Canada’s facing a backlog of NEXUS applications that has hundreds of thousands of travellers waiting for approval.
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) says that there is a backlog of more than 295,133 NEXUS applicants waiting for an interview.
It cites the ongoing closures of Canadian enrollment centres as the reason for applications being backed up. The offices were shut down in March 2020 due to the pandemic.
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“Canada and the US are in discussions about the timing of the reopening of Canadian enrolment centres,” the CBSA told Daily Hive in a statement. “Until that time, [enrollment centres] in Canada will continue to be closed.”
Offices in the US reopened in April, so the agency is advising Canadians to book their enrolment interviews down south.
Current NEXUS cardholders who renew their membership before its expiry date will still be able to skip the lengthy security lines travelling to and from the US for an additional 24 months, according to the CBSA.
Prospective members must be risk-assessed by the CBSA and the US Customs and Border Protection. It takes Canada’s agency about 30 days to risk-assess, and once the application has been pre-approved by both countries, the applicant will then need to schedule an interview at a NEXUS enrolment centre via the online portal.
All travellers must continue to use #ArriveCAN to submit their information before arriving in Canada. You can download the free app for iOS and Android devices or sign in online: https://t.co/NvdTxBMcfl pic.twitter.com/a6vApQvlAu
— Canada Border Services Agency (@CanBorder) May 10, 2022
Canadian travellers have been experiencing unusually long wait times across the board since COVID public health measures have eased. Whether it’s waiting hours in line to renew their passport, or nearly missing their flights trying to get through security at the airport, there’s no shortage of lines in the country right now.
The CBSA did not provide a timeline for when Canadian NEXUS enrolment centres could reopen.