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Visiting Canada-Metric Conversion Tables

Updated on March 2, 2018

Welcome to Canada

Source

Imperial to Metric

Canada changed from Imperial measurement to the metric system in the 1980’s.For many of us this became quite confusing as we had to learn a new way to calculate such things as how fast we are supposed to be driving, how many liters will it take to fill the tank with gas, how much does that chicken actually weigh and how cold or hot is it outside. If you have never been to Canada and are planning a trip, below are some tips that I hope you will find helpful.

Km/h & Mph

A speedometer showing mph and km/h along with an odometer and a separate "trip" odometer (both showing distance traveled in miles).
A speedometer showing mph and km/h along with an odometer and a separate "trip" odometer (both showing distance traveled in miles). | Source

How fast am I supposed to be driving?

  • When driving from the U.S.A. into Canada or vise versa speed limits can be a challenge even though most cars now have a speedometer with mph and km/h marked right on them.
  • I know myself that when I drive into the states I have to keep checking to make sure that I am driving at the correct speed limit. You get used to driving at mph or km per hour and having to stare down at the gauge can sometimes be distracting especially when you are on a busy freeway or highway.
  • If you have a GPS or a vehicle with a digital readout that displays your speed per hour that can be changed between mph and km/h this will be a great help to you, but if you don’t I have made up a chart below that you can copy, print and take along on your next trip.

Kilometers Per Hour to Miles Per Hour

(click column header to sort results)
km/h  
mph  
30
18.641
40
24.855
50
31.069
60
37.282
70
43.496
80
49.710
90
55.923
100
62.137
 
 

Gallons to Litres

When you see the price at the gas stations in Canada you may say, "Wow gas is cheap up here."

Sorry to disappoint you but gas in Canada is measured in liters, not gallons. In one U.S. gallon, there are 3.785 liters.

What was that temperature again?

When listening to a radio announcer or television weatherman he will be announcing the temperature outside in Celsius rather than in Fahrenheit.To figure out what the temperature is in Fahrenheit double the temperature, subtract one-tenth and add 32.

Celsius to Fahrenheit

Celsius
Fahrenheit
-40
-40
-30
-22
-20
- 4
-10
14
0
32
10
50
20
68
30
86
40
104
For a more in depth temperature conversion chart please go to http://www.texloc.com/closet/cl_cel_fah_chart.html

Weight and Price is by Kilogram

This package of rib chops is 4.414 per kg, and weighs 1.658 kg.
This package of rib chops is 4.414 per kg, and weighs 1.658 kg. | Source

Kilograms to Pounds

When you are accustomed to using the Imperial system for most of your life this can be quite a challenge. I still think in pounds rather than kilograms and am constantly trying to figure out at the grocery stores how many pounds a roast weighs when it says 2.4 kilograms. What I do is “guestimate” (guess) or multiply the kilograms by 2.2.

The pork chops to the right weigh 1.658 kg or 3.65 pounds.

What You Will Need Before Entering Canada

For anyone coming to Canada, you must have a valid passport, passport card or NEXUS card. Children under the age of 18 must show proof of identity and citizenship. If the child is traveling with anyone other than his or her parent a notarized affidavit of consent from the parent of the child may be asked for when border crossing. For more information please go to Canada Border Service Agency.

© 2011 Susan Zutautas

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    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      JKenny, Oh I didn't realize that you still used mph. Thanks for letting me know that and for the votes.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      radhikasree, Thank you. I have several hubs on Canada that you might like.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      bankscottage, One year my mother in law was taking my sons into the states, and I wrote up a letter for her giving my permission. It wasn't required at the time but I wanted to make sure that she didn't run into any problems.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      prairieprincess, I thought that I'd never get used to change with temperatures. It's funny though as now when I tell someone in the States how hot or cold it is outside I have to go to a conversion chart :) Thank you.

    • JKenny profile image

      James Kenny 

      6 years ago from Birmingham, England

      Hi Susan, interesting hub. I had no idea that Canada converted to the metric system. Being British, I'd have less of a problem adapting to things, because we already measure our petrol in litres. However, we still measure distance in miles and we still used mph for speed. So I guess I'd have to get used to a few things. Voted up etc.

    • radhikasree profile image

      Radhika Sreekanth 

      6 years ago from Mumbai,India

      A helpful guide for those visiting Canada. Canada is my dream land and I've heard that there are so many stunning scenarios. Nice hub.

      Up and useful.

      Sharing with my friends here.

    • bankscottage profile image

      bankscottage 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Great hub. I used to go to Canada all the time for hockey. That last paragraph is particularly good advice. If one parent is taking the child, that parent should have a letter from the other. If neither parent is going, the letter should be from both parents. In the age of child abductions, the border agent is going to look out for the child.

