Know Before You Go: Canada

Know Before You Go: Canada

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Your U.S. cell phone will work in Canada but the charges will be astronomical if you don’t let your carrier know you are heading out of the country and have them work out a texting and calling package for you while you’re away.

If you don’t set up a special plan, be sure to turn off your cellular data in settings and only download email when you’re hooked up to WiFi.


All of Canada uses the Canadian Dollar (C$ or CAD). The Canadian dollar’s value floats against that of all other major currencies.  Canadian bills or bank notes are commonly available in $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 dollar denominations. Foreign currencies are easily changed into Canadian dollars at currency exchange kiosks at airports, border crossings, large shopping malls and banks. Many places near the Canada / U.S. border – tourist destinations especially – accept U.S. dollars, but exchange rates vary by retailer and likely are less favorable than bank exchange rates

Credit cards and debit cards are widely accepted across Canada and ATMs are easy to find in urban areas so it’s not necessary to bring loads of cash.

Passports and Visas

All U.S. citizens arriving in Canada must have a valid passport or passport equivalent, such as an enhanced driver’s license or NEXUS card.

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