Important Information for Travellers in

Prince Edward Island

Photo Credit: Yvonne Duivenvoorden

Important Travel Information

Whether it’s your first time visiting Prince Edward Island or you’re practically an honourary Islander, we’ve collected this important information to help make your trip a breeze. 

Visitor Information Centres

The island is covered with a network of Visitor Information Centres and Island Welcome Centres where you'll always find friendly, knowledgeable Islanders ready to help point the way.

Bilingual Services

Operators who offer French services have designated symbols. A French Island Guide is also available here

Conversion Charts

Like the rest of Canada, Prince Edward Island uses the metric system of measurement. Conversion charts can be found here

Driving on PEI

Please keep the following laws, guidelines, and information in mind as you drive in Prince Edward Island: 

  • Seat belt use is mandatory effective July 1, 1987
  • Blood and breathalyser tests are authorized on Prince Edward Island
  • The Canadian (Imperial) gallon is 1/5 larger than the US gallon
  • Studded tires are permitted on Prince Edward Island from October 1-May 31. 
  • Most major car rental companies have offices in the Charlottetown Airport as well as other Island locations. 
  • Check out our driving distances map
  • On our major highways, the speed limit is 90km/h, and speed limits reduce when approaching towns and villages. 

Emergency Services

In the event of an emergency, dial 911. The 911 Emergency Response System is in place throughout the province.  The system is capable of linking visitors with translators in 140 different languages. Callers will be linked to the appropriate emergency service provider - police, fire or ambulance.  

There are seven hospitals in Prince Edward Island, and several medical clinics are also available. 

Health Insurance

Canadian citizens will be covered under their own provincial health care plan. Non-Canadian visitors should obtain or extend their health insurance coverage before coming to PEI on vacation. 

International Visitors to Canada

Visitors from international locations must carry a valid passport and visa, if required. 

Legal Age

The legal drinking age on PEI is 19. Minors may be present in licensed lounges between 11am and 8pm if accompanied by parents and a meal is ordered.

Environmental Health staff conduct regular inspections and compliance checks with retailers to ensure tobacco isn’t sold to youth under 19, and people may be asked for identification. 

Beer, wine, and liquor are sold at outlets across the Island. The import of liquor into the province is regulated. 

Drinking on any public beach on the Island is against the law. 

LGBT Travelers

Prince Edward Island is a welcoming, friendly destination for LGBT travelers looking for vibrant culture, amazing cuisine, and a relaxed lifestyle. Visit the PEI Gay Tourism Association site for information about accommodations, things to do, marriages, and more!

Money Matters

The Canadian dollar is the currency used on Prince Edward Island. Many operators and retailers will accept American dollars, but not always at the official exchange rate. Businesses do not typically accept other foreign currencies. It is recommended that you convert your national currency into Canadian dollars before traveling to PEI. 

Traveler’s cheques are recommended as an alternative to carrying large amounts of cash. 

When making a reservation, be sure to ask the operator about cancellation of deposits, accepted credit cards, and policies on refunds and late arrivals. 

The Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) in PEI is 14%. This is a combination of the federal 5% Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the 9% Provincial Sales Tax (PST). Only GST (5%) is applied to heating oil, children’s clothing and footwear, and books. 

PEI Geography

Prince Edward Island is an island located off the eastern coast of Canada, covering a land mass of 5,660 square kilometres (2,184 square miles). Its highest point of land is 152m above sea level at Springton in Queens County. The Island is only 224km (139 miles) long and between six and 64 kilometres (four and 40 miles) wide. No part of the Island is more than 16 kilometres from the ocean. 

PEI is the smallest province in Canada, with a population of 146,105 in 2012, and is located in the Atlantic time zone. There are two cities in PEI – Charlottetown (the capital) and Summerside. The Island is divided into three counties, Kings, Queens, and Prince. 

Special Needs

Access Canada is a four-level standard used by roofed accommodation operators to meet the needs of mature travelers and people with disabilities, and is a voluntary program. Search for Partially Accessible, Full Mobile Accessible (accessible to persons requiring use of a wheelchair), Sight Accessible (accessible to persons with partial sight impairment to total blindness) or Hearing Accessible (accessible to persons with partial to total hearing loss) from the Features tab of our online Accommodations Search tool.

If you have a designated parking permit from your province or state, please display it prominently in your vehicle. Otherwise, please do not use a designated parking space reserved for people with mobility impairments. 

Traveling With Your Pet

Some accommodations providers offer pet-friendly accommodations. Use our accommodations search tool to find facilities that allow pets. 

Dogs are not permitted on beaches in PEI National Park between April 1 and October 15 for conservation and public health and safety reasons. They are permitted on walking trails and in other areas of the park, but must remain on a leash no more than three metres (10 feet) in length. Dogs are allowed on provincial park beaches if kept on leashes. Owners must pick up after their pets in any park. 

Cats and dogs visiting PEI should be accompanied by a current rabies vaccination certificate. They must be free of diseases communicable to humans. 

There are veterinary clinics and kennels on the Island to help you care for your pet.  

Weather

  • Spring in Prince Edward Island is comfortable, with temperatures ranging from 8 to 22 degrees C (46-71 F). 
  • Summer is hot, but rarely humid, with temperatures in the 20s (70s) and rising as high as 32 degrees C (90 degrees F). 
  • Autumn is clear and bright, with temperatures ranging from 8 to 22 degrees C (46-71 F).
  • Winter is crisp and clean. Temperatures are typically in the -3 to -11 degrees C range (26 to 11 degrees F). 

Check out our weather page for more temperature info and precipitation averages throughout the year.