Canadian Adventures: Top Cities All Over Canada - United Hub

Canadian adventures: Top cities all over Canada

By Matt Chernov

I'll let you in on a little secret – regardless of when you plan to travel, there's never a wrong time to visit Canada. Encompassing almost four million square miles of remarkably beautiful terrain, it not only contains the world's longest coastline, it's also the second-largest country on Earth. And across its immense territory you'll find a wealth of diverse destinations just waiting for you to explore. Looking for stunning scenery? It's got you covered. Fancy a stay in a quaint seaport village? You'll find plenty to choose from. In the mood for big city excitement? Look no further! Basically, Canada offers something truly special for every type of traveler. To help you get the most out of your next visit, here's a regional guide to the spectacular Great White North.

Atlantic region

Halifax

With its waterfront views and colorful Victorian architecture, Halifax is quite possibly the perfect maritime destination. If you're visiting for the first time, be sure to spend a day strolling the city's historic harbor boardwalk. While you're there, grab lunch at the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market, which holds the distinction of being the longest continuously running market of its kind in North America. When the weather is warm and sunny, head to Citadel Hill and explore the iconic star-shaped military fort that overlooks the water, or wander the romantic Halifax Public Gardens and enjoy an hour-long guided horticultural tour. Have time for a short side trip? Then a quick visit to the nearby community of Peggy's Cove should definitely be on your Halifax travel agenda.

St. John's

Nature lovers who visit St. John's will definitely want to lace up their hiking boots and traverse North America's easternmost coastline on foot. Don't forget to bring your camera along, too, because the astounding scenery that you'll discover is well worth sharing with friends and family back home. If urban fun is more your speed, check out the wildly popular George Street area and chances are you'll find an outdoor concert or an open-air food festival waiting for you. Grown-ups, meanwhile, should make plans to sample the beers on one of St. John's local craft beer tours. Finally, if you're visiting in the late spring or summer, book a whale watching trip with the folks at Iceberg Quest tours. Their expert guides will provide you with an up-close-and-personal look at nature's majestic giants of the sea.

Charlottetown

Anyone who grew up reading the beloved children's classic "Anne of Green Gables" will want to set foot on the magical Prince Edward Island and see for themselves where the tale was set. The city of Charlottetown is Prince Edward Island's capital, and it's every bit as delightful as you might imagine. There's an undeniable storybook quality to this quaint Canadian destination that's simply impossible to resist. Along with literary walking tours of the city, visitors can marvel at the ornate St. Dunstan's Basilica, or take in a cutting-edge art exhibit at the nearby Confederation Centre of the Arts. Since delicious seafood is one of Charlottetown's biggest attractions, treat yourself to a memorable dinner of chowder, mussels and jerk spiced crab legs at the popular Claddagh Oyster House.

Central Canada

Toronto

Visitors to Toronto will discover a glorious assortment of cultural influences throughout the city, making it an ideal vacation spot for just about everyone. Where else can you find gleaming avant-garde architecture cozily nestled alongside historic churches situated on cobblestone streets? That playful mixture of styles gives Toronto a personality all its own. If you've rented a car on your visit, then be sure to take a short side trip to see the iconic Niagara Falls. It's only a mere 2-hour drive away. Exploring the city's funky Kensington Market is a guaranteed good time, or perhaps a guided tour of the Hockey Hall of Fame might be more to your liking if you're a sports fan. For foodies, there's no better way to experience the true taste of Toronto than to head to the city's Distillery District and see what's on the menu at one of the dozens of eateries you'll find there.

Montreal

You can easily spend a week exploring the friendly streets of Montreal and never find yourself less than captivated by its casual elegance and enchanting French charm. In fact, the only problem is deciding which of the sights and attractions to check out first. I recommend starting with the incredible Notre-Dame Basilica, because there's just no better way to immerse yourself in the city's fascinating cultural heritage. Next, take in an expertly curated exhibition at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. When you feel the need to stretch your legs, a leisurely walking tour of the exciting Plateau Mont-Royal neighborhood is a fun way to acquaint yourself with the city on a pleasant afternoon. Once the sun goes down, take a nighttime boat trip on the beautiful Saint Lawrence River and watch the lights of Montreal shimmer after dark.

