beware of canadian immigration officers!
what we experienced while entering canada is worse than everything we went through in russia :-(
looking forward to the free state of canada we arrived by plane in vancouver.
the proceder of entering is really arbitrary!
officers ask people why they wanna enter canada and what they will do there.
once we asked about the posibility for working there - therefore we posted some sentences on our website in which we only asked if sb knows sth about working in canada and may offer a job to us. noone answered. so we informed us and got information that we can enter as tourists, look for work and make the permit after getting a job. we never wanted to work illegal or do sth forbidden!
so we went to the immigration counter for tourists, thinking nothing worse...
after asking us some questions which we answered all, the female officer went to a pc, searched in internet, found our site and printed our posting from may 2006.
she told us we are criminal, treated us like this and we needed a ot of words to convince her giving us 6 weeks and not to send us back to japan.
so take a look to your website if you want to enter canada, write nothing that would make you trouble - do it after leaving this "free" country...
shit happens - we miss russia!!!
Canada is not truly "free" in my opinion. Your experience is not surprising to me.
I have known many Canadians, and there is not one that I can remember that I did not like. However, there are very subtle differences I have noticed between the U.S. and Canada when it came to governments.
Canada is more socialist leaning than the U.S. Canadians enjoy free healthcare, while we in the US have to find it through work, pay out of pocket, or both. Canadians are not as free when it comes to firearms. Canadians are not free to ride motorcycles without a helmet, like many states of the US.
Socialist minded governments tend to be more protectionist in its admissions. It is free to go there as a tourist, but, as you experienced, if you hint that you might want to find some work, the "protectionist alarm" was sounded, and now you have to beg and plead to have the honor to be there.
I really don't think that you had to disclose this bit of information, however. If you want to get a bit of revenge, you can always cross into the US and smuggle some firearms back into Canada. (No, I am kidding...don't try this!!)
Yuma simon, pick up a newspaper or look south. ya know that big ol' fuss down at the US/mex' border? it partially 'cause people want to come to the US and work. the same as the thread poster was hasseled for in canada.
yup, canadians are free from being shot by a sat. night special, free from a tanking US $ brought on by the unchecked, irresponsible spending .
so your take on a country is if they have to wear a helmet and can pack heat?? amazing.
You might want to pass on social and political commentaries. mind if I take a min to LAUGH!
most any country on EARTH will restrict or at least have you file seperate paper work etc... if you are going to work there. try it sometime.....
As an aside, Canada recently arrested some 17 people involved in a huge bomb plot- they are only accused as yet. Perhaps this agent was a zealous one, or perhaps the folks in immigration had been told to tighten down on a certain "profile." It's impossible to know. Grant mentions something about bringing our bikes into other countries. "FATAL, keep your mouth shut!'' I believe he wrote, about asking too many questions. When dealing with any immigration, saying less is better. If asked where you're coming from, just answer- don't say where you're staying, when you're leaving or ask about the chances of working while you're there (Baikal, I'm not saying you did this). Just keep it short and honest. kmet, the USD is just fine here in Argentina, come on down!
Come on down to the US of A where we cater to illegals. We'll get you set up. ( Sorry guys had to say it) Don't take what I said serious.
All kidding aside Canada just busted some real bad folks planning on beheading the PM. Even at that you have to realize in any country there are going to be jerks, you just happend to run accross one it seems. The US isn't far away, so when your time starts runnig out, you can cross here for a day or two then head back if you want.
cool down guys!
we just wanted to tell other bikers that they might have to be carefull what to write on their website before entering.
this proceder to look in the internet for a website of travellers entering a country is not usual and we are really wondering about this practice.
most people think russia is very hard to enter but it seems that northern american countries are not less difficult.
we have just been easily annoyed about the trouble we had - without reason!
wearing a gun everytime or driving without helmet is no sign for freedom, but this is another discussion which should not been taken here...
if sb thinks the first posting is written too hard - sorry, but i've been a littlebit angry.
keep cool - we are all bikers, or !!?
Reminds me of my favorite question of a border officer, which I was asked by a US-officer in 1994 when me and my friends were coming from Canada in a 1976 Ford Mercury Cougar with 8000 cc, more than 200 HP and a great sound, resulting from holes in the exhausts:
"Why should I let YOU into MY country?"
I was speechless and would still not know what to answer. And I still do not know why she would let us in - asking no further questions.
I think the question is the only one border officers should be allowed to ask, since it reflects the only reason for the existance of border officers :)
But other posters are right, don't tell more than is asked for. In Holland we have a saying for this: don't wakeup sleeping dogs.
Hey, I was born a Canadian citizen, and those guys treat me like crap too.
The worst experience I've ever had was with US Customs in Dallas when flying back from a motorcycle tour in Costa Rica ten years ago. He made me empty out my suitcases and my pockets, searched my clothes, asked me about three times what I did for a living, etc. He was very thorough and gruff. For a moment I worried he might start snapping on the latex gloves, and then I'd be in real trouble!
Here's the kicker: he asked me what I was doing in Costa Rica. (Gee, I'm wearing a motorcycle jacket and I'm carrying a motorcycle helmet...) I tell him a little about the motorcycle tour. Then he asks me if I can't do such a motorcycle trip in Canada.
I answer with as little sarcasm as I can, "Uh, no, it's January...."
Thanks to Sargeant Suspicious I got on my connecting flight to Vancouver only nine minutes before departure!
However, my father is going through something that falls similarly into this category, although in business.
