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Old July 4th, 2011, 04:56 PM
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Default Immigration and Customs in Montreal

A question for our Québécois and frequent travellers to Montreal.

We are flying from Atlanta to Montreal. We are scheduled to arrive at 1443. The ship is scheduled to depart at 1800. How long should it take to get our luggage and clear immigration and customs? Or, do we clear immigration and customs when leaving Atlanta? Is the wait for taxis usually quick or should we reserve private transportation? How long a trip to the pier?

Although we have a back up plan (rent a car and spend night in Quebec City), we would prefer to make the ship on time.

thanks,
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Old July 4th, 2011, 06:04 PM
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Marc.. it's been a number of years since I've been to Montreal. But, there's a couple of things I still recall. One being it's quite a jaunt from the airport to the pier.

You'll be clearing C&I upon arrival in Montreal. You won't have much of a wait for a taxi, but you had best hope you flight arrives on time.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 09:12 PM
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We flew through Montreal last fall on our trip from Chicago to Barcelona, and again on the return after our Europe cruise. On the trip to Europe, we landed in Montreal and I recall walking from the terminal about 10 - 15 minutes to the border control area, we went down an esculator and saw just a massive sea of people. Luckily, since we were just passing through Canada and not staying, we were directed to the left at the bottom of the esculator to a different line and window which we were able to get through quickly and on to our connecting flight. My guess it it took anywhere from 30 - 60 minutes to get through the long rope lines in that room that day. On our way back from Spain, we were able to go through US Customs in Montreal and skip it when we got back to Chicago.

I can tell you this, every time I have entered Canada the Canadian Customs and Immigration Agents have been the fastest, most efficient and NICEST border control people I have ever encountered.
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Old July 5th, 2011, 09:35 AM
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Kuki and Scott, thanks for the info.

I "think" I have allowed an hour for customs and immigration; far more than I have experienced in over 50 international arrivals.

Kuki, the distance appears to be a little over 20km; did it feel long because of traffic? Again, I "think" I have allowed an hour for taxi ride. I am getting a bit concerned so may arrange for private transportation.

I am learning that getting from Montreal to Quebec City (next port) is not as easy as I thought so I am looking at more options for minimising my chances of missing the boat (e.g., gave up exit row seats in order to get seats near front of plane).

Again, thanks
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Old July 5th, 2011, 10:52 AM
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Your problem will NOT be customs or luggage retrieval or car rental.

Your problem will be TRAFFIC.

Traffic on and off the island is like no other city. (well, perhaps NYC).

It rarely gridlocks, but pretty close.

I assume you are flying into Trudeau? That is in the West Island. You have to get from there to the cruise port is .... but i'm pretty sure you don't have to get off the island to get there. That is a good think, as the bridge/tunnel traffic can take forever.

Aft all, that, with your ship sailing at 6PM .... I think you should be pretty safe with 3 hours of clearance to make your sailing. My only caveat would be what time you need to check-in vs. what time you sail. If you need to check in at 4PM .... it would be tight.

If you haven't been to Montreal before, i'd recommend going a day early and getting one of the boutique hotels in Old Montreal .... it's a beautiful city and there is a lot to see and do.
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Old July 5th, 2011, 11:33 AM
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Queen, thanks! Google maps shows 20 to 720; never getting off of the island. I hope that saves me. Last time I arrived in Montreal was by train; didn't have to fool with the airport.

Check in won't be an issue; I should be able to walk right on board. I assume they will try to raise gangway at 1730. Still, given how short the sailing is to Quebec City, I am hoping they will wait a few minutes for me if need be.
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Old July 6th, 2011, 09:39 AM
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Hi,
If you been to Montréal before,you can take a direct flight to Québec from
Chicago or Detroit.
From Montréal to Québec the cruise is very smooth,the ship usually docks
around 7 o'clock.
Any info regarding this itinerary,please be my guest I made it twice,one to
FLL and Barbados.
Have a nice day,
MTL
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Old July 6th, 2011, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc View Post
Queen, thanks! Google maps shows 20 to 720; never getting off of the island. I hope that saves me. Last time I arrived in Montreal was by train; didn't have to fool with the airport.

Check in won't be an issue; I should be able to walk right on board. I assume they will try to raise gangway at 1730. Still, given how short the sailing is to Quebec City, I am hoping they will wait a few minutes for me if need be.
I hope it is not like in the USA where you must be aboard 90 minutes prior to sailaway

If you miss the ship in MTL there is also a train to Quebec city
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Old August 24th, 2011, 11:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc View Post
A question for our Québécois and frequent travellers to Montreal.

We are flying from Atlanta to Montreal. We are scheduled to arrive at 1443. The ship is scheduled to depart at 1800. How long should it take to get our luggage and clear immigration and customs? Or, do we clear immigration and customs when leaving Atlanta? Is the wait for taxis usually quick or should we reserve private transportation? How long a trip to the pier?

Although we have a back up plan (rent a car and spend night in Quebec City), we would prefer to make the ship on time.

thanks,

Welcome to Montreal in advance!

You will clear customs upon your arrival at YUL. I would allot an hour for that, assuming your luggage claim process goes smoothly.

There is a lineup for taxis (and limousines) at the arrival level. After you come out of the last gate you'll need to head towards your left. The line for the taxis is located across from the Tim Horton's coffee shop.

It'll be tight for sure with time but I think it can be done. The highway (freeway) to the downtown area has only two lanes for most parts and can be congested as early at around 3:30pm. By the time you arrive at the port area it may be congested there too since people are coming off work around that time.

Try for an earlier flight if the change is not too expensive. You'll definitely have less stress.

Good luck!
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