We are here in Montreal on vacation. Canada is, of course, a major producer of gold, and I was curious to see if fractional ounce gold coins are easier to get here than in the USA. My limited experience so far is yes, maybe a little easier.
I went to the following paces to inquire:
-- 4 foreign exchange shops
-- Kitco (more comments below)
-- Scotia bank
-- a coin dealer
Two of the four exchange places sold gold, you could see what they had on offer behind the bulletproof glass. Both sold 1/4 oz Maple Leafs, only one sold 1/10 oz. The shop that did not sell 1/10s did sell small bars (10 gram) from different suppliers.
Here are three Maples I bought, with our keys to our room for scale:
They are two 1/4 oz Maples (1997 and 2013, they changed the picture of the Queen) and a 1/10 oz in the plastic holder. Prices: $400 for the 1/4 oz pieces and $160 for the 1/10 (both prices in Canadian dollars). Compare recent price for 1/10 Eagles in the USA: $185 (OK, the price of gold was perhaps $20 higher, so $2.00 for the higher US price), so buying fractionals in Canada is worth it...
Kitco (the famous supplier of precious metals prices online that many gold sellers use) has their headquarters here in Montreal: 620 Cathcart St., Suite 900 in the heart of the city.
I went to take a look, they only had offices with a small display of PMs. One was a 10 oz bar of gold, there was also a 100 oz silver bar that was recovered from the World Trade Center after 9/11. They only sold 1 oz Maple Leafs, no fractionals. The rest of Kitco was normal looking offices that I was not invited to see. Not very friendly, but I did not call ahead for an appointment either.
Kitco referred me to Scotia Bank for fractionals, I had earlier seen Scotia mentioned somewhere as a place to buy gold. They said, yes they could sell it, but I had to wait a week or two...
Finally, I saw a coin shop while walking around. Most of his business (like in the USA) was for numismatic pieces. He only sold 1 oz Maples, no fractionals. He DID say that fractionals are getting hard to get now, which is my experience in the USA.
So my best judgement, at least for the moment, is that small gold bullion coins are a bit easier to get in Canada. Just in case you wanted to know.
Montreal is a nice place to visit! Fortunately for me (as my French is pretty bad), almost everyone, who deals with tourists anyway, speaks English as well.
Coffee is big here! We had a chance to try coffee from three chains so far, here are our preliminary reviews:
-- Tim Horton's (their biggest chain): coffee is good, snacks not so much
-- Cafe Presse: stronger coffee, they let you read newspapers there...
-- The Second Cup: three "strengths" of coffee, my wife liked their capuccino