Click on the links below to jump directly to the section of this page.
The Westin Ottawa is the official conference hotel, and we encourage you to book
and stay there. For your convenience, we have an official Westin Ottawa
web page as
part of the iEMSs 2010 web pages. Please remember that Ottawa is a national capitol, the northern
end of a UNESCO World Heritage Site (the Rideau Canal System
), and a major
tourist destination with tourism at its peak in July. Book early and don’t
expect too low a rate, especially now that the "loonie" (our dollar) has chosen
this moment to soar in value.
For other accommodation, we recommend:
Ultra cheap: HI
Ottawa Jail Hostel, Ottawa
Bed and Breakfast: Gasthaus Switzerland Inn
An official website: http://www.ottawatourism.ca
On your own (with lots of good hotels at every price point): http://www.Expedia.ca , http://www.hotelclub.com
Feel free to ask: your General Chair spent many years here, as has your Local Arrangements Chair.
Things to do if you don’t have to rush off: check the official Ottawa Tourism website,
rent a houseboat or a canoe
Gatineau Hills have wonderful biking trails, including well-maintained
world-class off-road bicycle pistes. Many public roads in the Gatineau are open only for bicycles on Sunday
mornings and there are villages and lakes and private spots to enjoy the
outdoors. Be sure to go to the Byward
(open every day) for an outdoor coffee and fresh pastry at le moulin de Provence
stopped there for a cookie). You can eat fresh local raspberries by the
handful, and sample local artisanal cheeses. Check out the National Arts Centre
For international travelers, Ottawa
International Airport (designated as YOW) is served from Europe, directly
through Frankfurt a.M. (FRA) and London
Heathrow (LHR) by Air Canada, and code-shared with Star Alliance partners (such
as Lufthansa, BMI, TAP, Austrian, SAS, United, Continental, US Airways,
Croatia, BMI, ANA, Asiana, Thai, Air New Zealand). Connections to/from Paris
(CDG), Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) and other European and Asian Airlines are
routinely made through Montreal Trudeau International Airport (YUL), Toronto
Lester B. Pearson Airport (YYZ) and Vancouver International Airport (YVR).
Service to/from major American airports is outlined in detail below.
Air travel times to Ottawa from YUL, YYZ and YVR are
approximately 0.5 hours (YUL), 0.5 hours (YYZ) and 4.5 hours (YVR).
VERY IMPORTANT: your first landfall in Canada is the
place you pass through Customs and Immigration (Canadian Border Services
Agency). It normally takes less than 1 hour, provided you have the correct
documentation, and your airline booking will reflect this. All three airports
have excellent transfer facilities, separate from the ordinary arrivals soon
after you disembark from the aircraft. Your luggage will be checked to the
final destination, but you will be required to retrieve it and reposition it on
a transfer belt. If your transfer is from a other than
a Star Alliance Carrier to Air Canada, you may need to secure a new boarding
card as part of your transfer, and a Toronto transfer will involve a building change.
If you are coming directly to Ottawa, you will clear Canadian Border Services Agency
formalities only there and be at your destination.
If you are driving from the USA in a rental automobile, be sure to tell the car rental agency that you will be
travelling to Canada with the automobile, when you book the automobile. Normally, CBSA will not
allow a rental vehicle with license plates from the USA to pass through the border, and
the agencies can arrange an appropriately licensed vehicle.
Canadian automobile driving distances can be deceiving
to European friends: Toronto to Ottawa is a 5-7 hour trip, Vancouver-Ottawa is
a long, exhausting 5-day trip.
Rail travel: what rail travel? Don’t even try!
Travel through US airports can be a headache for foreigners travelling to Canada. At the first US landfall, you will have to claim your luggage and go through US customs before putting it on a transfer belt, even though you are only passing through the USA. You will also file a landing card and customs declaration. If you are a citizen of a country which doesn't have a visa waiver agreement with the USA, you may be required to bring and/or fill out extensive documentation, often equivalent to arriving/staying in the US for a visit there. You will be subjected to secondary procedures, such as giving a hand swab, pat-down or scan and possible extensive questioning by a US Marshal. You should be VERY careful to have proper documentation when transiting the USA. Customs formalities in places like Washington DC, Los Angeles or New York can take several hours. North American landfall in Canada (YOW, YUL, YYZ or YVR) is strongly recommended.
(Note that prices and services are subject to change)
|Limousine Service (on demand)|
||$29 average to downtown
|Accessible vehicles are available upon request.|
|Departs from post 10 outside the level 1 Arrivals area.|
|Fare (One way)|
|Children 14 and under)
|Hours of Operation
||4:55 a.m. - 11:55 p.m.
||Every 30 minutes
|Public Transit (OC Transpo) |
|Cash Fares (exact change only) |
|Adults 12 and older
||$3.25 or 2 bus tickets
||$1.60 or 1 bus ticket
|Children 5 and under
Route 97 departs from post 14 outside the level 1 Arrivals area.
