2019 annual Meeting Travel Tips
Toronto is in the Eastern Time Zone.
Average high temperatures for Toronto in April are 11ºC / 52ºF and down to 4ºC / 39ºF at night.
What to Wear:
Dress code is business casual. Please note that air conditioning in the hotel can be cool, so we recommend bringing a jacket or light sweater to sessions.
Individual travelers are advised to obtain their own personal health, luggage, or other travel insurance as desired; however, regardless of financial status or health care coverage, hospitals in Ontario will not refuse treatment to those who require it.
Smartphones and Mobile Devices:
Check with your service provider for travel packs and other options identify options to avoid costly roaming rates while traveling internationally. Toronto offers free Wi-Fi in many public spaces that help reduce your data usage. Read the International Phone Use Guide for more details on using your mobile device outside the United States, and how to disable roaming and track your talk time and data usage.
You may want to keep the following phone numbers at hand:
- Emergency: 911
- City of Toronto: 311
- Canada Customs: (800) 461-9999
It is recommended to use a credit card or Canadian currency when traveling to Toronto. Credit cards are accepted at all major retailers. The Canadian Dollar is Toronto’s currency with coins called loonies ($1) and toonies ($2) for denominations under $5. U.S. Dollars are accepted in many Toronto establishments, however you’ll receive change in Canadian funds and exchange rates differ from merchant to merchant. You’ll find cash ATM machines all over the city, including all banks, most hotels and shopping centers. Currency exchange is available at kiosks in the city and at the airport, and most recently the CN Tower and Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada have agreed to accept Chinese mobile payment options: WeChat Pay and Alipay. For up-to-date exchange rates, visit www.oanda.com.
Taxes and Tipping:
The Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) is a 13% tax that is applied to most purchases of taxable supplies of goods and services in the Province of Ontario. The HST consists of a 5% federal portion and an 8% retail sales tax portion. If you’re happy with the service you receive, a 15 to 20% tip on the pre-tax bill is a standard expression of appreciation. Note that some restaurants automatically add this gratuity when serving large groups, so be sure to check your bill. Tips are also expected for services such as haircuts, shoe shines, and taxi rides. 15 to 20% is standard for these services as well.
Canada has two official languages: English and French. In addition to these, the top 5 languages spoken in Toronto are Mandarin, Italian, Tamil, Portuguese, and Spanish. Since 50% of the city’s population was born outside of Canada, 180 languages and dialects are spoken in Toronto.