Im a US citizen planning to go to Canada later this month. Unfortunately, I just realized that my passport is expired. I dont want to renew my passport now because I may not have my new one by the time the trip arrives. I realize how serious this is for travelling abroad. But will border patrol make a huge deal about this? I know people come and go with just a license. Thoughts?
Good point. Why risk it? I initially thought about it because I thought it would be 350+ to expedite my passport through one of those sites. However, if i just show up within 2 weeks of my travel date with proof, I only have to pay the nominal expedite fee of 60.
I wish more states offered EDLs.
Protip - If you find yourself lacking proper ID at a large border crossing, you can keep turning around after getting rejected and eventually one of the guards will let you through. Be prepared for a stiff "Canada is not the 51st state" lecture on the way back.
As to the OP question, you should be OK on an expired passport or the cheaper alternative could be to get a birth certificate - these were not allowed for a while in the mid-2000s but then the requirements were relaxed again.
http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_p.../cis_1082.htmlIf a U.S. citizen traveling to Canada does not have a passport, passport card, or approved alternate document such as a NEXUS card, they must show a government-issued photo ID (e.g. Driver’s License) and proof of U.S. citizenship such as a U.S. birth certificate, naturalization certificate, or expired U.S. passport. Children under 16 need only present proof of U.S. citizenship. (Please see below for important information concerning re-entry into the United States.)
When returning to the United States from Canada, it is very important to note that all U.S. citizens are required to present a valid U.S. passport to enter or re-enter the United States via air. For entry into the United States via land and sea borders, U.S. citizens must present either a U.S. passport, passport card, NEXUS card, Enhanced Drivers License, or other Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI)-compliant document.
I stand by my statement that you will have smoother sailing most of the time with your papers in order, but I would not cancel a driving vacation to Canada over paperwork discovered to be improper at the last minute.
The US State Department says that it requires a passport or similar for re-entry. While I don't believe they enforce the rules, the CBP probably goes by what the state department says it requires.
Your advice probably wouldn't work if the OP looked Mexican while trying to do what you suggest. I assume your personal experience doesn't include that.
Our next-door neighbor's daughter was flying to England with her boyfriend a few years ago.
She didn't know that her Dutch passport had expired.
They told her that it had expired. We asked how Pat, her boyfriend, took it.
"When he saw my red, tear-streaked face, he was pretty sympathetic."