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The W - Random - What would you do with $106 in Canada?
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Mr. Boffo
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Since: 24.3.02
From: Oshkosh, WI

Since last post: 454 days
Last activity: 414 days
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.24
Alright, story time. Skip down to the 4th paragraph if you're not interested. I've been collecting foreign coinage since I started working at my current job some 6 1/2 years ago. Retail locations go through a lot of coins, and so few people actually look at the change they are giving or receiving. A lot of it actually comes in the rolls of change from the banks. So I decided to take any of it I could find out of the money system. 99% of it is Canadian*, and I hadn't had a plan for what I was going to do with it until a few years ago. I've decided I'm going to drive into Canada and spend it.

I wasn't going to do it until I had amassed enough Canadian money to cover my trip. A passport card that can be used for driving into Canada is $45, and the shortest drive into Canada from where I live is 350 miles, which is about 15 gallons of gas, which is about $30 worth of gas. Well I counted it up tonight, and I have $106.74 Canadian. I plan to drive to the nearest Canadian entry point (which is across the border from Sault Ste Marie, Michigan) and spend my hard earned Canadian coinage. I don't know how spending that much coinage is going to work (I have at least $10 worth of pennies all rolled up), but that's the plan.

I've decided to try to buy things that we don't have in the states. For instance, I've been told I need to try to find Crush Cream Soda, which I've been told is the best cream soda available and is unknown here.

My question, then, is if anyone has any advice on things I should buy/places I should eat while in Canada? Candy, Soft Drinks, Ketchup Flavored Lays, whatever you can think of. Bonus if you know that it'll I'll be able to find it in the middle of Ontario. I'm interested in anything I can't get down here.

* other coinage include (from Europe: Ł.25 British, .20 Swiss franc, €.16) (from the Caribbean: $.35 Cayman Islands, $.54 Bahamas, $.2 Barbados, $.05 Bermuda, $.10 East Caribbean) (other: $.11 Australian, $.20 Singapore, 2.50 Mexican nuevo pesos, .50 first-edition Mexican pesos (worthless), .01 Panamanian Balboa, .25 Seychelles Rupee, $.10 Ecuador, $.05 New Zealand, 5 3rd-edition Polish zlotys (worthless), ₩200 (South Korea), .2 Russian ruble, and various presumably worthless pre-Euro currencies (France, the Netherlands, Germany, Ireland)).
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Merc
Potato korv








Since: 3.1.02
From: Brisbane, Australia

Since last post: 1291 days
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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.00
$.11 Australian
What the? The Aussie 1c coins were discontinued in 1992.
That is a heck of a journey for discontinued currency :)
Guru Zim
SQL Dejection
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Since: 9.12.01
From: Bay City, OR

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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.53
Buy a Big Turk candy bar. It's a gummy center chocolate covered thing that you can't compare to anything else.

Start with just one.




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cfgb
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Since: 2.1.02
From: Ottawa, Ontario

Since last post: 2 days
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.80
Poutine if you can find it, but the further away you get from Quebec, the worse it gets. Fries, fresh cheese curds, gravy. Bonus points if it comes from a truck. I have NO idea if you'll find any good stuff in that area though.

Apparently Smarties are Canadian, I've been told. They're from Nestle. I guess the best comparison is to M&M's, but that's just unfair to Smarties.

I had no idea Crush was our thing.

Beavertails, but that might be limited to the Capital. It's a deep fried pastry covered with sugar, and other stuff depending on the type. I've only ever had 1 myself, with hazelnut, but some people are crazy for the things.

It's maple syrop season. If you can find a Cabane Aux Sucre, do it up!

I dunno, I'm sure there's a zillion things, but once you're USED to it, it's less exciting. Kinda like how when I cross the border I start to drool over Ponderosa and Cracker Barrel.
Zeruel
Thirty Millionth Hit
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Since: 2.1.02
From: The Silver Spring in the Land of Mary.

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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.05
Not to thread jack, but I have about $7 Canadian in single bills from our trip to Ontario and Montreal back in the 80s. Are the singles still legal tender?

Boffo, if you lived close-by, I'd give them to you just so you could get some weird looks while up north.





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Oliver
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Since: 20.6.02
From: #YEG

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.21
Unless you have one where you are, head up to a Tim Hortons and get a coffee - that there's a hot steaming cup of Canadiana. That'd run you about $1.75 for an extra large.

With that said, I can't stand the coffee, but, hey...there's not accounting for taste.



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KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

Since last post: 7 hours
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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.17
    Originally posted by Zeruel
    Not to thread jack, but I have about $7 Canadian in single bills from our trip to Ontario and Montreal back in the 80s. Are the singles still legal tender?
Yes, but if you try spending them, you will confuse the heck out of the people working the cash register, and not just because there's no spot in the tills for $1 bills; they stopped printing the $1 bill in 1989 (oh God, I am so old) so there's a very good chance you could hand a store clerk the first $1 bill they'd ever seen.



