Local transportation

Travelling by bus in BC and Canada?

  

Pacific Coach Lines (travel between Victoria, Vancouver and Whistler) has a limited number of wheelchair lift equipped coaches in its fleet. For passengers who require service with the wheelchair lift equipped coach reservations must be made AT LEAST 48 hours in advance of the trip to guarantee accessible service. For Health and Safety reasons motorized scooters cannot be loaded, unloaded or securely fastened within the baggage bays.

For passengers who use mobility aids but are able to board the coach with some assistance and store their mobility aid under the coach, phone Pacific Coach Lines at least 24 hours before departure to request assistance and be at the depot no less than 30 minutes prior to departure for boarding.

For more detailed information on these services, please contact customer service:

1-800-661-1725 (toll free) or 604-662-7575

 

GREYHOUND BUS LINES  (travel across BC, Canada and the US) allows some people with disabilities and their attendant to ride together for the price of one ticket. This applies only on regular fares, not specials. Most depots have accessible washroom facilities and attendants to assist people in wheelchairs.
Check Greyhound’s web site for current policy as each type of disability (hearing, mobility etc) have diffent eligibility requirements and accomodations.

Greyhound suggests you call their information line to check on the current rules.
Fare and schedule information in Canada
1-800-661-TRIP (8747)

TDD/TTY
1-800-397-7870 5:00 a.m. – Midnight

Get the BC Ferries disability discount

  

If you are a resident of British Columbia and have a permanent disability, reduced fares are available (this applies to passenger fares only).  
To receive them, you must present your BC Ferries Disabled Status Identification (DSI) card.  
Please call BC Ferries for details or you can download the Information for Passengers with Special Needs Brochure (application included).


Passengers requiring the use of an "overheight" vehicle equipped with a mechanical wheelchair lift or ramp may travel for the same cost as an "underheight" vehicle (or car) with or without a DSI card. Please inform the ticket agent of your vehicle’s special status.

An escort (one only) traveling with a person with a disability is eligible for the disabled rate.  The escort must be traveling in the same vehicle as the person with a disability.  Escorts accompanying seniors with a disability traveling on a senior’s free day must pay full fare.

Gasoline tax rebates, how to get them!

  

Provincial Gasoline Tax Rebate for Persons with Disabilities

People with certain disabilities may apply for a refund of tax paid on fuel purchased for their motor vehicles. The refund is based on the amount of taxes paid, to a maximum of $500 annually.

You must meet all of the following criteria to qualify for the program:
– you must be a "person with disabilities" as defined in the Motor Fuel Tax Act
– you must be at least 16 years old
– you must be a registered owner or lessee of a motor vehicle, or provide a letter from the registered owner indicating you are a joint owner of the vehicle

Qualified persons must first register before claiming a refund. Please see Register for the Fuel Tax Refund Program for Persons with Disabilities.

 

Applications and supporting documentation should be sent to:

Consumer Taxation
Branch

PO BOX 9442 STN PROV GOVT
VICTORIA BC  V8W 9V4

Fax: 250-356-219

 

Federal Excise Gasoline Tax Refund Program

If you are medically certified as having a permanent mobility impairment, and you cannot safely use public transportation, you can apply for a refund of part of the federal excise tax on the gasoline you buy.

For more information and an application form, see Information Sheet XE8, Federal Excise Gasoline Tax Refund Program.

Disabled parking permits in BC, where to get them!

  

Enforceable, plastic placards with permit number and international symbol of access are distributed to people with disabilities, and agencies transporting people with disabilities, so that they may park in designated spaces. Individuals must complete an application form and have it signed by a doctor.

The permits are available from SPARC BC, and are available for download HERE

Mailing address:

SPARC BC

4445 Norfolk St, Burnaby, BC  V5G 0A7

Fax: 604-736-8697

Email: permits@sparc.bc.ca

 

If you are travelling to BC from out of province or out of the country and you want to use your home parking permit or need a temporary permit, find all the information HERE.

Need Help with Support or Advocacy? Weblinks to Join Others!

