I-194 Waiver Forum

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append delete DanP

In Toronto do you guys always get referred to secondary?

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append delete #26. PJ

I haven't had to go into secondary at pre-clearance, at least at YVR, in over 3 years now at least, only when I cross by land do I have to park and go in to get a card for 6 months. I was told not to use the automated kiosks at YVR and to use the "visa" line is all. I get asked the purpose of my trip (usually business), how long and why do I do for work. Then I usually get a stamp and I'm on my way after they inspect my waiver. It would be great to be able to use the kiosks as to speed things up as at least at YVR, Nexus users get priority and seem to make the lone go slower. Overall I'd say it's much more relaxed then I remember it being.

append delete #27. WaiveMeIn

@John Rogers

It does seem kind of random. At one time, they even made me do fingerprint. And each time I got a stamp, the stamp was good for six months for each visit (new electronic I-94 each time), even though I ended up staying at most only a week.


They took me to secondary, but I was fortunate enough not to encounter much problem with their questioning, and they never asked me for my phone/computer I had with me, only asked basic stuff like who was I visiting, how long would I stay, etc.

append delete #28. WaiveMeIn


I never went through the preclearance at YVR, as I did most of my flying from YYZ, but I'm glad to hear you hardly ever got called to secondary.

If you don't mind me asking, did you get six months each time they stamped you, and did you get stamped everytime, or only when your previous stamp had expired?

I'm curious because, I kept getting new stamp for six months each time, even though the old stamps were not yet expired.

append delete #29. PJ1


They stamp it every time now regardless of how old the previous one was. I think the date is more important for the land crossing since they don't need to send you in for secondary where as now they do everything at the first agent without having to go to secondary. I figure if I crossed by land with the stamp from YVR I wouldn't have to go in if it was within the 6 month window. Overall the experience has been much less anxiety inducing than it used to be other than some really scrutinize the waiver although I'm sure people try to cross with fake ones. I don't understand why they just don't add something linked to our profiles so they know an active waiver is on file and then you wouldn't even need to carry that letter and potentially lose it.

append delete #30. Jamie9260

In Calgary and Edmonton i handed them my passport and waiver they breifly looked at it and let me no hassel

append delete #31. Hercdoc

I am travelling for first time on a waiver, crossing by air travel into U.S from calgary from connecting flights. I am stressed to the max as I am a professional travelling with colleagues and am trying to reduce and embarrassment if I am pulled into secondary. Is there anything I can do to expedite/mitigate any issues. Ie: go to a border crossing by land to get a 6 month pass first? I am also trying to ensure I dont miss my connecting flight.

append delete #32. Becca

When travelling to USA via air do you get in the ‘visa’ line up at customs or go to the keyask? First time travelling with a 5 year waiver and I’m freaking out ! What can I expect ? please tell me the process

append delete #33. John Rogers

@Herdoc I would go to the border by land if possible before your travel and get an I-194 Card. This will help you NOT be dragged into secondary when you fly.

@Becca You travel as per normal EXCEPT you show the waiver. The first time you use it its very possible you will be pulled into secondary.

append delete #34. jazzsax1

@Hercdoc or simply go to the airport without your companions.

I guess for me I'm lucky. Anyone I would travel with including work / professional friends know my circumstances so it's a non issue.

append delete #35. Adelaide


@John Rogers

I'm hoping to get a waiver later this year (as I mentioned it's 90% sure I'll be coming to you to get this done - I have an overstay and that's all).

Just to clarify - does a person get dragged into secondary with a waiver no matter what? ...And in secondary are they trying to "catch you" on something else or is it more of just a formality?

If you go to the land border and get the I-194 card BEFORE you fly are you still put into secondary when you fly?

append delete #36. John Rogers


This is what is SUPPOSED to happen.

The first time you use your waiver you are taken into secondary. Then left alone for 6 months. The next time you travel AFTER 6 months, they take you into secondary again. Its to check CPIC and also authenticate the waiver is real. Also, if you enter in may 2019 and they don't hear from you again until may 2022, they may check to see if Canada has a record of you re-entering.

I am sure people will tell experiences of things that did not happen exactly like this, but this is technically how it is supposed to work.

append delete #37. Becca

This is my first travel with the waiver and it’s for a work event with work people so I’m hoping there are no issues. We have 2 hour stop over in Toronto. Is this long enough ? What will they do in secondary ? What do I need to bring ? Just passport and letter?

append delete #38. John Rogers

@Becca it should be enough but you can't control that. Maybe go to the border and get an I-94 card in advance of flying?


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