It's always a good idea to gather information about your trip well before you go. Use your travel agent or the transportation company as resources. Their Web sites and customer service staff can answer questions about the services you will receive during your trip. If you need information in an alternative format, ask your transportation company what they have available to meet your needs (for example large print publications or an electronic version). Do not assume that others know your needs.
It often pays to shop around. Services vary. Some may not be available everywhere. You may find that one company is better equipped than another to meet your specific needs. Ask questions. Compare answers. You'll get more control over your journey.
Canadian standards for accessible transportation
There are Canadian regulations for accessible transportation that service companies must follow. The Personnel Training for the Assistance of Persons with Disabilities Regulations require transportation companies to train their employees and contracted personnel on how to provide services to persons with disabilities. There are also specific regulations that apply to passenger aircraft with 30 or more seats that operate within Canada.
In addition to these regulations, transportation companies have agreed to meet or exceed the accessibility standards that we have published in our Codes of Practice. There are codes for air; passenger rail; ferry services that cross a provincial or Canadian border; communications with travellers with disabilities; and terminal accessibility. We developed the standards in consultation with transportation companies and groups representing persons with disabilities. The standards should be respected everywhere, but they are not a service guarantee. Your best approach is to ask your transportation company for details about how it will meet your needs.
Transport Canada also has a Bus Code of Practice for scheduled intercity bus services.
You'll find the regulations, codes and other information about accessible travel on our Web site or by contacting us.
Travelling outside Canada
Our tips can also help you if you travel outside the country. Remember, though, that Canadian standards and rules don't apply in other countries. In some places, travel is very accessible, but in many other places it is not.
A reminder: You will need a passport. It is an essential document for international travel, but in some countries you may also need a visa, health certificate, and proof of vaccination.
If you use a service animal, you should ask ahead about whether you might need an international health certificate and proof of vaccination for the animal. It is recommended to always carry certification for your service animal.
If you are taking along any medication, ask about how it will be handled at security checkpoints.
Note: Some products sold over the counter in Canadian drug stores require prescriptions in other countries, including the United States. You may not be able to bring your medication into the country without a prescription.
Ask before you go what you can and cannot take with you. You can get information from your travel agency or transportation company, from the governments of the countries you visit, and from travel publications and Web sites.
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