JK: LJ, FB, T
Mr Heel II
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Since: 25.2.02

Since last post: 9 days
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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.15
Whatever you do, when the border agent asks what the purpose of your trip to Canada is, you MUST tell them this story, and post a picture here of the look on their face after.

Or better yet...video.
Reverend J Shaft
Liverwurst








Since: 25.6.03
From: Home of The Big House

Since last post: 16 days
Last activity: 5 hours
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.05
    Originally posted by Oliver
    Unless you have one where you are, head up to a Tim Hortons and get a coffee - that there's a hot steaming cup of Canadiana. That'd run you about $1.75 for an extra large.


Are Tim Hortons in Canada different than Tim Hortons in the U.S.? We have them ALL over Michigan but many people claim that they are "uniquely Canada", meaning they either have never been to Michigan or Tim Hortons are a lot different in Canada.

I love their donuts by the way. If those are actually better in Canada, then I'm heading down to the Windsor tunnel tonight.
KJames199
Scrapple
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

Since last post: 7 hours
Last activity: 7 hours
#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.17
    Originally posted by Reverend J Shaft
    Are Tim Hortons in Canada different than Tim Hortons in the U.S.?
I've only ever been to one American Tim Horton's (in Midland, Michigan) and my iced capp tasted exactly the same as the Canadian ones do. It did seem to me that the American Tim's might have had a slightly smaller menu, but that was years ago. Surely the Americans have mastered all of our advanced donut and sandwich techniques by now.

As for what to buy in Canada? Don't listen to these chumps - Smarties are far inferior to M&Ms. Big Turk bars are good (in limited doses). Do you guys have Coffee Crisp? I like those.

And check the cereal aisle for weirdness. When I go to the US, I always come back with Cocoa Krispies and Corn Pops (both of which exist in grossbuckets form in Canada). So I guess you could buy gross Canadian Cocoa Krispies and Corn Pops if you wanted. Plus, if you ever wanted packaging with a bunch of French on it, you've found the right country.

Agreed on good poutine if you can find it. If it has shredded mozza, run away.



JK: LJ, FB, T
Mr. Boffo
Scrapple








Since: 24.3.02
From: Oshkosh, WI

Since last post: 454 days
Last activity: 414 days
#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.24
    Originally posted by Merc

    $.11 Australian
    What the? The Aussie 1c coins were discontinued in 1992.
    That is a heck of a journey for discontinued currency :)

That is correct. A 1978 Australian one cent. It has a cat on the back for some reason.

    Originally posted by cfgb

    Apparently Smarties are Canadian, I've been told. They're from Nestle. I guess the best comparison is to M&M's, but that's just unfair to Smarties.

    I had no idea Crush was our thing.

What's funny is that America has a candy that is called Smarties, which is nothing like your Canadian Smarties. Wikipedia says our smarties are marketed as "Rockets" up there. And Crush soda is owned by Dr Pepper Snapple Group. Recently, they signed an agreement with Pepsi wherein Pepsi would distribute Crush to many locations where it wasn't currently available. Usually you'll find Orange and Grape. But the Crush Cream is unknown here.

Good suggestions, all. The trip is still in the planning stages (I still need to get that passport card). I hope to do it sometime in the summer. I'll let you know when it happens. KJames, Nestle started selling Coffee Crisp down here maybe a year ago. After reorganizing our candy aisle, we carry nearly every candy that our distributor makes available to us. I was not familiar with some of the candies we got in at that time like the Coffee Crisp and the Nestle Chunky.

Edit: I've also found old currency with King George VI on it isn't every once in a while. I see sites that say a penny might be worth as much as 10 cents, so I'm not going to bother. I got a 1942 penny today that says "GEORGIVS VI D:G: REX ET IND: IMP:". In other words, George VI, By the Grace of God King and Emperor of India.

(edited by Mr. Boffo on 9.3.09 1816)
tarnish
Frankfurter








Since: 13.2.02
From: Back in the Heart of Hali

Since last post: 503 days
Last activity: 2 days
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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.82

Well, you're not exactly hitting a burgeoning metropolis at your crossing location

Real Maple Syrup is certainly a beautiful thing, but it's expensive and you can probably get that in Northern Michigan. A visit to the grocery store might find you some Maple Sandwich Cookies that you can't otherwise get, though. While you're there, you'll find our holy trinity of odd potato chip flavors: Ketchup, Salt & Vinegar, and Dill Pickle. All of them will damage the soft tissues in your mouth, but I love them all.

With regards to the candy bars you can get here that you can't get down there, do bear in mind that the Brits consider them to be overly-sweet versions of the originals in the UK. Coffee Crisp is worth a try if you've never had one, as are Mr. Big and Aero.

If you want something truly Canadian get a "Butter Tart". You can get the mass-produced kind in any convenience store, but consider looking for a bakery and getting the real deal. It's pretty much like Pecan Pie without the Pecans. Better than it sounds, really, although I can't say I've had one in years. We used to be required on every trip to bring some down to my aunt down in Oil City, PA. While you're at the bakery, grab some Nanaimo bars if you've never had them.

