Just when you think you have heard everything . . . along comes a story like this.
Dianna Hilliard, an attorney in Missouri with 25 years of experience handling drunk driving cases, explains that if you are a passenger with a DWI / DUI conviction you may have a problem entering Canada during your cruise. In a blog entitled "On a Cruise to Canada??? DWI Conviction? May need a special waiver to enter Canada," Ms. Hilliard writes:
"A DWI incident will effect your ability to go to Canada.
Canadian authorities are reported to be refusing admission to drivers with a DWI conviction in the USA. Such records are immediately available on Canada Immigration computers and may show convictions as far back as 20 years ago. Those with such convictions may be able to get a waiver for up to 30 days visitation upon payment of a $200 (Canadian) fee. A single DWI conviction may be permanently expunged from the Canadian computers for payment of $400 (Canadian). Canadian officials are reported justifying the fees because they feel DWI is a serious crime and it is a way of keeping "undesirables" out of Canada.
This includes passengers on a cruise. What should you do? First, plan ahead, way ahead as Canada may take over 6 months to decide on a special waiver . . ."
It seems strange that a passenger who enters Canada only for an afternoon and returns to the cruise ship which leaves at 6:00 p.m. (and doesn’t even rent a car) could be be prevented from entering the country for a drunk driving arrest 5 or 10 years ago. It seems particularly strange because at any given time there are hundreds of drunk passengers on the cruise ships as they enter Canadian waters.
Does anyone know of a passenger who was denied entering Canada because of a DWI / DUI conviction?