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Travel Documents & Check-In

Ensure a smooth journey by understanding the travel documents required for your international ferry voyage on The CAT.

Let's get you ready for your adventure.

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Know Before You Go

Canadian law requires that all persons entering Canada carry proof of citizenship and identity.

For tourist visits to Canada of less than 180 days, U.S. citizens do not need visas. Other types of travel generally require visas. Visit the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website for current information.

If you have a criminal record, you may be unable to enter Canada. To determine whether you are criminally inadmissible and get information about how to overcome this finding, refer to the IRCC website. Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officials determine if you can enter Canada in accordance with Canadian law.

Children under 16 only need proof of U.S. citizenship.

Lawful permanent residents of the U.S.

Lawful permanent residents of the United States must show these documents for all methods of travel to Canada:

  • a valid passport from their country of nationality (or an equivalent acceptable travel document) and
  • a valid green card (or equivalent valid proof of status in the United States)

A complete list of acceptable status documents for lawful permanent residents of the U.S.

As per the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), Canadian citizens aged 16 years and older must present one of the following documents when entering the United States by land or water:

The WHTI-compliant document you choose to use must be valid for the duration of your stay.

Canadian citizens aged 15 years and under entering the United States by land or water require one of the following documents:

  • a passport
  • an original or a copy of a birth certificate
  • an original Canadian citizenship certificate
Canadian Permanent Residents

Canadian permanent residents may need a non-immigrant visa to enter the United States.

You must obtain this visa from the U.S. authorities before entering the country. You must also have a valid passport from your country of citizenship.

For more information visit Cross U.S. Borders – U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

If you are a citizen of a country that is part of the visa waiver program (VWP), you don’t need a visa to enter the U.S. for stays up to 90 days. Instead, you must obtain pre-travel authorization via the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to your departure.

U.S. permanent residents

Canadians who are permanent residents of the United States must present a valid U.S. permanent resident card upon entry.

All passengers, including walk-on, must check-in at least 60 minutes prior to the schedule departure time. 

If not checked in 60 minutes prior, we reserve the right to cancel your reservation. Please note all members of your travel party must be present for check-in procedures.

All passengers, including walk-ons, must be checked in by 8:30am local time on the day of travel.

For Bar Harbor departures, customers may check-in the evening prior to travel between 3:00PM and 5:00PM local time or on the morning of travel between 8:00AM and 11:00AM and receive an express pass for boarding. Express pass holders should not arrive for loading prior to 1:30PM.

At check-in, passengers will be issued a Customs declaration form to complete before arriving. Upon arrival to port, all passengers will present their passport and declaration form to Customs for entry into the country. No declaration form is currently required for entry to Bar Harbor, Maine. 

Passengers traveling via vehicle or bicycle will drive to a Customs checkpoint where they will present documents for entry. 

Passengers traveling without a vehicle will present themselves to Customs with all their bags in hand. 

Only Customs can determine if you are permitted to enter the country. Bay Ferries Limited cannot be held responsible in any way for individuals who are inadmissible or who do not hold the necessary documentation to enter Canada or the United States. 

Persons with a felony may be denied entrance into Canada. If you have been convicted of a crime in the United States it may be considered a felony in Canada. A Driving Under the Influence conviction (DUI) is considered a felony in Canada. Visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website for more information.