canadian experience at the boarder

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canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dangerous » Thu Jun 21, 2012 11:17 am

what foods have you had trouble bringing across the boarder? i have several food sensitivities and would like to bring some shelf stable foods with me that i am 100% certain won't bite me. we are crossing from Windsor, Ontario.

any advice? warnings?

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:01 pm

sage_ wrote:what foods have you had trouble bringing across the boarder? i have several food sensitivities and would like to bring some shelf stable foods with me that i am 100% certain won't bite me. we are crossing from Windsor, Ontario.

any advice? warnings?

Hi Sage,

I have driven down to Burning Man multiple times from Saskatoon.

I have usually planned to purchase my food once I was in the US. Since food is cheaper there, and I had restricted space it made sense.

I did discover that some fruit was not allowed. If it has had the label taken off - they probably wont let you across with it. But if it is fruit grown in the US, it is ok. (Well that was what the border guard in Climax SK said.)

Here are some websites that might help you figure out what you can cross with:

https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail ... rsonal-use
http://www.ezbordercrossing.com/the-ins ... ted-items/

If you are driving across the US, most major US cities have some pretty decent health food stores. In 07 I went to Whole Foods in Salt Lake City, Utah. I believe their web site has the location of all of there stores.

I'd check the US food rules and make sure you are ok. The best way to deal with the US border is to be honest.

Good luck!

Maybe I'll see ya on the playa...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dangerous » Fri Jun 22, 2012 5:31 am

stretch80 wrote:
Here are some websites that might help you figure out what you can cross with:

https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail ... rsonal-use
http://www.ezbordercrossing.com/the-ins ... ted-items/

Maybe I'll see ya on the playa...


thank you! this was very helpful.

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Canoe » Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:55 am

For equipment:
Canoe wrote:Make sure you have a photo of the equipment obviously taken in Canada. Print it out. As you leave Canada, stop at BSA and get a declaration that you're taking the equipment you own out of the country. It's a little paper card listing the equipment. Serial numbers are ideal, but not required. This way you won't pay tax on it when you return to Canada.

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=54138#p800978

Remember: at the border, answer the question asked, honestly and simply. Don't confuse them by volunteering more information then necessary.

Canoe wrote:
engineer2012 wrote:...the purpose of my stay in the US? ...

I'm going camping (in the desert). Black Rock City, Nevada.


Canoe wrote:
Shambala wrote:I'm meeting some friends to go camping! :D

And the agent says "What's their names and addresses, where are they from and how do you know them? How about you write all that down and then we'll discuss it."

Don't open doors you don't have to. You can explain it, but they're working to protect their country, so don't waste their time making them think they have to take you into a room and interrogate you to verify your intentions. It also wastes your time, you may miss your flight, or they may feel uncomfortable enough that you're denied entry.

Flying in, and entry by other means, you are required to provide the duration of your stay and the address you'll be staying at.

645 Journey Street
Black Rock City, Nevada.

(mix the street address up a bit, we don't want their computer showing 20,000 people planning on staying at the same address)

Don't volunteer (don't waste their time or risk confusing them unnecessarily), but if they ask for more detail: "attending the week long Burning Man Art Festival at Black Rock City, Nevada. It's North of Reno, near Gerlach, Nevada." Adding any additional time you'll spend in the country, like seeing Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, etc.. You're another boring tourist bringing useless stuff you'll never need.

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Canoe » Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:04 am

stretch80 wrote:...If you are driving across the US, most major US cities have some pretty decent health food stores. In 07 I went to Whole Foods in Salt Lake City, Utah. I believe their web site has the location of all of there stores...

Selection/variety in Reno is better than any I've seen in Canada. Watch prices, but usually much better too. You'll find products you love but can't get in Canada...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Fri Jun 22, 2012 9:49 am

I have flown down for the burn 2 times and driven 3.

When at the border/customs I always say I am going camping in the Nevada desert. Usually the border agent says "Going to Burning Man?" to which I reply "Yes" - When asked my address I usually give the approximate BRC camping address 642 D Road, BRC, NV & zip code (which translates to 6:42 D). And honestly answer any additional questions.

