Do I need a passport for Niagara Falls?
The Niagara River, attracting over 28 million tourists a year, straddles the border between America and Canada. Which side is the best to view it from? To get the full Niagara Falls experience you will want to cross the border into Ontario. American citizens going to Canada to see Niagara Falls often want to know: do I need a passport for Niagara Falls? Recent updates to travel requirements have changed the way Americans and Canadians can go back and forth between the countries. Make sure you don’t get turned away at the Canadian border!
Do I need a passport for Niagara Falls or Canada?
Travelers want to know: do I need a passport for Canada? The easy answer is YES! While it may be possible to enter Canada without a passport, the U.S. Department of State recommends that ALL international travelers hold a valid passport. While some border crossings may permit you to enter with a birth certificate and photo ID, you can not enter with those documents. However, for any flights leaving and entering the United States, you MUST have a valid passport.
Obviously, all travelers have unique itineraries. Some people are minors, traveling with a tour group, flying domestically within America then driving to Canada: The possibilities are endless. The best way to provide ease and answers before your trip is to understand the bottom line as stated above. All travelers should hold a valid passport. Also, you may qualify for traveling to Canada with a passport card. What is the difference between a passport card and passport book?
Passport Card for Travel to Canada
A passport card is an official U.S. Identification card issued to travelers for land and sea border crossings at Canada, Mexico, The Caribbean, and Bermuda exclusively. The passport card is not valid for any air travel including flights to Canada and Mexico. The card is less expensive than the passport book at the current price of $55 for the application for travelers 16 and older, $40 for applicants under 16, and have renewal fees in the case of expiration for $30. Either way, you should have a passport for Niagara Falls.
Passport Book for Travel to Canada
A U.S. Passport book is a verified second form of identification issued to travelers who intend to travel internationally. This book will allow travelers to fly, drive, and cruise around international borders, unlike the card which justifies its cost. Currently, passport books are valid for 10 years and are $135 for adults. Minors can obtain their passport book for $105. Expedited services or rush passport service is available (with an additional fee) to travelers that need a passport faster than the 4-6 weeks for routine processing.
In regards to children traveling to Niagara Falls in Canada, there are a few things to note. US citizens under the age of 16 traveling from America to Canada and returning to America by land or sea are not required to have a passport book. However, they are able to enter by providing an original or certified copy of their birth certificate. If you are not the parent or legal guardian, you must provide a signed handwritten note by their parent indicating the itinerary of your travel with contact phone numbers included. You simply will be denied entry if you are lacking the proper documentation. Be safe and make sure you have your passport for Niagara Falls.
The US border offers the American Falls and Bridal Veils Falls of the Niagara Falls. However, their bigger brother Horseshoe Falls is on the Canadian side. If you have the proper documentation there should be no limitations to your scenic vacation.
Don’t let a missing document prevent your trip to see the incredible Niagara Falls. No visa is necessary for U.S. citizens traveling to Canada. So grab your passport and head on over to our friendly neighbors to the north.