A few days into the Olympics and I’ve come to realize what you need when you are getting around town to multiple events. Yesterday I put together a list while I was sitting inside Canada Hockey Place, after waiting 45 minutes to get through their security. Here are my top things to remember when you’re an Olympic spectator.
Wear comfortable shoes
Without cars and with transit re-routed due to street closures, walking is your best option around this city. I walk from the West End to the BCIMC at Robson Square, to Olympic venues and hospitality houses. Warm socks and running shoes have prevented my feet from being rubbed down to a nub. Wear shoes with support and some that can get wet as these are being dubbed “The Rain Games”.
Carry as little as possible
Heading through security at the Olympic venue yesterday there were families with backpacks full of picnic food that of course, they weren’t allowed to bring in. Some tossed items away while I saw at least half a dozen people polishing off apples near the security tent before being let through. Your bags will be searched, your pockets will be emptied. Try to carry as little as possible and only the essentials if you’re going to any live celebration site or venue with security.
Carry transit fare
I have been walking everywhere but the SkyTrain and Canada Lines have been saviors in hurried times. They’re probably your best bet for distance travel right now so be sure to carry at least $2.50 to board. If you have an Olympic ticket for an event, you may ride transit for free on the day of your event.
Show your colours
Whether you support Team Ukraine or Team Canada, wear your nation’s colours on your sleeve – literally. You can hit up the official Olympic Superstore at HBC or visit Roots & Lululemon for unofficial and international merchandise. One thing I must note though is that my husband’s been getting sour looks for wearing Team USA gear. We’re very welcoming of every nation yet his Team USA gear always brings attitude out in people (moreso locals). Lets make sure to have the right attitude as we are welcoming the world, even our brothers to the South.
Get a cowbell. Ring it. Go Canada. Repeat.
Thank the blue jacket volunteers
Thousands of those blue jacket Olympic volunteers are out there showing you the way, getting you into your event, and wrangling the massive crowds to make sure everyone’s on the right track. They’re kind, they’re local, they’re not being paid but they’re here to help. If you get the chance, thank a blue jacket volunteer today.
Leave lots of time
Since there are crowds of thousands meandering through the streets of Vancouver make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get where you need to go. Allow at least an extra hour in travel time whatever your destination may be.
Those are just a few of my tips for spectators and Olympic visitors in Vancouver right now. If you have any of your own, please feel free to leave them in the comment section.