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Green card, no passport -- any problems at entry?

Discussion in 'Visitors' started by katz, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. Hi there,

    Quick question -- I need to visit a friend in Canada, briefly (one day), driving from Detroit. Situation is --- I am a green card holder (it does not expire for a while), but my foreign national passport (Russian) has expired in 2006, and I never renewed it.

    Are a green card and a US driver's license enough to enter Canada? I will bring my passport with me, but the fact that it's expired -- would that be an issue?

    Thanks all!
  2. As long as you're driving, you'll be fine with just the green card and driver's license.

    Also, make sure you have your car registration and that your insurance is valid in Canada.
  3. To add to that, please leave your expired passport at home. Just do as Thaiguy wrote.
  4. Thanks for a quick response, guys (gals?)! :)

    Yup, I'll be driving -- a Hertz rental car (any issues with rentals?). Not sure how the rental registration would fit, but we'll see.

    Re: expired passport -- pardon me for being a pest, but... Why not taking it with me? I wouldn't show it unless asked for it, of course...
  5. Only Canadian citizens and residents are restricted from driving a U.S. rental car into Canada. As a U.S. resident, this restriction does not apply to you. However, you MUST show the car rental agreement /lease, and a valid/unexpired U.S. driver's licence. Don't forget to buy the car rental's insurance.

    At this time, until December 2007, U.S. citizens and residents are not required to show their passports when crossing the border(s) by land - Passport requirement by Land is tentatively set for January 2008. Your passport is an added proof of your citizenship and your visa stamp, but don't forget that all this information is already on your "green card." Your "green card" shows your citizenship as well as a validity date.

    So, if the current law does not require you to show a passport, you don't even need to have an expired one on you, even if your intention is to show it to them upon request, because they will request for your passport - it's standard procedure. But if you don't have it on you, the current law requires that you can still show your green card and your valid state driver's license /identification card. They cannot hold it against you for not having a passport - the law does not say so yet; the law will say so in January 2008, by which time everybody crossing land borders is required to show a passport for land travel.

    If you happen to have a passport on you while crossing the border, then that passport must be unexpired. This is so, because when you have a combination of travel documents on you, say, a valid green card and a valid U.S. driver's license plus a passport, the passport supercedes those other documents. And, if the passport is expired, border personnel can always exercise their discretion in using the expired passport as grounds for not letting you travel outside of the U.S., or into Canada.

    At the same time, they can let you cross with the expired passport, and make a notation of it in the database, BUT when re-entering the U.S. after your 1 day trip to Canada, you might then be required to show a valid and unexpired passport in order to re-enter the U.S. since you showed a passport when leaving the U.S.. And, I am sure you will not have a valid /unexpired passport within a day.

    Both Canada and the U.S., currently do not require a passport for land travel.

    You are only going to Canada for 1 day.

    Save yourself any potential problems and from being in a state of limbo outside of the U.S until you get a new passport from your country. In your own best interest, leave the passport at home. And, upon your return to the U.S., work on getting a valid passport because come January 2008, then you're going to need it.
  6. Wow, Libra -- THANKS for such a detailed answer! Makes a lot of sense to leave the passport at home for this trip. :)
  7. Hi Katz,
    I am in the same situation. Have you gone on this trip yet? Can you please confirm if you were able to enter Canada/ re-enter the US with just the green card? Your answer will be a lot of help as I am driving all the way from New Jersey. Thanks!
  8. I've done the opposite - Can/US/Can - without any problems.
  9. I want to get visa to pay a visit in canada to my friend i have a us greencard?

    Sir i am farhana khan I am a US Green Card holder i been in UAE last coiuple of months i got a job and a little business. i have a vacation coming up and i want to visit my friend in canada for 15 days and come back to uae. i am woundering what do i need to do to get there for vacation. i have heard from a lots of people for green card holders no need visa its a entry. but i am thinking about geting a visit visa so i dont have no posibility of any problem. what i need to do to get that Visa stamped? thank you.

  10. I didnt know who to start a new topic.
    But with the new laws do I need a passport if I have a U.S green card (Mexico)? I know Im exempt from a visa but is that the same of a passport? Im going on July on vacation and might travel by ferry or train.
    and If i need a passport do I need one from Mexico?

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