About Vancouver

Cradled amid skyscraping mountains and sparkling ocean, scenic Vancouver is one of the world’s premier meeting and convention destinations. A renowned award-winning cuisine, family-friendly attractions, and a vibrant art and music scene, all add up to an unforgettable conference experience. The host of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, Vancouver presents a perfect balance of urban culture and sophistication with the rugged adventure of the great outdoors.

With so much to experience in Vancouver, you will be well-entertained during your conference off time. Galleries and public exhibits for art enthusiasts, historical sites and districts for history buffs, and scenic hiking trails and botanical gardens for nature lovers are just a small sampling of the city’s diverse attractions.

Air Travel Information

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is one of the world's most accessible airports. A British Columbia Visitor Center operates 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, year-round at the Arrivals section of the International Terminal.

Please remember to visit the AIB Air Travel Discounts page for a special Star Alliance discount for AIB conference participants.

Visa Information

To attend the AIB conference in Vancouver, some foreign nationals will need a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV). You can find a list of which countries need to apply for a visa and which do not at the Visa Requiring Countries section of the Citizenship and Immgration Canada (CIC) website. If you do require a visa, you may be eligible to apply for one online. Please visit Apply Online for a Visa section of the CIC website for more information. Please note that some countries have significant processing times for visa applications, so AIB encourages you to apply for a visa on a timely basis.

If you need to apply for a Visa, AIB can issue you an invitation letter to attend the conference in Vancouver. Once you have successfully registered for the conference, please contact the AIB Secretariat to request an invitation letter. Please remember to mention how your name appears on your passport to ensure the letter is correctly issued. Please note that the letter will be issued by the AIB Secretariat. Copies of these letters have been provided to the Special Events Unit of CIC where AIB 2014 has been registered as an international conference. Visa officers at the various consulates will be able to compare these letters to the ones on file, so please make sure to include a copy with your application, and also to bring a copy of the invitation letter when you are traveling to Vancouver.

Getting to the Conference Venue

The AIB 2014 meeting will take place at Westin Bayshore Hotel. The conference venue will also serve as the primary conference hotel for the AIB 2014 meeting. Please visit http://aib.msu.edu/events/2014/Lodging.asp for rate and reservation information.



You have the following alternatives to get from the Vancouver Airport to the Westin Bayshore Hotel:

  1. Canada Line - Canada Line is Vancouver's rapid transit rail link connecting the airport to the downtown Vancouver area. You can conveniently access the trains from both the international and domestic terminals. The closest stations to Westin Bayshore Hotel are the Vancouver City Centre and the Waterfront Stations. Both stations are about a mile (1.6 km) away from Westin Bayshore. You can walk (get off at Waterfront Station) or take a taxi (get off at Vancouver City Centre) for this final distance, depending on your luggage. A ticket on Canada Line will cost less than CAD$10 but varies by day and time.
     
  2. Taxi - A taxis ride from the Vancouver International Airport to the Westin Bayshore will take 25 to 45 minutes depending on traffic. The cost should be around CAD$40-45.

  3. AeroCar Service - You can also reserve a Sedan or a Minivan from Aerocar Service.
  4. A private sedan will cost around CAD$50, while a 6-person minivan costs around CAD$60.

Basic Travel Information

Money

The legal tender is the Canadian Dollar (CAD). Most stores, restaurants, and taxis accept Credit and Debit Cards, and are generally capable of processing both chip cards as well as swipe cards. ATMs and exchange bureaus are easy to locate, however please note that most ATMs will charge a transaction fee, in addition to any fees your personal bank may charge.

Time

In June, Vancouver will be in the Pacific Daylight Time (PDT) which is UTC-7.

Electricity

Canada operates in 110 volts, 60 cycles (60hz), with US style flat prong plugs. Please remember to bring any adapters you may need.

Climate

In late June, Vancouver will be mild, with daytime temperatures around 18-21°C (65-70 °F). Night temperature may fall to around 11-13°C (52-56°F). The weather typically is partly to mostly cloudy with a slight chance of occasional light rain. You can find more information at WeatherSpark-Vancouver.

Language

English is the predominant language in Vancouver. English and French are the official languages of Canada, so finding someone speaking French will be very easy as well.

Internet Access

The special lodging rates at the Westin Bayshore for the AIB conference include free Wi-fi access at the hotel. Outside of the hotel plenty of places also offer free wifi access.

Tipping Advice

Tipping behaviour in Canada is similar to the United States in most cases. Taxis usually expect about a 10-15 percent tip, while waiters expect 15-20 percent. For bellman or porters $1-$2 per bag and for housekeeping about $2 per day is the general average.

Additional Resources

Recommendations from AIB Members

If you have visited Vancouver recently (or you are a local AIB member) and would like to share personal recommendations with AIB members that will be participating in AIB 2014, please use the form below to add your recommendations to this list.