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 

      6 years ago from Canada

      Susan, I am about half and half with metric. I remember when we made the switch. I was in grade one and my Mom was involved in letter-writing to the government to get it stopped. It was very controversial at the time. I think this article will be very useful for those visiting Canada. Great job!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thank you Brian. You being from the UK would have no problem :)

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      CloudExplorer, Thank you. When I returned to Canada I found it hard to get used to the metric system and I still think in pounds especially when buying meat. Thank you for all the votes and shares. I really appreciate the support.

    • BRIAN SLATER profile image

      Brian Slater 

      6 years ago from England

      Very useful hub Susan for those heading in your direction. Voted up.

    • CloudExplorer profile image

      Mike Pugh 

      6 years ago from New York City

      Very useful hub here @Just Ask Susan, i love your way of explaining things overall, I have had issues when i was in college, dealing with the conversion factors and that of the metric system of measures when I had initially transitioned out of high school.

      So I truly feel that this hub is totally relevant for folks for sure looking to do travels into Canada, I haven't had to make any metric conversions lately though, but if I cross borders into Canadian territory coming all the way from New York City, I'll be sure to bring that cool table you provided for us here, with me.

      Thanks for sharing such a cool useful hub with us all, this has gotten voted up, pinned and all the sharing and hub love I can possibly give it. Great Job!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      brsmom, I was living the states when Canada did the switch over. I found it a little difficult to get used to when I returned home. I still think in pounds when it comes to food.

      Nice to meet you and glad you liked the hub.

    • brsmom68 profile image

      Diane Ziomek 

      6 years ago from Alberta, Canada

      Great Hub! I am a Canadian through and through, and I learned imperial measurements when I started school. When I was in lower elementary they made the switch, so now I use both. It depends on what I'm measuring. I think temperature is about the only thing I use metric for, and even that is debatable. I will figure out liters and kilometers to get MPG when checking my van's fuel efficiency.

      For those who have yet to visit our country, I do have to say you must visit the Rocky Mountains. A modernized cabin in the mountains would be awesome, but I too have to wait until I become a famous author. Voted up!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      rajan, I didn't know that India still used the imperial system for construction and real estate. Thanks.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      6 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Interesting and useful hub. Handy conversion charts.

      In India we use the metric system for weights & measures. Real estate and construction industry still use the Imperial system. Speed & distances are measured in the metric system. So actually a mix of the two systems are in use.

      Voted up.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Cloverleaf, I bet was easier for you than it was for us that were born here to get used to the metric system. Thanks.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Rolly, I still have to think in pounds. As far as gas goes I've gotten used to metric. Thanks.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Lisa, London, Ontario is pretty nice. I miss the days when we could go back and forth between countries without passports.

    • Cloverleaf profile image

      Cloverleaf 

      6 years ago from Calgary, AB, Canada

      Great tips, Susan. I suppose I take all these things for granted now, but when I first moved here from the UK it took a while to figure out how fast I was driving. Voted up!

    • Rolly A Chabot profile image

      Rolly A Chabot 

      6 years ago from Alberta Canada

      Metric is something that we have gotten somewhat used to but most of us still look at things in the old imperial system. Thanks for the great hub... very well done.

      Hugs from Canada

    • Rusticliving profile image

      Elizabeth Rayen 

      6 years ago from California

      I love Canada! I lived in London for about 6 months in 2000. The people are wonderful there. I loved going to the markets there. When I first came there, I never had a passport and all they made me do was recite the "Pledge of Allegiance" of the United States.LOL I must have looked really pathetic and they felt sorry for me!LOL Great hub with a lot of information for those visiting! :)

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Sharyn, Thanks so much.

    • Sharyn's Slant profile image

      Sharon Smith 

      6 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

      Great hub idea Susan and very helpful!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      zatalat, So glad that you found this useful and thanks for letting me know.

    • zatalat profile image

      zatalat 

      6 years ago from Global

      Very useful information.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Tina, thanks so much.

    • thougtforce profile image

      Christina Lornemark 

      6 years ago from Sweden

      Hi Susan, we have the metric system here too and it feels good to know that I would have no problem with that if I visit Canada! But I can imagine that it is a problem and takes time to get used to. Great and useful information for everyone who travels!

      Tina

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Keith, lol Good Joke :)

    • attemptedhumour profile image

      attemptedhumour 

      6 years ago from Australia

      Hi susan, it is hard trying to factor in all those changes and you have thought of some sensible suggestions. I'm forever converting fahrenheit to centigrade or vice versa.

      Here's a topical joke.

      A fellow went into a hardware store and said. I'd like a yard of three by two please mate?

      The owner said. "I'm sorry sir but we don't use those old fashioned terms anymore, you have to ask for a meter of seventy five mil, by fifty two mil."

      The customer said. "Sorry mate, but how much is a meter of it then?"

      Owner~ "Two bob a foot." :)

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Kathy, prasetio, Ruby and Todd,

      Thanks so much and I am glad that you all found this useful.

    • profile image

      Todd D. Schmidt 

      6 years ago from Las Vegas

      Helpful information, Thank for your sharing.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      6 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Geez, I felt like i was back in nursing class 101, trying to learn the metric system, to me it's confusing, but only because we don't use it. Your info. is useful. Thank you....

