Customs and immigration covers a range of border control procedures (referred to as 'immigration' in most countries other than US) and import of goods.

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How to intentionally get denied entry to the US, without getting into trouble?

I have a multiple entry visitors visa for five years. I went to USA last year and lived there for one year with my husband (6 months entry and other 6 months of extension). I left USA legally. Now my ...
67
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17answers
42k views

Why would you wrap your luggage in plastic?

At many airports you can wrap your luggage with sheets of sticky plastic. Why on earth would you do that? I only see disadvantages. I can imagine the mess when customs ask you to open your luggage. So ...
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6answers
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If I've visited Crimea, what country do I list on my customs declaration form?

On returning to the U.S. I must fill out a customs declaration form, which includes listing the countries that I have visited prior to arrival in the U.S. If I was in Russia and visited Crimea after ...
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7answers
7k views

Do I need to pass customs if I enter by swimming over a body of water?

Suppose I'm a long distance swimmer and swim across a large body of water to another country, like from France to England, or from England to the USA. Do I need to pass customs? Do I need the same ...
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9answers
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What can I do to prevent passport stamps being put on blank pages?

I'm running low on blank passport pages which are sometimes needed for full page visas such as those issued by Armenia, India, and Vietnam. When I crossed the border into Turkey the other day I got ...
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3answers
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Luggage was stopped by customs (we learned about it after our flight)

We have returned from Russia 4 days ago (Moscow-St.Petersburg-Prague). After we've arrived to Prague, we learned that our luggage didn't come in our airplane and was lost. Today we've received ...
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7answers
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Can growing a beard cause problems in crossing borders?

I just recently renewed my passport with a picture taken just after I shaved. I haven't shaved since (>3 weeks) and I kind of like it. I am even looking into how to maintain a beard, but that is a ...
39
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7answers
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How do I get an engagement ring past security/customs in an airport without alerting my significant other?

A related post, made me wonder how you can hide a ring from a "special one" traveling with you to a place where you will propose and yet get it legally through security or customs? You don't want the ...
38
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5answers
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Does a US immigration officer really have the power to deny entry to the country at personal will?

Quite some comments exist that in the end it is the individual immigration officer that has the final call to let you enter the US or not and that there is no way of objecting that decision. Given ...
33
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4answers
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Your address at destination: What if you don't know any address?

Often, when entering a country, you must fill a form that asks, in particular, where you will stay. What if you don't know yet? Even worse, what if you don't have your guidebook in hand luggage, and ...
33
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3answers
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Is there any list of countries I should not visit if I want to go to the US?

I have heard that if I have been to some countries I might be refused entry to the US. I'm planning to travel (vacation) a bit in the Middle East; that will include Iran, Lebanon, Qatar, Oman and ...
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2answers
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Any way to find out what US Customs & Border Protection has in their database?

I travel from the US to Canada occasionally (about once per year on average) with my family. We are all US citizens and travel with US passports. Every time we re-enter the United States, I am given ...
26
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2answers
1k views

Can I bring an anti-religious book into Saudi Arabia?

Could I bring books like The God Delusion from Richard Dawkins to Saudi Arabia? What will happen if they saw this book in my hand during the check-in or somewhere else in Saudi Arabia? What about ...
23
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7answers
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Carrying medicines internationally for a friend

A friend of mine has asked to carry medicines from India to UK. She is also going to provide me the prescription for those medicines. However, I am a bit reluctant because the prescription that she ...
23
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4answers
2k views

Laptop Searches by Customs - UK and US

I'll be traveling to the UK (London) on a study abroad in the spring and will be bring my laptop for school and intern purposes. I was just curious what/if any rights UK customs has to search laptops ...
22
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4answers
2k views

How do custom officers determine if the imported goods of a passenger are old or newly bought?

Almost all countries levy custom duties (with an allowance) on imported goods by passengers, such as electronics, clothes, etc., that have been bought from outside that country and are intended to ...
21
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6answers
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I was told my signature was ripped out of my passport. Should I be worried?

