Travelled to 14 countries / regions

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Toronto native and fly very often for work



Americas > Canada > Toronto > Pearson International Airport (YYZ) > Useful Info
Submitted on Jul 16, 2018 Useful Info

What you should know if you have a connection at the Toronto Pearson airport

  • Pearson is a decent airport, and it's gotten a lot better for layover passenger in recent years with some upgrades to the facilities
  • Logistically, there will be a lot of signages everywhere to tell you where to go
  • One thing I found confusing about Toronto is that there is no terminal 2. Only terminal 1 and 3
  • Terminal 1 is all the Star Alliance airlines, predominantly Air Canada. Terminal 3 is all other (i.e. non-Star Alliance) airlines. Here's the list on the Pearson official website
  • There's a train that connects terminal 1 and terminal 3. It'll probably take about 15-20 minutes to get from one to the other door-to-door (the train itself is less than 5 minutes)
  • Connection time: it'll take 1-1.5 hours to connect through Pearson. The longest being if you're going to the US because of the amount of people going there and the pre-clearance operations (pre-clearance means that you clear US customs in Toronto, rather than in the US). Air Canada has this nice chart that shows the minimum connection time through various airports in Canada, including Pearson
  • Wifi is free and unlimited. When you're in the terminal, just connect to the network named "Toronto Pearson Wi-Fi", and you'll see a popup where you just need to click on Accept the Terms and Conditions
  • In this popup, you don't need to provide your email address. There will be a field asking for your email address but that's an optional field to sign up to newsletters from American Express, who's the sponsor and it'll look like you need to put it in but you really don't
  • The speed is decent. You won't be able to torrent but it's fast enough for YouTube
  • Luggage:
  • You need to pick up and recheck your checked luggages in Toronto if you're connecting to a Canadian destination from an international city (including the US), as you'll be going through the Canadian customs in Toronto
  • There are some exceptions to this. If you're flying with Air Canada, and coming in from EU, Switzerland, or Iceland, then your luggages will be sent automatically to your final destination and you don't need to pick them up in Toronto. See this exception on Air Canada website
  • Always confirm this with your airline. Aside from Air Canada, there are a number of other airlines for which you don't need to pick up your luggage if you're connecting to another Canadian city, I just can't remember what they are
  • If your final destination is not in Canada, then you don't need to pick up your luggages in Toronto
  • Lounges:
  • Most of the lounges at Pearson are airline lounges, which are only accessible to elite flyers of those airlines
  • But anyone can pay for access to Plaza Premium, which is an international chain that operates a lounge in each of the departure areas in both terminal 1 and 3. Here's the list for Pearson. The fees to access these lounges range from CAD$50 for 2 hours - $80 for 6 hours. These lounges are honestly pretty decent, they have shower facilities in here that you can use
  • Unless you have NEXUS, you need to fill out the Canadian customs form. Your airline should give it to you on the flight, but if you forget to fill it out on the flight don't worry there are paper copies you can fill out at the customs hall. Just make sure you bring a pen with you