Conference Info > Passport Information
*** New Requirements for Travelers from the United States *** Since January 1, 2007, EVERYONE traveling by AIR between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Bermuda have been required to present a valid passport, air NEXUS card, or U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Document due to regulations set forth by the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative.
As of 1 June 2009, EVERYONE traveling between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Bermuda by LAND, SEA (including cruises and ferries) or AIR will be required to present a valid passport or other documents as determined by the Department of Homeland Security to cross the border.
Customs & Duty Free
All persons entering Canada must fill out a declaration for Canada Customs. Each visitor over the age of 19 may import, duty free, a maximum of 40 ounces (1.1 litres) liquor or wine, or 288 ounces (8.5 litres) of beer or ale, up to 50 cigars, 200 cigarettes and 8 ounces (200 grams) of tobacco. Revolvers, pistols, and fully automatic firearms are prohibited entry into Canada. Non-restricted firearms (which must be declared) are a regular sporting rifle or a shotgun with a barrel over 470 mm (18.5 in.) with a maximum overall length of 660 mm (26 in.).
For more information see:
Canada Border Services Agency
1.800.461.9999 - North America or 001.204.983.3500 - International
In all cities and towns, it is possible to convert between Canadian dollars and most major currencies at many banks. In addition, most retailers in Canada will accept US currency either at par or at slightly reduced value. All Canadian banks provide currency exchange at the daily market value. In some areas, private exchange bureaus will give better exchange rates and lower fees than banks, so if you have time during your travels to look one up. It might save you some money on the exchange both when you arrive and before you leave, because Canadian dollars may not be worth as much in your home country, particularly the coin.
Many businesses across Canada accept US Currency based on their own exchange rate for general purchases. Bills are taken with the exchange rate but coins are taken one to one (that means, CAN 1.00 = USD 1.00 in pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, loonies and toonies only), almost all automatic vending machines will reject US coins. Check here for the current US/Canadian exchange rate: www.xe.com/ucc/
English and French are the only two official languages in Canada. All communications and services provided from the federal government are available in both languages. Many Canadians are functionally monolingual, although some parts of the country have both English and French speakers. Over a quarter of Canadians are bilingual or multilingual. Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal are home to large Chinese migrant populations, and Cantonese is commonly spoken in the Chinatowns in these cities.