Practical Matters

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To make your trip as easy and fun as possible, we've provided some practical information and tips for visitors to Vancouver:

 

For details on the following additional important information, select one of these sections:

 



Baggage Handling
Porter service is available at the Vancouver International Airport. Most tour group companies provide baggage handling services on arrival and departure. Rates and policies vary and should be confirmed with the supplier.



Climate
Warmed by Pacific Ocean currents and protected by a range of mountains, Vancouver enjoys mild temperatures year-round. From high 70's Fahrenheit (low 20's Celsius) in summer to a mild mid 40's Fahrenheit (0° to 5° Celsius) in winter, the climate is always hospitable. Our winters are wet, but it rarely snows, except on our local ski hills.

Average Daily High Temperatures:

Month Celsius Fahrenheit
January 5 42
February 7 44
March 10 50
April 14 58
May 18 65
June 21 69
July 23 74
August 23 74
September 18 65
October 14 58
November 9 48
December 6 43


 

Holidays
There are 10 statutory holidays and one civic holiday celebrated annually in British Columbia. Generally, banks and some businesses remain closed. Theatres, restaurants, and corner grocery stores remain open for business as usual. In some centres most shops remain open.

Holiday 2011 2012 2013 2014
New Year's Day Jan 1 Jan 1 Jan 1 Jan 1
Good Friday Apr 24 Apr 6 Mar 29 Apr 18
Easter Monday Apr 24 Apr 8 Mar 31 Apr 20
Victoria Day May 23 May 21 May 20 May 19
Canada Day Jul 1 Jul 1 Jul 1 Jul 1
Civic Holiday Aug 1 Aug 6 Aug 5 Aug 4
Labour Day Sept 5 Sept 3 Sept 2 Sept 1
Thanksgiving Day Oct 10 Oct 8 Oct 14 Oct 13
Remembrance Day Nov 11 Nov 11 Nov 11 Nov 11
Christmas Day Dec 25 Dec 25 Dec 25 Dec 25
Boxing Day Dec 26 Dec 26 Dec 26 Dec 26


Population
The following are approximate population numbers based on 2001 Canadian Census reports:

  • City of Vancouver: 582,045
    - the largest group (35%) is between ages 25 and 45 years
  • Greater Vancouver: 2, 028, 996
    - 49.5% of BC's population of 4.1 million.

 


Smoking Laws
Each municipality in Metro Vancouver has differenct rules for smoking in public places such as public buildings, restaurants and pubs.

Within the City of Vancouver, smoking is not permitted by law in all indoor public spaces, including public transit, shopping malls, restaurants, pubs, nightclubs and casinos. Smoking is not permitted within six metres of an entryway, openable window or air intake of a building. Signage will be posted to indicate the applicable smoking restrictions. Please smoke in designated areas only.

 


Tipping
Some properties and resort hotels include tips or gratuities with tours group to simplify bookkeeping. This will usually include gratuities for housekeeping, bell service and food service. If meals are included in the price, customary gratuity will be calculated at 15 per cent. Visitors should be advised that the standard tip in most restaurants is 15 per cent.