Canada has the entire package to offer to visitors, from wonderful natural marvels to busy cities. When you are thinking of visiting Canada, you must remember a few things that will make your trip smoother and ensure you have a great time.
Like any other country, these are a few things that are different from India, which you may not expect. It is better to be prepared for any circumstances rather than being caught in a sticky situation. Here is a guide for those who are visiting Canada for the first time.
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Things to know about visiting Canada for the first-time
- It gets cold – Canada is the second-largest country in the world, which is why the weather differs across this country. Even during the summer season, it can get cold at night. The best thing to do is to carry plenty of warm clothes, including a scarf, a hat, or earmuffs, and if you are visiting during winters, be prepared for snowfall. Pack your clothes and shoes, keeping in mind you may have to wade through knee-deep snow. Canada’s western coastline has higher temperatures but not high enough to survive without warm clothes.
- Learn basic French – Most Canadians speak English, and you can get by easily. However, there are still some people, especially from the Quebec region, who speak French. Canada is a melting pot of cultures, and it is advisable to know certain basic sentences in French. If you cannot remember these sentences, you can always make a note of them on your phone and use them in a pinch.
- Get travel insurance – Canada has excellent healthcare schemes for its residents. However, it can cost you a hefty sum if you are just visiting. That is why getting travel insurance is imperative. It protects you against costs that are incurred due to unforeseen circumstances. If you are looking for the best fit for yourself, you should look at the travel insurance online options to look at everything available in the market. Travel insurance protects you against theft of a passport, loss of baggage, medical emergencies, and other such circumstances that can leave you stranded in a foreign country.
- Explore the natural beauty – Canada has beautiful mountains, lakes, valleys, and national parks to offer. Here are some of the most loved spots in Canada – Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Big Muddy Badlands, Saskatchewan, Red Sands, Prince Edward Island, Cathedral Grove, Vancouver Island, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, British Columbia. These are popular sites for camping overnight.
- Sales Tax and Tips in Canada – Canadians are known to be polite worldwide, and the hospitality of Canadians is top-notch. Unlike in India, the service charge is not added to your bill. Although tipping is entirely optional, you are expected to tip about 15% to 20% of the bill. Apart from this, you should not be surprised to see an added sales tax in the bill. Apart from this, various provinces have their own taxes. Depending on where you are in Canada, your bill can easily come up to 15% more of the total value. Remember, when you buy an item in a store, the taxes are added while billing.
- Keep visa documents handy – Indians must have a visa when they are visiting Canada. When traveling to Canada, you might need to produce your papers promptly whenever asked for them at the airport. That is why a Canada visit visa from India should be kept handy along with the application of the visa as well as the receipt of payment. With the new norms in place, you may need a copy of the recent RT-PCR test that you have taken within 48 hours of landing in Canada. So, you should crosscheck all your documents and try keeping them in hand baggage to avoid confusion.
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- Transportation in Canada – Canada is a beautiful country and stretches across various time zones. If you are looking for ways to get around the country, then driving is a good option. Driving during winters can be tricky. That is why it is also essential to look at other options for traveling within the country. You can book flights, you can use the railways, buses, ferry, trams, subways, and taxis. You can also walk around or even cycle through the local areas.
This checklist will not only allow you to be prepared for traveling to Canada, but it can also give you hints on what to pack, how much cash you should keep handy, how you can make a budget, what to look for in travel insurance, etc and so on. While you are enjoying the sights in Canada, it is also important to remember your safety and convenience.