Cheap dairy, Trader Joe's: What Canadians missed most about driving to the US

Oct 13 2021, 11:24 pm

With the US announcing its land border will reopen to fully vaccinated Canadians in November, many northern neighbours are already planning their first post-pandemic trip.

The US land border has been closed to non-essential travelers for nearly 20 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that will all change next month.

Here’s a roundup of some of the things Canadians are most looking forward to:

Visiting family and friends

family visit

Iakov Filimonov

Many couples and families have been separated for months by the border closure, and this holiday season could be the first time in a long time Canadians can drive to see their relatives in the US.

Outlet shopping


mojo cp / Shutterstock

It’s well known that the US has more and cheaper options for buying clothes and other goods, and there are many outlet malls close to the border serving bargain-hungry Canadians.

Cheap cheese and dairy products



Cheese is notoriously expensive in Canada, so it’s a popular item to buy on cross-border road trips. Tillamook is a favourite of British Columbia residents, and they love visiting the creamery in Oregon that offers tours.

Trader Joe’s

trader joe's

Kristi Blokhin / Shutterstock

From peanut butter cups to Everything But the Leftovers seasoning, there are many reasons Canadians missed this much-loved grocery chain. There are even TikTok accounts that review products to help people choose what to buy.

NFL and other pro sports games

seattle seahawks

@seahawks / Instagram

Major sports games that aren’t hockey-related can be hard to come by in Canada. Now that the US land border is opening, Canadian fans can drive down to see their favourite teams play again.

Cheap gas


Margarita Young/Shutterstock

Americans tend to have cheaper prices on fuel, and many Canadians fill up the tank before heading back.

Cheap booze



Beer, wine, and spirits are also more expensive in Canada, leading many northern visitors to stock up with good deals in the US.

American fast food

In-n-out Burger

Adam Wilson/Flickr

A stop at In-N-Out is mandatory.

Visiting the US side of Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls, Ontario (Travelzoo)

It’s finally possible to appreciate this beauty from all angles again.

Trips and vacations in the US

Yosemite National Park

Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park (Stephen Moehle/Shutterstock)

There are so many drive-able spots to visit in the US, and many Canadians are excited to visit them once again. US national parks will be high on the 2022 travel wish list for many Canadians.

Faster cross-country road trips

Google Maps

Google Maps

Canadians driving from Toronto to Vancouver can shave about 10 hours off the trip by going through the US.

PO boxes

PO Box

Alina Rosanova/Shutterstock

To avoid paying international shipping fees and duties.

Cheaper flights

SeaTac airport

Bill Roque/Shutterstock

Many people still see international travel as risky, so this one may not come back into play for months to come. But dedicated travelers are sometimes able to find cheaper flights out of US airports — so much that the price difference is worth the drive across the border.

Megan DevlinMegan Devlin

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