When traveling, it is always important to make sure you know the dos and don’ts of every country. There is so much to do in Canada, but there are things you must find out before you traveling to Canada. These things not only give you a better experience, it might just save your life.
Pack Proper Clothing
Canada has different temperatures and climates depending on where you are going. It is very critical to research the area you are going to. Vancouver in winter is not the same as winter in Winnipeg. You have to pack weather-appropriate clothing, regardless of where you go. Make sure you have woolen accessories, high-quality snow boots, and a waterproof jacket.
Anticipate Weather Conditions
Canada is known for its harsh winter weather and it is imperative that you keep watch on the weather as it changes rapidly. Track weather on websites such as The Weather Network. During winter road closures are common due to snowstorms and avalanches, so be alert, if you are driving, make sure you hire a car well equipped with snow tires.
Acquire a Visa Beforehand
Before you start traveling around Canada, you have to obtain a visa. Most people need to obtain an ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) to enter the country. It does not cost much and you must buy it online before you arrive in the country.
Guard Yourself Against Petty Theft
Unfortunately, petty crime is a problem in most major cities globally. Most thieves target tourists, believing them to be ripe targets, Make sure you leave your passport in the hotel and carry a copy instead. If you leave luggage in the car, stow it out of sight and remove any valuables from the car in case it gets broken into.
Watch Out for Bears
Black and grizzly bears are common in Canada during summer and are dangerous. When you visit any National Park, hide any food away from bears to avoid an attack. Make sure you dispose of garbage properly and store food in airtight containers as bears have a very keen sense of smell. When visiting Churchill to see the polar bears, be very careful, as polar bears are famous for stalking humans!
Get Travel Insurance
Regardless of where you come from, travel insurance is critical. Insurance companies have an extra clause for if you intend to snowboard or ski. These activities are fun, but potentially dangerous and are the reason you need travel insurance prior to going to Canada.
Canada’s cities have various public transport modes. The SkyTrain in Vancouver is the longest fully automated and driverless system in the world. Toronto has buses, subways, and streetcars. If you are traveling to rural areas, it is best to rent a car as public transport may give you problems connecting to different places. Ubers and Taxis are also available in major urban towns.
Watch Children Around Water Areas
Canada has the longest coastline in the world. There are plenty of swimming places during summer. Canada is home to various freshwater lakes. Unless you are a strong swimmer, do not enter into the water. The ocean has strong currents that may seep you away easily. Remember not to dive in Canada’s rocky cliffs on the ocean side. Adults must supervise young children when swimming at all times.
Always know the emergency numbers for every country you go to. In Canada, the emergency-number is 911, just like in the US. For non-emergencies in areas like Winnipeg, Vancouver, Halifax, Calgary, and Edmonton, visitors can dial 311.
Using the Internet
As with everywhere else you go, be careful while using the internet, especially when booking hotels or transportation on public Wi-Fi. Public Wi-Fi is a haven for hackers where they can easily intercept the traffic of others on the same networks, stealing their credit card details and account information in what’s known as a Man-In-The-Middle attack. These public Wi-Fi threats can be curbed using traffic encryption software such as a VPN. Always remember to take care of your digital as well as physical safety.