Quebec city on a budget
There are already many websites that tell you a great insight into how to visit Quebec city on a budget. I know many people like me would never stop traveling if it was not about the budget. Don't forget that traveling can be a luxury. Not everyone in the world can afford a plane, train, or other modes of transportation. Think of yourself as a lucky person already!
I'm here to tell you a few trick and tips as a local to save money and enjoy Quebec without breaking the piggy bank.
Use passeport Je bois local
You like discover craft beer ? Oui? Then this is for you!
This is a real local insight that might improve your voyage !
The craft beer community is good here and there is a lot to discover.
There an local app that you pay 45$ + tx and allow you 12 pints or 3 small tasters flight size beer! You can use it in over 100 microbrewery all around the province of Quebec.
Currently, the website and the app are only available in French, since the majority of their customers speak French. However, it isn't because they don't want other people, but rather because they are primarily aiming for us les gens de Québec :).
I contacted them and there is no problem for you to use it! I use it myself and I think it could be interesting from a craft beer lover to another, I made this tiny tutorial. I don't earn anything of it and there no referral system. It is just a tip from a local to a traveller! If you know things like that in your country, let me know!
The app is currently in french but it is easy to use once you know how it work, 1-Once you paid the passeport here , you will receive a code by email to activates your apps.
2-You can use the gps on the phone app and it will tell you where are the closest microbrewery (and let you know if it is included or not into your package).
3-Add the brewery in the passport list and get there
4-Before ordering any drink at the bar tell to the staff that you use Je bois local app and they will give you a code. Put the code in the passport and show it the the brewery staff.
I made a short video here
You can't use the app to get 2 pints at 1 place. The main goal is to discover and travel.
Maybe it will turn your trip into a craft brewery quest!
Usually a pint in a brewery is about 8$ cad so you saved almost 50$.
With the money you saved you can use it to support them and maybe buy merch or a can (or few) as a souvenir! Maybe get even another pint?!
Super important the tips is not included *
Facebook: Buffet de l'antiquaire
Restaurant can be very pricy or not !
Amazing restaurants may be found all across the city. Some of them can be quite expensive.
however, you can discover great food to enjoy regardless of your budget.
One of them is le buffet de l'Antiquaire.Located close to the old port, still offers good meals at a reasonable cost. Excellent, well-known restaurant serving regional cuisine for breakfast here.
If you are on a tight budget, I suggest you to get a bit outside old Quebec and go visit Saint-Roch or Saint-Sauveur instead. There somes option that are not very pricy . It's possible to eat like a local at (exemple) renowned snack-bar named Chez Gaston. The poutine is about 8$, hamburgers are around 4.50$.Not healthy but good!
Fun fact: You can even eat like Wayne Gretzky
In 2016, Wayne Gretzky came to see his son Trevor play for our local baseball team (Les Capitales de Québec, amazing team ), he didn't go to a fancy restaurant as you might think, but to the bureau de poste (everything is around $8, so it's fair enough).
Also nearby on Saint-Joseph there a great Moroccan restaurant Méchoui Marrakech that offers great service and great value. Restaurants, cafés, and boulangeries (baked goods) such as la boite à pain are plentiful and won't break the bank.Have a coke or a beer at Macfly and play old pinball machine as much as you can.
Do something good
If you have any leftovers from the restaurant, you can store them in the community fridge at Saint-Roch church's bottom (on Saint-Joseph street).It help the people in needs in the area.
Credits photo: Tony Webster
Take La bus (public transportation)
When I get in old Quebec to do my tour,I use the public transportation (or la bus as we like to say it here ) .Parking can be expensive and since public transportation has been modernized, getting to downtown has become pretty easy. There no need anymore to bother the driver to tell you where to stop.Inside every bus there a screen that tell you the next stop. Yet, it can be difficult to go outside of the city's downtown and Sainte-Foy areas.Use google map with transportation and also use the RTC website that show the next bus coming up nearby.
There many places to see by bus nearby the old town.
The city can be crowded sometime. If you are visiting Old Quebec for a few days, give yourself some time to explore the neighbourhood. Take a stroll down the 3e avenue or through the lovely Domaine Maizerets to experience the local ambiance in Limoilou.
