There is good news for those looking to speed up their border crossing experience.
To mitigate ongoing backlog issues at Canadian border crossings, border officials have reopened two Nexus and Free and Secure Trade (FAST) enrollment centers in Canada.
It’s the first time Nexus and FAST offices have opened in Canada since the pandemic began, and federal officials say more offices will open in the future.
the nexus Program, With more than 1.7 million members, it is designed to expedite the border clearance process for its members, while freeing up more time for Canadian and US border security agents to deal with unknown travelers and cargo. or potentially higher risk.
The benefit of Nexus is that it allows those traveling between the two countries to save time by skipping long lines and using the shorter, dedicated Nexus lanes when crossing the border, as well as designated kiosks and electronic gates at major airports, and faster processing. faster at sea crossings.
The reopening of these two Canadian centers is the first phase of a larger plan to address the long backlog of Nexus and FAST, and will increase availability for applicants to book appointments to interview for Nexus pre-approval, the Services Agency said. Canada Border Patrol in a statement Monday.
Those looking to get Nexus approved can now schedule interviews, by appointment only, in Lansdowne, Ontario. (Thousand Island Bridge) and Fort Erie, Ontario. (Puente de la Paz) registration centers, through the trusted traveler programs portal.
Travelers who want to apply will still need to complete a new two-step process, and Canadian offices do not mean applicants don’t have to cross the border to finish the process.
If conditionally approved for Nexus status, travelers can complete the first part of the interview at one of two reopened Canadian enrollment centers, then complete the second part of the interview across the border at the appropriate enrollment centers from USA on the other side. For Lansdowne, that’s Alexandria Bay, NY, and for Fort Erie, that’s Buffalo, NY.
To get conditional approval, both the CBSA and US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) must give approval prior to scheduling the interview portion, and interviews must take place on both sides of the border.
“Nexus and FAST are beneficial to Canada and the United States, and we are working hard to find creative solutions to reduce wait times, address the backlog, and help more travelers obtain Nexus cards,” said Marco Mendicino, Minister of Public Affairs. security, in a press release. “This new two-step process is further proof of our commitment to it. We will continue to find solutions that take advantage of technology and expedite renewals.”
Applicants also have the option of completing a one-step process and scheduling full interviews at enrollment centers in the US, which may be a preferred option for those who do not live near the two centers currently open in Canada.
And those who are already members of the Nexus program and are waiting for an interview can renew their membership before the expiration date to keep their travel benefits for up to five years.
More centers are expected to open at select land border crossings in the future, as this initial phase progresses, the CBSA says.