Planes, Trains and Automobiles: How to Get to Montreal

The night life of Montreal city
naibank / Getty Images

Montreal, Canada's second-most populated city after Toronto, is a wonderful place to visit. This cultural capital has a heavy French influence, so you'll feel as if you're in Europe rather than North America. Whether you're taking a car, airplane, train or bus to Montreal, getting to this sophisticated, historic city is well worth the effort.

Montreal by Bus

If you'd like to take a bus to Montreal, Trailways and Greyhound have daily trips from major U.S. and Canadian cities, including New York and Chicago. Sample travel times and costs: 

  • Trailways NY, NYC – Montreal: Nine hours; from $86 one way
  • Trailways NY, Albany – Montreal: Six hours; from $53 one way
  • Greyhound, Chicago – Montreal: 22 hours; from $85 one way

Montreal by Car

An island in the middle of the St. Lawrence River, Montreal is a one-hour drive north of the Vermont – New York border and five hours east of Toronto. Quebec City is almost three hours away. Canada’s capital, Ottawa, is two hours away.

Montreal by Air

Most major airlines serve Montreal’s Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport. It’s a $40 cab ride to downtown. Depending on traffic, the trip will take between 40 minutes to an hour. If your French is weak, it’s best to write down the name of your destination.

Montreal Airport Transportation

The 747 Express Aeroport Bus runs to the city center (777 Rue de la Gauchetiere, at University) and to the city's intercity bus station centrally located above the Berri-UQAM Metro (subway) station via a number of downtown hotels. Tickets are $10 one way.

Public Bus 204 east leaves from outside departures (ground level) every half hour to the Dorval train station. From Dorval, transfer to the express bus 211 to the Lionel-Groulx Metro station or a commuter train to the downtown Windsor station and the Vendome Metro.

Montreal by Train

Amtrak operates a scenic, 11-hour train service from New York’s Penn Station that follows the Hudson River and Lake Champlain from $69 each way.

Via Rail offers service all over Canada. Sample routes and costs: