Canada travel tips for visa holders

In Canada the daily rate may be an enticing $29 but by the time you finish with insurance, gasoline (fill it up before taking it back or you pay the rental company’s prices plus a fee for doing it), the number of kilometers, provincial sales tax, GST and any other bits and pieces, you can be handed a pretty surprising bill. So make sure you know all the extra costs. Some companies offer vans and, with a number of people sharing, this can work out to be quite economical. These should be booked well in advance. Count on needing a credit card to rent a car in Canada. Cash is not considered good enough. There may be some companies here and there who will rent to those without plastic but even after the hassle of finding one, expect more problems.

 First the company will need a few days (at least) to check you out. If you’re not working, things can be sticky; bring a letter from an employer or banker if you can, and lots of good identification. You may also need to leave a deposit, sometimes as much as several hundred dollars a day. After all that you may still have to sign away your first child too. It’s not worth the headache. Some companies require you to be over 21 years of age, others over 26. You may be asked to buy extra insurance depending on your age, but the required premiums are not high. Insurance is generally optional.

 Check to see if your car insurance at home includes rentals or offers a rental clause. Doing it this way is cheaper than buying the insurance from the rental agency. Parents note, children less than 18kg (401bs) are required to be in a safety car seat which must be secured by a seat belt. The big-name rental companies can supply seats at a small daily rental fee. Out of the major cities it may take a couple of days for the outlet to come up with one but the cost is the same? Recreational Vehicle Rental Renting recreational vehicles (RV s) or campervans, or various trailers (caravans) is another option. The RV market is big in the west with specialized agencies in Calgary, Edmonton and Whitehorse.

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