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Video:How to Get a NEXUS Card

with Kaytie Sproul

If you're a U.S. or Canadian citizen, a NEXUS card can greatly reduce the time you spend going through customs when crossing the border. Here are a few pointers on how to obtain a NEXUS card.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Get a NEXUS Card

Hi, I'm Kaytie Sproul, here for About.com, and today we're going to take a look at how to get a NEXUS card using information from About.com's GoCanada site.

What Is a NEXUS Card?

If you travel frequently between the U.S. and Canada, and are looking for a quicker path through customs, you might want to consider getting a NEXUS card. A NEXUS card gives U.S. and Canadian citizens pre-approval for entry into either country. Let's take a closer look at how to get one. The final phase of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, a plan to better secure U.S. borders, went into effect in June of 2009. As part of the initiative, every U.S. citizen entering Canada is now required to show a passport or a NEXUS card. With a NEXUS card, travelers can satisfy the requirement to prove both identity and citizenship.

Ways to Apply for a NEXUS Card

There are a couple of different options when it comes to applying for a NEXUS card. Whether you are from the U.S. or Canada, the best way to apply for a NEXUS card is to visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website. There, you'll be able to complete an online application, or download a copy of the application form and mail it in when completed. However, if you live in Canada, you can simply walk into your post office and pick up an application.

Interview With Border Representatives

Once your application has been sent in, someone from the Customs and Border Protection Agency will contact you to setup an interview. Interviews can be conducted by both U.S. and Canadian border representatives separately, and tend to run around a total of 30 minutes. During this time you will be asked in detail about your citizenship, criminal record, and previous border crossing experiences. Upon completion of the interview, the representative will explain some basics regarding the legalities of bringing items across either border. Also, once you have completed the interview, you'll be required to have your fingerprints taken as well as a retina scan.

Other NEXUS Card Tips

Here are a few more good tips for you to know: A NEXUS card costs $50 US and Canadian, and is good for five years. Although NEXUS card holders can pass through customs through self-serve kiosks or special NEXUS card lanes at the border, they can still be subject to inspection as the situation warrants. Even though you may possess a NEXUS card, you are required to carry your passport with you when crossing the border. Although security has tightened over the years, slowing travel across borders, if you are a U.S. or Canadian citizen and meet the requirements, a NEXUS card can greatly ease your passage into either country. The application is on the web, just a few clicks away!

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