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Old 08-23-2015, 08:59 AM   #57
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Not interested in starting a debate, just relating what transpired at the border crossing. As suggested, I did not argue governance or philosophy with the border personnel. They were professional and caused no damage to our property and performed the job they are hired to do which is to protect all of us.
I share this so that others understand they should not attempt to cross with weapons. Info sharing (between countries) seems to be in place and I was on their radar.
Canada was lovely by the way. From Bay of Fundi up through PEI we met nice people, stayed in excellent facilities and never felt unsafe. As with any country, state, city or town, I am sure there are places that should be avoided but we did not see anything like that on our travels.
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Old 08-23-2015, 01:32 PM   #58
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Don't let the border keep you from going into Canada. We have gone may times thru Canada onto Alaska and several times into Ontario. They are just doing their jobs to make it a safer country. I used to go into refineries on the Gulf Coast and I can assure you I felt safer in the restricted safety access ones.
No pistols are allowed but rifles are allowed with a permit(if you have Texas license plates-they will ask how many ??)for hunting.
Take passports, insurance papers & money. Fuel costs about $1.00/gal more and beer is about double due to taxes.
Be courteous and have safe travels. It's a safe and wonderful country.
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Old 08-23-2015, 01:48 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by pjnlorrie View Post
Our experience this year (June). Crossed at Calais/St. Stephen. The wife and I are 54, teachers, pulling a TT. Followed the recommended behaviors and courtesies. We were asked, rather forcefully, 3 times if we had any firearms and the consequences explained in no uncertain terms. We were directed to secondary and 3 officers removed EVERYTHING from our vehicle, searched every box, bag, compartment and crevice of our TV as well as the interior of the TT. I believe this was due to my CCW, which in FL requires a FBI background check.
We had no weapons. I choose to visit your country, I'll honor your laws.
Also received a lecture that Canada has no "Right to Defend" laws. Apparently, if attacked one should be proper about it and allow yourself to be killed.
Been there, done that. Crossing at Winnipeg many years ago. I was with a bunch of cops from Denver. It finally stopped after one of them badged the Canadian officer. The problem is that the Canadian media puts out the propaganda that "ALL" Americans have guns and we are dangerous. No exceptions. Sad state of affairs.
If you do own guns and you want to bypass the 3rd degree here's what you do. If you own a shotgun you can download a form online Firearm Users Visiting Canada - Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Fill it out before you get to the port of entry. Declare your shotgun right away and hand the officer the paperwork. Your reason is you plan on camping in the wilderness and need protection from bears. You will have to show the officer the gun. Then you'll have to pay a fee of $25 dollars (it might be more now) and your on your way. I've done it many times and its easy. Leave your pistols and high powered rifles at home.
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Old 08-23-2015, 01:52 PM   #60
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We, too, crossed into Canada from Calais this past June. I, too, have a Florida CCW permit. I left my guns at the Calais Police Department for safekeeping. We went to the border, handed them our passports, dog's vaccination records, and motorhome registration. Passed through with any questions concerning fruit, firearms, and pepper spray. We answered honestly (none) and went through with no problems. Same situation returning back to Calais a month later. Never mentioned my CCW permit, or the fact that I left guns in Calais.
Just my two cents.
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Old 08-23-2015, 02:15 PM   #61
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I also went through Calais last year and never mentioned my Concealed Carry License. No problems, they never came onboard easy.
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Old 08-23-2015, 04:38 PM   #62
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Hi,
Clear up a few myths. Our CBSA has a high alert for firearms and FL/TX having a high number of CCW their suspicion is raised automatically. Also, border points in Ontario and here in BC, seize both mistaken and criminal (smuggled) firearms a day in high numbers.

There are no issues with respect to long guns entering Canada by US citizens as long as they are declared and safely stored for transport. $25 feee and sheet of paper is all it takes. Even handguns can be imported for very specific reasons but the process is longer and requires advance preparations and applications. Sometimes our people see handgun ammo in the conveyance and then assume there is a handgun, not understanding long guns and handguns can share ammo (.44 etc), so if you have it let them know and that the handgun is at home. Trust me, they are not firearms experts.

The CBSA officer who told you we have no "right of self defense" in Canada is dead wrong, but likely what he poorly attempted to convey was we don't have a castle law in Canada. There are many instances where Canadians have used deadly force in defense of their life and property and even if they are charged and it got to court, never convicted. The major difference is that we do not have the "consitutional right" to bear arms and being our histories are very different the culture of firearms is different as well. Our west wasn't "won", law came first and settlers followed.

At the border, CBSA snaps a photo of your plate and all the Inspector sees is if the vehicle plate is reported stolen or the plate has had previous infractions with CBSA and the entry/exit history. When they scan your passport, they only see if you have previous history with CBSA and the entry/exit information. CBSA only has access to NCIC/CPIC and other databases in the secondary examination area if you have been referred, not at the primary inspection line. So the Inspector really has limited information and 30 seconds to decide if a referral is warranted and for what reason.

In our big cities (there is a few we would like to sell or give away), sure there is an anti gun culture and they are a noisy lot, but I can assure you in smaller areas and rural areas the culture is very different, especially on the Prairie Provinces. There aren't a lot of farmhouses or pickup's that don't have old faithful by the door or under the seat. In a country of 33 million, we have 8 million "registered restricted" firearms and a whole lot more long guns that aren't restricted or registered by law!