And lastly, find a decent bar and order yourself a (Bloody) Caesar. It's a spicy Bloody Mary with Clamato (tomato + clam) Juice instead of straight tomato. No, you can't taste the clam.
TheOldMan
Landjager








Since: 13.2.03
From: Chicago

Since last post: 117 days
Last activity: 10 min.
#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.83
    Originally posted by KJames199
    And check the cereal aisle for weirdness. When I go to the US, I always come back with Cocoa Krispies and Corn Pops (both of which exist in grossbuckets form in Canada). So I guess you could buy gross Canadian Cocoa Krispies and Corn Pops if you wanted. Plus, if you ever wanted packaging with a bunch of French on it, you've found the right country.






Lise
Mrs. Guru








Since: 11.12.01

Since last post: 421 days
Last activity: 43 days
#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.63
Wait... You have to pay to drive in Canada now? Does B.C. just have a policy that it will accept a valid driver's license from nearby US states? Or did everything change with the new post 9-11 rules?

I know I need to have a passport now, but I had no idea that the driving rules had changed.

McDonalds in Canada is always fun, there's things not on the menu in the States, and they have packets of malt vinegar for the fries. If they still have raspberry-ginger ale, that's a good one too.

Really I don't think you'll have any problem spending it. Sounds like a lot of fun.
CRZ
Big Brother
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Since: 9.12.01
From: ミネケポăƒȘă‚č

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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.50
    Originally posted by Lise
    Wait... You have to pay to drive in Canada now? Does B.C. just have a policy that it will accept a valid driver's license from nearby US states? Or did everything change with the new post 9-11 rules?
You'll have to have paid for a passport....or a passport card.

Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (travel.state.gov)

I got mine! It's pretty!



Big G
Potato korv








Since: 21.8.03
From: the people who brought you Steel Magnolias....

Since last post: 34 days
Last activity: 6 min.
#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.59
    Originally posted by Mr. Boffo
      Originally posted by Merc

      $.11 Australian
      What the? The Aussie 1c coins were discontinued in 1992.
      That is a heck of a journey for discontinued currency :)

    That is correct. A 1978 Australian one cent. It has a cat on the back for some reason.




I believe that is a feathertail glider.

And also that coin is supposed to be worth $1.10AUD now. Go Nuts!
whatever
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Since: 12.2.02
From: Cleveland, Ohio

Since last post: 16 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.55
    Originally posted by tarnish

    While you're there, you'll find our holy trinity of odd potato chip flavors: Ketchup, Salt & Vinegar, and Dill Pickle. All of them will damage the soft tissues in your mouth, but I love them all.

I didn't think Salt & Vinegar was a Canadian thing - I see them here in Ohio all the time. They are DELICIOUS, but must be limited to every once in a while or you will kill your mouth dead.




"As you may have read in Robert Parker's Wine Newsletter, 'Donaghy Estates tastes like the urine of Satan, after a hefty portion of asparagus.'" Jack Donaghy, 30 Rock

KJames199
Scrapple
Moderator








Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

Since last post: 7 hours
Last activity: 7 hours
#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.17
If you're getting salt & vinegar chips, look for the Old Dutch Rave brand. I don't know if they have them out east, but they're super strong and really awesome and a little bit painful the first few times. Dill pickle flavour chips (not available in Rave, sadly) are also great. But ketchup chips taste like a tomato's ass.

I wholeheartedly second the call for nanaimo bars. I'm not a big fan of butter tarts, though.

I have never seen malt vinegar at a McDonalds. White vinegar, yes. Malt vinegar IS far superior. You can also get mayo for your fries if you ask. I don't.





JK: LJ, FB, T
StingArmy
Andouille








Since: 3.5.03
From: Georgia bred, you can tell by my Hawk jersey

Since last post: 20 days
Last activity: 20 days
#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.06
    Originally posted by whatever
      Originally posted by tarnish

      While you're there, you'll find our holy trinity of odd potato chip flavors: Ketchup, Salt & Vinegar, and Dill Pickle. All of them will damage the soft tissues in your mouth, but I love them all.

    I didn't think Salt & Vinegar was a Canadian thing - I see them here in Ohio all the time. They are DELICIOUS, but must be limited to every once in a while or you will kill your mouth dead.

I grew up eating salt & vinegar chips like my life depended on it in Georgia, so it's definitely not a Canadian thing. I see dill pickle chips pretty often too.

- StingArmy
Sec19Row53
Lap cheong








Since: 2.1.02
From: Oconomowoc, WI

Since last post: 5 days
Last activity: 1 day
Y!:
#20 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.95
    Originally posted by cfgb
    Fries, fresh cheese curds, gravy.

C'mon - he's from Wisconsin. We KNOW good cheese curds :-)

In the interest of all this exchanging, I should offer someone the $3.40 or so I have left on a DC Metra ticket. Any takers?
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