Man pushing luggage while wearing a face covering

Safe Travel Tips: 5 Things UP Express Riders Need to Know

Published: July 30, 2021

Updated: June 11, 2022

You’re finally ready to start an adventure where the destination isn’t your dining room or office. Congrats! Even if you’re a seasoned traveller, flying during a pandemic can be stressful. Whether you’re flying international or domestic as a business traveller, a parent, or a first-time flyer through Pearson Airport, this comprehensive travel checklist of safety tips will make your next trip a breeze. You’ll also learn about what UP has been doing to be ready for you.

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1. Keep it Clean and Pack a Mask

Pack a travel safety kit that includes multi-purpose safety and hygiene essentials.

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Masks are optional but welcome on board UP Express and in our stations, however, masks are still required inside Pearson International Airport. Remember to pack masks for your trip as regulations may be different depending on your destination.

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Remember to maintain good hand hygiene when at home, work and when travelling. If washing your hands isn’t possible, it’s essential to use hand sanitizer throughout your journey. We recommend keeping some travel hand sanitizer in each bag you carry. You are permitted to carry one bottle of liquid hand sanitizer containing up to 355 ml in your carry-on luggage according to CATSA (Canadian Air Transport Security Authority).

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Safety is a top priority on UP Express, which is why you’ll find hand sanitizing stations on trains, platforms and in stations. You’ll also see free CleanSlate UV machines at UP Express Union Station and Pearson Station. These machines will kill up to 99.9% of germs and effectively sanitize your electronic gadgets such as smartphone, tablet, and other non-porous items such as your pen, keys, and your PRESTO card!

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At UP Express, safety never stops, which is why 40+ measures have been put in place to keep you safe during every step of your journey. That includes working diligently to ensure that stations and trains uphold the highest in cleanliness and hygiene standards. You may see UP Express staff cleaning during your journey. To put your mind at ease, and to increase your level of safety, you can also consider using alcohol-based wipes that are at least 70 per cent alcohol to disinfect surfaces you are prone to touch along your journey.

2. Make it comfortable

Pro travel tip: no matter how long or short, a journey is better when you’ve made plans to accommodate your comfort.

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Remember when you’d get on a flight and you’d be greeted with a travel pillow and blanket? Those days are gone. Most airlines have adjusted their in-flight amenities as to reduce touching of elements on board. The smart thing to do is to bring your own to be on the safe side. Make sure to add a travel pillow, sleep mask and blanket to your air travel checklist. Planning to sleep? Bring a good pair of earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones.

Speaking of travel necessities – you can get an UP Express branded travel pillow and other travel gear for your safe travels at The Metrolinx Shop.

When it comes to any travel outfit, layering is key. Soft, breathable clothing will help you feel more relaxed and comfortable. We’ve all been there – you get on a plane and it’s either too hot or too cold. It’s always nice to have options.

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Good shoes are an important part of every long-term travel checklist. Travel shoes should cover the three Cs: comfortable, convenient, and cute. Slip-on shoes are usually your best bet, especially since you’ll need to take off your shoes at TFSA checkpoints, and they have the added bonus of being a versatile shoe to wear when you reach your destination.

Always bring some entertainment, you won’t regret it. A book or electronic reader, pre-loaded music on your smartphone, movies on your tablet or laptop or games. Whatever works to help you kill a few hours on your flight. To make your journey a little easier, there are chargers available in UP Express stations and power outlets on the trains.

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If you’re a new parent, bring along some toys that will keep your little one entertained as part of your baby travel back checklist. This can include a special book, a magnetic game, or finger puppets. You can also download music or audiobooks before you take flight on the free Wi-Fi on UP Express, which is available in stations and on board.

Also, remember to bring laptop and phone chargers, as well as travel adapters, plugs and power converters – they’re an important part of every work travel checklist.

3. Give yourself more time.

Expected the unexpected, always plan ahead and give yourself plenty of extra time before any flight.

Getting to and from the airport takes time. UP Express moves you from downtown Toronto to Pearson Airport in 25 minutes, with trains running every 15-30 minutes seven days a week. Always check your schedule before heading to an UP Express station. You can also use a self-service option to purchase a ticket online to provide a contact-free experience. Speaking of contactless experiences, you can use your credit card, mobile wallet or PRESTO card to pay for your fare on UP Express.

Check both your departure city and your destination. If you’re flying out of Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, some renovations have been made, and it’s important to get there early to get the lay of the land.

Image of person wearing face mask and shield

Allot for time you’ll need to get through security lines and pre-boarding screening. Pearson International Airport has amplified their safety protocols to ensure the health and safety of travellers and their employees, which will add to the time you’ll need before getting on your flight.

4. Bring all the right documents.

Having the right documents with you when travelling is important for a stress-free experience. Make sure to keep these as part of your permanent before you travel checklist.

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When you are traveling, especially internationally, you need to pay attention to every detail. Make sure to always have your Driver’s License, Passport and Travel Visa with you, and add these items to your permanent international travel checklist.

COVID-19 has drastically changed the way we all travel. A common requirement for entry into a new destination is proof of a negative COVID-19 test within a certain timeframe. It’s important to check Canada government regulations, as well as your destination country to ensure you have all the required documentation for entry and departure. Invest on the right travel insurance coverage as well to make sure you have emergency medical and trip- interruption coverage for your travel.

Whether you have only one reservation or several, you’ll want to keep copies of your itinerary in your travel luggage. Make sure to keep physical or electronic copies of confirmation receipts for lodging, train, bus and car rentals, as well as any event tickets you may have. If you’re taking UP Express, make sure to have a printed or electronic version of your e-ticket confirmation on hand, and remember to activate your e-ticket prior to boarding an UP Express train.

5. Do your research.

Travel requires research and it’s important to look into many factors including the weather, local cuisines, currency, banks and ATMs, and attractions.
Doing your research is an important part for every pre-travel checklist. Always check the latest health news. Canada’s travel and tourism website leverages insights from public health organizations so you’ll be in-the-know about current developments.

Make sure that you know the laws of the country or region you’re travelling in, and make sure to check what’s open. Many businesses, services and attractions have reopened while others remain closed. Have a plan in place for all the elements of your trip to avoid scrambling and getting stressed out on your trip.

Check out this full list of safety measures UP Express has put in place to keep you safe. We hope that we’ve given you some tips that will become a part of your long-term travel checklist. If you want to learn more about UP Express, visit their website or check out UP Express on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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