Port of Entry
Imeda is a citizen of Georgia. He holds a visitor’s visa from the US and another one from Canada. Imeda is currently in Michigan. He has heard no army or barrier to protect the border between the United States and Canada. Considering holding a valid visa to Canada, Imeda wonders if he can cross the border at any point.
A port of entry (POE) is where you may legally cross the border of a country. Canadian ports of entry include the following:
- Some Canadian airports such as Toronto Pearson International Airport, Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, and Halifax Stanfield International Airport
- Land ports of entry where you may cross with a vehicle or in some cases on foot, such as Windsor – Ambassador Bridge, Niagara Falls – Rainbow Bridge, Boundary Bay (British Columbia), Scobey–Coronach Border Crossing (Saskatchewan), and Chateaugay–Herdman Border Crossing (Quebec)
- Ferry crossings where a ferry takes you to Canada, such as Prince Rupert (British Columbia), Walpole Island (Ontario), and Yarmouth (Nova Scotia)
- Rail crossings where you cross the border with the help of a train, such as White Rock (British Columbia), Niagara Falls (Ontario), and Cantic (Quebec)
- Seaports where you enter Canada with a boat or a ship, such as Sept-Îles Port (Quebec), Belledune Port (New Brunswick), and St. John’s Port (Newfoundland and Labrador)
Services at a Port of Entry (POE)
Some of the services offered at a port of entry include:
- Examining foreign nationals and others for the purpose of entering Canada
- Issuing visitor records, TRPs, study permits, or work permits
- Changing the status of an applicant (e.g. from a visitor to a permanent resident)
- Administering biometrics
- Running typical tasks of customs (collecting tariffs or duties, preventing certain goods from entering Canada, etc.)
The officials at a port of entry may sometimes remove a person from Canada or detain certain foreign nationals or permanent residents under the immigration law (IRPA) or other laws of Canada.
If you already have an open immigration application and intend to enter Canada on a temporary basis, make sure to read the following article as well:
Even if you do not need a visa to enter Canada or you are a permanent resident of Canada or a citizen of Canada, you may not cross the border other than at a designated port of entry. Some ports of entry offer limited services or limited hours of operation. Make sure to double-check the availability of each port of entry before making travel plans to Canada.
If you intend to use a land crossing as a port of entry, make sure to read the following article as well:
If you wish to visit or move to Canada or if you have encountered any issues with the immigration authorities, you may fill out our free assessment form or book a consultation session to assess your potential opportunities or offer you immigration, visa, or citizenship advice.
Al Parsai, MA, DTM, RCIC
Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
Ashton College Instructor – Immigration Consulting
This article provides information of a general nature only. It may no longer be current. It does not give legal advice nor should you rely on it as legal advice. If you have specific legal questions, you should consult a lawyer. If you are looking for immigration advice, book an appointment. All the characters in the articles are fictional, unless otherwise clearly stated. Any resemblance in names, dates, and places (whether individuals, organizations, regions, or countries) is coincidental.
Fill our Free Canada Immigration Assessment Form in your language!