ALERT: Spots still available! Register ASAP!
About the trip
The Canadian-American Center offers a yearly field-trip to Canada’s capital city, Ottawa. This trip is an exciting opportunity for UMaine students to travel to a foreign country and experience Canadian geography, history, culture, politics, and social identity first-hand! This year’s trip will take place October 19-21, 2018.
This year’s trip will focus on the arts and culture of Canada. Come join us as we explore and think critically about the people, artifacts, and events that have contributed to, and those that have perhaps been prevented from contributing to, a Canadian sense of cultural identity, both in the past and the present. Highlights of the trip will include a tour of the Parliament Buildings (the last opportunity to tour Centre Block before it closes for a decade of repairs), a curated visit to the National Gallery of Canada, and a multicultural heritage tour of Ottawa’s Chinatown.
We aim to make this trip affordable. The registration fee ($195) covers all transportation costs*, entry fees* to museums and historical sites, and hotel accommodations at Les Suites Ottawa. Students are responsible for their own meal costs. An early bird special price ($175) is available for those who register before September 7th.
*Cost and fees associated with “optional” or unscheduled events and transportation are the participant’s responsibility.
Preparing for Travel
Before you leave:
- Make sure you have a valid passport or passport card.
- If you need to apply for a passport or passport card, consult the Dept. of State website for more information.
- If you are not a US citizen, please ensure you have proper documentation to cross into Canada and return the US. Contact the Office of International Programs for assistance.
- A record of certain civil or criminal offenses may prevent you from crossing the border.
- The University of Maine bears no responsibility for refunding trip costs to participants who are refused entry to Canada for any reason.
- Register online by Friday, September 7th, 11:59PM, to enjoy the discounted early bird price. After this date full price registration is available until Wednesday, October 3rd, 11:59PM.
- Estimate your expenses and exchange enough money into Canadian dollars before leaving. If planning to use a credit or debit card, inform your bank of your upcoming trip to Canada. Be aware of any foreign transaction fees you may incur by using a debit/credit card in Canada.
- Find out whether your health insurance will cover you in the event of a medical emergency in Canada.
- Find out what extra charges, if any, your mobile phone carrier may levy if you send or receive calls/texts/data in Canada. We recommend putting your phone on Airplane mode if you do not want to incur international data & roaming costs.
- Think about whether you might want to save money by using the full kitchen included in your Les Suites room, instead of eating all meals out at restaurants.
- Do bring the following items:
- Valid passport/passport card
- Cash for meals, souvenirs, and evening activities in Canadian dollars
- Health insurance card
- Medication, if needed (clearly marked with original prescription labels)
- Snacks and entertainment for the long bus ride to and from Ottawa
- Suitable clothing, including warm layers and comfortable walking shoes. Mid October temperatures in Ottawa range from 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit but can drop below freezing!
- DO NOT bring weapons or tobacco products. Attempting to cross the border with these items could result in you being left behind!
- Arrange to be dropped off at the Canadian-American Center (154 College Ave) at 7:00AM on Friday, October 19. Otherwise, you must park in the Steam Plant lot or another nearby lot for which you have a valid parking pass.
While you are in Canada:
- If there is an emergency in Canada, dial 9-1-1.
- Remember that any charges for laundry, phone calls, room service, etc. at the hotel are YOUR responsibility.
- The legal age to consume alcohol in Ottawa is 19 years. If you choose to consume alcohol, do so responsibly. Please be aware that crossing back into the US with alcohol in your body is considered possession by consumption, and therefore is illegal if you are under 21 years of age!
- Although the sale and possession of marijuana will be legal in Canada as of October 17, 2018, it remains illegal in the United States and may be subject to intense scrutiny at the border. Crossing the US-Canada border with marijuana in your body (at any age) is considered possession by consumption and could result in federal legal action.
- Keep receipts for anything you purchase in Canada, and know how much you spent during your trip in case you are asked to declare your purchases at the border.
- Have your passport ready when we return to the border. Crossing back into the US entails a very strict and detailed customs check. Be prepared to answer any questions you are asked honestly.
Friday, October 19
7:00AM: Meet at Canadian-American Center (154 College Ave)
7:30AM: Bus departs from Canadian-American Center
1:00PM: Stop for lunch in Magog, QC
4:00-5:00PM: Arrive at Les Suites in Ottawa
Saturday, October 20
8:30AM: Depart Les Suites for driving tour of Ottawa
9:15AM: Arrive at Parliament
9:30AM: Parliament guided tour
10:45AM: Depart Parliament
11:00AM: Arrive at National Gallery of Canada. Curated tour with gallery officials.
12:00PM: Lunch break in National Gallery of Canada or nearby restaurants.
12:30PM: Individual exploration of National Gallery of Canada.
2:15PM: Depart National Gallery of Canada for Chinatown.
2:30PM: Multicultural heritage tour of Chinatown.
4:00PM: Extra tour content or individual exploration of Chinatown.
5:00PM: Bus departs for Les Suites.
Sunday, October 21
9:00AM: Meet at Les Suites lobby for check-out and departure
1:00PM: Stop for lunch in Magog, QC
8:00-9:00PM: Arrive in Orono
Itinerary is subject to change.
We will be staying at Les Suites Ottawa. Students will be accommodated in Premier Two-Bedroom Suites at quadruple occupancy. Rooming requests (groups of 2, 3 or 4 students) must be submitted at time of registration, and will be subject to availability.
Our Premiere Two Bedroom Suites at 1000 sq. ft. are newly renovated and offer a queen size bed in the first bedroom and a queen size bed in the second bedroom with the double pull out couch in the living room which is separate from the bedrooms. There are two flat screen TV’s in each suite (42” in the living room, and 32” in the bedroom). They feature plush duvets, pillow-top mattresses, and upgraded bathroom products. Plus, as with all our suites, you get the convenience of a fully equipped kitchen and ensuite laundry facility. Our business amenities turn a suite into the centre of efficiency. They come with a working desk and chair, cordless speaker phones, wireless high-speed Internet, CD alarm clock and an in-room safe large enough to hold a laptop.