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I'm visiting Canada in 2 weeks with my family and have yet to order my passport. So, there is no guarantee that I will have my passport in time for the trip even if I did pay for the expedited process. When it is time to reenter the US from my trip, will they accept that I have my passport pending and just check with my birth certificate and social security card? Or will I be trapped in Canada?

Extra info: We are traveling by car. I live in North Carolina so I can't get an enhanced driver's license or a NEXUS pass.

marked as duplicate by Michael Hampton, drat, SpaceDog, CGCampbell, Gayot Fow Jul 1 '15 at 8:48

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  • "So, there is no guarantee that I will have my passport in time for the trip even if I did pay for the expedited process." You can do it directly at a passport agency for even faster processing. See travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/passports/… under "If you are traveling within 2 weeks or need a passport for a foreign visa within 4 weeks and:" – user102008 Jul 1 '15 at 19:48
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    "Or will I be trapped in Canada?" You will not be trapped in Canada. A US citizen cannot be denied entry to the US as long as you can satisfactorily prove your US citizenship, e.g. with a US birth certificate and a photo ID, etc. Though you can expect to get some stern talking-to by the immigration officers. – user102008 Jul 1 '15 at 23:31
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A birth certificate and social security card is not sufficient according to the rules. From WHTI Program Background:

U.S. citizens entering the United States at sea or land ports of entry are required to present a WHTI-compliant document such as a valid passport, U.S. passport card, Trusted Traveler Program card (NEXUS, SENTRI, Global Entry or FAST), or an Enhanced Driver’s License.

The only exception to this is for travelers under age 16:

U.S. and Canadian citizens under age 16 may present only proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or Naturalization Certificate.

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