Practical information about Los Angeles
Los Angeles is the second biggest city in the United States, but its reputation surpasses even that. “La-La Land”, “The City Of Angels”, “Tinseltown” - even its nicknames are common parlance. The sunset city rose to prominence in the 20th century as a powerhouse of cultural exports. Near synonymous with the film industry at large, Hollywood cemented this city’s role in the cultural landscape, and since, has grown into so much more.
Two neighbourhoods are nearly as famous as the city itself. Beverly Hills and Hollywood hold an iconic status in pop culture. The former for its fabulous expression of luxury and the latter as ground zero for much of contemporary film culture. A trip to either of these areas rewards with satisfying familiarity as often as it does with surprise and idiosyncrasy that has to be seen to be believed.
And any trip to L.A. would be incomplete without a splurge. With the city’s fashionistas flogging the hippest clothes, restaurateurs serving up the cutting edge of America’s food scene and bar culture that’s to die for, the options for ways to spend your time or places to explore are endless.
Undoubtedly, Los Angeles is a truly essential travel destination. Get your tickets today and see what makes this city so special. Los Angeles’ reputation precedes itself. Its ubiquitous presence in contemporary culture leaves many feeling it’s a place they know well without ever having set foot in the city. Check out the overview below on the things every traveller should know when travelling to Los Angeles!
Essential Los Angeles information for visitors
Emergency numbers: 911 is the best number to call in case of an emergency. This is a free number to call at all times. Making other calls or using data roaming will vary depending on your telecommunications provider. Make sure you know the terms and conditions of your phone contract before accessing mobile data or making phone calls that are not to the emergency number.
Government Office opening hours: The Consulate General of Canada in Los Angeles is open between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm, from Monday to Friday.
Temperature: Los Angeles is a famously sunny place with warm temperatures year-round. Even at the height of winter in December, average highs are around 18°C. The summer months can get very hot. August and September have average highs of about 29°C and temperatures can regularly hit 35°C or more.
Currency: The currency used in Los Angeles is the US dollar (USD). Credit and debit card transactions are very common, although some places may only accept cash. ATMs are ubiquitous, so you'll never be far from access to cash.
Local Time: Los Angeles uses Pacific Daylight Saving Time (PDT, GMT-7) which starts in the first few weeks of March and runs to the end of October. From November and the start of March, the city runs on Pacific Standard Time (PST, GMT-8).
Electricity: Los Angeles uses Type A and Type B plug sockets, the ungrounded flat two-pin and the grounded flat two-pin varieties and they run at 120V and 60 Hz.
Language: English is the primary language used in Los Angeles, although it's not uncommon for residents to speak Spanish or a range of other minority languages including Chinese, Tagalog, Korean and Armenian. English is shared by almost all of these groups, however.
Required travel documents: For Canadians travelling by air, a passport with more than six months to expiry is enough for entry under normal circumstances. A valid NEXUS card would satisfy the requirements too.
Health: There are no vaccination requirements for Canadian citizens travelling to Los Angeles, although these are always subject to change. It is always recommended to seek the advice of a doctor prior to travel to keep abreast of the most up to date information.
Tipping and taxes: Tipping is expected across Los Angeles, failure to do so in certain settings is considered rude. 15-20% is standard at a restaurant, tip less if you are unhappy and more is considered generous. Tipping a taxi driver 10% is considered normal. Bartenders will usually expect a $1 or $2 tip per drink. Taxes will generally be added to bills in restaurants, hotels, grocery stores and similar; expect around 9% (although this varies).
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