At Calgary International Airport the offices of the on-airport car rental companies are all located in the building just across the street from the arrival terminal and are well signposted. Although we stayed our first night in an ‘airport’ hotel and picked up our car the next day.
Through our travel agent in the Netherlands we made a reservation for a car with Alamo-Rent-a-Car. Their service was OK and fast. Be aware your rental period will start at the moment of signing the papers.
After checking the car - never forget to do it seriously to avoid problems when dropping off your car - we could start our round trip through Saskatchewan and Alberta.
I think you really need a car to explore Alberta.
See for rates and cars the website of Alamo
In Edmonton there is the Light Rail Transit (LRT) which is a good way to get around the city. There are a total of 10 stations throughout the city. Coliseum station is right next to Rexall Place if you want to catch an event there. Stadium station is next to the Commonwealth Stadium if you want to go there. Churchill through Corona stations are for downtown. Grandin station is the one to get off at if you want to go the Legislature Building and University station is for obviously the university and to catch buses to Whyte Ave. It costs $2 for a ride and the ticket you get is good for 90 minutes. So you can use the buses and the LRT for 90 minutes after you pay for the ticket. It runs from about 5:30am to 1:30am on the weekdays and a little shorter hours on the weekends.
There are many unpaved roads in Kananaskis Country with dusty gravel surfaces. Many of them are really wide, like the Smith Dorrien Spray Trail connecting Kananaskis Country (near Kananaskis village) and Canmore. Some of them are closed for the winter and open in May or even June (like road 40 or 68). So, before going out there, check the road situation. The scenery is however beautiful, the views amazing. Watch out for windshield and dust (if you are allergic).
hi there buddy!! spend a night in Jasper is great and visit lakes around and hike to Whistlers Mountain just above is terrific and time enough in Julyu when days are longer
Icefield parkway towards lake louise aint a long way .. i took around 4 or 5 hours stopping in the main icefield and looking at waterfalls and some other lakes..so spend the second night in Lake louise is absolutelly suggestable, taking a look to morain lake and lake louise or agnes lake.. its really beautifull.. depends on your time i wouldnt go southwards if u have to come back to Edmonton !!
take care !!
VIA Rail Canada in partnership with Marmot Basin and Jasper, Alberta, launched the Snow Train Express - a new seasonal departure from Edmonton to Jasper that will run from middle of January to the end of April. The train will use VIA's Panorama (fully domed) observation cars.
Developed in partnership with Marmot Basin and the town of Jasper to help
build on important winter tourism products in key markets, the Snow Train
Express represents flexibility for passengers, whether they're outdoor
enthusiasts or not.
It also cuts down on winter driving or even the necessity to rent a car if you're flying into Edmonton from abroad. This is a very positive development and I am eager to try it!
Warning: The Edmonton International Airport is located 50 kms outside of the city to the south, while the train departs from the northside of the city, so you may be faced with a C$35-50 taxi ride or a mini-bus transfer between the airport and the trainstation as there is no light rail to connect the two. Do not count on there being a regular transfer bus or coach.
"Air Canada has launched non-stop, scheduled transatlantic flights from Alberta's capital city in Canada to London Heathrow.
Air Canada's Edmonton-London Heathrow flights now operate three times weekly on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, increasing to daily service starting April 1, 2007. Air Canada flight AC898 departs Edmonton at 18:35 (20:25 departure time on Tuesdays), arriving Heathrow at 10:10; flight AC 899 leaves Heathrow at 12:35, arriving Edmonton at 14:45."
Source: Air Canada Press Release, November 1st, 2006
This is really good news because up to now you could only fly to Alberta directly from Europe via Air Canada and Luthansa, both in the Star Alliance, from Frankfurt and then change planes for Edmonton. The other routes from London were via Vancouver, Montreal or Toronto and then also change planes. From Europe it is much better to fly over the North Pole, which takes about 8-9 hours direct. Instead of across the Atlantic Ocean to Montreal or Toronto, which takes 7-8 hours, change planes, and then fly another 4-5 hours across Canada.
This second alternative from Heathrow to Edmonton in addition to Frankfurt to Calgary will help a lot in this respect. If I am not mistaken this is the only International flight directly in and out of Edmonton. All others transit through Calgary. This will definately make international travel to and from northern Alberta for either business or recreation that much easier. Cheers.
1. Turn signals will give away your next move. A confident Albertan driver avoids using them.
2. Under no circumstance should you maintain a safe distance between you and the car in front of you, because the space will be filled in by somebody else, putting you in an even more dangerous situation.
3. The faster you drive through a red light, the less of a chance you have of getting hit.
4. Warning! Never come to a complete stop at a stop sign. No one expects it and it will result in your being rear-ended.
5. Never get in the way of an older car that needs extensive bodywork, especially with B.C. or Sask, plates. With no insurance, the other operator has nothing to lose.
