What you should know before you rent a car
Where to rent a car in Canada?
Located in North America and bordered by the US to the south, and the Arctic Ocean to the north, Canada is known for its stunning landscapes, varied wildlife, and interesting cities. Its capital city is Ottawa, which is served by Ottawa/Macdonald–Cartier International Airport. While English is the most spoken language in Canada, there are a number of French-speaking areas, primarily most of Quebec province. Travelers arriving in Canada may well touch down in one of the country's most visited airports, such as Toronto Pearson International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, or Montréal–Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport – all of which offer car rental services upon arrival. Thanks to the large number of stunning national parks in Canada, as well as the country's well maintained and often scenic roads, renting a car is one of the best ways to see the country's sights. Alternatively, Via Rail Canada connects a number of cities across the country – however, without the flexibility afforded by rental car. Planning to travel on four wheels? Choose from car rental companies such as Thrifty, Discount Quebec, Hertz and Enterprise Rent-A-Car.
What are the driving rules in Canada?
When renting a car in Canada, there are a few road rules to be aware of. Firstly, it's important to note that in Canada, both speed and distance are measured in kilometers - from road signs to the speedometer in your rental car, km will be the unit of measurement. US visitors can drive in Canada with a valid US driver's license. When in Canada, drive on the right-hand side of the road and if using a cell phone while driving, this must be hands-free. While the vast majority of road signs in Canada are displayed in English, there are some in French-speaking areas such as Quebec which appear in French alone. The speed limit in Canada can vary, however in urban areas the speed limit is usually 50 km/h, while on the highway it can be as high as 120 km/h.
Road trips in Canada
Canada is known for its impressive natural scenery: coastal roads and sweeping mountain views are almost the norm when it comes to taking a Canadian road trip by rental car! From Ottawa to Vancouver, discover our top three picks for a road trip in Canada to remember.
Road trips around Ottawa
Canada's capital city is a great place to begin a Canadian road trip – but first, make sure to visit some of the city's best sights and attractions! Parliament Hill, the Canadian Museum of History, Rideau Hall and the National Gallery of Canada are just a few of the points of interest worth visiting in Ottawa. A number of great destinations can be found around Ottawa to be explored by rental car. Take a trip to nearby Montreal, which is around 125 miles away by road; if this isn't enough, continue on to Quebec City to discover one of Canada's French speaking cities. Alternatively, travel the 280 miles south to Toronto to see sights such as Lake Ontario and the CN Tower.
Road trips around Vancouver
Found in British Columbia, Vancouver is known for its diversity and its stunning location, surrounded by nature. In the city itself, don't miss sights such as Stanley Park, the Vancouver Art Gallery, and the Museum of Vancouver. From Vancouver, a number of beautiful drives await: take a few days and make the trip to Tofino, passing through the MacMillan Provincial Park along the way; or, for a shorter trip, drive over to Whistler for skiing and other winter sports.
The Cabot Trail
This popular route can be found in Nova Scotia and allows visitors to travel through the beautiful landscape of Cape Breton Island. Cape Breton Highlands National Park is one of the highlights of this road trip, with hiking opportunities aplenty (as well as the chance to see some moose!). In addition to featuring stunning coastal roads, this road trip also allows for the opportunity to discover the island's Celtic heritage.