If your summer plans included crossing the border and visiting our neighbours in the south, you may want to give yourself some extra travel time. While the border can often be backed up in the summer due to the amount of travelling, Canadians are now being warned that delays at the US border will be even longer than normal this summer. So make sure you grab some road trip friendly snacks and some coffee as you prepare to wait it out at the US border crossings in the upcoming months.
According to Global News, delays at the US/Canada border may be significant this summer as hundreds of American border agents are being temporarily transferred to the Mexico border for the season.
At the moment, 731 border agents that were previously stationed at land, sea and airport borders between Canada and the US are now being sent to the US/Mexico border. This means that over 700 agents are being removed from the northern border, leaving it short staffed for the busiest tourist months.
According to Global, US Customs and Border Protection states that these transfers come as a way to get more aid at the Southern border.
The transfer of these US agents from the Candian border to the Mexico border is in order to help handle the influx of families and unaccompanied children that are attempting to cross into the United States.
Yet, with millions of Canadians crossing the American border every summer, both Canadian tourists and American retailers are worried that this will cause delays and hurt border businesses like hotels and restaurants.
According to Statistics Canada in 2010 almost 20 million Canadians took overnight trips to the United States. These high numbers showcase just how many Canadians rely on these American borders each year.
Last week, 13 members of Congress from six northern border states wrote a letter to voice their concerns about these transfers. They stated that this could harm the trade and travel between Canada and the United States.
However, Snes. Susan Collins states that the US government will be monitoring the Northern border to ensure that it is not 'negatively affected' by these transfers. Nonetheless, be prepared to wait even longer at the customs line.