Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

Hi everyone,

I know that this subject has come up previously but I was just wondering if anyone has experienced anything recently when it comes to crossing the border to participate in a show?  (I am Canadian travelling to the US).

I am travelling by air so my product is being transported by a designated shipping company.

The event has a central cashier system so I won't be handling any transactions.

From everything I have read it's up to the border agent to decide if they let you through or not   .... from the website it says :  "Citizens of Canada do not require visas for travel to the United States, except for certain limited purposes. Citizens of Canada will need to meet other entry requirements, based on their purpose of travel."

I'm just not sure what else I can do to prepare for when I'm speaking with the customs agent?

Any insight you can provide would be helpful!

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I only know about it as a US citizen going to Canada so not absolutely sure about this. For sure I'd have a complete list of everything being shipped, value too. Be able to establish that you are coming in to do business so be able to prove you the maker of the goods and the business.

A few years ago I did a podcast with Chris and Geoff Buddie about going to Canada to do shows. You might glean some helpful info from that:

We'd love to know how it goes for you. A blog post, a review, tips, a podcast??

Super, thanks Connie.

I will definitely do an update afterwards! :) 

if a central cashier is handling all transactions could you not just be another traveller or tourist going to the USA. If you tell border agents your going to work make money will have a problem. Visiting old college friends for a reunion is an entirely different thing. Your spending money.

You might have another issue: If you sell well and have a lot of cash transactions or are paid by the "cashier" in cash. Then you have a problem with transporting the monetary amounts cross borders. On the idea of giving false information to the Border patrol - DON'T DO IT!  You open yourself up for a lot of problems if you go down that path.  yes it is a gamble. I have traveled, many times, over the years, back and forth to Canada / USA. Sometimes extensive searches, sometimes not. One time, just a few years ago, I was held up at the border, going into Canada. They kept me there for hours, questioning me... what about?  Their system pulled up a fist fight I had against a street gang that tried to move in on a business. Yep, a stupid street fight where I was exonerated about 40 years ago, came up and they almost did not let me in. I did not lie, but it is amazing what they find. Be honest, don't trap yourself.

Completely agree Larry, I would never want to jeopardize my ability to go back and forth from Canada and the US.  Fibbing never pays that's for sure! 


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