Information for International Visitors
Let us welcome you in whatever language you prefer. From our natural surroundings with the 1000 Islands, Canadian Shield, and freshwater lakes to our built history featuring the Rideau Canal, Fort Henry and military fortifications and home as the first capital of Canada, Kingston is a fantastic destination for your to experience and see the best of Canada.
Beginning June 1, 2009, all international visitors to Canada will require a passport or other appropriate secure document to enter Canada by land, water or air. Information on entry requirements for American/Canadian citizens between the two countries is below.
For all other international travellers to Canada, a passport is required. Please visit the Going To Canada website for full details on entry and visa requirements.
U.S. Visitors to Canada
On June 1, 2009, a new American law known as the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) will require U.S. citizens 16 years of age or over who re-enter the United States by land and sea to have a passport or other appropriate secure document like a NEXUS card.
Until this date arrives, U.S. citizens 19 years and older who enter the U.S. at land and sea ports of entry from within the Western Hemisphere will need to present government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license as proof of identity, along with proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or naturalization certificate, or a passport. Children age 18 and under will be able to enter with proof of citizenship. Verbal claims of citizenship and identity alone will not be sufficient to establish identity and citizenship for entry into the United States.
WHTI currently requires anyone, including U.S. citizens, entering or re-entering the United States by air to have a passport or a NEXUS card when used at a NEXUS kiosk at designated airports.
If you are a U.S. citizen, please visit the Department of State website for more information on international travel.
Canadian Visitor to the U.S.
With our location close to the U.S. border, you may be planning a visit to our American neighbours. Starting June 1, 2009, a U.S. law will require all Canadians to present a valid passport to enter the United States by water or land. Until this date arrives, Canadian citizens require government-issued photo ID for land or water travel. A valid passport is required for air travel to the U.S. For more information on entry requirements and passport information, please visit the Passport Canada website.
Dollars, euros, pesos and pounds - you bring it, we'll exchange it. While it is recommended to obtain travellers cheques for international travel, most banks, credit unions and foreign exchange outlets will be happy to assist you. Please use the below daily currency exchange calculator from the Bank of Canada.
Tax Refunds for International Visitors
The goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) may apply to various goods and services you purchase during your stay in Canada. The GST rate is 5%, and the HST rate is 13%.
The Government of Canada has eliminated the GST/HST Visitor Rebate Program and announced the introduction of the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program. For information on how to qualify for a refund on Canadian taxes you have paid during your visit, please visit the Revenue Canada website.