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Busking in Calgary

Busking is an important part of our city’s identity, culture and spirit. Buskers add delight, interest and energy to an afternoon stroll.

Calgary's streets and parks provide an opportunity for buskers to showcase their art and for citizens to show their appreciation.

Read our busking guidelines to learn where you can busk and what the rules are. Subscribe to The City of Calgary busker e-mail updates to stay current on City policy, process changes, and important deadlines.

What is busking?

Busking involves a person or group who provides entertaining street performances for public enjoyment. A person who does this is called a “busker.”

A busker’s only income for a performance is the donations made by the crowds they entertain. Please, give generously if you have enjoyed a performance!

Many artists begin successful careers as street performers. Whether you are a musician, singer, dancer, juggler, mime, poet, magician, comedian or other entertainer, there are many locations throughout Calgary that welcome busking and encourage you to demonstrate your skills.

Becoming a busker

So you want to become a busker in Calgary? You will need to get a busking ID and follow our busking guidelines. There are two busking ID options:

  1. Standard Busker ID (Free) - Lets you busk in public locations such as City parks and streets. This ID does not include transit stations.
  2. Calgary Transit Busker ID ($25 and a Police Information Check) - Lets you busk in all locations including transit stations. You must follow additional Calgary Transit Busker ID guidelines.

Please note: Busking on Stephen Avenue requires a standard busker ID and a permit issued by the Calgary Downtown Association

Applying for a Busker ID

For both ID’s you will need to fill out our Busking Application Form and pay any applicable fees.

If you are applying for a Calgary Transit Busker ID, your application will be processed once we receive your application, payment, and Police Information Check. We will not accept Police Information Checks more than five years old.

We aim to process all ID’s within three business days of receipt. You can submit the form by emailing it to

Paying for a Transit Busker ID

You can pay for your Transit Busker ID online.

You can also purchase a Transit Busker ID in-person at the following locations:

Transit Busking IDs are non-refundable, so be sure to understand the rules and requirements before purchasing. For more information, please contact

When do I get my ID?

Once your ID has been processed, you will receive your busking ID via email.

You can check the status of your application by emailing

Promoting buskers

Are you one of Calgary’s many talented street performers? As part of our Busking Program we would love to showcase you.

Contact to express your interest in this great opportunity.

How to connect

Find out more about busking in Calgary by signing up for the busker email distribution list