My Mother just returned from a two week trip to New Zealand today. When she arrived back home in the States it was pointed out that the page with her signature in her passport was ripped out making it ...
21
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1answer
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How can I travel to Germany with my dog?

I will be traveling to Germany (from the USA) in a few months and hope to bring my dog, a 10 lb Chihuahua-mix. I would like to do this with a minimum of difficulty, so I am hoping to hear the ...
20
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2answers
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Did not declare jewelry from Aruba

I bought a set of rings in Aruba. I traded my wedding rings in on the set. They told me not to declare them they were going to send the paper work to me in the mail. I got a receipt, and we got back ...
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4answers
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Will one be refused entry on a full passport?

My question was triggered by How do I decide whether to be worried about having enough blank pages in my passport? The question is pretty simple. What happens at a border when you need an additional ...
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5answers
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What is the minimum time to consider with a connecting flight in the USA?

Given the extensive time taken for immigration formalities in the US, what is the shortest time to consider between connecting flights in the US, when coming from abroad? Until now I have always ...
19
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2answers
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What's the value of the “genocide” and similar questions on the US customs form I-94?

It's been a while since I’ve been to the United States, so I’m not sure whether it’s still being used, but I remember having to always fill out form I-94 which asked some odd questions: such as ...
19
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1answer
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Why was there no immigration control flying from Dublin (DUB) to London Southend (SEN)?

So I recently made a return journey from London Southend (SEN) to Dublin (DUB), flying out of SEN and into DUB on Saturday on Aer Lingus, and back to SEN on Sunday via a similar Aer Lingus flight. In ...
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2answers
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What rights do you have in China to appeal stuff being taken off you in transit?

I debated this, but I think it's askable. I just flew transit through Beijing. Did NOT enter the country. You still have to go through security though, but whatever, it just takes time. Until I got ...
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Declaring illegal substances at customs - what would happen?

I've always wondered this. Occasionally I declare medicines, or wood carvings or whatever when going through customs. The point of asking you to declare these things is so that they can inspect and ...
18
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2answers
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What happens if you lose your passport at an airport / during transit?

Once, when flying from India to the UK, I left my passport on the plane's seat-back pocket and forgot that I left it there until I reached the passport control desks. Fortunately in this case, I ...
17
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4answers
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Do I have to enter the UK on my UK passport?

I'm a British National (Overseas), which basically means that while I don't have the right of abode in the UK, I am permitted to visit the UK without a visa. However, my passport has expired, and ...
17
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1answer
2k views

Is it really forbidden to cross the Indian border with Indian rupee?

Last week I tried to exchange some Swiss Francs into Indian rupees. For that I visited a big bank and they told me that they have rupees but I'm not allowed to import any into India. Is this really ...
17
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3answers
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How much electronics and other valuables can I bring duty-free when going to India?

I am planning to travel to India (COK airport, Kerala) from United States. I want to take my laptop as well as my tablet (iPad). Am I allowed to take both in my backpack with my documents related my ...
17
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1answer
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What happens if you arrive in Malaysia with a one-way ticket but are asked for proof of onward travel?

As we know, most countries require that visitors have a return or onward ticket as a condition of entry. But often, depending on where you're from and which country you're visiting, you won't be ...
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What happens if you are caught (accidentally) not declaring something at customs?

So, you get into the "nothing to declare" line, but you get selected for a random bag check anyway... and the customs officer finds something you were supposed to declare. It's something small, like ...
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3answers
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How do customs and immigration work in a sailboat?

So, I have this crazy dream. I'd love to purchase a little sailboat, make my way down the East Coast, across the Carribean, down South America, and end up in the Falklands, maybe Tierra Del Fuego, ...
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3answers
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Peacock feather a prohibited item?

I'm spending the summer in London and recently took a trip to Kew to visit the botanical gardens. While there I found a beautiful peacock feather that a friend of mine back in the US would love. ...
16
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2answers
642 views

Can I enter Thailand without having my passport stamped?

