#PSEWeb Conference in Montreal: Tips, Apps and Useful Links from a Local

July 21st, 2015 Karine Joly 9 Comments

Did I mention how excited I am to attend and present at next week one of the best higher ed conferences for digital pros, PSEWeb?

I know I did last week, but I’m SO excited – so please forgive me if you are not going to attend (just skip this post, the next one in the queue is NOT going to be about PSEWeb, pinky promise as my 6-year old often says).

PSEWeb takes place in my backyard this year

If you’re still reading, it’s safe to assume you are getting ready for PSEWeb and I’m going to see you next week in Montreal. Definitely come and say “hi” if you see me at the conference: I would love to meet you!

Since the conference takes place in my backyard this year, I thought I would share a few tips to help you pack and get your phone ready for the conference.

Driving to PSEWeb?

Are you sure?
Just kidding or am I?

You should know about the current festival taking place in Montreal: “Roadwork Festival.”

Ville de Montréal   Info travaux   Travaux en cours

Nice pic, right?

Don’t despair though as the timing is not THAT bad for drivers because of “Construction Holidays.”
Although the 2-week mandatory vacations for construction workers usually doesn’t apply to work on the road, the traffic won’t be as bad as it can be in the city.

Anyway, make sure you update your GPS or use a good app (Waze can help) before making your way to Montreal.

UPDATE: the conference organizers have posted useful Google Map directions for you.

You can also get a preview of possible issues on the road in the city on:
Transports Quebec web page about road conditions in Montreal
Montreal interactive map of roadwork (picture above)

And, if you want to roam around with your car in the city, download this mobile app from Montreal Parking Service. It will let you pay for parking from your phone among other useful things.

Flying to Montreal?

Once you land at YUL, you’ll need to get a cab (about $40 plus tip) or catch the 747 express bus to downtown running 24/7.

Montreal has a great public transportation system (well, maybe not as cool as Vancouver where you can ride the electric train between the airport and downtown, but it’s pretty neat).

And, the STM (Montreal Transports Service) has a really cool mobile app and website that will help you with your itinerary and schedule.

You can buy a 3-day pass at the airport fare vending machines to ride the 747 bus and the rest of the transportation network in the city for $18.

Oh, and if you bring your kids 11 or younger with you, up to 5 can ride for free with your pass during summer – I’m not sure though if the “kid” offer applies to the 747, but you can buy a different fare just for it.

2 Other Useful Apps

Let’s assume that you have already downloaded the PSEWeb app by GuideBook.

bixiMontreal has also a great bike sharing network, BIXI. I’m a big fan – and actually hold a season membership – because the Bixis are a great way to go around in the city while getting some exercise in the process. Moreover, they play very well with the subway as you will often find BIXI stations close to the Metro.

Budget wise, it will cost you $12 for 3 days as long as your bike ride doesn’t exceed 30 minutes – which is perfect if you want to roam around the city. You can also pay $5 for 1 day of similar use or $2.75 per a single ride.

You can download BIXI app and check out their website if you want to learn more about it. The app is really neat because it gives you real-time availability at stations and there is actually a station steps away from the McGill New Residence where PSEWeb takes place (although you should know that it is a bit on a hill) as well as a few in the Old Port where Monday night social will be held.

Last but not least, Montreal has some great foodtrucks and there’s also an app to spot them in the city: FoodTrucks (Android and iPhone).

If you’re looking for other suggestions for food, you can also check these suggestions.

And, if you want to eat some great goodies (croissants, cakes, breads, etc.), Premiere Moisson, is also a safe bet.

What to bring — besides your phone?

I have no clue how the weather is going to be, but it’s raining today (Don’t worry though as yesterday was a gorgeous beautiful day – it’s been alternating since the beginning of the summer). With the subway you should be fine, but maybe a small umbrella could be useful. Check the weather forecast.

Don’t forget to bring comfortable shoes to explore the city. It is truly beautiful.

Oh, and if the weather is nice, there are several place where you can swim (Aquatic Complex, Jean Dore Beach, several public pools and many opportunities to do water sports (SUP, surf, kayak, etc.).

So, this is NOT the ultimate guide to Montreal in the summer, but this should get you started.
Can’t wait to meet you all next week.

Now I’ll get back to work on my Tuesday keynote for the conference.

9 Responses

Got a question or comment?