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Old 12-09-2014, 01:45 AM   #1
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The NEXUS Program

LarryandLiz mentioned the NEXUS program in another thread on this forum, and it got me wondering how useful NEXUS is to those Escape owners who have signed up for it.

For example, how helpful is it to folks who cross the border a couple of times a year towing a trailer? And how is it beneficial when making cross-border flights?

Thanks for your thoughts on this.

Travel often? Apply for NEXUS - Official Web site
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Old 12-09-2014, 03:02 AM   #2
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Picture this; you're flying out of Orlando. The security area has about 20 xray machines and lines. There's like hundreds of people lined up. Your boarding pass says "TSA pre-check". You walk over to the side where it says TSA pre-check, down a condoned off pathway, up to the folks with a sign telling you all the things you don't have to do, like take off shoes etc. They smile at you because you're a "trusted traveler" and you're on your way. You do feel slightly guilty because all those other people are still in long lineups.

Need I say more. Oh, yes it works well with the trailer too.

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Old 12-09-2014, 11:57 AM   #3
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I don't have a NEXUS pass, but I fly out of Edmonton, Ottawa, and Vancouver and I've noticed that security bypass. It puts you in the same security check, but without the wait in line to get there; while waiting in the normal line, I've never seen a NEXUS passenger wait for more than a minute.

I haven't seen a land border crossing equivalent, but I haven't driven across the border for years; the CBSA web page for NEXUS land crossings says there are special lanes.
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Old 12-09-2014, 01:02 PM   #4
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Hi: Catchlight... Nexus is not avail. to me as I'm on the wanted list for attempting to import a 1/4 of a red pepper into the US. Alf
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Old 12-09-2014, 02:13 PM   #5
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It's handy as long as everyone in your party is a Nexus member. If not, you get fast tracked and your party gets delayed.
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Old 12-09-2014, 04:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P;76135. It puts you in the same security check, but without the wait in line to get there; while waiting in the normal line, I've never seen a NEXUS passenger wait for more than a minute.

I haven't seen a land border crossing equivalent, but I haven't driven across the border for years; the [URL="http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/prog/nexus/land-terre-eng.html"
CBSA web page for NEXUS land crossings[/URL] says there are special lanes.
Not quite the same security check. Usually fewer or sometimes no questions and more relaxed.

The Nexus lane for vehicles is usually so much faster. Whenever they show aerial shots of border lineups, with cars backed up a long ways, we always joke, oh look at that, one car heading for the Nexus booth. I really don't understand why more people don't apply for the card. Better for me though, don't want it getting too popular.

Lucky we still have our cards. My wife was caught taking two green onions across the border

Yes, it's all or nothing with card. If others don't have a card you can't use the Nexus lane, just the regular one.

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Old 12-09-2014, 07:03 PM   #7
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I don't have Nexus, since I don't frequent Canada, but I do have Global Entry, which expedites your return to the US only. I may get Nexus later if I find I'm doing a lot more foreign travel.
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:17 PM   #8
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Proximity to the border could also be a factor. So many Canadians live within easy driving distance of the border, about 40 minutes in my case, that it's useful more frequently. Also, a lot of Canadians are frequent cross border shoppers. Still, the two interviews and paperwork seem to reduce the number that are taking advantage of the program.

Global entry is also probably more useful for Canadians as we're more likely to be landing at a US hub after being overseas before continuing on to Canada.

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Old 12-09-2014, 07:27 PM   #9
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Proximity to the border could also be a factor. So many Canadians live within easy driving distance of the border, about 40 minutes in my case, that it's useful more frequently. Also, a lot of Canadians are frequent cross border shoppers. Still, the two interviews and paperwork seem to reduce the number that are taking advantage of the program.

Global entry is also probably more useful for Canadians as we're more likely to be landing at a US hub after being overseas before continuing on to Canada.

Ron
Yeah I don't think it works that way Ron. Global Entry is a CBP program and it also gives you TSA precheck privileges, but its for US residents only.
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Old 12-10-2014, 03:19 PM   #10
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Ron,
Have you ever crossed the border from Canada into Sumas? Our recollection of the lanes is that you don't have access to the Nexus line until you get quite close to the actual stations. Of course, we didn't have a Nexus card so I am not sure if we are correct in this. I am wondering if we would still have to wait in a long line (potentially) for awhile before being able to move into the Nexus lane? Also, what I gather from what you said is that even having a trailer in tow, those with Nexus cards will not have to go through the searches that occasionally happen with trailers and RVs. Is this correct? Seems like a great option to me; just eliminating the wait time and the stress makes it well worth the investment.
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Old 12-10-2014, 04:29 PM   #11
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but its for US residents only.
I have Global Entry and the kiosk works for me. I've used it in DFW and LA returning from South America or Australia.

