This year, it's happening on Monday, May 22, and honestly, it looks like it's going to be a whole bunch of fun. I know the May weather in Montreal hasn't been too impressive lately (it was legit snowing a few weeks ago, guys), but the leaves are budding, the flowers are sprouting, the grass is green, and the sun looks like it's here to stay.
Which, all in all, will make for one seriously fun national day off. And probably a well-needed day off, if we're all being honest with each other.
Victoria Day also happens to be the unofficial start of the summer season in Montreal (at least to me, anyway), which means there's an extra reason to celebrate!
If you're wondering what exactly there is to do this long weekend, don't worry. There are tons of things going on this weekend this Saturday, Sunday, and even Monday, for all kinds of price points.
Keep in mind, all of the following activities are super fun! Some are free and cheap, too, though; and others might cost a little more, but are well worth doing now that you have the time.
Montrealers clearly love BIXI bikes, as illustrated by the company's record-breaking statistics for the 2021 season, which has just come to an end. If you have any doubts about that love, just take a look at the 5.8 million trips taken over the year.
Alexandre Taillefer, chairman of the board of directors of BIXI Montreal, called the company's historic figures "a testament to the ever-growing importance of the bike-sharing service, particularly the popularity of the growing number of stations and electrically-assisted bicycles."
BIXI says it had a record number of new riders in 2021, as well as a record number of people who signed up for memberships for the first time, "with a 70% increase over last year."
"As for the total number of trips, it has increased by 74% since last year, to 5.8 million, which is one of the best years since the birth of BIXI," a release from the company says.
Thanks to promotions and an early start date, BIXI was able to eclipse its previous records by a large margin. BIXI, in fact, says the 2021 season was the "longest season ever."
With the end of the season and bike stations coming down throughout Montreal over the next few days, BIXI is poised for even more success after the winter. The mayor, for instance, has promised to promote the service by adding thousands of new electric bikes to its fleet and will add even more stations around the city.
"While the majority of customers used to frequently use the service to commute to work or downtown, more and more people are now discovering the benefits of riding a standard or electric BIXI to shop, rediscover their neighbourhood or simply for fun," added Christian Vermette, director general of BIXI Montreal, in the release.
"This is just the beginning as we promise to continue to innovate in order to maintain our status as a leader in the bike-sharing industry."
As summer winds down, so does the BIXI Montréal season. If you've been relying on the bike-sharing system to get around over the past five months, you may be wondering when you'll have to start using other modes of transit. Remember waiting for busses? Ugh.
The answer is November 15, which is when the BIXI season ends. Bixi says the bikes are taken off the network that day, and moved into storage in a warehouse in Rosemont-La Petite Patrie so they can "spend the winter warm inside."