Québec City

If you're a Francophile living in the United States, you don't have to cross the Atlantic Ocean to experience the charm of La République française. Instead, you can make a far shorter journey to the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec. Here, you'll discover a city that's filled with some of the most authentic French culture this side of Paris. For an inside look at this amazing destination, here's a guide that lists everything you'll need to know in order to plan a marvelous getaway.

West Coast region

Vancouver

It's easy to see why Vancouver is widely considered to be one of the world's most livable cities. A few of the many must-see attractions include hiking or cycling through the 1,000-acre Stanley Park, and grabbing a gourmet lunch at the remarkable Granville Island Public Market. The city's fabulous Chinatown is one of the biggest and best of its kind in all of North America, so plan on spending at least a full day enjoying its festive atmosphere. If you're curious about the region's aboriginal people and traditions, schedule a visit to the acclaimed Museum of Anthropology, which is located on the University of British Columbia campus. And if you've still got energy left, a nighttime stroll through the wonderfully atmospheric Gastown district is highly recommended.

Victoria

Thanks to its authentic British flavor, you'll feel like you've gone to merry old England when you arrive in Victoria, but it's really just a short boat trip away from Vancouver. A peaceful haven for artists, writers and thinkers of all kinds, Victoria is graced with Canada's mildest weather, making it an ideal spot to visit year-round. That comfortable climate is one of the reasons why the city's 55-acre Butchart Gardens are such a vibrant sight to behold. Regardless of the season, you'll find many of nature's most beautiful flowers in full bloom here, which is why it's such a beloved spot for locals and visitors alike. Other recommended activities in Victoria include a trip to Royal BC Museum, a cycling tour of the historic Cook Street Village neighborhood and a thrilling whale watching excursion with the Prince of Whales company.

Banff

This incredible winter resort destination features some of the most beautiful scenery on the entire planet. To experience the area's natural splendor in all its glory, ride the Banff Gondola up to the summit of Sulphur Mountain and prepare to be amazed. Exploring the glacial lakes, untouched ice fields and awe-inspiring wildlife in Banff National Park are the main reasons why people visit this region. It's the kind of place that turns a simple vacation into a life-changing adventure. Of course, skiing is the most popular outdoor activity in Banff, and since the season runs all the way until late May, it's surprisingly convenient to plan a Canadian ski getaway for your entire family.

Getting there

Once you've decided on the perfect Canadian travel destination, book your tickets by visiting united.com or by using the newly improved United app.

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Looking back at a landmark year with Special Olympics

By Ryan Wilks, October 19, 2020

Earlier this summer, we shone a light on our flagship partnership with Special Olympics and our commitment to the Inclusion Revolution. In that same story, we introduced you to our four Special Olympics Service Ambassadors, Daniel, Kyle, Lauren and Zinyra (Z), who, this month, celebrate one year working at Chicago O'Hare International Airport as part of the United family.

This groundbreaking, inclusive employment program took off as a part of our ongoing partnership with Special Olympics, a community relationship that employees across the company hold close to heart. The original 'UA4' (as they call themselves) have become an integral part of the United team serving customers at O'Hare Airport. Even from behind their masks, their wide smiles and effervescent spirit exude and bring life to the service culture of excellence we strive towards every day.

"The UA4 are more than just customer service ambassadors. They are shining examples of how inclusion, accessibility and equity can have monumental impacts on the culture and service of a business and community," said Customer Service Managing Director Jonna McGrath. "They have forever changed who we are as a company. While they often talk about how United and this opportunity has changed their lives, they have changed ours in more ways than we can count."

