Good Day all.
Since we are such an international bunch I wanted to see if anyone had any input.
I will be visiting Toronto at the end of the month for the first time.
I have never been but I have heard wonderful things about it.
I am technically going for work but I will have all of a friday afternoon and almost all day monday (flight leaves at 5) to enjoy the town.
We are staying at the holiday inn near the airport.
I was hoping someone could help me out with any information about public transportation, great food, awesome shopping ( I was hoping to be able to do my holiday shopping there since hopefully they would have different stores).
Oh and also the money issue.
Do I need to exchange my dollars for canadian dollars??
Coming from a girl (me) born in TO, you will want to visit the Eaton Centre (which is downtown TO, on Yonge St). Or since your out by the airport, you could go to Yorkdale mall. Both are big and have lots of stores. The Eaton Centre is more touristy .
Also, if your downtown, I'd go to the CN Tower. Great views of the city and Lake Ontario (depending on the weather of course). Lots of fun stuff to do there. ROM, Art Gallery, Yonge St in general is fun just to people watch.
Public transportation is probably the easiet bet, as traffic is horrible. You can take the TTC anywhere. Very easy to figure out. I wouldn't take a cab unless your staying right downtown, as sitting in traffic can add up in a cab.
I would exchange $ before hand, makes it easier to shop with and some of the stores exchange rate may not be as good as the banks. Besides our money is pretty and colourful....
If you need other info, pm me and I'll help you out
I would have some cash, but mostly use your charge cards or debit cards. You will get the best rate possible that way. Just an fyi that debit cards work very differently in Canada then they do in the usa. Debit cards in Canada all have to use the little 'machine' and enter your Acct. A, which is usually checking account, which is spelled; "Chequing" in Canada; or Acct. B, which usually is your Savings account. They are different. If you want to just 'sign' for your purchase instead, like especially at a restaurant, then just tell them it's a "Visa" card, so that you can use it like a charge card and just sign for it. Otherwise, you'll have to walk up to the machine and enter your pin, etc. into it.
I hope I haven't confused you, but if you need further clarification, just pm me. I second the motion to ride up the CN Tower. The "ROM" that the other CC person mentioned is the "Royal Ontario Museum", and the TTC is the "Toronto Transit Commission." The hockey hall of fame and the Ontario Science Centre are also interesting places to visit. The "Go" Train would be fun to take from the airport area to the downtown area. Or the 'subway' would be fun too. There are maps to where you want to go right on top of each exit door of the subway trains. Ask your hotel concierge for more specifics/options, etc.
Have fun! I was born in Toronto, but currently live in PA.
Here's a link that may help with transportation:
Make sure you are back at the airport 2 hours ahead of your departure to make sure you clear security and customs in time. The airport recomends 2 hours ahead for international flights and 90 mins for domestic.
If you want to use cash, change it if you can (saves hassle trying to convert) and get smaller bills - a lot of smaller shops (food places) won't take 50's or 100's anymore.
Thank you all so much,
I knew someone would be a wealth of information and I got not 1 but 3 awesome people.
You guys rock.
thanks for the tip on the debit cards neecerator, I was only planning on taking cash and credit cards as I have stopped using debit cards all together, but its still good to know so I can tell the other people I will be traveling with.
According to google maps we will only be 25 minutes away from Niagara falls so that is something we definitely want to do.
Since Toronto is so much more metropolitan than south Florida I am going to be looking to find a awesome hair salon to get a hair cut and blue highlights.
I will definitely be taking public transportation. I have been scowering the ttc website trying to connect bus and subway routes with points of interest.
Thank you again for all the tips, if you have any more please feel free I accept all suggestions.
Not to scare you, but the Province of Ontario (where Toronto is in) has 13% tax. So on your expensive Toronto haircut, you'll pay the price of the cut, + 13% tax, + tip. You may want to re-consider that one.
I hope though, that you truly find what you are looking for. Honest Ed's store is a fun place to go. It's a cold time of year to be visiting, so dress warm, especially when you go outside to see Niagara Falls. Compared to FL, you'll freeze your butts off! Feel free to ask more questions as you figure things out. Most of all, have a blast!!
Recheck your google calculation. Niagra Falls is more like 90 minutes away, not 25.
Ya i just rechecked- 87 miles
ok so scratch that off the list.
neecerator- thanks for the tip on the tax % - ill definitely be keeping that in mind for my purchases then.
ill be spending some time (that means at least several hours) looking stuff up, im sure I will have more questions
Oh I definitely plan on bringing my heavy winter gear- I have fur (fake) lined adidas boots that are awesome- keep the toes toasty, have lots of grip, and look pretty good.
Thankfully since its a seminar I don't have to bring any nice work clothes