British Columbia is wild and beautiful and people are usually way relaxed. I travelled a little less than one month around the province, would be great if someone living in BC could improve upon this start. : ) --Gnyrfta (talk) 18:43, 21 June 2018 (CEST)
Hostels are cheaper and more readily available in Vancouver Island than in Vancouver. The cheapest hostels in Victoria (HiHostel for example) are around 30$ per night. For Vancouver, if you have not booked ahead of time, the cheapest hostels are around 50$ per night or more.
I was told from a local in Victoria that it is legal to camp in Beacon Hill park if you took down your tent in the morning (maybe 11-7 or something like that). I was also warned that there had been one or two people killed around the park area in the past months. In the park there are signs forbidding camping. I slept there one night and it was fine. There are many homeless people in both Vancouver and Victoria and many people sleep at shop entrances.
Backcountry camping along the Juan de Fuca trail is 10$ per night, which was for unsupervised campgrounds with bearproof food storage facility and restrooms. I believe that camping on Crown Land, if no special rules apply, is free. A lot of Canadian land is Crownland. However, getting to Crownland without a car is not always easy and it is important to remember that there are many bears in Vancouver and that wild camping (especially on your own) requires a higher degree of preparation and care than what is common for example in most of Europe. [[<-Link to BC-parks info about bears and cougars]] Another difference from Europe is that the possibility of getting lost if you go off trail can be larger and more dangerous, since there are large expanses of wilderness with very little people and the vegetation can be very dense. Also, in the wilderness it is not at all certain you will have coverage on your phone. Take the time to be prepared and to talk to locals about the conditions in the area where you are considering camping.
By the foot of Grouse mountain there is part of the parking lot that is under reconstruction because of possibility of falling rocks from above. If you want to risk this it was possible to camp on a bluff above this lot (june 2018) without being seen from below, but not certain of the legality.
Links for more information on free camping: 
Free camping on the Gulf Islands: 
The Vancouver area has a public transport system where you buy a card called a compass card and fill it up with money. A trip in only one zone costs about 2.50. If you have 2.40 you can still enter the transportation system - when you exit ('tap out') your card will have -0.10 and the next time you fill upp your card you pay 10.10$ to have a balance of 10$, so you kind of borrow from your future self. The system is operated by Translink: 
Vancouver Island has buses where you only can pay with cash. They cannot always give change, so exact fare is good. The fare is usually about 2.50$. Most buses are operated by BC Transit: .