6. Braking is to be done as hard and late as possible to ensure that your ABS kicks in, giving a vigorous, foot massage as the brake pedal violently pulsates. For those of you without ABS, it's a chance to strengthen your leg muscles.
7. Speed limits are arbitrary figures; given only as a suggestion and are not enforceable in Alberta during rush hour, especially in Calgary.
8. Just because you're in the left lane and have no room to speed up or move over doesn't mean that an Albertan driver flashing his high beams behind you doesn't think he can go faster in your spot.
9. Always brake and rubberneck when you see an accident or even someone changing a tire. This is seen as a sign of respect for the victim.
10. Learn to swerve abruptly without signalling. Alberta is the home of high-speed slalom-driving; thanks to the Department of Public Works, which puts pot-holes in key locations to test drivers' reflexes and keep them alert.
11. It is tradition in Alberta to honk your horn at cars in front of you that do not move three milliseconds after the light turns green.
12. Remember that the goal of every Alberta driver is to get ahead of the pack by whatever means necessary.
13. In Alberta, 'flipping the bird' is considered a polite salute. This gesture should always be returned.
Alberta has some of the most aggresive drivers in Canada, and some of the busiest highways. Large transport trucks are always on the road - and in a hurry.
When driving in Alberta, please note - go the speed limit, or higher! Driving below the speed limit, unless in extreme weather conditions, only makes others mad. If you are taking a picture, pull over. Sight seeing, pull over. Do not drive under the speed limit on any of the roads! This includes on highways and in towns!
As well, on highways, and in towns, if you are driving on a two laned road, as in, there are 2 lanes going the same direction, the LEFT lane is for the slow drivers, (ie - driving the speed limit). The RIGHT lane is for everyone else! DO NOT drive in the right lane unless you are prepared to go usually at least 15km's / hr over the speed limit!!!
One other thing, big transport trucks always have the right of way. Do not cut them off, do not slam on your brakes in front of them - they are bigger than you and can't stop quickly. Do not get in their way!!!!
Air Canada has several different sizes of planes they fly you around in, large jets to 16 seaters. Fear not however, on each of the planes they have a stewardess, peanuts, and a toilet. However the smaller planes, usually operated under the name Jazz, don't have movies, or much leg room.
Make sure when you are taking flights with Air Canada that you actually do show up an hour early to book in, or they get quite upset at you!
Also remember, like most large airlines, you have to go through a security check with Air Canada, and they do take away things like nail clippers, files, and anything else that could be used as a weapon!
If you plan on making quick jaunts around alberta, or bc, try flying Swanberg Air. Started by two brothers who took charter planes to a fishing spot, this airline is a very relaxed, calm atmosphere.
You can check in 20 minutes before your flight, meaning no waiting around the airport, fly right into the City Centre Airport in Edmonton (if you take the small plane), and they are consistenly cheaper than the other airlines in and around alberta.
The downfall? No peanuts or drinks on the plane!
The upside, besides whats mentioned above? On the little plane (8 people) you always have a window seat!!!
Not really a tip, more of a warning...
Goodluck driving in and around Calgary!!! They have the wierdest system going, that even a map isn't going to help you. Be prepared to get lost!
We had a list of things we wanted to see and do in Calgary and set out to explore, and ended up driving round and round in circles all day. Things on the list we actually saw? NIL. We actually left Calgary early because of the problems we encounted on the road! I'm sure the locals will find this funny, but it is very overwhelming for tourists.
You should have a car or truck, so that you can travel from town to town. Additionally most of the better areas to go hiking, require that you drive to them. We decided to travel the Ice Fields Parkway. Here there are many trails and sights to see.
I had booked a Compact car from Budget rentals a few weeks before we were due to head west. I find that you usually get much better prices than when you just walk up to the counter. In this case, for US$270, we had a great little car for 10-days as we put almost 2000 km (1250 miles) on it.
It was an automatic, without either air conditioning or cruise control (which I missed on those long straight roads!). The trunk was more than ample in size, able to accommodate our three large suitcases (one full of Christmas and birthday gifts) and have room left over.
The gas consumption was excellent (the price was running at about US$0.57 per litre), it was comfortable to drive and its small size made for easy manouevering when we were in downtown Calgary.
Altogether, no complaints at all!
Bar none- Le Germain is spectacular. I couldn't classify it as boutique becuase it caters to such a...more
Pyramid Lake Road, 5 km from Jasper, Jasper, Alberta, T0E 1E0, Canada
Good for: Business
The Met is a lovely boutique hotel located on Whyte Avenue. It is in a excellent location. There is...more