Travels

Cost Of Living In Canada

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Canada flag city view

Universal public health care, an advanced social government, a reputation for compassion and a perfect environment for cyclists, skiers, fishermen, artists as well as urban residents. It is clear to see why so many people worldwide dreamed about moving to Canada.

One of the first steps is how much it will cost to move and what it will cost to live after you get there. It's also important to know how much it will cost to live in a major city in Canada. It is also important to understand how different or similar your finances in the northern country look, whether you are retiring, temporarily moving or move into Canada for good.

This guide will help you to learn about the costs of living in Canada so that you can stay in any of the six-time zones in the country.


Cost of Living in Canada


How Expensive is Canada Compared to Other Countries?

When it comes to finances, one of the first things you need to consider is the exchange rate. How much cash will be in Canadian dollars and how far it will go out from your country, but also what kind of fees you can pay to exchange your money. It is particularly important because, when you work frequently with currency exchanges, you still have earnings in your home currency.

Unfortunately, money exchange companies and banks tend to increase their exchange rates to increase their profits. They can keep the conversion costs down by gaining money on the rate. This sly approach can make you believe that you are getting a good rate, but actually, it's quite costly. When you convert your money, ensure that you test a true mid-market exchange rate converter.

Once you've been working with the currency exchange, you're going to have a bank account full of Canadian dollars, usually only referred to as dollars or "loonies" by locals.

In Canada, the most common form of denoting money is just with a dollar sign ($), it can also be written as Can$ or C$ to separate it from the other dollar-based currencies. It can also be written as CAD.

Compared to a few major currencies, the list below shows the approximate value of Canadian dollars at this current time:

  • £1000 equals $1705.71
  • $1,000 equals C$1324.94
  • €1000 equals $1460.64
Toronto night show

Comparing the Cost of Living

Toronto, Canada: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$1640 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$70 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at C$145 a month.

Montreal, Canada: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$1000 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$60 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at close to C$85 a month.

London, United Kingdom: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$2800 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$92 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at close to C$220 a month.

New York City, USA: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$3900 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$95 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at close to C$150 a month.

Berlin, Germany: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$1100 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$60 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at close to C$120 a month.

Sydney, Australia: A one-bedroom flat in the city will cost you around C$2700 a month, a meal for two will cost you around C$80 and public transport will vary depending on the service, but you are looking at close to C$160 a month.

Canada red mug held by woman

Which of the major cities in Canada is the most expensive?

The cost of cities across Canada can vary widely. The cities below list the top five most expensive cities in Canada to live in:

  1. Vancouver, British Columbia
  2. Toronto, Ontario
  3. Victoria, British Columbia
  4. Calgary, Alberta
  5. Hamilton-Burlington, Ontario

Salary Average in Canada

Keeping the cost of living in mind, the other key factor is how much you’ll make. Depending on where you choose to live in Canada, your salary can vary considerably as employers make up for their city's value. If however, you aren’t planning on keeping your job at home, the following stats will give you a rough idea of the salary you should expect in Montreal or Toronto.

Toronto

  • Cashier: $ 21,100
  • Copywriter: $ 35,200
  • Financial Analyst: $52,000
  • Graphic Designer: $38,000
  • Product Manager: $70,000
  • Receptionist: $24,000
  • Software Engineer: $58,000
  • Teacher: $40,000

Montreal

  • Cashier: $ 16,300
  • Copywriter: $ 33,500
  • Financial Analyst: $42,800
  • Graphic Designer: $33,800
  • Product Manager: $59,400
  • Receptionist: $22,500
  • Software Engineer: $52,100
  • Teacher: $37,900

Canadian troops marching

Cost of Housing and Accommodation

Regardless of where you move in the world, rent will always be one of the most important items of your budget, typically 35% to 50% of your monthly expenses. In three of Canada's biggest cities, the following figures detail rental prices (In Canadian Dollars)

Montreal:

  • Large Apartment: $1100
  • Medium Apartment: $860
  • Small Apartment: $640
  • Student Dorm Room: $550
  • Internet: $40

Toronto:

  • Large Apartment: $1700
  • Medium Apartment: $1400
  • Small Apartment: $1100
  • Student Dorm Room: $600
  • Internet: $40

Calgary

  • Large Apartment: $1400
  • Medium Apartment: $1100
  • Small Apartment: $900
  • Student Dorm Room: $460
  • Internet: $50

bike on a wall with maple leaf sign

Dental and Health Care in Canada

One of the main selling points for Canada is the free healthcare programme, meaning you won't be charged for appointments to doctors, dentists, ear checkups, the emergency room, or any other medical treatment.

Like most countries with this kind of healthcare, it is funded by the tax system of the country. To retain the no-cost programme, the average person spends about C$4,200 a year, while a family of four costs about C$11,800.

While taxes at that point may seem pretty high for foreigners, all in all, Canadians accept that it's not too much to pay for the fairly free healthcare system, as they can retain relatively good health.

surgeons in scrub suit in operating room

The Travel and Transportation Prices in Canada

Canadians tend to drive everywhere, much like their southern counterparts in the U.S. That said, biking's popularity to work is on the rise. In fact, some neighbourhoods in Halifax, Vancouver, and Quebec City are seeing 20 percent of travellers coming to work by bike, although this statistic drops significantly through the cold winter months.

It is also fairly common for people of major cities to use public transportation, buses and trains, while cars are king in the Canadian commute. Also noteworthy is the prevalence of air travel, as Canada is a large country, and cars and trains are not enough for longer trips, particularly from coast to coast.

  • Gasoline (1 litre / 0.25 gallon) $1.02
  • Monthly Bus/Transport Pass $91
  • Bus Ticket, Single Use $3.15
  • Taxi Tariff, 30 Minutes $16
  • Toyota Corolla, New $21,449
  • VW Golf, New $23,000

Air Canada airplanes at the airport

Cost of Education

Canadians like most other nations enjoy a free system of public schools for children up to 18 years of age. Prices in Canada are relatively low for higher education compared to U.S. schools, although they are somewhat less competitive than European countries where universities are often government-subsidized. The table below will give you an idea of the cost of education in Canada.

  • Preschool / Kindergarten: $12,204
  • Private school for lower grades: $16,000
  • University of Toronto tuition: $6,400 (residents)/ $44,020 (non-residents)
  • York University tuition: $7,312 (residents)/ $22,417 (non-residents)

Canada has always been regarded as a great place to live, and it can be very cheap for its relatively high quality of living, depending on where you choose to stay. In the major cities too, Canada appears to be more accessible, not to mention Tim Horton, hockey, and hills.

Canada school

How can eTA Canada Help?

You may apply on this website for your Canada Electronic Travel Authorization with our online form and an eTA is valid for five years. If the eTA and your passport remain valid, you may fly freely to Canada at any time. If you have any further questions regarding our services, or about Canada please take a look at our FAQ page or our blog.

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