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 

      6 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Wow..... this was useful information. I'll bookmark this hub. I hope I can use this information when I visit to this country someday. Excellent and very well written. Thanks for share with us. Vote up as always.

      Prasetio

    • Chatkath profile image

      Kathy 

      6 years ago from California

      This will really come in handy when I finally do go to Canada! And I will! I have been wanting to visit for years now so it will no doubt be one of my first trips after I slow down working (soon hopefully). Very complete Hub Susan! Up and useful!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Pam, I think there are only three countries that do not use the metric system. I am not positive about this though. Thanks for your comment.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      6 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Great information to travel to many countries as so many countries use the metric system.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      You can tell I am not a world traveler. In the old days one could just drive across the border. We didn't plan ahead and get Canadian money and it was after hours for the banks. Thus as I recall there was some loss in not having Canadian dollars. It was several years ago so I forget the details. It didn't amount to very much anyhow.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Dave, When I went to school in Montreal we sang God Save The Queen every morning before beginning classes. It's a shame that it is not sung any more in the schools here. There are so many people that feel the same way as you when it comes to the metric system. Thanks so much for your comments.

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      dahoglund, I am surprised to hear that. Canadian banks will exchange American money at the current exchange rate.

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 

      6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Susan: I am a 64 year old,born and raised fourth generation proud Canadian. I was born under the Union Jack as my flag and God Save The Queen as my national Anthem a member of The British Commonwealth, one of the few who can hold either Canadian or British Passport, as I choose. I don't mind O Canada as an anthem but I still prefer the Union Jack as my flag.

      I was born and raised following the old measurement standards of feet & inches, miles, pounds & Quarts and gallons etc. I hate this metric measure and I refuse to work with it.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      It has been a long time since I have been to Canada.The biggest problem was the currency exchange. I assume with credit cards that is pretty minimal now..

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      RH, For sure the train ride would be a great way to travel up here.

      Austinstar, Now why didn't I think of that, Beaver Tails and Elephant ears and I was just at the fair too. I may have to add a bit to this hub now, thanks for the inspiration.

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 

      6 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      When I visited Montreal, I had a smile every time someone called me Madame! In Texas, that has a whole 'nuther meaning (a madame is in charge of a house of ill repute).

      Perhaps you can give us some customs or anecdotes like that.

      Yep, like "beaver tail" is not a pastry, it's a synonym for a guy chasing a girl (to get some beaver tail) ROFL.

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      I have to say Susan that would be much more fun and - you would be doing your fellow citizens a favor!

      I really can't wait to visit Canada - I thought it might even be fun to take the Amtrak and get a sleeper car. I could read and sleep all the way there!

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      DzyMsLizzy, The metric system does take some time to get used to. The easiest for me was switching from Fahrenheit to Celsius but when it comes to pounds and kilograms I still have a hard time.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 

      6 years ago from Oakley, CA

      I visited Canada a couple of times in 1990 and again in 92--first bringing daughter to a college in AB, then home again. On first trip, we went early, rented a car, and spent a couple of days "doing" the West Edmonton Mall. (Outrageous fun!) But man, on the way back to Calgary, I was startled to see the speedometer reading 110, and realize I was 'legal!'

      Great hub with useful information.. even if I still don't 'get' metrics.....

    • Just Ask Susan profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Cardisa, A log cabin in the mountains sounds wonderful!

      Wesman, I get the travelling bug myself and I am sure you would love Canada.

      Rosemay, I thought our prices were high. Thanks for your comments.

      Pamela, I always have my calculator with me or close by.

      RH, Well if you come to Ontario I'll drive you around. :)

      Bill, Thanks so much.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 

      6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Useful stuff for travelers!

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Awesome Susan! I had never even thought of the metric system being employed in Canada. I think it would be safer for me and everyone else in Canada if I just dont drive:) lol I would be so lost....but I still want to visit. I hope you have reasonable taxi fares!

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 

      6 years ago from Oklahoma

      Lord! Too much math. lol I'll have to carry around a calculator everywhere I go or take a math savvy friend. Great article.

    • Rosemay50 profile image

      Rosemary Sadler 

      6 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

      A very useful hub Susan. We also buy our gas by the litre. I can't believe the price of your pork, to buy a kilo here would cost NZ$21 = about $17 Canadian.

      A printout of the speed limits is a great idea when changing from kmh to mph or vice versa.

      Some really useful information here.

      Voted up

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 

      6 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      Great hub Susan!!! I'd love to come live up in your beautiful country for a while some day. I sometimes get a travelling Jones, as they say. . . .

      . . .but that metric stuff. . . Gosh how I hate the inconvenience of . . .um. . .inconvenience!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 

      6 years ago from Jamaica

      The same thing is happening with me. I just hate not knowing how many pounds that chicken I bought weighed. We have the same units of measurement as Canada so I should be pretty comfortable when I realize my dream of living in the mountains in a Log Cabin that is modernized....that is as soon I become a famous author!

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