As far as procedures for entering Canada.
In advance of your flight do the following asap
1.Sign up for Eapis (https://eapis.cbp.dhs.gov/)asap
to get your username and password- I think it can take a few days so sign up asap.
2. As a Canadian we need a US Customs decal to cross into the US. So you might need to order one of those decals asap as well. (https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov/
) They can take up to 6 weeks to receive(although just having paid for the decal and having the receipt may be good enough- check with US Customs and border patrol. )
On the day of your flight
1. When you are ready to cross the border file your eapis notice of departure from the US. (https://eapis.cbp.dhs.gov/
2. File a US Flight Plan.
3. Call Canada Customs (1-888-226-7277)and let them know what time you will arrive in Nanaimo- they will ask your aircraft ident passenger info- probably passport info as well as asking you what you are bringing to Canada.
4.**Remember to activate your flight plan with Seattle Radio in the air as US flight plans aren't usually opened until you radio them in the air.
1.Again make sure your flight plan is active **Remember to activate it with Seattle Radio in the air as US flight plans aren't usually opened until you radio them in the air. They will activate your flight plan and give you a cross border transponder code
2.Probably the most stress free way to travel to Nanaimo would be to be talking to Whidbey Approach (118.2 When west of Whidbey Air Force Base)when crossing the Strait of Juan de Fuca(let them know you already have a cross border transponder code). They will terminate/hand you off to Victoria Terminal 127.8 around the time you cross into Canada. If you are between 2500 and 12500 you will be talking to and stay with Victoria Terminal all the way from crossing into Canada until descending into Nanaimo if thats where you want to clear customs. When you get close to Nanaimo you can pick up their weather on their atis @ 128.425- then switch over to Nanaimo radio @ 122.1 and let them know you have their atis(weather-like an awos) and you're inbound full stop for customs.
3. When you land have Nanaimo radio close your flight plan if able or call Canadian Flight Service at 1-888-987-2633 to close.
4.Park where tower indicates for Customs and if they aren't there in person give customs a call (1-888-226-7277) and let them know you have arrived. Most times they will simply give you a clearance number over the phone and wish you a good day.
I haven't cleared customs at Nanaimo- I always clear in Victoria as that is my home base. Any questions let me know.