Niagara Falls, much like most of Canada, has four seasons that see fluctuations in temperature. During the winter months (November to March) temperatures average between -6 and 4°C (21 and 39°F) with snow fall common. The beginning of spring (April and May) sees average temperatures between 8 and 14°C (46 and 57°F) with temperatures rising to average highs of 26°C (79°F) throughout the summer in June, July and August. By mid-September temperatures begin dropping again, staying near an average of 13°C (55°F) until the end of October.
While these are seasonal averages, we can all agree the weather can change in a moment’s notice. We recommended you check the forecast for the duration of your stay prior to arrival. It’s also recommended you be prepared to get wet, as even on the sunniest days mist from the Falls can blow your way if the wind is strong.
While you’re here, check the daily forecast.
The primary currency used in Niagara Falls, Canada is the Canadian Dollar. Canadian dollars come in the following denominations:
- Notes: $1000, $100, $50, $20, $10, $5
- Coins: $2.00, $1.00, $0.25, $0.10, $0.05
While most businesses will accept American Dollars, you will get the best value by paying in Canadian currency. The rates for currency exchange vary, and it’s recommended to have local currency on hand prior to your arrival. If not, you can change your money at a bank or Currency Exchange Center within the city once you arrive. When you cross the border into Canada, you must declare any currency or monetary instruments you have valued at $10,000 or more – either in Canadian or foreign currency, or a combination of both.
Most banks are open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday to Friday with fees between $3.00 and $6.00 for non-client transactions. Currency Exchange Centres are usually open longer hours, seven days a week, with fees as low as $1.00. You can find these centres conveniently located on all international bridges as you enter the country, as well as throughout the city. Both of the casinos in Niagara Falls also offer currency exchange with rates comparable to banks.
Before leaving, international travellers should check with their bank, to ensure they are aware you will be travelling out of country. Credit card companies can decline purchases made in foreign destinations as a safety measure, if they are not made aware of travel ahead of time.
TAXES AND SERVICE FEES
Harmonized Sales Tax (HST)
There is a mandatory Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) of 13% that is added to most purchases of taxable goods and services within the Province of Ontario. This tax is not typically reflected in the price on display, but rather is applied at point of purchase.
Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT)
Your hotel bill will include a mandatory MAT. A MAT used to fund tourism is a common practice around the world that will be familiar to many travellers.
In April 2017, the Province of Ontario passed Bill 127: Stronger, Healthier Ontario Act which allowed lower or single tier municipalities in Ontario to charge a transient accommodation tax, also called a “Hotel Tax”. In Niagara Falls, providers of overnight accommodations (Hotels, Motels, Bed & Breakfast etc.) collect a $2 per room, per night Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT) which is administered by the City of Niagara Falls through the Niagara Falls Canada Hotel Association. The funds are used to promote the destination via the local Destination Marketing Organization which is Niagara Falls Tourism. The MAT must be disclosed to the purchaser at the time of booking. For more information about the MAT, please visit the City of Niagara Falls website.
Other Service Fees*
Like other destination cities around the world, here are some additional fees you may find at some businesses in Niagara Falls:
- Some hotels may charge an additional “hotel or resort fee” to cover incidental services. As this is individually determined by each business, the charge may vary from property to property.
- Some businesses may also charge additional service fees.
Businesses are permitted to set their pricing and add discretionary service fees and the amount to be charged must be made known in advance to the prospective customer and not shown as a “tax”. As pricing and service fees are individually determined by each business, these charges may vary. Businesses in Ontario are required to adhere to the Provincial Consumer Protection Act which covers these requirements.
* Niagara Falls Tourism is not responsible for establishing pricing, or processing or collecting any service fees.
For restaurants, gratuities are rarely included in the bill. It is customary to tip approximately 15-20% on the total bill before tax, tipping less for poor service or more for truly exceptional service. Many restaurants may automatically add 15-18% gratuity for groups of six or more to your final bill.
