Ottawa - Post Report Question and Answers

What kind of car do you recommend bringing to post, given the terrain, availability of parts, burglary/carjacking risks, etc.? What kind of car do you advise not to bring?

Any kind of car is fine. I believe that insurance is cheaper if you buy snow tires. - Aug 2015

High clearance SUV with 4 wheel drive and snow tires. - May 2014

Just bring winter tires (not studded snow tires). - Jul 2013

Almost any U.S. car would be serviceable here and would not draw too much attention. Roads are in generally good condition, so no specific cars required for that. Parts and service are likely to be more expensive, but if you know what you need you can order it and the mail room will bring it up. Some warranties will apply in Canada, but check with the manufacturer for specifics. Snow tires are not required in Ontario, but many people have them. You can order online and the mail room will bring them up from NY. A set of 4 with wheels cost about $800 for my car. The CLO will organize a winter-for-newbies session with briefings from GSO, RSO, Motorpool, etc. on how to prepare your house and car for winter. - Jan 2013

Almost anything goes here, but you will need snow tires. Most people order them from the States, and the mail truck will bring them up for you. - Dec 2010

The Honda Accord is the most popular car in Canada, just like in the U.S. Gas is much more expensive in Canada than in the U.S., but many folks do have SUVs. You don't really need them in Ottawa, though, as long as you have good snow tires during the winter. - Aug 2010

Realistically, you could drive a Mini Cooper in the general urban area of Ottawa with All-Seasons on it and be fine. If you're really concerned, a good set of snow tires will do the need to buy an obnoxious SUV to handle winter. You don't need to go overboard and buy a Hummer! - Nov 2009

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