Report: Southbound border crossings up 6.5 percent

Posted by DAVE GALLAGHER on October 16, 2013 

Border Traffic Whatcom County

Canadian cars heading into the U.S. line up at the Peace Arch border crossing in Blaine on Monday morning, Jan 28, 2013.

PHILIP A. DWYER — THE BELLINGHAM HERALD Buy Photo

Border traffic into Whatcom County continues to rise, according to the latest data.

Nearly 11.1 million people traveled southbound through the five Whatcom County border crossing in the first eight months of the 2013. That's a 6.5 percent increase compared to the same period in 2012, according to data collected by Western Washington University's Center for Economics and Business Research. 

Something that has helped is the Canadian dollar, which has remained strong throughout 2013. The Canadian dollar is currently equal to around 96 U.S. cents. 

In August nearly 1.8 million people traveled south into Whatcom County, the highest monthly total since August 2001. Generally speaking, the southbound border crossing numbers tend to decline in October and November, rising again in December for the holiday shopping season.

This year's numbers are on track to surpass the 2012 total of 15.4 million, which would make it the highest annual total since 1997.

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