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Vancouver Transportation

Getting There

Boat/Ferry
TransLink’s SeaBus crosses Burrard Inlet between Canada Place and North Vancouver; one-way fare is $3.75. Two independent companies operate the iconic “tub ferry” services along False Creek, south of downtown. The gaily-colored False Creek Ferries and Aquabus boats trundle up and down between downtown docks, Granville Island, Science World and various other spots; fares vary by distance, from $3.25. BC Ferries, one of the world’s largest and best-known public ferry operations, operates a vast network of services between the mainland and BC’s many islands, including Vancouver Island; the two main ports are south of Vancouver at Tsawwassen, and north at Horseshoe Bay.
Airport
Thirty minutes south of downtown by taxi or light rail (the new Canada Line), Vancouver International Airport is one of North America’s major air hubs, with direct service to more than a dozen countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. Major carriers include Air Canada, WestJet, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Japan Airlines, United, Alaska and American. Allow at least 35 minutes to the airport from downtown, more during rush hour. Canada Line, the new rail line between downtown and the airport (built for the 2010 Olympics) runs every 7 minutes; the fare is $8.75 one way. Taxi fare is about $35 between the airport and downtown; most downtown hotels do not offer free shuttles, though some airport area hotels do. Airport-licensed Aerocar limousines also serve incoming travelers; it’s $39-$47 to downtown; 888-821-0021. Travelers flying to the United States pass through U.S. customs here in Vancouver, and need to allow at least an extra 45 minutes to do so. The airport is the home of one of the world’s great pieces of modern art. Bill Reid’s massive sculpture, The Jade Canoe, on the upstairs level in the International Terminal, depicts earth’s creatures on a voyage to the future. Be sure to take a few extra minutes to view this compelling work.
Train
Via Rail is the Canadian national passenger rail system, with frequent service between Vancouver and eastward points across Canada; 888-842-7245. Amtrak’s Cascades line provides daily service between Vancouver, Seattle, Portland and Eugene, in the United States; 800-872-7245. TransLink is the metropolitan Vancouver transit agency, operating a comprehensive Lower Mainland bus system, as well as the three SkyTrain light-rail lines, which run between downtown and the airport and Richmond (Canada Line), and eastward to the suburbs of Burnaby, New Westminster and Surrey (Expo and Millennium lines). Fares are charged by zone, regardless of whether the conveyance is a bus or train; a typical two-zone one-way fare is $3.75. If you will be riding buses or trains a lot, FareSaver ticket books offer some modest savings, and you can purchase one day of unlimited rides for $9. TransLink does not offer multi-day visitor passes; 604-953-3333.

Getting Around

Select
Talk about how to get toTransLink’s SeaBus crosses Burrard Inlet between Canada Place and North Vancouver; one-way fare is $3.75. Two independent companies operate the iconic “tub ferry” services along False Creek, south of downtown. The gaily-colored False Creek Ferries and Aquabus boats trundle up and down between downtown docks, Granville Island, Science World and various other spots; fares vary by distance, from $3.25. BC Ferries, one of the world’s largest and best-known public ferry operations, operates a vast network of services between the mainland and BC’s many islands, including Vancouver Island; the two main ports are south of Vancouver at Tsawwassen, and north at Horseshoe Bay the city using the selected medium of transportation.
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