Canada is one of the best places on earth for an RV rental journey. Like any vacation, be sure you leave plenty of extra space in your plans to enjoy surprises and soak up all the great flavors of the country. Be sure to enjoy the great provincial park system and plan your routes so that you skip the highways to see the majestic natural beauty of the country. Now get out there and hit the road!
More people than ever are headed to Canada for RV trips. Between the stunning natural environments of places like Banff National Park and the cosmopolitan charm of cities like Vancouver and Montreal, Canada provides travelers the perfect combination of ingredients for a fabulous vacation. So if you want to make the most out of your RV rental adventure in Canada then check out these hacks from our team of expert travelers.
1. Remember that Canada is Big
It seems obvious, but many people forget just how large Canada is. It’s the second-largest country on the planet. So this is something you need to keep in mind when designing your travel itinerary. There’s simply no way for you to travel coast to coast in Canada in under a week. Well, you can do it but you’re going to spend most of your time driving! Instead, choose manageable sections of the country that you’re interested in. For example, you can just focus on the Canadian Rockies or the province of Quebec. You’ll have much more time to dig in and really savor your vacation.
2. Save Some Cash at Provincial Park Campgrounds
Campsite facilities across Canada vary by size and as you travel around the country. Many areas have larger, private sites with great extra facilities like shops, cafes, and even swimming pools.
The provincial parks are more back to nature. They don’t have quite as many amenities, but are very affordable and still have most of what you need. Generally, they do have electrical hookups and filling stations for water. You’ll also be able to be firewood and ice. You can always splurge on a luxury campground, but these spots are great and in many cases, you don’t need a reservation even during high season.
3. Make Sure Everything is Packed Tight
The highways of Canada are smooth. But once you head into the backcountry, you’ll get onto some unpaved roads that may have you bouncing around a little bit. For example, the magnificent Algonquin Provincial Park is only reachable via a six miles stretch of bumpy, gravel road. In no time at all, you’ll have things shaking and rattling all about. Even normal roads with a bump or two can send things up in the air. So before you set off each morning just make sure everything is in place and secured. You’ll be happy you don’t get a black eye from a falling can of beans!
4. Choose the Right Size Vehicle for Your Trip
If you are planning on a Canada RV rental adventure, chances are you aiming to spend a least a couple of weeks exploring the great outdoors. On this type of adventure, a good guideline is whatever size you were initially planning, go one size up. The more people sharing an RV the cozier it can feel.
This is particularly true for friends traveling together looking for their own comfortable sleeping spaces. You also need plenty of room for all your essential travel gear such as outdoor equipment, cooking gear, and more. Remember, your RV will be your home for these next couple weeks so you’ll want a little extra to be able to stretch your legs.
5. Watch for Animals
Canada is home to a fantastic array of wildlife. You can find bears, foxes, moose, geese, raccoons, deer, and so many more animals in abundance. Both for driving safety and your Instagram, keep on the lookout for these creatures.
National parks aren’t the only place you’ll find these animals too so keep that in mind when you’re driving. Outside of urban areas, slow down and keep an eye out. It may also be a good time to snap some pictures—although make sure to take proper precaution with larger animals. Remember, you’re on vacation. Give all animals the time they need to cross the road so you can continue your adventure.
6. Keep a Pocketful of Loonies
“Loonies” are slang for Canadian dollar coin nicknames for the bird featured on them. Everywhere you go, you’ll find a need for these coins. You’ll need loonies for washing machines at provincial parks along with vending machines, parking meters, and toll roads. It’s best to keep a small jar of them near your center dash compartments so you always have them ready for when you need them.
7. Planning Your Route is Essential
If you’ve had experience with RV rental journeys in other countries, you may have enjoyed not needing to overly plan your adventure. Unlike an RV trip in this US, however, there are some specific Canadian details you need to be aware of. As mentioned, distances in Canada are great. However, all national parks have strict speed limits of 90 KM per hour max. There will also be many times you’ll want to stop and enjoy so plan these factors into your schedule. Moreover, route planning is key. For example, certain roads like the Icefields Parkway that connects Jasper to Banff National Park are so spectacular you can spend all day enjoying the scenery on it.