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Surrey Facts

Surrey Facts

Consider these facts some handy travel tips in order to fully experience what Surrey has to offer. From weather to health and safety, and on to those who like to get an idea for what to expect, these facts will help you get you prepared for your very own experience! Please be our guest, and get to know Surrey!

Population

Based on the 2016 Canadian Census, the population of the City of Surrey is estimated to be 517, 887; it is thought that 68% of that population is between the ages of 15 to 64. Surrey makes up about 11% of British Columbia’s population of an estimated 4.6 million. 

Language

Both English and French have federal status throughout Canada, although, the majority of Canada’s population speaks English as either a first or second language. The City of Surrey is largely diverse and is home to a variety of multicultural groups. In fact, after English the most common language is Punjabi, which is spoken by around 20.5% of the population. Some other prevalent mother tounge languages spoken in Surrey are Mandarin, Hindustani, Tagalog and Korean. 

Weather & Climate

Surrey’s climate is typically inter-coastal Pacfic-Northwest; moderate and four seasons. This is characterized by winters that are quite rainy and wet, often with rainfall lasting until the early spring. The summers are sunny and mild which transitions into a cool autumn season. 

Time zone

The city of Surrey is in the Pacific Time Zone which encompasses parts of western Canada, western United States and Western Mexico. Places in this time zone observe standard time by subtracting eight hours from Coordinated Universal time, which offsets to seven hours, when Daylight Savings Time is used. Surrey observes Daylight Savings Time from the second Sunday in March until the first Sunday in November. 

Currency

When visiting Surrey, it is recommended that all visitors use the Canadian Dollar (CAD). Visitors can exchange their foreign currencies easily at currency exchange kiosks at certain border crossings, large shopping malls, and banks. It is advised to have local currency before arriving. Certain hotels, merchants and restaurants will accept US or other foreign currencies at a pre-determined rate that may differ from the daily rate posted by financial institutions. 

One Canadian Dollar consists of 100 Canadian cents, although, our 1 cent coin (the penny) has been phased out since 2013. If you are paying in cash, your purchase will be rounded to the nearest five cents. Canadian coins come in denominations of 5 cents, 10 cents, 25 cents, $1 and $2 ; bills come in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100.  

Taxation

The majority of purchases in British Columbia are subject to a Provincial Sales Tax (PST) of 7% as well as a federal Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 5%. Accomidations are an exception, as they are subject to a PST of 8% as well as a hotel tax of up to 3%. Liquor is also an exception, as it is subject to a PST of 10%. Additionally, certain goods, such as books and magazines, food and restaurant meals, as well as childrens clothing are GST and/or PST exempt.

Gratuities & Tipping

When dining out in a restaurant tips are not calculated in your bill, therefore, it is suggested you add approximately 15 to 20 percent; 15 is pretty customary, whereas 20 is for exceptional service. If you are dining out in a group of eight or more people, it is standard for a restaurant to automatically add a gratutity of 15-18 percent onto your bill. Tipping for counter service is not expected. Other services that typically attract tips are spa treatments, hair and nail services and taxis; 15 percent is standard. 

HEalth & Safety

Emergeny Services:
Ambulance: 9-1-1
Fire: 9-1-1
Police: 9-1-1

Non-Emergency Services:
Surrey Memorial Hospital: (604)- 581-2211
Non-Emergency Police: (604)-599-0502