Never try to evade a question. It will delay your trip.

If you are travelling by vehicle, make sure you know everyone. Ask the blunt questions: "Is there any legal reason why you would be denied entry into the US? Any criminal issues? None? Are you sure? - Cause if you do have an issue with customs I will ____ (insert threat here)" Remember that if one person gets denied entry into the US, the entire vehicle occupants may also be denied. (All customs agents access the same system so a 2 agent crossing is no different than a 200 agent crossing...)

Make sure you are 100% legally clear as well. Do you know the history of the vehicle itself? Is it a rental? Make sure that the vehicle has been swept for anything that would draw negative attention from any law enforcement agent. Again, blunt questions are good. Is anyone carrying anything that would get them in trouble? IF any of these questions is "YES" you will need to assess your options at that point.

Check the US customs web site for disallowed items and make sure you are good-to-go. Propane cylinders and white fuel, etc, can be purchased in Nevada (lower cost too).

Since you have a long haul (longer by about a day than I would) it might make sense to pick up as much supplies as possible in Fernley/Reno. Why waste the gas hauling water and such across the entire width of the US??
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby theCryptofishist » Fri Jun 22, 2012 10:00 am

I don't even want to talk about Deb's experience, but that "Is there any legal reason why you would be denied entry into the US? Any criminal issues? None? Are you sure? - Cause if you do have an issue with customs I will ____ (insert threat here)" is mighty useful. (Unless, of course, like Deb you had no idea that an issue already taken care of would come to bite you in the ass...)
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Fri Jun 22, 2012 10:11 am

theCryptofishist wrote:I don't even want to talk about Deb's experience, but that "Is there any legal reason why you would be denied entry into the US? Any criminal issues? None? Are you sure? - Cause if you do have an issue with customs I will ____ (insert threat here)" is mighty useful. (Unless, of course, like Deb you had no idea that an issue already taken care of would come to bite you in the ass...)

100%

Never assume that any past "issue" is dealt with. Contact your local RCMP and find out. Check with US customs just to be sure.

I did a quick search and found the following:

Entering the U.S. and Canada with DUI offenses: https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/402

Entry into the U.S. - Canadian with criminal record or overstay, waiver: https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/760

I have always driven down with people I met on the internet. Always asked questions, so far, never had problem. Getting to know your co-riders before starting the trip is always a good plan.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dragonpilot » Fri Jun 22, 2012 1:09 pm

Also you will most likely drive down US 395. If you decide to drive past the turn off for Cedarville, CA and go into Alturas, CA for gas, groceries, and booze you'll have to pass thru a California Agricultural Inspection station. They're just looking for fresh produce and meats that don't meet California safe veggie/meat standards.

Packaged stuff should be OK...or just don't buy any produce and meats until you get to Alturas. The worst that can happen is that your goods could be confiscated. I wouldn't worry about fines or detention. The inspectors are pretty laid back...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Fri Jun 22, 2012 5:08 pm

dragonpilot wrote:Also you will most likely drive down US 395. If you decide to drive past the turn off for Cedarville, CA and go into Alturas, CA for gas, groceries, and booze you'll have to pass thru a California Agricultural Inspection station. They're just looking for fresh produce and meats that don't meet California safe veggie/meat standards.

Packaged stuff should be OK...or just don't buy any produce and meats until you get to Alturas. The worst that can happen is that your goods could be confiscated. I wouldn't worry about fines or detention. The inspectors are pretty laid back...

Uh, She is driving from north of Michigan, so probably I-80...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby catinthefunnyhat » Fri Jun 22, 2012 5:17 pm

Wait.. Canada's not just that state north of Washington?

;)

I worked for a few years as a travel agent. One of the most frustrating things I had to do was call car companies to rent vehicles (when they couldn't be booked online for whatever reason). Frustrating because no matter where the vehicle was to be rented, the person I spoke to was in the southern US, and they were always flummoxed by bookings in Canada. I remember one woman, I told her I needed a car for Winnipeg. She said, "What state is that in?" I said, "Manitoba." She said, "Where's that?" I said, "Oh, sorry, It's in Canada." After a long pause, she said, "Canada... that's near Michigan, right?"