Linda, yah, the entry into the Sumas crossing is a bit contorted and we don't use it much. It's possible in a huge line up situation that you'd have to wait a bit with the regular folks until you could turn into the Nexus lane. Even in a worse case situation it's still way better.

I don't think any security agency would be silly enough to say "Hey we checked you out so we'll never check again" In fact, the first two times we used it we wondered what the advantage was because we still got the questions etc. After that it's been clear sailing. But you're still eligible for random checks, it's what keeps people from being tempted to abuse the system.

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Old 12-10-2014, 04:55 PM   #12
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When I went to Chilliwack last month I went through the regular slow lane. I've had a Washington State Enhanced Drivers License for some time and thought it was good only for proving my citizenship without having to carry a passport when going into Canada. That was the intent when I first got it several years ago and before the NEXUS program.

The border guards, going both ways, accepted the EDL but made no mention of my being able use it for the fast lane. Now with all this talk I decided to do some investigation. And what did I discover? Yes, by golly, an EDL can be used in the NEXUS lanes so when I go to pick up “Escaping Reality” next month I’ll give it a try.
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Old 12-10-2014, 05:11 PM   #13
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That's great for you but I'm a little surprised. I have an enhanced license also and I'd never heard that it could be used in the Nexus lane and the signage doesn't seem to indicate that. The process in obtaining both items is quite different and the Nexus process does require dual country interviews (in one location) as well as fingerprints and an iris scan which the enhanced license didn't require. But if it works for you, good, you'll save time.

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Old 12-10-2014, 05:16 PM   #14
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Perhaps what was meant was that the Washington State EDL can be used in lieu of a passport and in conjunction with a Nexus pass, not in lieu of a Nexus pass?
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:34 PM   #15
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Perhaps what was meant was that the Washington State EDL can be used in lieu of a passport and in conjunction with a Nexus pass, not in lieu of a Nexus pass?
That seems like a probable situation because before you can even get to the booth you have to stop at a sensor station and hold up Nexus cards for each person in the vehicle.

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Old 12-10-2014, 06:40 PM   #16
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I just signed up for the first steps of a Nexus card online and I noticed that if you go through the government customs sites (U.S. or Canada), the fee is $50. If you go through a third party, it is much more (I saw from $100 to $200 or more in company fees, in addition to the $50 background check fee). Quite a rip-off!
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Old 12-10-2014, 07:00 PM   #17
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Wow, didn't know that non US residents could use Global Entry, Ron. Good to know, thanks.
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Old 12-10-2014, 07:24 PM   #18
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It's not authoritative, but Types of Documentation » ezbordercrossing.com looks like a good summary of the various border-crossing documents.
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Old 12-11-2014, 01:46 AM   #19
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Perhaps what was meant was that the Washington State EDL can be used in lieu of a passport and in conjunction with a Nexus pass, not in lieu of a Nexus pass?
Good possibility, Karen. It was the state DOL that told me the EDL could be used in the NEXUS lane and, perhaps, not fully understanding what I was asking.
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:28 AM   #20
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Hi: Catchlight... Nexus is not avail. to me as I'm on the wanted list for attempting to import a 1/4 of a red pepper into the US. Alf
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For sure you have to be careful what you try taking into the US as far as food is concerned. Coming into Canada we often have groceries and are never asked what kinds of food.

Just three days ago I made the mistake of saying we were going to church and a "pot luck" lunch but said we had no food. Well, suddenly we happened to be randomly selected for search. Pulled into garage three agents checked the car and one asked "who packed the food." My mind reeled for a second wondering what I had left in the trunk then again said we have no food. The intent was to go to a grocery store in the US before church knowing the sticky food rules. They also handed us a sheet outlining what is and isn't allowed into the US for food.

We would consider Nexus but usually always land crossing and our Nexus lanes are open only two hours weekday mornings to US and two hours afternoons coming back.

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