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> Camping In Quebec City/montreal, Language problems in Canada
Ted Morgen
post May 21 2013, 09:16 AM
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I would appreciate hearing from people who have recently traveled to Canada. I've heard so much about Quebec City that I wanted to camp there in our travel trailer and see the city, however when I looked up the only campground in the city there was a comment that we should not go if we are English speaking only. One needs to speak French. I did not see any warnings about Montreal. Advice on this issue would be appreciated.
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Ted Morgen in Palm Bay, Florida
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Texasrvers
post May 21 2013, 09:39 AM
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I can’t speak to the specific campground, but when we were in Quebec we had no trouble with the language difference. (We did not go to Montreal.) Most businesses (especially those in the tourist areas) have employees that speak English, although they will probably greet you in French. Then many said, “Francais ou Englais?” The tours we took had English speaking guides, but you had to be sure that the tour you chose would be in English. We never felt any animosity from the locals because we did not speak French, but we did try to learn a few phrases and did the best we could. Just the fact that we tried to speak French seemed to go a long way. If nothing else it provided them with some amusing entertainment. Sorry I could not help with the campground. Hope someone else has your answers.
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TAB_16
post May 21 2013, 09:48 AM
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Hi

I think I could add a little light on this situation. I'm from Nova Scotia and my wife is from Trois Rivieres (1/2 way between Montreal and Quebec City). We travel across Canada to "home" every couple of years in our TT [a 2400 mile 1 way trip] (have had many). Just to let you know - I speak about 6 word sof french and my wife understands a little but speaks little more than I, we have NEVER been unable to make ourselves understood or been unable to communicate in Quebec (the Province) or Montreal or Quebec City or anywhere.

Quebec'ers ~ 80% speak English (just an estimate), some are hard headed and will let you struggle a little - but so what - it's an adventure and your visiting their culture.

Have not stayed in Montreal as it's a fuel stoop on the way we are going. Be aware its a crazy large metropolis posted limit on the overpasses is 70 kph (~ 40 mph) but FEW obey it, I did because without a GPS you will be lost - even with a GPS take it slow cause theirs lots of on/off ramps to navigate - also don't go through the tunnel (name escapes me ... maybe Laval) - no propane AT ALL allowed.

Camping near QC (Quebec City) is beautiful many campgrounds on the St Lawrence Seaway - they can be small and difficult to navigate around if you have a BIG rig.Best to book ahead - because our last trip east (last year), we started looking for a campground a ~ 430 pm and did't find one with a spot until 1030 pm. The french seem to use their campgrounds as there CABIN in the woods with lots of seasonal campers.

Anyway any further I can add just ask

TAB_16
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riggarob
post May 21 2013, 09:51 AM
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I remember a decade or so ago the Quebec government passed a law saying that French was the only language to be spoken. The fallout from the businesses was that they ended up revoking that law as far as I can remember. What Texasrvrs quoted was the outcome from this legislation. Robbie



QUOTE(Texasrvers @ May 21 2013, 11:39 AM) *

I can’t speak to the specific campground, but when we were in Quebec we had no trouble with the language difference. (We did not go to Montreal.) Most businesses (especially those in the tourist areas) have employees that speak English, although they will probably greet you in French. Then many said, “Francais ou Englais?” The tours we took had English speaking guides, but you had to be sure that the tour you chose would be in English. We never felt any animosity from the locals because we did not speak French, but we did try to learn a few phrases and did the best we could. Just the fact that we tried to speak French seemed to go a long way. If nothing else it provided them with some amusing entertainment. Sorry I could not help with the campground. Hope someone else has your answers.



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docj
post May 21 2013, 11:09 AM
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We spent a couple of weeks in French-speaking Canada a few years ago and had a great time. With respect to the issue of how people treated us, our best example was in a small cafe on the Gaspe Peninsula. After we successfully placed our lunch order with a French-speaking owner/waiter, a young, bilingual couple (the only other people in the restaurant) from Montreal told us that they were prepared to "step in and provide assistance" if we had needed it! laugh.gif

I used to travel extensively all over the world and found that I could do quite well by knowing how to say "please" and "thank you" in the languages of the places that I visited even if I didn't know how to say anything else. I found I could elicit a smile from most people simply by making this small effort. I don't think the people of French-speaking Canada are any different.


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Luvtheroad
post May 21 2013, 04:20 PM
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We spent a day in Montreal last summer and I have to say everyone we met spoke fluent English, at least in the tourist areas. Everyone was friendly and helpful, too. Not at all the stereotype I had come to expect.
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ontariogirl
post Jul 4 2013, 04:02 PM
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We live in Ontario and travel quite frequently in Quebec. Quebec City is the most beautiful city in the world, so don't let the language stop you. We stayed at Valcartier Park, which is about 1/2 hour outside of Quebec City. Downtown is gorgeous. Cochon Dingue is a funky little restaurant downtown. The Valcartier waterpark is large, clean and great for kids. Quebec City is very French, but in the restaurants and campgrounds, they will try to speak English. Tourism is important to both these cities.

We also stayed at the KOA south, just outside of Montreal. It isn't too fancy, but you can get into downtown Montreal in 15 minutes which is a huge bonus. Old Montreal is incredible in the summer on the weekends, with buskers and overflowing patios. The biodome is great for kids, there is La Ronde, an amusement park. Just the atmosphere of downtown is great, and most people in Montreal and tourism there, will speak English. They appreciate if you try to order something in French, even if you butcher the language, it is fun to try.

Have fun, you will love these cities!
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