Sigh....
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Fri Jun 22, 2012 5:28 pm

catinthefunnyhat wrote:Wait.. Canada's not just that state north of Washington?

;)

I worked for a few years as a travel agent. One of the most frustrating things I had to do was call car companies to rent vehicles (when they couldn't be booked online for whatever reason). Frustrating because no matter where the vehicle was to be rented, the person I spoke to was in the southern US, and they were always flummoxed by bookings in Canada. I remember one woman, I told her I needed a car for Winnipeg. She said, "What state is that in?" I said, "Manitoba." She said, "Where's that?" I said, "Oh, sorry, It's in Canada." After a long pause, she said, "Canada... that's near Michigan, right?"

Sigh....

I get that blank look when I say I live north of Montana, usually I need to explain where that is in reference to California... Yup.

Not everyone draws a blank, but there are those "wow?" moments ;)
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dangerous » Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:38 pm

wow..before you all replied i was only worried about my gluten- soy- grain-free-shelf stable pepperettes :(

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:53 pm

sage_ wrote:wow..before you all replied i was only worried about my gluten- soy- grain-free-shelf stable pepperettes :(

sorry my dear,

I know it is a lot to think about, but my intention was to make your trip as painless as possible...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Canoe » Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:34 pm

catinthefunnyhat wrote:... the person I spoke to was in the southern US, and they were always flummoxed by bookings in Canada. ..."Canada... that's near Michigan, right?"...[/size]

At least now, with electric cars available, driving in the south with a Canadian car with a block heater for the engine, the plug sticking out of the front grill no longer draws "Is that a secret electric car or something?" Then you have to try to explain about block heaters, which they couldn't believe. Now they'll gladly assume electric car and ignore it.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dangerous » Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:35 am

stretch80 wrote:sorry my dear,
I know it is a lot to think about, but my intention was to make your trip as painless as possible...


no worries :) i am traveling with a 7 time Burner; his last burn and my first.

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Sat Jun 23, 2012 12:12 pm

sage_ wrote:
stretch80 wrote:sorry my dear,
I know it is a lot to think about, but my intention was to make your trip as painless as possible...


no worries :) i am traveling with a 7 time Burner; his last burn and my first.

That is good! My first burn trip was a short 24 hour drive to BRC with a 5 time burner, it is amazing how much good advice she gave me.

Compared to TO, BRC is going to be a dry hell-bed. Make sure you have a decent moisturizing lotion, good sun screen. Test all your gear at home (learn how to put stuff together ahead of time). Carry a headlamp with you to the portapotties at night (seriously, do it - you will thank me later). No means no, scream it if you need to. If something goes wrong, ask for help. Give someone a hand if you can, its the base form of participation. lastly, Expect Nothing. - all of your preconceived notions are most likely wrong.

Not every minute on the playa is going to be fun, just remember: "Nothing good is easy!"

Make sure you have your ticket, before starting the drive - before leaving your block, again before leaving the city, and probably a few times on the drive. When you hit gate road, find your ticket and have it ready. Did I mention, check your ticket? :)

Perhaps I'll see ya on the playa!
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dragonpilot » Sat Jun 23, 2012 5:58 pm

stretch80 wrote:
sage_ wrote:
stretch80 wrote:Make sure you have your ticket, before starting the drive - before leaving your block, again before leaving the city, and probably a few times on the drive. When you hit gate road, find your ticket and have it ready. Did I mention, check your ticket? :)


And just today I showed up at a state park without my season pass...which was sitting in my dresser drawer at home...cost me $10 extra!
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Rice » Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:13 pm

dragonpilot wrote:And just today I showed up at a state park without my season pass...which was sitting in my dresser drawer at home...cost me $10 extra!

My personal best woops is going on a road trip and realizing my wallet was at home at the first gas stop.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby cordsally » Sun Jun 24, 2012 5:23 am

Glad to visit this topic but no words to share right at the moment..................... :arrow:
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Maizie » Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:17 pm

I'm from Saskatoon as well (hi, Rice!), and am full of food allergies. Last year was my first burn, and I was super paranoid about it. I didn't bring any food across the border with me last year, so can't help with that, but I can make a recommendation for shopping.

