If you are arriving by air from the USA or any other country, you will need a valid passport in order to enter Canada.
US citizens may enter Canada without a passport only if entering by land or water. One way for US citizens to get to Victoria without a passport is to fly to Seattle and then take a ferry.
Citizens of some countries will require a visa for entry as well as a passport.
Getting Around Town
The conference centre, all hotels, and most Victoria attractions are within easy walking distance of one another downtown. A rental car is not necessary unless you are planning to take side trips out of town as part of your vacation.
If you are flying into Victoria on a commercial airline, you will probably arrive via Calgary (on Westjet), Toronto (on Air Canada), Vancouver (on Air Canada), Salt Lake City (on Delta) or Seattle (on Alaska/Horizon).
- A taxi ride downtown will cost about $55CAD.
- An airport shuttle runs every 30 minutes, and costs $15CAD per person, or $10 per person for groups of three (make sure you organize your "group" before getting on the shuttle, and that you are all going to the same hotel).
If you can get easily to Seattle and want to make the hop to Victoria without going to the airport, you have a number of fun alternatives:
- The Victoria Clipper is a high-speed passenger ferry, that takes about 2½ hours to travel from downtown Seattle (Pier 69) to downtown Victoria. ($50USD per person, each way.)
- Kenmore Air flies 10 passenger float planes from Lake Union (near the Space Needle) to downtown Victoria, a picturesque 40 minute flight. ($120USD per person, one way.)
- If you have a car, and drive west to Port Angeles, you can take one of two ferries:
- The MV Coho is a car ferry sailing the 1½ hour crossing several times a day between Victoria and Port Angeles. ($40USD per vehicle plus $10USD per person, one way.)
- The Victoria Express is a passenger ferry traveling twice a day between Victoria and Port Angeles. ($12.50USD per person, one way.)
- If you have a car, and drive north to Anacortes, you can take the Washington State Ferry to Sidney, about 20 minutes north of Victoria.
- If you do not mind driving, simply drive all the way north to Tsawassen (about 3.5 hours from Seattle) and take BC Ferries. You will clear customs at the Peace Arch border crossing (may take 30 minutes or longer) — US and Canadian citizens will require proof-of-citizenship, all others will require a passport.
Vancouver Airport: Stuck in Vancouver on a long layover and looking for WIFI? Go to gate C34, outside the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge and use SSID datavalet.
If you can get easily to Vancouver and want to make the hop to Victoria without going to the airport, there are a number of fun alternatives:
- BC Ferries runs car ferries from Tsawassen (40 minutes south of downtown Vancouver, 40 minutes north of the US border) to Swartz Bay (30 minutes north of Victoria) on an hourly schedule from 7am to 9pm every day. ($42CAD per vehicle plus $12CAD per person, one way.)
- Pacific Coach Lines runs bus service from downtown Vancouver and Vancouver Airport to downtown Victoria (via BC Ferries) every two hours (sometimes more frequently, check the schedule). The trip takes about 4 hours, end to end. ($36CAD per person, one way.)
- Harbour Air flies float planes between downtown Vancouver and downtown Victoria on a hourly basis seven days a week. The route goes over the lovely Gulf Islands and takes about 35 minutes. ($110CAD per person, one way.)
- West Coast Air also flies float planes between downtown Vancouver and downtown Victoria on a hourly basis seven days a week. ($110CAD per person, one way.)
- HeliJet Airways flies Sikorsky helicopters between downtown Vancouver, Vancouver Airport and downtown Victoria on an hourly basis seven days a week. ($150CAD per person, one way.)