The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

Apr 20 , 2022 · 8 min read

You are off to Banff to enjoy the great outdoors and are wondering about the most affordable way to get there. The bus is the cheapest way to get from Vancouver to Banff. But many factors need to be considered if you are going from Vancouver in British Columbia to Banff in the Alberta province next door.

As well as your travel budget, remember time, season and preferred travel style all come into play when traveling the 900 km that includes the mountain ranges of the Coast, Columbia and the Rocky Mountains.

Banff is a popular resort town inside Banff National Park. It is famous for beautiful scenery, excellent hiking, skiing, and other outdoor activities. Sitting at an altitude of 4,537 feet, it is the highest town in all of Canada. Less than an hour away is Lake Louise, and first-time visitors to the area should spend some time there. The most common ways to get to Banff from Vancouver are by plane, car, bus, or train. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each option so you can decide which ones sound best.

By Plane

The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

Flying from Vancouver to Banff is the easiest and fastest mode of travel. It will only take three hours and there are many excellent travel deals for flights and accommodation. After a 1.5 hour flight, you will land at Calgary International Airport (Banff doesn’t have an airport). Then you need to drive about 1.5 hours to reach Banff. Your options for the scenic drive include a shuttle bus, renting a car, taxi or maybe you are lucky enough to have a friend in the area who will pick you up.

There are frequent non-stop flights from Vancouver with the major airlines, Air Canada and WestJet flying economy or business class. You can book in advance and plan a trip for your work vacation or make a last-minute booking for a spontaneous weekend away.

Calgary International Airport is modern and has great shopping and services. It’s such a nice airport, just being in transit is like a mini-vacation. Of course, Vancouver International Airport is also very nice with all the facilities and comforts you would expect from an international airport. It’s easy, fast, safe and convenient to fly to Banff from Vancouver. Keep your eye out for the best flight deals and get ready for a great vacation. 

By Car

The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

If you have your own vehicle or a rental car, you can drive from Vancouver to Banff. The road trip will take about 9.5 hours if you drive directly there without too many stops. It’s a great way to see spectacular landscapes and have a little adventure.

If you take the Trans-Canada Highway 1, you can get to Banff from Vancouver in about 10 hours. You will go through Vancouver, Hope, Kamloops, Revelstoke, Golden and Banff. These main towns are great for sightseeing when you need a break from driving and also have great accommodation options. If you are not limited by time, you can take the opportunity to spend time in the places that take your fancy.

You can also find smaller towns you may never have heard of that can be fun to stop at. There are other routes to take, but this is the most direct and popular one. It’s a pleasure to drive in most seasons, except perhaps winter when roads can get slippery and dangerous. You will also need tire chains on some roads between October and March. Driving in winter isn’t recommended with the added risk of black ice, storms, and even avalanches.

By Train

The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

If you have the luxury of time on your side and fancy a leisurely train ride, it will take you a couple of days to get from Vancouver to Banff. But it’s the most expensive option as the experience is as exciting as the destination. Enjoy Instagram-worthy scenes, excellent food and drink and being rocked to sleep in your comfortable cabin during a train trip to remember. Some train companies have longer trips to Banff, with the quickest being two days.

There is something so charming and romantic about a long train trip. If you are on a budget this time, you might want to consider traveling by train another time you go to Banff. It is such a wonderful destination that is so different every season, and most people go back many times.

By Bus

The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

The cheapest way to get to Banff from Vancouver is by bus. The long 13.5 hour-long bus ride isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, but it sure is affordable compared with other options. The bus is a great choice for travelers on a budget and with plenty of time.

Most services stop to pick up passengers every hour or so, but only briefly, so there isn’t time for shopping or sightseeing. It also isn’t easy to sleep on a bus that is constantly stopping and starting. But eventually, you will arrive right in Banff, happy to be at your destination and off the bus. (You might need to factor in a massage to your travel costs if taking the bus trip.)

The advantage over flying is you arrive in downtown Banff without adding another leg of the trip to get to Banff. Your accommodation might have a pick-up service, or you might need to take a taxi to wherever you are staying. Since the downtown area of Banff isn’t massive, it won’t take long to reach your final destination.

If you are going to Banff in winter, flying is one of the fastest and safest ways to get there. If you want to see the gorgeous landscapes and have time then a bus, train or car would be appealing. You could always combine your travel options by catching a flight there and taking the bus back, for example. This can be a great way to see the countryside and have an affordable trip. It’s a long and beautiful journey to one of the most popular destinations in Canada, so it makes sense to travel in a way you can enjoy it all.

When To Visit Banff

The Cheapest Way To Get To Banff From Vancouver

One of the best times to visit Banff is during winter as Banff is a wonderful snow sport and activity destination. Skiers and snowboarders flock to Banff, hitting the ski fields during the day, staying in luxury resorts and enjoying the natural surroundings.

Banff Sunshine Village, Lake Louise Ski Resort and Mt Norquay are the main resorts and you can buy lift passes at each one or buy a special pass to hop between them. If you have any energy during your busy day, the nightlife in Banff is excellent. Bars with live entertainment, pubs with roaring fires and nightclubs with world-class DJs are all popular in Banff.

If you prefer a quieter evening, the food scene is great, with many downtown restaurants to choose from. The local area has great quality produce, so you will be eating fresh and healthy meals prepared by some of Canada’s finest chefs. You can also find local delicacies like elk and bison on many menus, paired with the best wines from the region and afar.  Summer, spring and autumn are also great seasons to visit Banff with great hiking and other outdoor activities like canoeing, swimming, golf and fishing. 

Soaking in the warm waters at the Banff Upper Hot Springs is lovely any time of the year. Dating back to 1883, the hot pool is outside with epic views of the valley to Mount Rundle to enjoy as you bathe in the mineral-rich warm waters. Many people go to the hot springs because they believe the water has healing properties.

A National Parks Pass is ideal if you are visiting Banff several times a year during different seasons. A ride on the Banff gondola is another activity you can do any time of the year. As you ascend to the peak of Sulphur Mountain, witness amazing views, where an observation deck is a perfect spot for some photos. Enjoy a meal at the top-of-the-world restaurant, wander the boardwalk and visit the Sulphur Mountain Cosmic Ray Station before heading back down on the 8-minute gondola ride.

Visit the Trip Support website to find out more about Trip Support flights, or call our travel experts on #1-855-606-0606 for more information. They are always ready to help our clients plan their next epic vacation.

The face of travel is changing rapidly. We are proudly leading the industry with an innovative and flexible Book Now, Pay Later option.

You can buy the air ticket and vacation packages by putting down a small deposit to secure the services and pay the balance in installments. Flexibility and savings are just some of the benefits of flying with Trip Support.

We don’t check credit scores so this payment Book Now, Pay Later method is available to everyone. You can book now and pay later in installments. There is no credit check with this fantastic pay later option.

You can book now and pay later and go to Banff in Canada with Trip Support. Get your pay later flight to Banff or Vancouver by Trip Support today!



The face of travel is changing rapidly. We are proudly leading the industry with an innovative and flexible Book Now, Pay Later option.

You can buy the air ticket and vacation packages by putting down a small deposit to secure the services and pay the balance in installments. Flexibility and savings are just some of the benefits of flying with Trip Support.

You can book now and pay later and go to Honolulu in Hawaii with Trips Support. Get your pay later flight to Hawaii by Trip Support today!

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