For accommodations, it is customary to tip hotel staff who assist with baggage and parking as well as the concierge and the room attendant. The choice to do so, or not do so, as well as the amount, are completely up to you.
Emergency Services' Phone Numbers
In the event of an emergency and you find yourself in need of immediate medical, police or fire assistance, always call 9-1-1 right away.
To contact these services in a non-emergency event you can call:
- Police: 905-688-4111
- Niagara Parks Police: 905-356-1338
- Fire: 905-356-1321
- Ambulance: 1-866-895-6227
Ontario hospitals will always provide treatment to those requiring care, but in order to avoid incurring costs of an emergency healthcare visit, visitors should ensure they have adequate travel insurance from their home healthcare provider.
Greater Niagara General Hospital
Douglas Memorial Hospital
Niagara Health System
Welland County General Hospital
|5546 Portage Road||176 Wellington St.||230 Bertie Street||1200 Fourth Ave||65 Third Street|
|Niagara Falls, ON||Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON||Fort Erie, ON||St. Catharines, ON||Welland, ON|
|(905) 378-4647||(905) 378-4647||(905) 378-4647||(905) 378-4647||(905) 378-4647|
While visiting our destination you may want to enjoy a libation or two. We hope that you choose to visit a local winery, brewery, distillery or restaurant to experience what Niagara, Ontario has to offer.
Please be aware that by law, you must be 19 years of age or older to consume or purchase alcohol in Ontario. ID may be requested at restaurants and establishments from individuals who appear under the age of 30. Acceptable forms of identification include valid government photo ID, such as a passport or driver's license.
For the most part, alcohol for consumption at home can only be purchased from LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) Stores or The Beer Store. However, there are a select number of grocery stores across the province that are licensed to sell beer, cider and wine. In addition, there are wine boutiques located across Ontario known as Wine Rack and The Wine Shop that sell various wines and wine based beverages.
LCBO locations closest to the Falls:
5389 Ferry St.
Niagara Falls, ON
Monday to Saturday 10am - 10 pm
Sunday 11am - 6 pm
4694 Victoria Ave.
Monday to Wednesday 10am - 6 pm
Thursday to Saturday 10am - 8 pm
Sunday 11am - 6 pm
7481 Oakwood Dr.
Niagara Falls, ON
Monday to Saturday 10am - 9 pm
Sunday 10am - 6 pm
If you do venture out to one or several of the numerous wineries, distilleries and breweries across the Region, you can also purchase alcohol directly from their site. Often they carry products in house that cannot be purchased elsewhere.
By law, you must be 19 years of age to smoke or purchase tobacco in Ontario, and you cannot smoke or hold lighted tobacco in any enclosed workplace, any enclosed public places, any restaurant or bar patio, any motor vehicle with a person under the age of 16 inside and within specifically designated outdoor places in Ontario such as children's playgrounds and publicly owned sports fields.
The Smoke-Free Ontario Act has greatly reduced tobacco use and lowered health risks to non-smokers in Ontario. When smoking outside, you must be further than 9 metres away from an entrance or exit of any building that is used by the public. For further information please visit the Smoke-Free Ontario website.
The purchase, use and possession of recreational cannabis is legal in Canada for adults age 19 or older. Cannabis can only be purchased from an Ontario authorized retail store or through the Ontario Cannabis Store online. For more information on restrictions and use, visit ontario.ca/page/cannabis-legalization.
On official holidays, most banks, liquor stores, business offices and government offices will be closed, as will some stores, while other businesses may have reduced hours. It is recommended you check with an individual business for their holiday hours prior to arrival. Holidays that occur on weekends are typically observed the following Monday.
|Friday, January 1|
|Monday, February 21|
|Friday, April 15|
|Sunday, April 17|
|Monday, April 18|
|Monday, May 23|
|Friday, July 1|
|Monday, August 1|
|Monday, September 5|
|Monday, October 10|
|Friday, November 11|
|Sunday, December 25|
|Boxing Day||Monday, December 26|