Got new I-94 at the Canada border


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Hello everyone,

I recently got the new I-94 at the US/Canada POE. I thought, will wright something which can be useful for many.

As usual, my I-94 was going to expire in May 2012 as my old passport was going to expire in May 2012. So during one of my last entry in to the US, I got I-94 valid untill my old passport validity. I have valid H1b untill 2013.

1. Got the new passport now

2. Went to JFK CBP office but no help. Did not get new I-94 there

3. Applied for the Canada visitor visa, got it in 15 days via mail at NY embassy.

4. Went to Canada @ Niagara falls (rainbow bridge) on saturday. Wait time at bridge was 5 minutes.

5. Canadian immigration officer DID NOT take my I-94 as it was a short stay in Canada for one day.

6. I made a specific request to the Canadian Immigration officer to take my I-94 and I explained him that my only purpose to visit the canada was to renew my soon expiring I-94 and to visit Niagara falls from Canada side.

7. The officer agreed to take my I-94 on "my request"

8. Went to Canada, watched the breath taking view of Niagara from Canadian side.

9. Stayed there for about four hours.

10. Came back via the same rainbow Bridge, wait time was around 30 minutes.

11. A nice US immigration officer asked me certain questions including my purpose to visit Canada and my visa status/job in USA.

12. He then asked me where is my I-94? I replied "Canadian Immigration officer took it today while going to the Canada"

13. I was sent to the upstair CBP office for the interview

14. Wait time at the office was about 45 minutes.

15. I was interviewed at the CBP office and was aksed "million" questions about my current job, previous statuses, what happened to my I-94, what I was going to do once I am done with my current visa etc. The officer was nice and courtous.

16. I was not afraid at all as I have always been in legal status, never violated anything and I am NOT from IT and I am NOT working for DESI mom and pop company.

17. I went there with all the documents. I was asked to present I-797, employement letters etc.

18 Issued the Brand new I-94, typed, stamped with validity untill the visa expiration.

So bottom line, I-94 at the canadian border is NOT guaranteed. If you stay in Canada for less then 30 days, they will not take your I-94. You have to act smart and explain Canadian immigration officer and submit your expiring I-94.

While coming back, after not finding I-94 card, you will be sent to CBP office upstairs, will be interviewed thoroughly and will be issued new I-94. Go there well prepared as if you are going for the visa stamping with all the documents.

Good luck and hope it helps.

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