Bus tickets are available at the Ground Transportation Desk located on level 1 at the centre door of the Arrivals area.
$1.25 / bus ticket (minimum purchase 2 tickets @ $2.50)
$7.50 Day Pass purchased on the bus.
Route 97 uses low-floor, fully accessible buses that accommodate wheelchairs
|Air Canada (AC)|
|Non-stop flights to/from: Boston, Calgary, Charlottetown, Edmonton, Frankfurt, Fredericton, Halifax, Quebec City, London (Heathrow), London (Ontario), Moncton, Montreal, New York (La Guardia), Regina (May 2010), Saskatoon, St. John’s, Thunder Bay, Toronto (Pearson), Vancouver, Washington (Reagan & Dulles), Winnipeg|
|American Airlines (AA)|
|Non-stop flights to/from: Chicago|
|Continental Express (CO) |
|Non-stop flights to/from: Newark|
|Delta/Northwest (NW) (Pinnacle & Mesaba)|
|Non-stop flights to/from: Detroit|
|Porter Airlines (PD) |
|Non-stop flights to/from: Halifax, Toronto City Centre|
|United Airlines (UA)|
|Non-stop flights to/from: Denver, Washington-Dulles, Chicago|
|US Airways (US)|
|Non-stop flights to/from: Philadelphia, Charlotte (May 2010)|
|WestJet (WS) |
|Non-stop flights to/from: Calgary, Toronto, Winnipeg|
This information is subject to change at any time. Please check with the
airline for current information regarding non-stop destinations. Direct flights
involve en-route stop(s), but do not require a change of aircraft.
For complete information consult http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/index.asp
To visit Canada, you must:
- have a valid travel document, such as a passport
- be in good health
- satisfy an immigration officer that you have ties, such as a job, home and family, that will take you back to your country of origin
- satisfy an immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your visit and
- have enough money for your stay. The amount of money you will need can vary with the circumstances of the visit, how long you will stay and whether you will stay in a hotel or with friends or relatives. For more information, ask the Canadian visa office in your country or region.
You may also need:
- a Temporary Resident Visa, depending on your citizenship (see Visas and Exemptions below)
- a medical examination and
- a letter of invitation from someone who lives in Canada
Visas and Exemptions
Transport companies, such as airlines, must ensure you have proper, valid travel documents when you enter Canada. If you do not have the proper documents, you may be delayed or denied boarding.
On March 11, 2010, CIC amended the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations to clarify the factors used to determine which travel documents can be used to apply for a visa, and to travel to or enter Canada.
Under the new Regulations, the following travel documents are considered unreliable and are not acceptable for entry into Canada:
- any passport claiming to have been issued by Somalia,
- non-machine readable passports issued by the Czech Republic,
- temporary passports issued by the Republic of South Africa, and
- provisional passports issued by Venezuela.
This list is subject to change. Check the above web address regularly for up-to-date information.
You may or may not need a Temporary Resident Visa to visit Canada, depending on your citizenship. Even if you are exempt, though, there is important information you need to know before you plan your trip.
If you need a visa, see How to Apply for a Visa at the web address above.
If you do not need a visa, see Visa Exempt – Important Information for Travellers in the Learn About section on the same web page.
If you are not sure, see Do You Need a Visa? in the Related Links section of the same web page.
Many people do not require a visa to visit Canada. These
- citizens of Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Botswana, Brunei, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel (National Passport holders only), Italy, Japan, Korea (Republic of), Latvia (Republic of), Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Portugal, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Solomon Islands, Spain, Swaziland, Sweden, Slovenia, Switzerland, United States, and Western Samoa;
- persons lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence who are in possession of their alien registration card (Green card) or can provide other evidence of permanent residence;
- British citizens and British Overseas Citizens who are re-admissible to the United Kingdom;
- citizens of British dependent territories who derive their citizenship through birth, descent, registration or naturalization in one of the British dependent territories of Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn, St. Helena or the Turks and Caicos Islands;
- persons holding a British National (Overseas) Passport issued by the Government of the United Kingdom to persons born, naturalized or registered in Hong Kong;
- persons holding a valid and subsisting Special Administrative Region passport issued by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China;
- persons holding passports or travel documents issued by the Holy Sea.
Some people are inadmissible—
they are not allowed to come to Canada. Several things can make you inadmissible, including involvement in criminal activity, in human rights violations or in organized crime. You can also be inadmissible for security, health or financial reasons.
Citizens of the following countries and territories require a Visa to VISIT
or TRANSIT Canada:
Republic of Cameroon
Central African Republic
China, People’s Republic of
Congo, Democratic Republic of the
Congo, Republic of the
Israel (only Israeli citizens holding valid Israeli “Travel Document in lieu of National Passport”)
Lithuania (holders of non-biometric passports only)
Micronesia, Fed. States
Poland (holders of non-biometric passports only)
Sao Tomé e Principe
Saudi Arabia, Kingdom of
Trinidad and Tobago
United Arab Emirates