Pattie Lovett-Reid: How to save money as you travel within Canada
According to a recent Ebates.ca poll, Canadians have a lot of pride. Fifty-nine per cent of those surveyed believe Canada is the best country in the world to live in. That may be why 85 per cent know for sure Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday, and two-thirds say they will be celebrating in some fashion, whether it is a fireworks display, a Canada Day party, visiting a national park or travelling within Canada.
Planning to travel? Capital One has analyzed the daily average spending to Canadian cities (includes daily spending on hotel, taxis/limos, dining/takeout and nightlife). At the top of the list is Quebec City $354.07, followed by Halifax $318.63, and Montreal $316.59. Places like Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa hover around $300 per day. Little doubt hotels are the biggest expense on average $192.83 spend per day, big nights out $78.27, followed by restaurants and takeout at $73.27.
While top Canadian destinations including Ottawa, Toronto or Vancouver are likely to be overcrowded, which can lead to price increases, try skipping the crowds and look to off-the-beaten path and enjoy a more local feel and save on costs. Take advantage of the sharing economy - ride sharing and home sharing can reduce costs significantly. Check your travel benefits associated with your credit card there are likely perks you weren't aware of. Most cities across the country will have free entertainment offerings and attractions. If you look for it, there are ways to save money.
Canadians enjoy living close to family and friends, but a close number two, according to Ebates, is the proximity to nature, parks and the outdoors. And while we all appreciate many things about Canada 55 per cent value our health care system, national and provincial parks 49 per cent, and Canadian politeness 48 per cent top the list, followed by cultural diversity 45 per cent, our abundant natural resources 44 per cent and Canadian foods such as maple syrup and poutine 36 per cent. Surprisingly, hockey 30 per cent just edged out Canadian weather 28 per cent for reasons we love being Canadian.
Given the fact you may be travelling and looking to keep your costs down, Canadians told Ebates how they can be creative when it comes to saving money:
- Wait for sales before buying, 65 per cent
- Purchasing during end-of-season or off-season sales, 61 per cent
- Compare prices before buying, 55 per cent
- Shopping online, 34 per cent
- Buying items for multiple seasons, 31 per cent
- Buy in bulk, 10 per cent
And, finally, when it comes to shopping homegrown brands, Canadians think the following retailers/brands are most "Canadian":
- Canadian Tire, 40 per cent (which ranked first in every region of the country, except the West where it is tied with Hudson's Bay)
- Hudson's Bay, 29 per cent
- Roots 13 per cent and;
- Canada Goose, 9 per cent
Here's to the next 150, Canada.