Foire aux questions
Capital City: Ottawa
Largest Cities: Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and the City of Québec (both French-speaking)
Population: 36.29 million (2016) World Bank, Trends
International Calling Code: +1
Head of State: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
Type of Governance: Federal parliamentary system, constitutional monarchy
Government: Constitutional monarchy, parlementary system, representative democracy, federal monarchy
Currency: Canadian dollar
Time Zone: 4hrs to 8hrs Greenwich Mean Time (GMT/London time)
Electronic Travel Authorizations ‒ eTAs
Most travellers are required to have a visa or electronic travel authorization (eTA) to arrive in Canada by air, or when transiting through a Canadian airport.
Before you apply, check to see if you need a visa/eTA:
If so, apply here for an eTA:
Health Requirements: No vaccinations required.
“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.”
December to March ‒ Pack outerwear for extreme cold: Warm winter boots, ski-type snow pants, warm winter coat with hood, hat, lined and waterproof gloves, scarf or neck warmer/gaitor. Pack a balaclava as well if you are planning to ride a snowmobile/sled.
April, May & October, November ‒ Pack warm clothing to wear in layers, in addition to waterproof outerwear and comfortable walking shoes. A hat, scarf and gloves/mitts are required for travellers visiting Nordic regions.
June, July, August ‒ Summer can be very hot and humid in some Canadian cities. We recommend packing light, comfortable outfits with good breathability, and jacket/sweater for mornings and evenings or boat excursions. Hat, sunglasses, sunscreen and insect repellant are also travel musts, to travel in comfort. Do note most restaurants and hotels have central air conditioning in the summer months.
Mid-September to Mid-October ‒ “Indian summer” marks high-season in the Canadian tourism industry. Generally, Canada has lovely sunny fall days at this time of year, yet warm clothing is advised to enjoy chillier mornings and evenings.
Canada uses American electrical outlets. An adapter is necessary to use most devices purchased overseas.
Volts: 110 to 120 volts
Frequency: 60 Hz
Service and sales tax are not included in product pricing, contrary to a number of other countries. Whether you are in a restaurant or a store, a sales tax will be added to the sales price, at time of payment.
In Canada, there are 2 taxes. There’s the 5% federal GST (Goods and Services Tax), and the PST (Provincial Sales Tax) that varies between 0 and 10% depending on the province.
Tip ‒ Often referred to as a ‘service’ fee, the tip is not included in consumer prices. For restaurant servers, leaving 15 to 18% of the amount billed is recommended. Workers in the Canadian foodservice industry are paid less than minimum wage because tips are considered to be a part of their income/salary. Of course, the tip remains at the client’s discretion, and it should also reflect the quality of the service received.
Please read about other instances where tipping is recommended:
Bars/Cafes ‒ It is customary to leave $1 per drink/beverage. If your tab is high, tip 15% of the total amount.
Taxi Drivers ‒ It is customary to tip 10% of your trip fare, adding $1 per suitcase, if they are handled by your driver. Taxi drivers are generally honest in Canada, but it is advised to ask beforehand how much the trip will likely cost, unless it is a set fare, such as an airport/downtown trip. For instance, your taxi fare from Montreal Airport to downtown Montreal might be set at $40: tip between $5 and $10, depending on how many suitcases you have, and your level of satisfaction.
Tour Guides ‒ On city bus tours, day trips or guided activities, tipping your guide $4 to $6 per person is the norm. Again, this depends on your degree of satisfaction: if very satisfied, do leave more.
Bus/Coach Drivers ‒ On a Canada Coach Tour? Tip your driver approximately $3 p.p./day. Once again, tipping depends on your level of satisfaction: if very satisfied, do leave more.
Hotel Porters ‒ As a rule, leave $1 per suitcase, more if it is very large.
Hotel Housekeeping Staff ‒ Some hotels place an envelope for this purpose on a guestroom desk or nighttable. If you don’t put the money in the envelope, housekeeping will not touch it. Guests usually leave $1 p.p./night.
Most stores are open Monday to Saturday, 9 am to 5 pm and Sundays from 10 am to 5 pm. In big cities, some supermarkets and shopping malls open at 8 am, and close at 9 pm.
Do note that many stores and particularly ones in faraway regions may not be open Sundays. As well, business hours there are generally quite limited.
2019 Canadian statutory & other holidays:
- New Year’s Day – January 1
- Banking Institutions – January 2 (Québec only)
- Family Day – February 12 (only in British Columbia)
- L’île en Fête – February 19 (Prince-Edward-Island)
- Nova Scotia Heritage Day – February 18 (only in Nova-Scotia)
- Family Day – February 19 (only in Alberta, New-Brunswick, Ontario, Saskatchewan)
- Louis Riel Day – February 19 (only in Manitoba)
- Heritage Day – February 23 (only in Yukon)
- Good Friday – April 19
- Easter Monday – April 22
- Victoria Day / Journée nationale des patriotes in Québec – May 20
- National Aboriginal Day – June 21 (only in the North West Territories &Yukon)
- Fête nationale du Québec – June 24 (only in Québec)
- Discovery Day – June 25 (only in Newfoundland and Labrador)
- Canada Day – July 1
- Nunavut Day – July 9 (only in Nunavut)
- Battle of the Boyne – July 9 (only in Newfoundland and Labrador)
- Statutory Holiday – August 6 (everywhere except Québec & Yukon)
- Discovery Day – August 20 (only in Yukon)
- Labour Day – September 2
- Thanksgiving – October 14
- Remembrance Day – November 11
- Christmas – December 25
- Boxing Day – December 26
The Canada Specialist Program (CSP) is offered by the Canadian Tourism Commission.
(Please remember to choose your country of origin before you begin)
This program covers the more traditional visitor regions. You can therefore sell products in one given province to clients who wish to explore a particular region, or propose they take a longer trip across two or three provinces. You may also suggest cross-country itineraries to clients with more time. After all, in terms of size Canada ranks second worldwide.
Because your focus is on distant visitor regions entails discovering the country’s many assorted airports, so that upon entering Canada your clients can enjoy the experiences of their choice. The program comprises the following modules:
Canada in Short
- British Columbia and Alberta
- Manitoba and Saskatchewan
- Ontario and Québec
- Atlantic Canada
- Great Canadian North
- Aboriginal Experiences
- Winter Experiences