Our Edmonton Travel Essentials lays out the essential information you need to help planning your trip to one of the most popular destinations in Canada. No matter how frequently you travel, some questions will always need answers: What’s the weather like? How can I get from the airport to my hotel? What currency and type of plug do I need? We have all these answers plus other basic info about the best time to go, getting there, getting around, and a few useful travel tips.

It’s all compiled in this Edmonton Travel Essentials. After reading this short and easy-to-read guide, you will be a little more prepared to start your trip in Edmonton, Alberta.

  • When is the best time to travel to Edmonton?

    When is the best time to travel to Edmonton?

    Edmonton has a humid continental climate, with average temperatures ranging from -10ºC in winter to 18ºC in summer.

    • The rainiest time of the year is between May and September, with an average of 12 rainy days per month.
    • Snowfall can be expected between October and April.
    • June-August is peak tourist season, with hotel and flight prices rising accordingly.
    • April-May and September-October are great times to visit, you’ll avoid the peak season’s throngs, and flight and hotel prices are more affordable. The weather is pleasant, yet plan to pack a jumper as temperatures and humidity make the city rather chilly.
  • Edmonton basics

    Edmonton basics
    • Primary languages: English
    • Plug types: A and B
    • Electricity: 120 V
    • Currency: Canadian Dollar (C$)
    • International dialling codes: +1 780
    • Emergency telephone number: 911
  • How to get to my hotel in Edmonton?

    How to get to my hotel in Edmonton?

    Edmonton International Airport

    Edmonton International Airport is the primary airport serving Edmonton. One of the busiest airports in Canada, it sits 26 km south of the city centre as the crow flies. It features 1 passenger terminal and 2 runways. Here, you’ll find a great range of dining and shopping options as well as facilities including banking and currency exchange services. There are several transfer options to reach Downtown Edmonton:

    • A taxicab takes around 30-40 minutes. The taxi rank can be found outside the Arrivals level.
    • You can also use Uber and Tappcar apps in Edmonton Airport. The pick-up area is just outside the Arrivals level.
    • The Route 747 bus service takes around 40-50 minutes. You can purchase your ticket at the EIA Ground Transportation Booth on the Arrivals level.
    • Shared shuttle buses take around 30-40 minutes. The pick-up area is just outside the Arrivals level.
    • Many Edmonton hotels offer complimentary shuttle transfer. Check out with your hotel if it offers this service.
    • Car rental agencies can be found on the ground level of the multi-storey parking facing the terminal.

    If you come by train to Edmonton

    Edmonton Station is served by Via Rail trains and Greyhound buses. It’s a rather small station located roughly 5 km north of the city centre. Its facilities include snack and refreshment stands and ATM machines. From here, you can get anywhere in the city by bus or taxi, rental car or ridesharing apps.

    photo by jasonwoodhead23 (CC BY 2.0) modified

  • How to get around Edmonton?

    Travel tips

    How to get around Edmonton?

    Downtown Edmonton is compact enough to be explored on foot. It even features an indoor/outdoor walkway system called the pedway, which interlinks more than 180 shops and stores across the city centre. Downtown Edmonton covers roughly a 3-sq km area. You’ll find, within walking distance, many landmarks and attractions such as Winspear Centre, Oblats Maison Provinciale, and the River Valley Victoria Park. The city centre also hosts a great choice of dining, shopping and nightlife entertainment options. For longer journeys, a good choice of public and private transport services is at hand.

    photo by Kurt Bauschardt (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

  • ETS transportation networks in Edmonton

    ETS transportation networks in Edmonton
    • ETS (Edmonton Transit System) is in charge of public transport in Edmonton. It operates over 20 bus lines and 2 light-rail lines that cover the entire city.
    • Single tickets and 1-day passes are available.
    • Tickets and passes can be purchased at all LRT stations, at over 100 authorized sellers including 7-Eleven and Shoppers Drug Mart outlets, and online.

    photo by Kurt Bauschardt (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

  • Taking a taxi

    Taking a taxi
    • Taxis can be hailed on the street in Edmonton.
    • You can easily find cab stands outside hotels and near the main attractions and shopping areas.
    • You can also directly call popular companies such as Yellow Cab (780-462-3456), Anytime Taxi (780-439-6655) or Sherwood Park Cabs (780-469-4222), just to name a few.
    • Most taxis accept the payment of the fare by credit card, but it’s better to ask the driver before you get in.
    • It’s common to give a 10-20% tip to the taxi driver.
    • Uber and local taxi apps can also be used in Edmonton.

    photo by Simon Law (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

  • What are the main annual events in Edmonton?

    What are the main annual events in Edmonton?

    Ice on Whyte Festival

    • What: This 10-day family-friendly festival features ice carving creations and lessons, children's games, a giant ice slide, live music, fashion, food, and cultural events.
    • When: Late January–early February
    • Where: Whyte Avenue & Gateway Blvd in Old Strathcona

    Edmonton International Jazz Festival

    • What: The Edmonton International Jazz Festival is one of the major events yearly held in Edmonton. The aim of the festival is to make jazz music accessible to as many people as possible. It showcases national and international artists and bands playing a wide range of styles, including Bossa Nova, Ragtime, Jazz Rock and more.
    • When: June
    • Where: Various venues across the city

    Edmonton Folk Music Festival

    • What: Get back to the roots of North American music, from country to blues to gospel and more, at this extremely popular festival annually held since 1980. Musicians from all around the world perform over 4 days on several stages in Gallagher Park, opposite Downtown Edmonton, close to the North Saskatchewan River.
    • When: August
    • Where: Gallagher Park

    photo by Mack Male (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified