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new to flying, could do with some help/advise

new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Old Oct 26th 2017, 1:15 am
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Default new to flying, could do with some help/advise

So i've only ever flown once on an hour flight within Europe with only carry on luggage, soon i'll be flying to Canada on my own to begin my WHV so this whole flight process is pretty daunting having extra bags, a layover and needing to get the visa during the layover...

I have a few questions.. i'm flying with WestJet from Gatwick to Vancouver with a connection at Toronto, originally i was connecting at Calgary but had to change my flight, when it was via Calgary i was told i don't have to collect my bags and re check them in as they have 'quick connect' which transfers your bags straight to the next flight. Now i'm going via Toronto they're saying i have to collect my bags and according to this website "drop off your bags at the Connecting Baggage Belt", is anyone familiar with this? I know it sounds dumb as it's probably obvious when i'm there but i like to know ahead of time the exact process so when i'm there i don't need to guess what to do. Do i collect my bags at the 'collection belt' then drop them of at the 'connection belt'? Are these 2 separate areas or next to each other? i have no idea how it works.

As my connection is at Toronto i have to get my visa at this airport as it's the first Canadian airport i land at. As i say i have no idea on the whole process so how does it work? i come off the plane, collect my bags - drop off at connecting belt, go through passport check then go to the immigration bit to get my visa? or am i completely wrong? i have 4 hours connection but i've read the queues for customs can be an hour or so plus 1 - 2 hour queues for the visa so i wanna know exactly step by step what to do to wizz through it all as smoothly as possible.

just to clarify, for the WHV the documents i need on me to present to the immigration officer are the POE letter, Insurance certificate, passport and proof of funds correct? i have read the official website but i just want to check that nobody has been asked for anything else? i also find it a little unsettling that after 9 months of planning it is still down to the immigration officer as to whether you get the visa, i guess you have to have a pretty major reason for them not to grant you a visa but the fact they can say no is quite scary! do they ask questions? has anyone heard of anyone not getting their WHV?

sorry if these questions are dumb, to be moving to another country on my own when i've never even had an international holiday... i just want the flight to be as simple as possible, the planning of everything else has been a big enough headache! though this forum has been a huge help
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 3:25 am
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

I think I can reassure you on your first query. I flew into Pearson on Saturday and the passenger next to me was connecting through to Montreal. I noticed as I walked through that connecting passengers were being directed to a particular area (connection signs stand out as they are purple) - I assume she went through there. A few minutes later, after going though passport control, I was waiting for my case and she was collecting hers too. She seemed to know where she needed to go next, so I’m sure you’ll be directed properly too.
Good luck! I’m sure someone else will have further advice soon.
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 4:47 am
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

This might be of use

https://www.torontopearson.com/Connecting.aspx#

"Tell us where you're coming from, where you're headed and what airline you're on and we'll provide you with a customized, step-by-step guide to your time at Toronto Pearson. "

.... and also this http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/travel-vo...a-apa-eng.html

You have got it 100% correct on the documentation you need.

Good luck and enjoy your flight!


Last edited by Siouxie; Oct 26th 2017 at 4:54 am.
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 10:03 am
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

thanks for the quick responses, that is good to know, thanks for the links as well i'll have a look at those.
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 12:27 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Hi
We flew Gatwick to Toronto with connection to Moncton 10 days ago.
Just a few tips.

There are no landing cards to complete on the plane instead it is done on machines at the airport before going through customs. In our case went through all the questions to get a blank piece of paper printed. If this happens to you still keep hold of it. There are plenty of people about to help. We were told to try again but same result, after which we were told to take the two blank pieces to the customs officer, who then gave us the old fashioned paper form landing card to complete.(if you have goods being shipped later, indicate this here I think there is a box to tick)

After customs you go to immigration office( again lots of people around to direct you). The landing process at immigration does not take very long (5 to 10 minutes) but there may be a lot of people in front of you, we waited about 30 minutes)
There is a Service Canada office besides immigration where you can get a SIN number, which takes about 5 minutes.

Baggage claim is just outside Service Canada office and you will have to collect your bags.

If you have goods to follow, you will have to go to the border agency and present list of goods with you and a list of goods to follow. This took about 15 minutes for us. There was no one in front of us.

I think we went wrong somewhere here as we could not see any signs for connecting flights or connecting luggage. We ended up going upstairs to WestJet departures in order to drop of our bags. Luckely a kind WestJet employee helped us, as by this time we were tired and easily confused.

Last edited by Ingeb; Oct 26th 2017 at 1:04 pm.
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 7:00 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Your connection was at Toronto?

Originally Posted by Ingeb View Post
There are no landing cards to complete on the plane instead it is done on machines at the airport before going through customs. In our case went through all the questions to get a blank piece of paper printed. If this happens to you still keep hold of it. There are plenty of people about to help. We were told to try again but same result, after which we were told to take the two blank pieces to the customs officer, who then gave us the old fashioned paper form landing card to complete.(if you have goods being shipped later, indicate this here I think there is a box to tick)
i came across this when looking up the declaration form just so i can get an idea of what i need to fill in, but you say they have machines instead now?

After customs you go to immigration office( again lots of people around to direct you). The landing process at immigration does not take very long (5 to 10 minutes) but there may be a lot of people in front of you, we waited about 30 minutes)
There is a Service Canada office besides immigration where you can get a SIN number, which takes about 5 minutes.
So there is a separate area to get the visa? this is the bit i keep hearing conflicting versions, some have said at customs when they check your passport you also do the visa there but others say you go through the passport check and then to the immigration office to get the visa...