He is working for a very large multi-national corporation. A US division won a contract for some consulting work in Canada. When the work was about to begin, a very loud protectionist alarm was sounded by the Canadian division who cried foul that they were not given the contract automatically being as the contracted company was also Canadian. As a consolation, many of the workers from the US were replaced with Canadians, at the urging of a few politicians who got wind of the issue.
When I lived in Los Angeles, I remember about 10 years ago, the film/television industry was migrating from L.A. to Canada. I had a friend in the special effex industry who was supposed to work on a film that was being shot in Canada. However, a few days before he was to go, he was replaced by a local, as were several of his co-workers who were supposed to go. His boss, who got the contract, told them that there was pressure to hire locals rather than bring in his own workers.
As far as our own situation in the US: I live on the border. Many businesses around town are being worked at by people from Mexico. They live across the border, and commute into town daily.
Bush, himself, keeps going on about "dignity" etc. in his own attempt to continue letting in undocumented workersinto the States. I highly doubt that a US customs officer would make such an issue about somone hinting about staying on in the US for awhile and working.
The Canadian officer, however, gave Baikal a hard time about his hinting. I just felt that the subtle differences between the governments of the US and Canada, and how Canada, from my understanding, was a little bit protectionist, may have come into play here.
(Just for the record, I harbor no ill feelings toward Canada, its people, its custom officers, or its protectionism. This was my take on Baikal's experience). I am sorry if I sounded harsh, and I apologize to any Canadians that I might have offended, except for the snowbirds that come to Yuma every winter and give me a hard time. (Another joke)
The worst experience I've ever had was with US Customs in Dallas when flying back from a motorcycle tour in Costa Rica ten years ago.QUOTE]
Not to defend the customs officer in Dallas, but the US has been cracking down on men going to Costa Rica for underage prostitutes. You either raised a red flag as a possible drug smuggler, or pervert. Wow, what an exciting trip!
Freedom thats a laugh !!!
Yuma, seems to me that that the US is not so free - nor are many countries -is anyone - however US officials and government spend much time deceiving its citizens, the newschannels are very regulated and have very little exposure of the world outside of the USA, this is why the world is becoming hostile to the the USA as a result of interference and misinformation - the UK government is also guilty of interfering along with some other western governments - this makes life difficult for all of us travelling around when really most people are decent and just want to put food on the table and see their families right. But put some un-educated idiot in a uniform and give him/her some power and all of a sudden you have created a problem not a solution -thus the border authorities in many countries are terrible and that includes the US where gaining entry is far worse than many so called non-democratic countries, such as Russia where the border guards were friendly and helpful and entry took less than an hour that included taking the bike - a friend just going as an aircraft passenger to the states took two hours to get through customs and security she was a real threat - being a 65 year old single woman from Orkney (off the north of Scotland), this is not uncommon. Russia does have a security awarness as they have been fighting terrorism in all manner of ways for many years prior to september the eleventh.
Sorry to get political here but like the statement earlier said being allowed to carry a gun or not wear a crash helmet is not freedom - Honesty and uncensored information from a government who are aware of and open to different values and ways of life is the route to freedom something most of us in the western world dont see as money speaks far louder than any other values to the people in power. Maybe we should elect world travellers to represent our peoples in government.
Oh by the way I am not speaking from an armchair viewpoint here I have worked and travelled to and through many parts of the world over the last 25 years and spent many periods of time in the US. Mind you if they -The US Government find this statement and link it to me I will most probably be refused entry to the US in the future anyway - as foreigners it seems are not allowed to publicly have a view on US policy - part of the open and honest, free society of the good ol U.S of A. PS I certainly aint anti - anyone on an individual basis. Just dont be deceived into thinking your 'free' in the States as you - like the rest of us are if the Government (Democratic, socialist, communist,republic make little difference) have their way are anything but free. No doubt this will cause a storm !!!!
I too live very near the US border and you are flat wrong if you think customs wouldn't care if your coming to the US to work.
Baikal's info that his web site is being read by customs agents, that's smacks of big brother/1984 etc... rather spooky.
I agree the US doesnt tell the full story, and lies to its citizens. Bush has admitted this. That is fact.
I hate politics and I checked in here to read MC stuff, but I couldnt stand to see Canada slammed for something ( re work hassels) that every country does, and its lack of "rights" .
Stepping off the soap box, I'm done with this thread, maybe the site.
Take it easy guys
Just the view point of one canuck.
Jake- No fears if you were barred from the USA you can always come to Canada. Just don't tell the nice lady at customs you have a web site where you receive information on how to circumvent the system.
Kmet- before you go away mad try looking at this with a Canadian viewpoint. To accommplish that you need to grab a beer, sit outside in the sun and appreciate that it isn't snowing. After 20 minutes possibly a second beer you wil not only not be upset by what you read but you can probably chuckle at the mental image of poor Baikal getting roasted by someone who thinks they are doing their job.
As most Canadians I know will tell you, we really don't care if other people come to Canada or not as long as we can stay.
With all the agriculture around here, they can't find enough illegals and legals to work the fields, let alone other industries. ALL of the undocumented people never go through customs and have very little to fear even if they are caught. I was not slamming Canada, and neither was Baikal...he was just blowing off steam discussing a motorcycle related incident (related in that travelers have to cross borders at times), and I was just giving my take on his hassles. Another way of looking at it--Baikal's experience can help others in crossing any border.
I am sorry that you feel so strongly and appear so fragile that one complaint about a customs official will lead you to want to leave a site altogether. Which leads me to Riq's take on it:
I hear you on the beer. If you ever come down this way, look me up, and I'll buy you one. And when you are leaving, take a snowbird or two with you. Seriously...
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