The Busiest Border Crossings in the United States

The San Ysidro Port of Entry. Editorial credit: Arthur Greenberg /
The San Ysidro Port of Entry. Editorial credit: Arthur Greenberg /

According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), approximately 199.9 million people crossed into the United States (US) through the country's various ports of entry in 2018. The report indicates that the country's busiest border crossings are the three following states: Washington, Texas, and Maine. However, most of the busiest border crossings are in Texas. The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) does not collect the same level of data related to outbound crossing. Some of the busiest ports of entry in the US based on personal vehicles for March 2019 are highlighted below.

The Four Busiest Entry Points in the US

San Ysidro

The San Ysidro Port of Entry is located in San Ysidro, which is a district of San Diego, California, near the US-Mexico border. Also known as San Ysidro Land Port of Entry, it is the busiest border crossing in both the US and the Western Hemisphere, as well as the fourth busiest land border crossing in the world. In 2018, San Ysidro recorded 9.4 million pedestrians crossing the border into the US, plus 14.5 million personal vehicles carrying 25.2 million passengers. In March 2019, a total of 1.208 million personal vehicles crossed the border, up from 1.039 million in January. In March of the same year, 930,000 pedestrians crossed into the United States through the San Ysidro Port of Entry.

El Paso

The El Paso Paso del Norte (PDN) Port of Entry is one the busiest border crossings in the United States, with bridges between El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahau, Mexico. The city of El Paso is located in western Texas, along the Rio Grande river and US-Mexico border. The border crossing is served by numerous bridges, including the Cordova Bridge, Stanton Street Bridge, Santa Fe Street Bridge, and Zaragoza Bridge, and ranks as the second-busiest in the US in terms of personal vehicles. In 2018, 12.4 million personal vehicles carrying more than 22 million passengers used the border crossing. In March 2019 alone, approximately 982,600 vehicles were recorded crossing into the country through the El Paso PDN Port of Entry.

Otay Mesa

The Otay Mesa Port of Entry is one of two border crossings in San Diego, California. Located just north of the US-Mexico border, the crossing connects the community of Otay Mesa in San Diego with the borough of Otay Centenario in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. Commerical trucks entering the US from Tijuana must use the Otay Mesa Port of Entry rather than the San Ysidro Port of Entry. In 2018, 3.4 million pedestrians and 7.7 million personal cars were recorded entering the United States through through Otay Mesa. In March 2019, Otay Mesa ranked as the third-busiest port of entry in the US, registering 573,597 personal vehicles, up from 501,600 in the previous month.


Laredo is a city in Texas, located in the north bank of the Rio Grande, near the US-Mexico border. The ports of entry between Laredo, Texas and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico consist of five international bridges, including four road bridges and one railway bridge, and rank as one of the busiest border crossings in the US. According to the US Bureau of Transportation and Statistics, the border crossing at Laredo was the third-busiest in terms of pedestrians in 2018, recording 3.7 million pedestrians, as well as roughly 5.1 million personal vehicles. In March 2019, a total of 445,919 personal vehicles entered the US through Laredo, up from 393,922 in the previous month, and ranked as the fourth busiest border crossing in the US.

Source of Border Crossing Data

Border crossing data is provided by the Bureau of Transport Statistics, which is part of the US Department of Transportation. Data is collected at inbound crossings at the US-Mexico and US-Canada borders. The data collected by the US Customs and Border Protection include the number of trains, trucks, buses, passengers, pedestrians, and personal vehicles. It is important to note that data collected does not include the number of outbound crossings.

List of the 10 Busiest Border Crossings in the United States

RankPort NameStateEntries (March 2019)
1San YsidroCalifornia1,208,832
2El PasoTexas982,585
3Otay MesaCalifornia573,597
8Buffalo-Niagara FallsNew York357,879

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