My wife and I went through US customs at YVR and soon realized that we couldn't get to the aquarium. Is there a way to leave once passing through customs? I have a 6 hour wait until my next flight.

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    Anecdote: My wife and I were once flying from YYZ to the USA, and our flight was cancelled due to weather after we had gone through US pre-clearance. We were required to pass through Canadian customs before we could exit the airport and find a hotel for the night. I therefore suspect that at a minimum, you would need to pass through Canada customs to exit the pre-clearance area; and this may not be something that the airlines want to encourage. May 29, 2018 at 18:57
  • @MichaelSeifert, Do you remember how you got back to Canada customs from the preclearance area? There's no apparent way to do that from the departure concourse other than by the airline opening several normally-locked doors to get to the arrival hallway so it seems like this might only be possible in special cases like your's.
    – user38879
    May 29, 2018 at 19:36
  • Why not try and report back? :)
    – JonathanReez
    May 29, 2018 at 20:37
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    Basically, there's no exit to be found. Looks like I'm stuck here. Thanks everyone.
    – Rolan
    May 29, 2018 at 22:19
  • @Dennis If the flight was canceled, there would presumably be a lot of passengers in the same situation. Worst-case, CBSA could send officers to escort passengers to the customs station.
    – cpast
    May 30, 2018 at 0:30

1 Answer 1


I remember last time I went through US preclearance in Toronto, that there was a sign that said something like, if you pass through preclearance, you must proceed on a flight to the US the same day; and if you leave, you must report to the Canadian Border Services Agency. (I can't find a picture or copy of the text, unfortunately.)

So I think basically, you would have to report to CBSA and go through Canadian immigration and customs to go back to the rest of the airport, and you would have to then go through US preclearance again when you want to board your flight later.

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