Destination Review: Keep Calm and Drive Safely: Tips for Cross-Canada Car Trips

The Luxe Factor: Tips for Cross-Canada Car Trips

BY Emma Midlton



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Keep Calm and Drive Safely: Tips for Cross-Canada Car Trips

Canada features an amazing mixture of scenic mountain and lake landscapes, well-equipped city highways, and snaky rural roads. Driving in the second-largest country in the world may prove to be a daunting challenge. To be on the safe side, follow our simple driving across Canada tips and tricks. Check your International Driving Permit. To drive legally in Canada, you must have two valid documents – a driver’s license and car insurance. Driver’s license. For short-term visitors – whose stay in the country is going to last not more than 90 days – a valid home driving license and insurance will be sufficient. If you’re planning to stay in Canada longer than 3 months, apply for your local authorities to get an international driving license. Car insurance. Sometimes, a car journey around Canada proves to be a challenging endeavor, especially for first-timers. Therefore, car insurance is an obligatory document for any traveler from abroad. Try to have your documents processed by respectable car insurance providers.

1.  Make Allowance to Your Age

Bear in mind that there exist certain restrictions concerning underaged travelers in Canada:
  • The minimum driver’s age is 16 in most provinces.
  • If you want to rent a car, you must be at least 20 years old.
  • In Canada, car rental policies fluctuate from province to province. This means that in definite pick-up locations 18- and 19-year-olds are allowed to hire a vehicle.
  • If you are in your 20’s, you’ll have to pay Underage Surcharge.
Hence, go into more detail on this matter and find a reliable car hire company – such as – that offers the best prices for under 21 car rental deals.

2.  Create a plan for your future trip

Canada is a beautiful land of mirrored lakes, snow-capped peaks, and picturesque glaciers. Get to know your future destination in-depth. Devise a step-by-step plan for your journey. Make a list of places to visit in Canada such as, for instance – Niagara Falls, Stanley Park, Notre-Dame Basilica, Old Quebec, Butchart Gardens, CN Tower, and Old Montreal.

3.  Make your bookings

Read travelers’ reviews and tips on the appropriate accommodation to book. Make online reservations in advance to get the most beneficial deals. Find out information about the best car rentals with the most affordable prices.

4.  Study traffic rules in Canada

In general, driving rules in Canada are the same as the traffic regulations in America. But still, certain distinctive features exist. Canada driving rules vs the US regulations:
  • Americans don’t need to have an international license.
  • Speed limits on signs are indicated in kilometers, not in miles.
  • You are not allowed to turn right on red in Montreal.
  • Proof of auto insurance is demanded.
The most crucial regulations to be obeyed for all drivers in Canada:
●       Stick to right-hand traffic
Good news for the Americans and a curtain disturbance for the Japanese and British travelers. Cars drive on the right-hand side of the road in Canada.
●       Keep speed limits
The minimum permitted speed on highways is 60 km/h. The top speed varies from 80 km/h to 100 km/h. The average allowed speed for urban roads is 50 km/h and for rural roads outside the city, the limits are set between 60-80 m/h.
●       Don’t use a mobile phone
Cellular devices are prohibited as they are the main distractors. But using “hands-free” while driving is legal.
●       Read the road signs
Never overlook road signs, read and keep them carefully. Depending on the province, they may be written in French or English, and some of them are bilingual.
●       Carry driver’s documents with you
Always have at hand a valid driver’s license, insurance, and registration documents.
●       Don’t forget about winter
If you are going to Canada in winter, take into account the northern climate of the Great White North. Heavy snows, drifts, and icy roads are tricky and dangerous for inexperienced chauffeurs. Below are several driving tips for driving to Canada in winter:
  • Drive carefully. Avoid making sudden turns and stops. Don’t drive too fast, as it often leads to collisions on frosty roads. Brake slowly before entering a turn.
  • Get your vehicle ready for snowy weather. It is the most rational winter driving safety tip for Canada. Switch to winter tires and keep necessary equipment in your car, such as snow brushes and scrapers, lightweight shovel, flashlight, and battery jumper cables.
  • Take better control of skids. In case of skidding, turn into the skid and accelerate. Such a maneuver will help to pass on your auto’s weight from the front part to the rear. After that, you are sure to regain control of your car.
  • Maintain distance between vehicles. Tailgating gets much more dangerous in winter. Try not to drive dangerously close to another automobile to prevent car accidents.
For this post, we’ve created a survival guide on a safe car journey around Canada. We hope they’ll come in handy and your trip will be smooth and enjoyable.

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