The 800 bus will take you from the old town to the Montmorency waterfalls (its the last stop of Montmorency path). That would be the most cost-effective method of transportation.
How to pay and how much? Where I get the tickets?
I often get that question so many time on tour!
You can pay in the bus in cash for 3.75$ per ride. Make sure you put the right amount in the box at the entrance because if you put 10$, the driver won't give you change. To save yourself some trouble, you can buy a daycard for 9$ or an occasional card filled with ticket for 3.25$ instead of 3.75$ ride. If you are here for the week-end,why not take a week-end card at 16.25$ (the card will be activated from friday at 17h30 to sunday).You can buy thoses card at somes dépanneur like Jack and gil or some pharmacy.
This will help you Here is a website for the points of sale and service counters.
Im on a boat !
On that note, ferries across the river to Lévis is terrific for taking photos of the walled city and only cost $3.85 each way. Amazing place to appreciate the view whether you go in the winter when the boat is hit by ice or in the summer when the sun sets over the river. That is essential!
Ideal for Instagram or simply unwinding without even using your phone!
Have a look at my video for it
Look out for free concerts,shows,festivals or even firework!
You dont have the budget to see a big concert...
Or maybe you just arrived and didn't knew there was something going on and you cry because it's sold out...No worry! Somes festivals showcases artists doing free concerts with amazing talent that you wouldn't know other wise! Believe me, we have a lot of big or little festivals and free events!
From printemps en musique to Mondo carnaval to the Festival d'été de Québec!
Ask local when you are here or the persons at your hotel/hostel reception. * In summertime there some nice little outdoor concerts on the fields of Abraham at le Kiosk Edwin-Belanger-Bandstand .To know more about music venue go to my blog here Be open and look out !
Don't overlook online discounts,somes actually worth it!
I have used a fantastic packages that the tourism office has offer. They were highly aggressive and huge to entice the locals to be tourists in their own city during the pandemic. They greatly aided the struggling tourism sector. Even now, post-covid, I would still advise visiting their website. The website for Québec City tourism has a wealth of informative blogs about your trip.
Personnal Note: I never sleep in a downtown hotel in my life except once.
I did once during the pandemic. In fact, I stayed at the venerable Clarendon Hotel (that I mention once a while on my tour). The primary cause was the substantial discount at the time.
My next hôtel in my bucket list would be the Château Frontenac!
But so far I can't even afford their broom closet!
If anyone has the contact of the manager I would not say no!
We have discount website similar to groupon. Sometime you can be impress by the offer.
There actually a promo at the time Im writting this .You can book a room at a local well known hotel named le Concorde for 110$ a night. Thats actually a bargain. It will be probably over when you will read this but thats the reason why you should check.
Always read the conditions (fine print) regarding date and expiration before buying anything
Here is some website that you can check
Québec cite tourism office - Package and discount on the Quebec city tourism office.Great website for information regarding Québec city.
Promo rabais - Discount website with hotel deal,restaurant and activity
Tuango - Another discount website
Take one of my free walkings tour
Yeah I know...self promotion ....wow!
...but you are the one that get to this website ...not me! Im a professional licensed tour guide since 8 years and a proud local. I think it is the best job in the world (except during a pandemic...I dont recommed it...Very boring).
I love to give advice while on tour about what things going on, things to do...
If you don't take a guided tour (from me or anyone else tour company) then you haven't experienced this city fully.I dont say this because I am a tour guide, but because there is just so much to see and do here. You might miss somes. And a city becomes more alive and interesting when the buildings around it are given a story.
As a freelance tour guide, I do not receive any funding from the city. The free walking tour is contribution-based ideas very common in many place in the world. As a result, you give whatever you want at the end of the tour. That is not something I mention or force anybody to do; it is completely voluntary. Be sure, I do my best to make the tour one of the highlight of your trip!
You can book your tour here
There also possibility (with fee) to do private tour. Over the year I did many tour for schools groups, company or even a bachelorette party (it actually happen).
I hope my advice helped you! See you soon! À bientôt!