In the two years of partnership with Special Olympics, United employees have volunteered over 10,500 hours of service at events around the world and donated over $1.2 million worth of travel to the organization.

"This inclusive employment program is what community partnerships, like ours with Special Olympics, are all about: collaborating to identify areas where the needs of the community intersect with the cultural and business opportunity, then creating the infrastructure and programming to bring the two together," said Global Community Engagement Managing Director Suzi Cabo. "Through this program, our goal is to show other companies that when you put a committed effort and focus towards inclusion and breaking down barriers, you transform lives. I challenge other business around the world to follow our lead in joining the Inclusion Revolution."

Check out the video below to hear from our Special Olympics Service Ambassadors firsthand.

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Spotlighting our own during Hispanic Heritage Month

By The Hub team, October 13, 2020

We celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 th through October 15th and take the time to recognize the important contributions of our colleagues of Hispanic descent in the United family.

This year, we hosted virtual events organized by our multicultural business resource group UNITE to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, covering topics ranging from immigration reform to Hispanic leadership. We're also taking a moment to highlight Latinx employees nominated by their peers for their contributions both at and outside of work.

These nominees have demonstrated leadership in their position and through their character. Take a moment to read their own words about how their background and heritage plays a role in the way they interact with customers, in how they support their colleagues and why it brings valuable perspective to their work.

Vania Wit – VP & Deputy Counsel

Photo of Vania Wit, VP & Deputy Counsel for United Airlines

"I am the Vice President and Deputy General Counsel in the legal department. I am an attorney and have worked in the legal department for over 21 years and am currently responsible for a number of different legal areas – such as litigation, international, commercial and government contracts, labor, employment and benefits, antitrust. I have the privilege of working with a tremendous team of attorneys who are directly leading and managing these areas. One of the things I like most about my job is simply getting to know the backgrounds and personal stories that everyone has about their paths to United or their passion for the industry. Being the daughter of immigrants from South America and growing up in a family who relies heavily on air travel to connect us to our close family and friends is an integral part of my story and what drew me to this industry and this company."

Kayra Martinez – International Flight Attendant, FRA

Photo of Kayra Martinez on board an aircraft

"I love that my work as a flight attendant brings me all over the world and allows me to connect with diverse people across the globe. Because of my Spanish heritage, I've been able to use my language as a way to connect with passengers, crew members and people from every nationality. In addition, my heritage gives me a very close connection to family, creating community and using inclusion as a way to bring people together. After transferring to Europe, I was able to study German, more Spanish, Italian and Arabic. Outside of work, I'm the director and founder of a nonprofit organization that empowers refugees through art. Hundreds of children and adults fleeing war-torn countries have found healing through my art workshops. These refugees are currently displaced in Greece. Their stunning paintings are then sold in art galleries and communities around the world, raising awareness and putting income directly into the hands of refugee artists."

Adriana Carmona – Program Manager, AO Regulatory Compliance

Photo of Adriana standing in front of a plane engine

"I've been incredibly lucky to have amazing leaders during my time at United who have challenged me from day one to think outside the box, step out of my comfort zone and trusted me to own and deliver on the tasks assigned. I think this sense of ownership is largely shaped by my Latino background, which values responsibility, respect and accountability and taking full charge of what's in your control to be able to deliver accordingly."

Harry Cabrera – Assistant Manager, AO Customer Service, IAH

Photo of Harry Cabrera

"My desire to help people is what drove me to start my career in Customer Service over two decades ago. Currently I provide support to our coworkers and customers at IAH , the gateway to Latin America and the Caribbean. As a Colombian native celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, I'm proud to see the strength that my fellow Latinos forge every day at United Airlines. Family values are a cornerstone of the Latin community; I consider my coworkers to be part of my extended family. Mentor support throughout the years gave me the opportunity to grow professionally. The desire to do better and help others succeed is part of that heritage. I collaborate with our Latin American operations and create ways to improve performance. No matter what language you speak, the passion for what you do and being approachable makes the difference in any interaction."

