Canada Postal Codes (Searchable)

Strephon_Alkhalikoi's picture

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Last updated 12/09/2010

Raw file: Canada_FSA_Searchable.csv (387.34 KB)

Includes 7660 locations in the following areas:

  • United States: ID, ME, WA
  • Canada: AB, BC, MB, NB, NL, NS, NT, NU, ON, PE, QC, SK, YT
  • some may be in: MI, MN, MT, NH, NY, OH, VT (near a border)

1 location(s) outside USA/Canada

This is the Canada-centric version of H Hannah's zipcode POI. Like his file it is searchable, and searches are conducted in the same manner as with his file. However, Canada postal codes, unlike zip codes, are broken down into two parts.

The first part is the Forward Sortation Area, or FSA. The Forward Sortation Area is a geographical region in which all postal codes start with the same three characters. The FSAs are similar to the US zip code, but larger. This POI file concerns itself solely with the FSAs and ignores the second part of the postal code, the Local Delivery Unit (LDU). A LDU denotes a specific single address or range of addresses within a FSA.

The reasons that LDUs are ignored in this file are twofold.

1. The intent was to be able to search for specific cities and towns by entering the FSA part of the postal code. There have been occasions where I could not use the GPS to simulate a drive to a specific Canadian city because the GPS required the postal code, which I did not know.

2. If the LDUs were not removed, the resulting file would easily be the largest POI file on the site (over 760,000 entries, 58MB in size). I have considered posting the full file to POI Factory for that one person who may want it. But I'm not sure any GPS can handle a file of such size.

Entering a specific FSA will provide the postal abbreviation, city, and province. For example, entering A0H into the GPS will return "NL - McCallum, Newfoundland and Labrador". However, this POI file is not designed nor intended for use in finding the actual location of a city. Since many towns use the same FSA, using the file to navigate to a specific city or town will not work.

There is an Easter Egg in the file. See if you can find it.