I cannot recommend Whole Foods enough. There are just no words. They have tons of foods available there that I can't find in Canada, there is an entire non-dairy frozen dessert section, and the prices are quite comparable to what we already pay in Saskatoon. I actually found Whole Foods to be way better at providing food for my particular allergies than a lot of stores locally here, so it was really exciting for me. They are really awesome in terms of catering to specific food requirements too -- it was just mind-blowing, compared to what I've seen here.

I'm already excited to go back this year . . . mostly for the burn, but also for the food!
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Clar-i-ty » Fri May 03, 2013 10:52 am

Oh wow. If Whole Foods is comparable to prices in Saskatoon, it's even more expensive than I thought! Yikes!
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby lemur » Fri May 03, 2013 11:22 am

BRING LOTS OF ROLLING PAPERS.

YOU CANT GET THEM IN AMERICA.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby dragonpilot » Sat May 04, 2013 12:23 pm

Lemur...bad boy!

They sell papers at Black Rock City...next to the ice sales.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby lemur » Sat May 04, 2013 1:08 pm

there was someone splainin their story a few years ago on tribe, a canadian.. who for some reason didnt think you could get rolling papers in merica.

so they brought some..

and for some reason, the combination of 'burning man' 'rolling papers' and whatever else.. caused the border guys to be like NO WAY.. and turned the person back.

they 'missed' buring man 'because' of it.. ..at least, so they widely proclaimed.


heh.

i tells ya

some people.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Savannah » Tue May 07, 2013 11:10 pm

I believe it.

Canada tried to keep me out some years ago by asking me if I had pepper spray in three different ways. I think they were really hoping to get me on that.

Ladies carry the pepper spray, right? No? Goddammit, we have to let her in. A 22 year old wants to go drinking and dancing with her 19 year old friends. She's the WORST.

If I'd been thinking clearly, I would have stolen a street sign on my way out.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Turtleburp » Wed May 08, 2013 12:37 am

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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed May 08, 2013 6:30 pm

Savannah wrote:I believe it.

Canada tried to keep me out some years ago by asking me if I had pepper spray in three different ways. I think they were really hoping to get me on that.

Ladies carry the pepper spray, right? No? Goddammit, we have to let her in. A 22 year old wants to go drinking and dancing with her 19 year old friends. She's the WORST.

If I'd been thinking clearly, I would have stolen a street sign on my way out.

With the magic of ebay, you can buy that street sign and claim you stole on the way out...
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby Savannah » Wed May 08, 2013 6:42 pm

theCryptofishist wrote:
Savannah wrote:I believe it.

Canada tried to keep me out some years ago by asking me if I had pepper spray in three different ways. I think they were really hoping to get me on that.

Ladies carry the pepper spray, right? No? Goddammit, we have to let her in. A 22 year old wants to go drinking and dancing with her 19 year old friends. She's the WORST.

If I'd been thinking clearly, I would have stolen a street sign on my way out.

With the magic of ebay, you can buy that street sign and claim you stole on the way out...


But I wouldn't really be able to enjoy it unless I'd genuinely stuck it to Canada.
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Re: canadian experience at the boarder

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed May 08, 2013 7:19 pm

Savannah wrote:
theCryptofishist wrote:
Savannah wrote:I believe it.

Canada tried to keep me out some years ago by asking me if I had pepper spray in three different ways. I think they were really hoping to get me on that.

Ladies carry the pepper spray, right? No? Goddammit, we have to let her in. A 22 year old wants to go drinking and dancing with her 19 year old friends. She's the WORST.

If I'd been thinking clearly, I would have stolen a street sign on my way out.

With the magic of ebay, you can buy that street sign and claim you stole on the way out...


But I wouldn't really be able to enjoy it unless I'd genuinely stuck it to Canada.

*sigh* Savannah, you and your odd obsession with authenticity... *shakes head* you'll never fit in, you know...
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