Free Credit Reports Canada - Equifax and TransUnion: Just the Free Reports

There are two major credit bureaus in Canada: TransUnion and Equifax

Both offer (I think by law) free credit reports.

Canada's Best Prepaid Mastercard and Visa Cards: Reloadable and Non-Reloadable "Credit Cards"

These prepaid stored-value cards aren't true "credit cards", even though they are Visas and Mastercards. They are, however, processed just like their credit card counterparts, and look just like them too.

Be sure to check out some of my other articles on Canadian prepaid cards, and alternatives for the typical prepaid card user:

GetFrom.To: A Wiki For Getting From Point A To Point B

As I learned from my experience in finding the best way to get from Munich to Berlin, one way, it's hard to find out the ideal way to get from Point A to Point B. If you're not from there, it's even harder.

How to Get to Berlin from Munich Germany Cheaply on the Autobahn

Trip Background

In September/October of 2012, a friend and myself made the trip to Munich Germany to meet up with a bunch of others for Oktoberfest.

2012 Average Currency Exchange Rates for Income Tax (CRA) conversion purposes

These are the average currency exchange rates for 2012, from the Bank of Canada website here. The CRA website, here, guides us to the Bank of Canada for average exchange rates.

Best Canadian Dollar CASH Exchange Rates

Going on a trip? Need US$ Cash or EUR before you go? Or need to pay off your US$ denominated Mastercard with US$ cash at a Canadian bank branch, as I often do with my US$ BMO Mastercard?

Hot Water Stops Working in a Hard Water Area and No Water Softener

Firstly, a Plumbing Disclaimer

This is just the documentation of one's experience. Consult a real plumber (I'm not one, nor am I your plumber) for your plumbing related needs.

Hot Water Stopped Working (but was easily fixed temporarily, again and again)

The hot water slowed down to a trickle throughout the house, but cold water ran fine at all times.

Flat-tire fix in Burlington Ontario: Good To Go Tire

Good to Go Tire.

It almost sounds like DTF tire.

I had not one, but two, flats repaired at this place (and I suspect no conspiracy on this one :) )

German car / BMW/ Audi / VW Repair in Kitchener/Waterloo

I'd recommend German Autotech on Colby Drive in Waterloo. Their website is:

It's a nice, pleasant and efficient owner-operator business, which is the type I prefer.

Trip to Cedar Point in Sandusky Ohio, early June 2012

Tips for myself in the event that I go to Cedar Point again:

Where to Stay in Sandusky Ohio (Cedar Point), Best Western Plus Review

Just a quick review on where I stayed for a night just to sleep before going to Cedar Point in Sandusky Ohio.
This was on a Monday night in early June.

Hotels in Sandusky Ohio

Places to stay seem to fall into three categories:

Maintaining or Closing Down an Unused Line of Credit: My take

Should you close down your unused line of credit?

For the most part, I'd say no.

Use your line of credit as your emergency fund

I like to think of a line of credit as an emergency fund, money that's almost always accessible/available to you, while allowing you to fully invest your savings or make extra mortgage payments.

A Good Quote About IT


What is the Minimum Age to get a Credit Card in Canada?

It depends on the province in which you reside.
Here's a chart:
Minimum Age for Credit Card
 British Columbia

Hotwire vs. vs. for Canadian Hotels

Just figured I'd share my experiences here.

I found Hotwire to have the cheapest rates. This makes sense because Hotwire doesn't publish the hotel name until you pay for it, you're taking a bit of risk, and the only reason you'd take that additional risk is for a lower price.

Credit Card vs. Secured Card vs. Prepaid Card

I figured I'd make this easy chart comparing the three, since my website talks a lot about all of them:

Canada: What's the Difference Between a Credit Report and Credit Score?

The short answer: Your credit report has just details about open and closed credit lines (ie: credit cards, lines of credit, mortgages, and sometimes unpaid bills), but no score.

HomeTrust Secured Visa Card

The HomeTrust Secured Visa card is often overlooked, probably because it is from a smaller issuer that most people have not heard of.   

I'd recommend this card, or the CapitalOne "Guaranteed" Secured Mastercard, for those that are:

BMO Coin Counting vs. TD Coin Counting/Change Counting Machines

2013 update: TD now has >300 locations with coin counters. BMO will charge you 8% of the entire amount if you put in over $250, if you're a non-customer. TD charges 8% for all non-customers, 3% for business customers, but nothing for customers (and you can open a free savings account).

Useful Coin Counting in Canada Links

Molecular Gastronomy / Spherification in Canada: Where to buy Sodium Citrate, Calcium Gluconate and Sodium Alginate

Ever want to make apple caviar? Or some faux 90s Orbitz drinks? How about molecular mojitos?
Well good luck if you're in Canada and don't want to spend a fortune.

Vancouver / YVR / Avis Car Rental Experience + Review + Tips

All in all, I found Avis to have the cheapest prices for me, totaling $186, all inclusively, for a 6 day rental of what Avis considers to be a full-size car (which they specify as a Chevy Impala or equivalent).

Air Canada vs. Westjet

I'm sure this is a tired topic, but everyone has an opinion on it, so I figure I'll share mine.

I'm by no means a frequent flyer, in fact I signed up for Aeroplan so I could get the $3 discount per flight leg by being able to decline the Aeroplan points. They'll probably expire before I get anything out of them.

Here's my take:

Global Towing and Recovery - Tow Truck Service in Kitchener/Waterloo (and outerlying areas?)

Just wanted to put in a good word for Global Towing and Recovery in Kitchener/Waterloo. They hooked up a flatbed tow in good time at a good rate that was almost half of what I was first quoted from another major local company.