Taxes and Customs in Montreal
As the second-most populous city in Canada, Montreal offers a wide selection of shopping, dining, and lodging venues. It’s helpful for travelers to know about tips, taxes, and other fees ahead of time so they won’t be surprised by these added costs when they patronize local restaurants, retail establishments, and hotels.
Taxes and Rebates
When visiting Montreal, expect to pay two different taxes on many of your purchases- the federal goods and services tax, commonly referred to as GST or TPS, and the provincial tax (PST or TVQ). Additionally, guests will see a lodging tax added to their hotel bill. Fortunately, non-residents can obtain a rebate for some of the taxes they’ve paid. TPS refunds may be granted for purchases that will be used outside the country.
Restaurant Bills and Tips
Depending on where you go, you’ll find that some restaurants and bars list their prices with taxes included, while others just list the base price. When you see TPS on your bill, keep in mind that it’s a sales tax, not the expected tip amount. Federal taxes are also applied.
In Canada, service is not automatically added to the cost of a meal. At eateries and pubs, patrons pay servers and bartenders a 15% tip (before taxes).
In the early 2000s, passengers departing Montreal from the Dorval or Mirabel airports reported that they were asked to pay what they referred to as an improvement fee. Travelers should visit this site to learn more about customs fees, other surcharges, and any rebates they may be able to claim.
Editor’s Note: The Information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about taxes and other local customs in Montreal.