CHAPTER 1: Travel Arrangements
All camp buses will be depart and arrive from The Hanger Parking Lot at Downsview Park 75 Carl Hall Road
Please be at the buses 30 minutes before the scheduled time of departure. The sooner we get to camp, the sooner the fun can begin! Please note that for first/full session campers, the bags go to camp in advance of the departure day.
A reminder not to send any foods containing nuts on the bus!
Buses will be boarded, from Toronto by age group. We can however arrange for a sibling to sit with another sibling if you prefer. If you would like to make a sibling seating request for the bus, you must CALL US WELL IN ADVANCE to make the arrangements.
DRIVING DROP-OFFS AND PICK-UPS
We do not encourage parents to drop-off their kids as we feel part of the camp experience is taking the bus to and from camp. We do realize that there are times when people may decide to drop-off and pick-up their child(ren). The timing of drop-offs and pick-ups can be challenging since campers are coming and going at all times.
It is critical that for drop-offs you arrive at 4:00 p.m. If you arrive before 4:00 pm you must wait until a staff person gives you permission to enter camp! For pick-ups you should arrive between 9:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. Please call the office when you reach McKellar so that we can have staff at the gate to greet you!
We not only encourage the buddy system down at the swim docks but also on the plane or bus. Our staff takes special care to ensure that campers are fine and are introduced to other campers right away. However, if you want us to contact a family in your area, perhaps with an older boy or girl to meet your camper at the airport or bus, contact Jen or Mark at the office and tell them you want a buddy or big brother/sister for your child. We will do our best to arrange it.
Out-of-towners fly directly to Lester B. Pearson International Airport – Toronto (with baggage) on regularly scheduled flights. Customs clearance is handled in Toronto upon arrival and departure. Our staff will be waiting just outside the baggage area to greet them, and to help with their bags. Chartered buses will whisk them to camp from there. Our buses will depart with supervisory staff approximately every 2 hours beginning around 11:00 A.M. through 2:00 P.M. from the arrivals level at Terminals 1 and 3. Parents are responsible for their own child’s flight plans, and should therefore book their tickets early in order to get the lowest airfare available and ensure a space is available on the flight of your choice. Please see Suggested Flights before booking: https://www.manitoucamp.com/current-families/resources-and-forms/transportation
NOTE: We recommend in some cases it is nice to take advantage of having relatives or friends in Toronto to fly in the night before and have your child stay with them in Toronto and then take the bus up to camp the next day. Your child’s bags can be brought to the bus. For most of you this may not be an option but if this would work you should consider it.
Arrival and Departure Window: Make sure that the arrival time at Toronto is between 11:00 A.M. and 2:00 P.M. and that departure time from Toronto is no earlier than 1:00 P.M. and no later than 5:00 P.M. (between 1:30 P.M. and 3:30 P.M. would be ideal).
Send your child with their Manitou travel pouch which should include: Your child’s passport, ticket/e-ticket, $40 emergency money for the airport (to be kept in office and not in camper cabin), and a permission letter from parent authorizing your child to travel on their own (see sample on site in parent resources/forms section). If sending a cellphone for air travel, it must be clearly labelled with your child’s name. A reminder not to send any foods containing nuts for the trip! If your child carries an EpiPen the airline will not allow him/her to board the plane without a note from a doctor, for security reasons.
Optional Private Limousine Service: If you wish to have your child driven from the airport by a private Limousine to limit wait time at the airport, please contact Jen at the office at 416-322-5888 to arrange. The cost of this service is approximately $550.00.
Bedding, towels etc. will be provided for campers who are travelling from outside North America as baggage restrictions when flying internationally will not allow for extra bags.
Please fill out the TRANSPORTATION FORM with flight details on our portal https://manitoucamp.campbrainregistration.com
UNACCOMPANIED MINOR SERVICE
We recommend sending your child as an “Unaccompanied Minor”. Most airlines require you to register as an unaccompanied minor if the child is under 16 years old on a direct flight. This is mandatory for children less than 14 years of age on the return portion of the trip and will be charging you the fee applied by the airlines. This means the airline will take responsibility for your child from the time you check them in until we meet them upon their arrival (and the same upon their return). Leaving Toronto, your child once checked in, must pass through customs if leaving Canada. OUR STAFF ARE NOT ALLOWED TO ENTER THE CUSTOMS/WAITING AREA. The Unaccompanied Minor service gives them special attention and supervision every step of the way, and also gives them special seating arrangements. Keep in mind that when booking an unaccompanied minor, the airline expects you to wait at the airport until your child’s plane has taken off. Our staff will, of course, do the same in Toronto as a safety measure. This service is only available on direct flights now with most airlines.