This is a follow-up to my latest post about travelling across Canada. So, you have read it and now you have decided to take the train instead of the plane? Great, you have a big adventure ahead of you! But there are a few things you need to know if you will be taking the train in Canada. I can for sure say that we wish we knew those things before starting our 60-hour trip. One of these things we actually just found out ourselves, and trust me, you don’t want to end up in the same situation as we did!
So, what do you need to know? If you are going to travel by train in Canada, have in mind that the train services in Canada is limited. Therefore, some train stations are also closed during most days. Since the train only passes by about 2 days a week at some towns, it makes sense that the stations are closed during the other days.
What we didn’t know is that the station in Saskatoon won’t open until 2 hours before the train is departing. We decided to walk there from downtown, which is about an hour. We thought we’d go before it gets dark and then just chill and eat something at the station. But:
1. We had to wait outside the train station for 2-3 hours in the cold.
2. There’s nothing at the station. No café, no kiosk. They have about two people working there that can help you with travel related questions, there are washrooms and there is a big waiting hall. But that’s it.
So, if you are taking the train in Canada – remember to check the operating hours at every train station you are going to. You never know!
The other thing I want to warn you about is the absence of wifi. I don’t mind being without it, trust me, I’m fine with my book and deck of cards but it’s quite important when you’re travelling. We don’t have any access to data on our phones here and when we went on our 35 hours trip from Toronto to Winnipeg we needed to get in touch with our airbnb host to get check-in instructions. No wifi on the train meant we couldn’t do that. We had to find wifi when we arrived in Winnipeg. Luckily this wasn’t too difficult, but after a journey that long you really just want to go directly to the place you’ve booked.
Other than that, I think I summed up my experience of taking the train in Canada well in my latest post. For more tips and tricks for your train journey, check it out. We just did our last trip with the train for a long time now and arrived in Edmonton early today. We’ll spend some days here and then we’ll go to Calgary by bus. Hopefully we will find jobs there and a place to live!