Baggage claim is just outside Service Canada office and you will have to collect your bags.
Ok so sorting the bags is last after the customs/visa process.

If you have goods to follow, you will have to go to the border agency and present list of goods with you and a list of goods to follow. This took about 15 minutes for us. There was no one in front of us.
i might be shipping a couple things out later (music instrument gear) but i'm not entirely sure yet so would i still need to declare that? do i also declare anything in my suitcases? for instance my carry on with have all my computer gear (laptop, iPad, hard drives etc).


I think i'm thinking into all of this way to much lol, i'm sure it will be simple once i'm there, i'm usually good at winging it...
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 7:05 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

When I went through the world's least organized airport, the one you're going to, a month ago, the procedure was that you filled in the little card on the plane and then did it again at the machine. You presented both cards to the officer who threw one away. Keep the other one and keep it handy, you will be asked for it after you have collected your bag.
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Old Oct 26th 2017, 8:06 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by Pinnacle View Post
Your connection was at Toronto?


i came across this when looking up the declaration form just so i can get an idea of what i need to fill in, but you say they have machines instead now?


So there is a separate area to get the visa? this is the bit i keep hearing conflicting versions, some have said at customs when they check your passport you also do the visa there but others say you go through the passport check and then to the immigration office to get the visa...


Ok so sorting the bags is last after the customs/visa process.

i might be shipping a couple things out later (music instrument gear) but i'm not entirely sure yet so would i still need to declare that? do i also declare anything in my suitcases? for instance my carry on with have all my computer gear (laptop, iPad, hard drives etc).

I think i'm thinking into all of this way to much lol, i'm sure it will be simple once i'm there, i'm usually good at winging it...
You won't have "goods to follow" as you are here on a temporary work permit. GTF lists are for Permanent Residents when 'landing'.

It would probably be a good idea to have a 'goods accompanying' list with you, if you are bringing any electronics (laptop etc) or musical instruments or tools of the trade.

I'd strongly suggest you read the two links I gave - it explains it, step by step - with directions (from the first link) that you can print out, specific to you.

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Old Oct 27th 2017, 1:24 am
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

You'll also have to go through security again at Toronto before you head on to Vancouver.
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 1:39 am
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by jennellapea View Post
You'll also have to go through security again at Toronto before you head on to Vancouver.
I'm sure this varies by day as every day at the Toronto airport is like the first day at the Toronto airport. But, last time I was there, they announced that WestJet passengers didn't have to do that, they could go directly to their connecting flights. As it happened, it didn't matter as it took several hours to unload the bags and everyone missed their connections anyway; I suppose they all left the airport to spend the night somewhere.
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 1:09 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
I'm sure this varies by day as every day at the Toronto airport is like the first day at the Toronto airport. But, last time I was there, they announced that WestJet passengers didn't have to do that, they could go directly to their connecting flights. As it happened, it didn't matter as it took several hours to unload the bags and everyone missed their connections anyway; I suppose they all left the airport to spend the night somewhere.
I heard the same announcement recently passing through the mess that is TO airport. Also the electronic machines wouldn't recognize my booking either by booking reference or passport so had to line up yet again for the connection boarding card and luggage drop off. Total F-fest.
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 1:44 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by Tangram View Post
I heard the same announcement recently passing through the mess that is TO airport. Also the electronic machines wouldn't recognize my booking either by booking reference or passport so had to line up yet again for the connection boarding card and luggage drop off. Total F-fest.
On the last couple of trips I've flown EasyJet (all electronic, wave your phone to board) from Italy or Switzerland (passport photo recognition machines, no contact with people at security) to LGW and then Air Transat (paper boarding passes) to Toronto (****ery as described passim). It feels like a journey back through time, as if there should be a horse and cart waiting for me outside the airport.
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 4:35 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
It feels like a journey back through time, as if there should be a horse and cart waiting for me outside the airport.
Well the Toronto cabbies would ensure that any Amish bid for that service would be quashed
I thought the new PIK kiosks would make it easier for travellers and have you downloaded the eDeclaration mobile app so you don't have to fill in those pesky declaration cards?

Travellers - CanBorder - eDeclaration (Beta) mobile app
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 4:38 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by Pinnacle View Post

So there is a separate area to get the visa? this is the bit i keep hearing conflicting versions, some have said at customs when they check your passport you also do the visa there but others say you go through the passport check and then to the immigration office to get the visa...


Ok so sorting the bags is last after the customs/visa process.
Never gone through Toronto but typically the process is:

1) Use electronic kiosk to fill in customs card

2) Initial screening by border officer normally at a booth
- if visiting on holiday or business this would typically be it for immigration and passport would be stamped
- In your case tell the officer you need to apply for a work permit and they will direct you to secondary for processing

3) Go to secondary and apply for work permit. In Vancouver you would collect bags first but im not sure on Toronto

4) In Toronto and if you have time, go to service Canada officer and get SIN. Saves you having to do it later

5) Proceed through customs and to connections
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Old Oct 27th 2017, 4:52 pm
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Default Re: new to flying, could do with some help/advise

Originally Posted by Former Lancastrian View Post
Well the Toronto cabbies would ensure that any Amish bid for that service would be quashed
I thought the new PIK kiosks would make it easier for travellers and have you downloaded the eDeclaration mobile app so you don't have to fill in those pesky declaration cards?

Travellers - CanBorder - eDeclaration (Beta) mobile app
Haven't you seen my many posts explaining how the kiosks have made the process slower, more complicated, and more error prone? You now have to deal with both the card and a slip of shiny paper like a till receipt. The border officer throws the card away and the passengers throw the till receipt away. When it's time to leave the building no one has either in their mouth.
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