FAST Card is easy to use at the Canadian border and speeds up drive time into the USA. The FAST card works in the following way: FAST truckers arrive at the Canadian border and pull into the FAST lane. At the kiosk, the driver must hold his / her FAST card in front of a card reader. They present three sets of papers, all of which are bar coded. One set of documents refers to the importer, the other to the truck company carrying the goods and the third set covers the driver. Each document is scanned through the barcode reader. Providing the documentation is in order and the driver is only transporting eligible goods he/ she may cross the border.
Some border crossing points do not have a dedicated FAST lane, but drivers should still present their FAST pass to the border guard and follow the above procedures.
How FAST Card Transmits Data
FAST card transmits personal data about the card holder in the following way: When you join the FAST card lane at the Canadian border your RFID FAST card transmits a signal with your personal FAST card ID number. Your FAST data appears on the border official’s computer screen. It is cross checked with law enforcement databases in Canada and the US as well as with license plate readers. The customs and border patrol guard verifies FAST pass data when you arrive at the FAST lane inspection point. As a low risk traveler your personal information is held on the border authorities’ computers and not directly on your FAST card and it is subject to privacy laws on both sides of the border.
Eligible Goods for FAST Drivers
Any goods brought into Canada by FAST drivers must NOT be controlled, prohibited or regulated and must therefore meet with all government regulations regarding imports. The goods imported into Canada must not be subject to release from any other government and they must have been shipped directly from the US or Mexico.
It is illegal to bring in prohibited, controlled or restricted weapons or firearms or weapons, including stun guns, pepper spray and Mace. Drivers must also be aware that it is unlawful to bring prohibited, restricted or controlled goods and substances, animals, or plants across the border including restricted fruit and vegetables, endangered animals and wild birds. Currency above US $10,000 / CDN$10,000 is not allowed into or out of either country; anyone taking larger amounts or monetary devices must make a customs declaration. You will not be able to use the FAST lane if you need have goods above the set amounts.
FAST Card Goods Declaration
FAST drivers must declare all personal and commercial goods to customs officials. Canadian drivers entering Canada can make a personal declaration using a Traveler Declaration Card (TDC), which must be filled out before joining the FAST lane. American truckers must make an oral declaration to the customs officer. Any driver with personal goods in excess of the permitted personal allowance must use the regular lanes at the border and NOT the FAST lane.
If Canadian or US border officials believe that you are in violation of these laws your FAST card will be revoked, your truck will be confiscated and any undeclared goods will be seized. Customs and Border Patrol for either country may also instigate criminal proceedings.
More questions about FAST Card? Read our FAQs
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