As of June 1, 2009, all U.S. and Canadian citizens who are 16 and older, travelling between the U.S. and Canada by land or sea, are required to present a valid passport or other alternative documents as determined by the Department of Homeland Security.
Please check with your airline or national transportation authority ahead of time so you aren’t disappointed. If you are flying you will need the full address of the hotel at the top of the hotel page. We suggest printing this out and putting it inside your passport. In response to questions about the purpose of your visit it’s useful to say something like, “I’m going to a little SF music convention in Mississauga to hang out with a bunch of friends”. This is both truthful and places you in the category of odd but harmless.
Here is everything you need in one place about passing through customs into Canada painlessly, from the Canada Border Services Agency. Since there seems to be difficulty in locating this information for return to the USA, here is info from US Homeland Security. We couldn’t find Immigration information for return to Britain, but here is HM Revenue and Customs information for all the goods you may purchase.
If someone has a link for the EU in general, or Germany in particular, we’d appreciate if you let us know.
FYI for folks crossing the border
We are always polite, smile, say please and thank you, and try to look harmless. Here’s a note for anyone asking about your stay at the convention.
“FilKONtario is organized by a not for profit group – The Filk Society of Upper Canada, and is run entirely by volunteers. All of our attendees come to sing and play with their friends and no one is paid to play. Our Guests of Honour are refunded their travel and hotel costs.”