Good news, travellers! A new app that allows Canadians to skip the lines at U.S. customs is coming to even more airports in Canada — and it could make Canada-U.S. travel even easier.
As of Monday, February 27, more Canadians will be able to download U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Mobile Passport Control app.
The app enables eligible travellers to submit their passport and customs declaration in advance via their phone, which streamlines the entry process into the U.S. by “reducing passport control inspection time and overall wait time.”
What’s more, the process – known as Mobile Passport Control (MPC) — does not require pre-approval and does not cost the passenger anything, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Travellers will also be able to skip paper forms and automated passport control kiosks, resulting in “shorter wait times, less congestion and efficient processing.”
The website explains, “MPC provides a more efficient in-person inspection between the CBP officer and the traveller. Since the administrative tasks are performed by the traveller prior to the passport control inspection, MPC reduces passport control inspection time and overall wait times.”
Although passengers using the MPC app will still be processed by a CBP officer in-person, they’ll be given access to a specific processing lane that offers a streamlined service.
The app can only be used at MPC-approved locations, although the number of participating airports continues to increase.
In Canada, Toronto Pearson Airport, Vancouver International Airport and Montreal Trudeau International Airport have all got the facilities to process travellers using MPC.
And, effective February 27, 2023, this list will expand to include the international airports in Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa and Halifax.
Many American airports also offer the technology, including major hubs like Chicago O’Hare Airport, John F. Kennedy, Los Angeles Airport, Tampa Airport and more.
In a recent viral video, Canadian TikToker @Glambygilly called the app the “best travel hack when you’re travelling to the United States.”
Encouraging her followers to download it, she added, “I’m not joking, I got through customs in literally 15 minutes.”
The MPC app can be downloaded for free via the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.
Once it’s been downloaded, passengers can create a profile with their name, date of birth, gender, country of citizenship, and passport information.
In the airport, travellers will then select their airport and terminal, take a selfie and answer relevant travel questions via the app. Then, they’ll receive an electronic receipt which will be shown to CBP officers. Easy!
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.