The main thing in dealing with our CBSA is IF IN DOUBT, DECLARE IT.

So, welcome to CANADA, please travel up here and bring your cash (which is 28% higher against our dollar. We need the money and we love tourists and have lots to offer our American cousins.
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Old 08-23-2015, 05:56 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by brian-nicola View Post
Hi, Clear up a few myths. Our CBSA has a high alert for firearms and FL/TX having a high number of CCW their suspicion is raised automatically. Also, border points in Ontario and here in BC, seize both mistaken and criminal (smuggled) firearms a day in high numbers. There are no issues with respect to long guns entering Canada by US citizens as long as they are declared and safely stored for transport. $25 feee and sheet of paper is all it takes. Even handguns can be imported for very specific reasons but the process is longer and requires advance preparations and applications. Sometimes our people see handgun ammo in the conveyance and then assume there is a handgun, not understanding long guns and handguns can share ammo (.44 etc), so if you have it let them know and that the handgun is at home. Trust me, they are not firearms experts. The CBSA officer who told you we have no "right of self defense" in Canada is dead wrong, but likely what he poorly attempted to convey was we don't have a castle law in Canada. There are many instances where Canadians have used deadly force in defense of their life and property and even if they are charged and it got to court, never convicted. The major difference is that we do not have the "consitutional right" to bear arms and being our histories are very different the culture of firearms is different as well. Our west wasn't "won", law came first and settlers followed. At the border, CBSA snaps a photo of your plate and all the Inspector sees is if the vehicle plate is reported stolen or the plate has had previous infractions with CBSA and the entry/exit history. When they scan your passport, they only see if you have previous history with CBSA and the entry/exit information. CBSA only has access to NCIC/CPIC and other databases in the secondary examination area if you have been referred, not at the primary inspection line. So the Inspector really has limited information and 30 seconds to decide if a referral is warranted and for what reason. In our big cities (there is a few we would like to sell or give away), sure there is an anti gun culture and they are a noisy lot, but I can assure you in smaller areas and rural areas the culture is very different, especially on the Prairie Provinces. There aren't a lot of farmhouses or pickup's that don't have old faithful by the door or under the seat. In a country of 33 million, we have 8 million "registered restricted" firearms and a whole lot more long guns that aren't restricted or registered by law! The main thing in dealing with our CBSA is IF IN DOUBT, DECLARE IT. So, welcome to CANADA, please travel up here and bring your cash (which is 28% higher against our dollar. We need the money and we love tourists and have lots to offer our American cousins.
Well said I am a registered gun owner even though our Canadian laws are over board they are getting slowly getting better thanks to the Conservatives.
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Old 08-31-2015, 08:52 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by pjnlorrie View Post
Not interested in starting a debate, just relating what transpired at the border crossing. As suggested, I did not argue governance or philosophy with the border personnel. They were professional and caused no damage to our property and performed the job they are hired to do which is to protect all of us.
I share this so that others understand they should not attempt to cross with weapons. Info sharing (between countries) seems to be in place and I was on their radar.
Canada was lovely by the way. From Bay of Fundi up through PEI we met nice people, stayed in excellent facilities and never felt unsafe. As with any country, state, city or town, I am sure there are places that should be avoided but we did not see anything like that on our travels.
As Canadians we are happy with our system as im sure you are happy with yours. Suggesting that Canadians have the right to be killed certainly shows disrespect for our laws but I dont wish to debate.
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Old 08-31-2015, 09:09 PM   #65
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Canada Customs is no better or worse than US customs. Both can make your life miserable if they want but for the most part they conduct themselves with professionalism. The last thing they really want is to give people a hard time for the sheer pleasure of it.

Thousands pass back and forth between the two countries every day and how many horror stories do you really hear (ie, something that wasn't the friend of a friend who had a cousin sort of thing?) Yes, leave the guns and ammo at home. Would say the same for any else which is illegal in the destination country but as far as the US and Canada are concerned there is a lot of similarity there. Handguns being the main exception in this case.

Just be clear on where you are going, how long are you staying if they ask. Answer any questions they may have honestly and directly and you should have no problems. Even if you do make an honest mistake on something, as long as it is an honest mistake ITO, they will often let you withdraw your application to enter Canada on the spot if it is a serious problem (ie, you forgot the Smith and Wesson in the glove box) or if it some kind of food issue, they will often just confiscate it and you will be on your way. Probably spend more time in the line up to get to the border than you will talking to them.

If you have a criminal record, be sure that won't affect you by getting in touch with Customs before hand. A CR can disqualify you from entering the country even if the sentence has been served.

This particular topic comes up more than it should. Compared to the kinds of issues that you can get crossing borders in other parts of the world, the US/Can border is a piece of cake provided you are on the up and up. This is the longest undefended border in the world. There is a reason for that, we get along and generally respect each others countries. So long as that continues, there is no reason to be overly worried about customs.
Yep, a DWI/DUI conviction can barr you from entering CA.
A U.S.A. border agent told me (2012) they had instructions to single-out every 100th vehicle and inspect inside and out, otherwise they only asked questions unless something made them suspicious.
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