post. ?Sounds like I could have them sent to my Escapee address. ?

Unopened bottles only aye? ?Now that makes a whole lot more sense. ?Betty could have left her half filled wine bottle as it was then right? ?I must have about a dozen opened hard liquor bottles on hand. ?Part of the penalty of being a single malt addict. ?I could easily eliminate unopened bottles before going to Canada. ?This rule means I won't have to frequent any Canadian bars. ? ;D
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Unopened bottles only aye?  Now that makes a whole lot more sense.  Betty could have left her half filled wine bottle as it was then right?

No, that's not "right". The customs regulations do not address open vs unopened - just the total quantity in your possession.  Partial bottles count and the border guard's estimate of the amount in an open bottle is not appealable. A certain amount (mentioned previously) is considered to be for personal use and is allowed duty free. Any additional is subject to an excise tax on the alcohol content (that's why beer, wine and spirits have different quantities).  You can bring as much booze as you want across the border in either direction, but you will have to pay customs duty on the amount that exceeds te personal use exemption. US and Canadian customs duty differs ad I don't know the current rates.

As I said previously, individual border gaurds may choose to ignore modest overages that are clearly for personal use, but the law does not. As I recall the anecdote, at one crosssing they let Russ Mahoney through duty free with a couple dozen bottles of wine.  But always declare the actual amount onboard and be prepared to pay the duty if asked.

 

UK-RV

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Smoky

I think this is what you need for Passport :-

http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html

And for loads of info on what you can take with you :-

http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/regional/regional_1170.html

Paul
 

Tom

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That's a good link Paul - explains all for anyone needing to apply for a passport and one can also download the application form.
 

Ned

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Only the initial passport application must be made in person.  Renewals can be done by mail.
 

Wendy

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Just wondering....I know you can't take too much booze into Canada, but what did they think about Russ's bay FULL of Diet Coke????
 

Ned

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Diet Coke isn't a controlled substance in Canada, although perhaps it should be :)
 
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