Checklist for Cross Border Flight Operations

COPA's Checklist for Flying in Canada


  • Pilot document (licence of certificate)
  • Medical Certificate up to date
  • Notarized letter authorizing children to fly in Canada/United States (only if accompanied by one parent)
  • Proof of citizenshipPassport
  • Birth certificate (original or certified true copy)
  • Photo ID (required with birth certificate)
  • Resident Alien ID Card
  • Other Visa documentation as required


  • Airworthiness Certificate
  • Registration certificate (temporary certificate is not acceptable)
  • Operating limitations 
  • Weight and balance information
  • Experimental Aircraft and Canadian Ultralights—Standardized Validation (for ops in Canada) or Special Flight
  • Authorization (for ops in US)
  • Proof of Liability Insurance (required in Canada)
  • FAA Form 337 (US aircraft only) or STC documentation if fuel tanks have been added in baggage or passenger compartments


  • File eAPIS notice online for arrival into or departure from the US and receive approval by email (ensure that you have applied to use the online system – up to five days for application to be approved).
  • If no transponder and/or radio, obtain a TSA waiver (5 days for approval to create an account, 7 additional days for waiver application approval).
  • Give advance notification to Customs by phone (eAPIS does not fulfill this requirement):
    U.S. to Canada—contact CANPASS at 888-226-7277 at least two hours but no more than 48 hours before arrival 
    Canada to U.S.—telephone CBP office at Airport of Entry no less than two hours or more than 23 hours before arrival
  • File and activate a VFR or IFR flight plan
  • Advise Customs if any change in ETA at AOE via ATC/FSS while in flight, get badge number and name of Customs official that ATC/FSS speaks with.


  • Make first landing at an Airport of Entry (AOE)
  • In U.S.—Do not be early and no more than 15 minutes beyond ETA; wait for Customs official to motion you out of aircraft
  • In Canada—if not met by Customs at your ETA, find a telephone and call 888-226-7277, follow directions from Customs official, obtain arrival report number