As of December 11th, 2017, the Canadian Border Services Agency will be implementing scheduled hours for those who are looking to get a work permit or study permit by crossing the Quebec land borders. This procedure of crossing the land border to obtain a Canadian visa is also known as "flagpoling".
The new schedule for the processing of study permits* and work permits requests by applicants who already live in Canada will apply at the following borders:
If you want to process your study permit or work permit at one of the listed land borders, you must do so during these hours of service:
-Monday to Thursday: from 12 pm (noon) to 7pm
-Saturday: from 9 am to 5 pm
Therefore, you should NOT try to cross the border for your study permit or work permit on fridays and sundays.
Outside of these hours, you will be invited to present a request to IRCC from within Canada if you attempt to submit an application for a study permit or work permit.
Furthermore, please note that those who have received a visa for Canadian permanent residence may still do their landing at these border crossings at any time.
How far is the border?
Both borders aren't very far from downtown Montreal, you are looking at around 1 hour to 1 hour and 30 minutes of driving to reach the Canada-USA border.
Downtown Montreal (AZ Law Firm) to Lacolle border: 76,1km
Downtown Montreal (AZ Law Firm) to Philipsburg border: 86.4 km
What is the procedure at the border?
Once you reach the United States border, you should let the border agent know immediately that you are attempting to flagpole for your study permit or work permit. You will then be redirected to the Canadian customs building where you can speak to the Canadian immigration officer and present the documentation for your application.
*At this moment, only applicants from the United States of America may apply for a study permit at a land border crossing.