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  1. Default Advice for RoadTrip to Ottawa, Canada

    Hey Folks,

    I was planning a trip to Ottawa Canada from New York City and wasn't sure weather I should drive up, or just take the Greyhound Bus. If anyone has had any experience, or if anyone has any advice about this trip (or even if you've been to Montreal), I would greatly appreciate it.

    I know it's about a 8-10hr. drive, and I can take the I-81, but I don't know what to expect. I'm looking to take the fastest and/or easiest route to get there. Also I heard that Canadian gas stations only take Canadian money and US money, is this true?


    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default slow going

    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    Greyhound will likely take several extra hours for the trip, since it tends to stop in every town along the way. I imagine you'd also have to plan for some extra time on the border, since you'll have more people that will have to go through customs. I imagine you'd also have to transfer busses in Montreal? Having said that, it could be a cheaper method than driving yourself.

    You might also look into rail options via Amtrak/VIA, which might be faster.

    I'm not sure I understand about your question about Canadian Gas stations taking only Canadian or US money. Are you hoping to spend some Euro's while you're north of the border? Some places might not take US money, and frankly, even the ones that do will likely charge you a pretty obscene exchange rate. You'd be better off converting money at a bank or near the border. Otherwise, just use plastic which is usually the most economical way to pay for purchases in a foreign country.

  3. #3

    Default I highly doubt it

    I highly doubt if anyone will take US dollars (i.e. gas stations, restaurants, etc). If you were visiting destinations close to the US border, then yes, otherwise, you will have to pay a visit to a local bank and exchange money or use your US credit card.

    As for driving or busing? I would go with driving as it gives you the convenience. Ottawa does have a very good transit system but you have to follow their schedule rather then yours. Here is the link to the Ottawa transit.

    Most of the sight seeing will be in Ottawa downtown area where the hotels will be a bit more expensive. If you had a car then you can drive a few minutes out and get a more affordable hotel.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France
    Posts
    761

    Default Canadian advice

    I was planning a trip to Ottawa Canada from New York City and wasn't sure weather I should drive up, or just take the Greyhound Bus. If anyone has had any experience, or if anyone has any advice about this trip (or even if you've been to Montreal), I would greatly appreciate it.
    Although I've never taken the bus to NYC, I know plenty of people who have done it back and forth and I nevr heard any complaints from them. All I know is that it takes about 6-7 hours and most of them prefered to travel at night. As for the transfer to Ottawa, I don't have a clue.

    I know it's about a 8-10hr. drive, and I can take the I-81, but I don't know what to expect. I'm looking to take the fastest and/or easiest route to get there.
    The lenght of the the trip will mostly depend on traffic : both in NYC and Montreal and possibly in NJ as well. The fastest route is I-87N to I-15N and I-10W.

    Also I heard that Canadian gas stations only take Canadian money and US money, is this true?
    Uh, what other currency did you want to use? I hughly doubt they'll accept pesos if that's what you have in mind. Gas stations usually accept CAD and some accept USD with a small fee. But even if they didn't accep USD, most gas stations and convenience stores have ATM machines where you can get Canadian money at any time. As opposed to the US, debit cards are widely used and have been for the last 15 years. Credit cards also remain very popular and offer a reasonable exchange rate.

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