Surviving Snowy Montreal—Tips on Making it Through Winter

January 07, 2015

Snowy City

Montreal gets its fair share of winter, that’s no argument. For many people, winter is one of the best times of the year, especially if you’re here to take in some winter activities. With its close proximity to many resorts and outdoor destinations, Montreal is the perfect hub for snowy, wintry fun! Book an affordable Montreal hotel suite and save money while you’re here. While there’s not much we can do about how much snow and cold we get, there are a lot of things we can do to survive and even thrive during the winter! From our winter-experts to you, here is an article full of little tips to make your stay in Montreal all the more pleasant, safe, and fun!

Dress for the weather.

Winter is no fun and even dangerous if you’re not properly dressed. Be sure to dress in layers, including a winter rated coat, boots, hat and mitts. Without these, the cold will make you miserable at the least, if it doesn’t freeze you in your tracks. Keep in mind that wind increases the effects of the cold and we get our fair share of wind, especially in the winter. Little rule of thumb for windy days: leave no skin exposed. Things to look for in winter attire include:

  • Rubber traction on soles of boots, avoid plastic or leather soles
  • Avoid flats or high heels, go for grooved traction
  • Get some glare protection with polarized sunglasses
  • Choose a winter coat rated between -20ºC to -30ºC.
  • Bundle up, but be sure you can see and hear traffic
  • Insulated mitts/gloves provide better protection

Be prepared for winter driving.

Winter driving is a challenge! If you’re visiting Montreal take advantage of public transit and avoid driving altogether, especially if you’re not familiar with the roads, or winter driving. If you’re staying in a downtown Montreal hotel suite, public transit is very easily accessible. If you do need to drive, slow down and be sure you have adequate insurance on your vehicle against any winter related incidents. Also be sure your vehicle is equipped with mandatory snow tires (check for the snowflake symbol), winter wipers and keep a snowbrush and extra jugs of washer fluid/de-icer in your trunk.

Keep on top of snow removal.

City wide snow removal is a major job and keeping out of their way is mandatory. Check out the new app Info-Neige to find out where and when snow removal operations are happening, especially if your car is parked in town.  Linked with the City of Montreal’s current snow removal information system, this app will offer near-real time information for your area.

Be prepared for cold and slippery conditions.

For people visiting from warmer climates or those new to the idea of Canadian winters, the slippery cold can be a bit of a surprise. The average temperature in January is about -9ºC, which means roads, stairs and walkways may be icy.  Watch for anything that looks shiny or wet, as ice is often clear and hard to see. Be sure to wear good footwear as suggested earlier and walk carefully. Last of all, enjoy! Winter is beautiful and can be a lot of fun, especially if you’re prepared.


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