Visa Activation Prior to US Entry

Visa Activation Prior to US Entry

Welcome to our “Customs With Katy!” blog feature, where we focus on customs-related topics, brought to you by none other than Phillips’ very own Move Coordinator, Katy Duncan! Why is ensuring that you have your Visa on hand and ready so important when relocating across the border? Let’s find out why:


If you are a Canadian citizen and are moving to the USA, you will need to provide a copy of your “permission to enter” the USA to your moving company. The most common “permission to enter” is a Visa.


Due to timing, you may not have this “permission to enter” on hand at the time when you book your move. This is fine for the purposes of first booking your move, but eventually, note that your Visa must be “activated” before your goods can successfully cross the border in your moving company’s vehicle. Activation means that you would need to cross into the USA at a certified customs location. The Visa takes many different forms, but the most common is a stamp in your passport if you are driving over the border or a stamp on your boarding pass if you are travelling by air. Once received, you may then take a picture of your Visa “stamp” and send it to your moving company for their records.


Coordinating the timing of your Visa activation with your moving company is your responsibility as US customs will hold you fully accountable for the proper coordination of your entry occurring before your goods.


To review: Ensure that you familiarize yourself with this main form of “permission to enter” and be ready to show yours to customs before moving into the USA. This will shorten or prevent any delays which may be experienced as a result of unpreparedness. For additional customs tips, we recommend that you routinely check our bi-weekly news updates.


As always, until next time, stay safe and stay customs compliant!


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