Saudi Arabia and Thailand have no political relations due to the bizarre blue diamond affair. If my passport found to have a Thai stamp during renewal I will be fined some big fine and my passport ...
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3answers
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Is there an obligation to renew a small child's passport before its expiry date?

I obtained my daughter's first children passport when she was just a few months old. Now she is three and during our last flight an immigration officer complained that her passport had a baby photo. ...
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What questions should I be able to answer when entering USA?

Last time I entered USA, the border officer asked me a lot of questions. Some of them were quite personal and others were about my destination in the USA. For example, he asked me where I would stay. ...
15
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3answers
406 views

How to enter East Jerusalem and who controls the separation with the western part

Can non-Muslim people from non-Muslim countries (EU) enter the part of Jerusalem where the famous mosque with yellow top is located? Are the police (or guards) at the entrance Israeli or Palestinian? ...
15
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3answers
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TrueCrypt Volumes: Will it cause any trouble?

From various sources (mainly friends and dubious internet sites) I heard that you can get in trouble if you have encrypted volumes/files on your laptop while entering USA. Apparently they assume that ...
15
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5answers
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Why does US Customs & Immigration ask the purpose of my trip when I'm returning home?

As a US citizen, when I re-enter the US, I am often asked where I was, how long I was there, and the reason for my visit. Why am I asked these things? Am I required to answer? Don't I have a legal ...
15
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1answer
903 views

Couldn't return papers to border officials last time. Should I be afraid when going back to USA?

Three years ago I was on holidays in Canada and visited the Niagara Falls. I also went to the American side of the falls and got something like a "short-term visa". I also got a green paper with all ...
15
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2answers
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Can I take chocolate to Australia?

Australia is well known for having very strict rules on what food and plant-based materials can be brought into the country, to try to keep the country free of diseases. Some food/animal/plant things ...
15
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2answers
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What happens if you miss a connecting flight?

What happens if you book tickets through an airline or travel agent, but on the travel date miss a connecting flight (either because the first flight was delayed, or because immigration/security took ...
15
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3answers
3k views

If I don't declare a not-yet-used engagement ring at airport security, am I smuggling jewelry?

In How do I get an engagement ring past security/customs in an airport without alerting my significant other?, MikeV posted a pertinent question which is worth asking: If I buy a ring in the US, ...
15
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3answers
3k views

Issues with US immigration after alleged overstay - how to handle?

I arrived in Miami International Airport (Feb 2013) and was taken aside by immigration who stated I had overstayed in the US in 1995 by a few days. It was claimed that I had not left the US and they ...
15
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1answer
445 views

Can you eat food refused by quarantine by Australian border control?

If some food you're bringing in is refused by quarantine, are they sometimes willing to let you eat it? Assume there isn't a massive queue behind you and the officer is in a good mood. Background: I ...
15
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1answer
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Is bringing tea from coca leaves to Europe illegal?

When travelling in Chile, tea from coca leaves was something you could buy at regular places. It is even sold as a preventive to altitude sickness in places like San Pedro de Atacama. After feeling ...
15
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1answer
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Do I really have to register with the police when staying with a friend in Croatia?

Situation: I'm a German in the UK. I'll be traveling from London to Zagreb next week and staying at a friends house. The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office says: Unless staying at a hotel or ...
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Dual nationality, EU and Australian. Does it matter which passport is “travelled on”

I plan to visit Australia from the UK, I am an Australian national with dual nationality - I also hold a Greek passport. I have all the correct documentation and everything is fine. However, if I ...
14
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UK tourist visa refused 3 times. Need to get there for flight home

Around 3 years ago I applied for a temporary working visa for the UK, but it got rejected because I lied to the police once and had some old DUI charges. So I never went to the UK. I recently arrived ...
14
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Biometric passport: How can I know if the chip is still working? Does it matter?

My biometric passport inadvertently spent some time under the rain. It's not badly damaged but some sheets are a bit deformed and there are tiny brown spots on the side. I am wondering if there is an ...