Juciaria Meadows – Assistant Regional Manager, Cargo Sales

Photo of Juciaria Meadows in a Cargo hold

"During my 28-year career, I've worked across the system in various frontline and leadership roles in Reservations, Customer Service and Passenger Sales in Brazil. I moved to the U.S. in 2012 to work as an Account Executive for Cargo. It did not take too long for me to learn that boxes and containers have as much a voice as a passenger sitting in our aircraft. My job is to foster relationships with shippers, freight forwarders, cosignees, etc. and build strong partnerships in fair, trustworthy and caring ways where United Cargo will be their carrier of choice. That's where my background growing up in a Latino family plays an important role in my day-to-day interactions. I've done many wonderful sales trainings provided by United and my academic background , but none of them taught me more than watching my parents running their wholesale food warehouse. Developing exceptional relationships with their customers, they always treated them with trust and respect. They were successful business people with a big heart, creative, always adding a personal touch to their business relationships and I find myself doing the same. It's a lesson that is deep in my heart."

Shanell Arevalo – Customer Service Representative, DEN

Photo of Shanell Arevalo at work

"I am Belizean and Salvadoran. At a young age my family moved to California from Belize. Although I grew up in the United States , one thing my parents taught me was to never forget the culture, values and principles I was raised on. This includes showing love, compassion, and respect to all people. We learned to put our best foot forward for any situation and always put our heart and mind into everything we do. In my position as a customer service agent, it's the difference of showing the love, compassion and respect to our passengers to show that this is not just a job but rather a passion of genuinely caring for our people. Being Latina, we are raised to always take care of our family, and the way I take care of passengers is the way I would take care of my family. If there's one way I know I can make a difference with our Spanish speaking passengers, it's being able to speak the language. The glow that comes over a passenger's face when they realize there's someone who can speak Spanish is absolutely an indescribable feeling. With that glow comes comfort and joy. The small comfort they get from knowing someone can connect with them makes all the difference in their experience."

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United Cargo responds to COVID-19 challenges, prepares for what's next

By The Hub team, September 30, 2020

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, United Cargo has supported a variety of customers within the healthcare industry for over 10 years. Three key solutions – TempControl, LifeGuard and QuickPak – protect the integrity of vital shipments such as precision medicine, pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical equipment and vaccines. By utilizing processes like temperature monitoring, thermodynamic management, and priority boarding and handling, United Cargo gives customers the peace of mind that their shipments will be protected throughout their journey.

With the global demand for tailored pharmaceutical solutions at an all-time high, we've made investments to help ensure we provide the most reliable air cargo options for cold chain shipping. In April this year, we became the first U.S. carrier to lease temperature-controlled shipping containers manufactured by DoKaSch Temperature Solutions. We continue to partner with state-of-the-art container providers to ensure we have options that meet our customers' ever-changing needs.

"Providing safe air cargo transport for essential shipments has been a top priority since the pandemic began. While the entire air cargo industry has had its challenges, I'm proud of how United Cargo has adapted and thrived despite a significant reduction in network capacity and supply," said United Cargo President Jan Krems. "We remain committed to helping our customers make it through the pandemic, as well as to doing everything we can to be prepared for the COVID-19 vaccine distribution when the time comes."

Our entire team continues to prioritize moving critical shipments as part of our commitment to supporting the global supply chain. We've assembled a COVID readiness task team to ensure we have the right people in place and are preparing our airports as we get ready for the industry-wide effort that comes next.

In cooperation with our partners all over the world, United Cargo has helped transport nearly 145 million pounds of medical supplies to aid in the fight against COVID-19, using a combination of cargo-only flights and passenger flig­hts. To date, United Cargo has operated more than 6,300 cargo-only flights and has transported more than 213 million pounds of cargo worldwide.

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