  

If you need help with advocacy it makes sense to contact one of the many organizations that work to support people with disabilities and their families.

Some organizations focus on helping people to understand and access the services and programs that are available to them. Others focus on providing resources for families and support networks. Many also work to represent the concerns of disabled people with governments and policy-makers. Joining with others links you to like-minded people who are concerns with issues that matter to you. So don’t be shy and hook up with the association that is relevant to you (some people join more than one).

British Columbia Web Links:

Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion (BACI) provides services and advocacy to people with intellectual disabilities and their families in Burnaby.

British Columbia Association for Community Living (BCACL) is a provincial body with a membership made up of not-for-profits, families, and people with disabilities. BCACL works hard to influence government at a policy level.

Family Support Institute is a network of family volunteers who provide support for other families of children with disabilities.

Family Net is an independent provincial network that advocates on behalf of people with disabilities and their families at a policy level.

PLAN is a not-for-profit that aims to help those with disabilities and their families create a safe and secure future.
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Handydart Service – Greater Vancouver

  

Effective January 1st, 2009 Translink/Greater Vancouver Transit Authority restructured the local handydart system and awarded the operating contract to a new company.

 The new phone # to book trips and for customer service/inquiries is:  (604) 575-6600.  (You will be required to quote a client # each time you call in for a trip booking)  Lori & Paul

Parking Secrets in Vancouver

  

Did you know that when you are parking in Vancouver and if you get a ticket at a meter you can get it waived on a one time only basis? It’s true. The Vancouver Sun has done an in-depth study on parking in Vancouver and has come up with its list of Parking Secrets.

My favorite secret is…number 3 that states, "For parking-meter tickets only, every driver in the city is entitled to
one “courtesy cancellation.” If you call 604-257-8732, and ask nicely,
the city will usually waive your fine. Each licence plate gets only one
free pass over the life of the vehicle."

This cheeky monkey thinks that this is because the meters sometimes do not read the coins and therefore do not give the time paid for and the City of Vancouver knows this and is giving the parker the benefit of the doubt.

Need Information? Check out the Red Book Online

  

The Red Book online is a compendium of human services available in the lower mainland of British Columbia. Check it out, it is chock full of information.

Taxi’s in Burnaby

  

BACI parents recently met with a representative from Bonny’s Taxi to discuss issues of concern for people with disabilities who use taxis.

We are told that Bonny’s has taken steps to ensure that there is better service for people with disabilities and that drivers are getting additional training to be sensitive to the needs of people with disabilities.

If you have disability-related service issues with Bonny’s taxi you are invited to call Emon at 604.435.8235 or by email at emon@bonnystaxi.com 

How to track self-employment car expenses

  

When a business owner is using a vehicle for both personal and business use, the same philosophy applies as with the home business expenses. Where square footage was used in the home calculation, kilometres driven are used for the vehicle calculation.

Over the course of the year, the business owner maintains an envelope in the car, where all car expenses are stored. These include gas, repairs, insurance (and interest payments if the car is financed).  At the end of the year, the business owner then calculates what percentage of those bills are business expenses.

This is directly tied to the kilometres driven for business purposes over the course of the year. To begin to calculate business kilometres driven, the total kilometres driven are required. This is calculated by subtracting the odometer reading at the beginning of the year from the year-end odometer reading.  Over the course of the year, it is essential to keep a logbook noting details of all business trips. After each business use of the car, the date, purpose of the trip, and number of kilometres driven should be noted. At the end of the year, adding the business kilometres in the logbook will provide the second half of the calculation.  Then, divide the total kilometres driven (derived from the odometer reading) by the business kilometres driven (from the logbook). This will provide the percentage of business use of the vehicle.

If the business is a GST registrant, this is the percentage of GST on vehicle bills that can be claimed for credit as well.  This percentage is then applied to all vehicle bills. This is the amount that can be claimed as a business expense. Traditionally, the motor vehicle expense doesn’t appear on the income statement until year-end, due to the fact that the allowable business use portion of expenses (km percentage) isn’t known until the year’s logbook is totalled.