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Author Topic: Upcoming Trip to Toronto  (Read 2679 times)

Mapmikey

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Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« on: April 08, 2015, 01:07:08 PM »

For our 25th wedding anniversary we are going to Toronto.

I will be using the I-190 crossing into Canada and staying in Vaughan (up Hwy 400 about 12 miles north of downtown).

My questions:
How is traffic on QEW-403-401-400 on a Saturday afternoon?  Would the reverse of this be noticeably worse on a Wednesday relatively early?
The ETR 407 website appears to let US drivers pay on-line after the fact once they receive the bill.  Are there any hang-ups with this?

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AsphaltPlanet

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2015, 02:02:10 PM »

The traffic conditions will depend on what the time of day and the specific date of travel will be.  Toronto is hosting the Pan-Am games this summer which is expected to significantly increase the amount of traffic on the areas roads.  Some GTA highways will have temporary HOV lanes during the summer because of the games.  These roads will include the QEW through southern Mississauga, as well as the 401 through the eastern GTA, in addition to some others that I have probably neglected to mention.

Besides that, traffic is often backed up on the eastbound lanes of the 401 through western Toronto, even on Saturdays.  The ramps from the 401 to the 400 can also back up, as the 400 takes a lot of summer holiday/vacation traffic.  There is a pinch point on the 400 at Major Mackenzie Drive where the highway narrows from four to three lanes per direction.  Depending upon the day, there is the potential for congestion at that location as well.  Along the QEW and 403 through Mississauga, traffic moves fairly well though, and has HOV lanes in the event you are traveling with a passenger. 

Long term construction just started on the ramp from the 400 southbound to the eastbound 401, which as of at least today, seems to be tying up traffic fairly significantly along the southbound lanes of the 400 approaching the 401.  I know you'd be heading the other direction on the return trip, but you'd probably experience at least some congestion on the 400.  Once beyond the 400 on the 401 however, traffic should move relatively well most of the way though.

Traffic moves consistently well along the 407.  I can't give you an advice on paying tolls for an out of province traveler though unfortunately as I live in the GTA and have a transponder.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2015, 02:22:47 PM by AsphaltPlanet »
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Mapmikey

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2015, 02:35:59 PM »

Thank you for your reply.  My trip will be over weeks before the Pan Am games so that will be good.

My trip to London in 2012 coincided with the Paralympics and the city was very crowded, especially the Underground system...

I will probably use the free routing heading to Toronto and 407 coming back...

Mapmikey
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rickmastfan67

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2015, 09:26:17 PM »

Use the QEW/Peace Bridge on the return trip.  NO TOLL.  Not sure about the 405 > I-190 as I think that has a toll in both directions.

And if you have EZ-Pass, if you want to use the Peace Bridge going into Canada, they do accept it there.  Not sure about the other bridges.

oscar

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2015, 10:06:13 PM »

Use the QEW/Peace Bridge on the return trip.  NO TOLL.  Not sure about the 405 > I-190 as I think that has a toll in both directions.

And if you have EZ-Pass, if you want to use the Peace Bridge going into Canada, they do accept it there.  Not sure about the other bridges.

I'm pretty sure the Peace Bridge is the only crossing between the U.S. and Canada to accept E-ZPass. But whichever crossing he uses, E-ZPass will be useful on the  approach routes, so I guess no rest for Mike's E-ZPass from the workout it gets here in northern Virginia.

On the 407, he might get lucky and not get billed. Since I haven't been (but it's been a long time since I drove the 407), I can't speak specifically to billing for that road, but whenever Ontario wants me to send money to cover traffic tickets, it's been good about accepting MC/Visa so no need to mess with the currency conversion. 
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Mapmikey

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2015, 06:45:21 AM »

Thanks for the replies...

EZ-Pass is now accepted on all Niagara River Bridges since Aug 2014 (http://www.niagarafallsbridges.com/index.php/crossing-info/e-zpass)

For road clinching reasons (US 62 from US 6 to I-290, I-90 from 290 to PA, possibly grabbing 990 if I can get away with it), I am using the 405/190 bridge in both directions.

And yes my EZ pass gets a workout in Northern Va.  They just made me increase my automatic refill amount because of how much it gets used now (9 refills in 3 months)...

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rickmastfan67

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Re: Upcoming Trip to Toronto
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2015, 07:47:59 AM »

Seems they only collect the tolls going into Canada now on all the bridges in that area.  That's a change since I last used the Lewiston-Queenston Bridge (I-190/ON-405) either in the late '90s or early '00s.  So, there is now no advantage going either to the Peace Bridge or Lewiston-Queenston Bridge unless you want to avoid the $1 ($0.95 EZ-Pass) toll bridge(s) on I-190 @ the Grand Island Bridges, then use the Peace Bridge.

 


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