Montreal's sensible layout combined with an extensive and super-efficient public transport system (Metro, bus and commuter rail services) make getting around the city easy. In fair weather hundreds of kilometres of bike paths that span the island offer a healthier, pleasant option. Public transport is run by the Montreal Transport Society, or STM. The pristine metro has dozens of stations along four different lines with numerous stops in the subterranean mall. The metro stops are all integrated with a comprehensive network of city bus routes. The metro and buses run between 5:30am and 1am, with a limited night bus service filling in. The inner city services in turn connect to a commuter rail network that serves the suburbs. Fares are standard on both the bus and metro and transfers are free; a discounted tourist pass is available for bus and metro. Metered taxis can be hailed in the streets downtown or ordered by telephone. There are numerous car rental firms in the city, but roads are often heavily congested and traffic jams are common.
GMT -5 (GMT -4 from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November).
Electrical current is 110 volts, 60Hz. American-style flat two-pin plugs and a plug with a third round grounding pin are standard.
The currency used is the Canadian Dollar (CAD). Banks and bureaux de change will change cash, as will some hotels. Major credit cards are widely accepted and ATMs are widespread. US Dollars are largely accepted.
The international access code for Canada is +1. The outgoing code is 011 followed by the relevant country code. The outgoing code is not necessary for calls to the US and the Caribbean. Internet cafes are widely available. Most international mobile phone companies have roaming agreements with Canadian operators, however it will be cheaper to buy a pay-as-you-go SIM card if visiting the country for long periods.
|New Years Day||1 Jan||1 Jan|
|Good Friday||3 Apr||25 Mar|
|Easter Monday||6 Apr||28 Mar|
|Victoria Day||18 May||23 May|
|Canada Day||1 Jul||1 Jul|
|Civic Holiday||3 Aug||1 Aug|
|Labour Day||7 Sep||5 Sep|
|Thanksgiving Day||12 Oct||10 Oct|
|Remembrance Day||11 Nov||11 Nov|
|Christmas Day||25 Dec||25 Dec|
|Boxing Day (Ontario only)||26 Dec||26 Dec|
With predominantly wet, warm summers and cold, snowy winters, the climate of Montreal is varied and seasonal. In winter snowfall is abundant, and snow is common both in spring and autumn. Temperatures well below freezing are experienced in winter, and the bitter weather is exacerbated by wind chill. Summer brings sunshine and pleasant days, with high humidity on occasion, although highs seldom exceed 74°F (25°C). Rain can be expected any time of year in Montreal, but summer tends to be the wettest season. A feature of the climate of Montreal is the possibility of late autumn heat waves, enjoyed as 'Indian summers', which frequently occur.
There is an airport shuttle bus service into the centre of Montreal and to the major downtown hotels.
Alamo, Avis, Budget, Hertz, National and Thrifty are represented on site.
Metered taxis are readily available and can be found waiting outside the baggage reclaim area on the ground level. The main taxi companies operating from the airport are Taxi Diamond, Taxi Champlain, Taxi Expert and Co-Op Taxi. There is a minimum charge for a trip from the airport of C$17. The fare to downtown Montreal is fixed at C$40.
The Departures Level offers ATMs and bureaux de change, as well as duty-free and other shops. A variety of restaurants, bars and cafes are available on both levels and wifi access is available from anywhere in the terminal. Business facilities are available in the VIP lounge. Disabled travellers are well catered for; passengers with special needs should contact their airline in advance.
Express parking (for pick-ups and drop-offs) is charged at C$5 for the first 20 minutes and CA$35 per day; short-term parking is available in HotelParc, charging C$5 for 20 minutes and C$25 per day respectively. Long-term parking is cheapest in Econoparc at C$17-C$21 per day and C$72-C$79 per week, and the lot is connected to the terminal by a free shuttle service. Valet parking is also available; the reception area is next to the terminal.
Wifi is available in the terminal, and is free for one hour.