If you want to cross over from Detroit to Windsor this week, you’d better have your passport. That has changed in the last few years. Canada wants to keep us gringos out, I guess. And we want to stop those illicit imports of poutine and Molson Light.
Scottie is traveling to Detroit this week. I told him Canada was just across the river; not sure if he knew. In fact, when I was looking into hotels, the ones on the Canadian side of the river were two and three times cheaper than those in downtown. We decided to keep Scottie on the U.S. side. We didn’t want him to be detained.
Clay was just on Bo’s show talking about going to Canada, that he had never been.
Haven’t been to Windsor, but I’ve been to Toronto, Montreal and the gun-free side of Niagara Falls. Which, by the way, is infinitely nicer than the U.S. side; even people who lived in Niagara NY admit that, including a guy here in Fort Smith who grew up within earshot of the falls.
If you were pricing hotels in Windsor in CAN$, it gets even worse. Because the Canadian dollar (they call their dollar coin the Loony; no paper dollar bills there) is worth 78 cents American at the moment. Thus a $100 hotel room in Windsor actually costs only $78 USD.
Clay does not get out much.
I went to Niagara Falls in the summer of 2004, but that’s as far as I’ve been into the Great White North. At that time you only needed a U.S. driver’s license to cross into either side.
Yep, they changed the requirements in 2009 where you need a passport or a NEXUS card to get into Canada. But a NEXUS card takes a while to obtain, requires a background check (so Clay might have trouble there ). So basically you need a passport.
Related trivia question: Going from the U.S. to Canada requires traveling north, right? Not in Detroit. Downtown Detroit is north of downtown Windsor through the Windsor Tunnel. Only place where you go from the US to the Great White North by going south. And the Windsor Tunnel is only about a mile from Little Caesars Arena.
There is one day a year you can go across the border at Detroit without a passport, but there is a catch. The Detroit Marathon, held in October, crosses the Ambassador Bridge into Windsor, spends about five miles in Canada and then comes back through the tunnel. You don’t have to carry your passport during the race, but you have to show your passport to pick up your race packet, and the race bib essentially serves as your passport for that day.
You can also get into Mexico and Canada with the new “enhanced drivers license”, which I obtained at the revenue office last month prior to going down there on a cruise. The new license requires a birth certificate, a local paid utilities bill or property tax assessment, and a social security card or some tax form with your social security number on it. They scan all of that in and then the information is put on the card for use when crossing the border.
That is because we started requiring visas for Canadians to enter US after 9/11. Brasil does the same and so do some other countries like France.
Canadians don’t need a visa to visit the US as a tourist, and Americans don’t need a visa to visit France, as long as they’re there for less than 90 days. Now if a Canadian wants to attend UA, for instance, she would need a student visa (as does Gabe Osabuohien), but that’s been true since long before 9/11.
My youngest spent the Fall term in Denmark (through UofA). Same deal. We went to visit him (and other places in Europe) in October. No Visas required, but had to have passports of course. He on the other hand had to have a student visa since he was staying more than 90 days. Which led to a funny thing, for Denmark you you to apply IN PERSON for a visa at one of their consulates. He went to Houston and did it. Then waited, and waited and waited. As his departure date approached, he hadn’t heard anything. There was no reason for him not to be approved. But we were getting worried. He actually left the states without out it. Almost none of the students going got their’s before leaving. The school finally said just tell anyone that ask that you are waiting on it and it should be ok. It was. I was worried though. He finally got it a week or so after arriving in Denmark.
I got the new Driver’s License with all the info in the chip. I’m good to go across the border but I’m staying here.
My favorite vacation spot is in Jasper, in the Glacier National Park of Alberta during the summer. I like Vancouver too but Jasper has trout in the Athabaska River, lots of bears, bald eagles and elk walking down the street like in the Norther Exposure series of years ago.
Clay, good thing about that is that mine is good till 2026. Bad thing, is I worry about that scanned information into the state’s database. With all the breaches these days, I worry about personal information and identity fraud.
[quote]lay, good thing about that is that mine is good till 2026. Bad thing, is I worry about that scanned information into the state’s database. With all the breaches these days, I worry about personal information and identity fraud.
You should be worried. There are a lot of states that sell the drivers license information to marketers. Texas is one of those states and they actually denied that they did it until, I think it was the Austin-American Statesman busted them. The legislature still has not stopped the practice that I know of.