10 Things Snowbirds Need To Keep In Mind When Staying In The USA
We've put together a 'Starter's List' for Canada Snowbirds Heading To The USA
Do your research online before you commit to booking your trip. Check reviews of Snowbird accommodations.
Arizona, California, Florida and Texas attract the vast majority of Canada's snowbirds. However an increasing flow of Canadians prefer winters in Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama, and Portugal. It’s less expensive and good weather is practically guaranteed.
Duration of stay:
Begin with a shorter stay. Test out the destination, meet other snowbirds and share experiences and costs. You’ll learn plenty for next season! And ensure you don’t over-stay your welcome. Canada's health insurance limits out-of-country stays to no more than six months within a 12-month period.
Buy travel insurance which is always recommended, wherever you happen to travel. Make sure you have sufficient medical coverage.
CAD to USD - Foreign exchange:
For best rates, compare foreign exchange outlets and banks. Also, think about creating a cross-border bank account, with credit card and no-charge transfers, for more lengthy stays.
Medications: Order more than you’ll need and carry onboard with you if flying. Also bring a detailed list of your meds signed by your doctor.
Pause your home services:
Put phone, TV, car insurance, mail and other services on pause, or redirect. Ask someone to drop in weekly (home insurance usually requires it).
Drive your vehicle or rent a car?
With an average 20-hour drive and three motel stops, it’s generally cheaper to drive to the U.S., if you’re going for a longer period.
Bring bank statements, mortgage payment receipts and/or tax filings to prove you reside in Canada.
Constrain your budget:
To make it more affordable — and ensure it’s annual! — avoid excursions, buy cheaper U.S. groceries and eat in. Seniors’ discounts sometimes start at age 50!