Border protection wants travelers to be prepared

WASHINGTON – Labor Day weekend is a major travel day, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection wants area residents and those visiting to travel abroad safely.

According to the CBP, “knowing what you can and can’t bring back to the United States is important before you board that flight home.” The organization has put together a “Know Before You Go” checklist.

Traveling checklist

  • Have all travel documents for the country you are visiting and valid I.D. for reentry to the U.S. Visit travel.state.gov for country-specific information.
  • Citizens of Visa Waiver Program countries need an approved Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) before boarding. For those traveling on a visa, a completed I-94 form is needed.
  • Have a completed Customs Declaration form (6059b) upon reaching CBP processing. Declare everything brought from abroad, even if you bought it in a duty-free shop. Some items may be eligible for duty exemptions.
  • Know the difference between prohibited and restricted merchandise. For more information visit the Restricted/Prohibited section of the CBP website.
  • Don’t attempt to bring fruits, meats, dairy/poultry products and/or firewood back without first checking whether they are permitted. Visit the Bringing Agricultural Products Into the United States section of the CBP website for more information.
  • Plan for more time during the busiest travel seasons and understand that CBP must conduct a thorough inspection of the nearly 1 million travelers entering the country each day.
  • Understand that CBP officers can inspect people and belongings without a warrant.
  • Check border wait times for various ports of entry.
  • Frequent international travelers who aren’t members of a trusted traveler program should sign up now.

Find other information on the CBP website.

Happy travels!

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