How to Plan for Your Visit to Canada
Are you planning a trip to Canada? Whether you’re planning a year-long tour, a six-month study term, to visit family, or just to see what the country has to offer, there are a few things you should know before travelling to Canada. In this blog post, we’ve collected some tips to help you prepare for your visit to Canada, including what to plan for before you leave, what to have ready when you depart, and what to prepare for your arrival.
Before you leave:
- Read about the country. Canada is a diverse country with a variety of landscapes, climates, and cities. It will help you when you’re packing and making travel arrangements to know what to expect at your destination. The best way to learn is to do some research by reading blogs like our Top Travel Destinations in Canada, or published guidebooks.
- Find out which travel documents and/or permits you will need. The government of Canada website has a simple quiz you can take to find out if you need a visa to visit Canada. If you want to work in Canada or study in Canada, you may also require a permit. Leave plenty of time to apply for the documents you will need for your trip.
- Plan your trip. Write an itinerary of places you want to visit in Canada and the activities you want to do. Allow reasonable travel time and time to rest in between your plans. Keep your itinerary handy so you know where you are heading to next!
- Purchase travel insurance. To help financially protect yourself and your loved ones in case an emergency occurs when you visit Canada, make sure to purchase travel insurance before you depart to avoid delays in coverage. A licensed Canadian insurance broker can help, and Travelance can put you in touch with a broker – just contact us!
When you depart:
- Make sure you have your paperwork in order, including your confirmation of coverage. Your paperwork should be one of the first things on your packing list. It’s essential to have your passport, any visas and/or permits, travel tickets, and your confirmation of travel insurance prepared for your trip. Keep these easily accessible on your way to visit Canada.
- Make sure you have any necessary medication and prescriptions with you. Keep it handy and carry extra in case of loss or delays! Customs officials may ask to see prescriptions and will want medication in its original packaging. If you must take medication with you, be sure it is properly labelled and documented. Here is where you can find a list of documentation customs officials may ask to see.
- Have Canadian cash ready for emergencies. Yes, most places in Canada and in transit will accept credit cards. However, for small purchases like food, and in case of an emergency, you will want to be able to pay immediately and cash is the best method.
- Pack clothing appropriate to the climate of the province/territory you will visit. Check the weather forecast for the destination you are heading to and pack clothing appropriate for the days you will visit Canada. If you will be in the country for more than one season, pack the lightest clothes first. You can always purchase bulky items, like winter coats, upon arrival unless you will need them immediately (in which case, it might be best to wear your coat as you travel!).
When you arrive:
- Make sure your documents are in-hand and ready to present to the customs officials. This is a simple but sometimes forgotten tip. Having your documents in hand when you go through customs will make the process easier for everyone involved.
- Make sure you know the address you are travelling to and the reason for your visit. These are common questions asked at immigration interviews. For a list of other questions officials will likely ask you, check the Canadian government website.
- If you are not meeting friends or family when you arrive, plan to take public transportation to your final destination. There are many ways to travel in Canada. The location you visit may have trains, light rails, a subway system, buses, shuttles, taxi service, ride sharing programs, and more! You can often find out how to get to your final destination from an information desk at your port of arrival. However, doing your research before you arrive for your visit in Canada can reduce stress after a long trip. Make sure you know how you are getting to each destination on your Canadian journey beforehand.
- Enjoy your visit!
We hope you enjoy your stay when you visit Canada. If you follow the steps in this blog post, your travels should be a little less stressful and a little more exciting.
Remember, it’s a good idea to pack travel insurance because visitors to Canada are not covered under Canada’s universal health care system. If you need Visitors to Canada Emergency Medical Insurance, Travelance can help connect you with a licensed Canadian travel insurance broker who will help you find the plan that best suits your needs.