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Old 26th Feb 2013, 11:51   #1
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Living in Canada

I was wondering how many of you guys live in Canada?
I'm planning to move to Canada before I die, so wanted to hear from you where would be a good/best place to move to
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 12:36   #2
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Originally Posted by phinix View Post
I was wondering how many of you guys live in Canada?
I'm planning to move to Canada before I die, so wanted to hear from you where would be a good/best place to move to
It's a very hard place to move to - I used to know someone who was in the process of trying to emigrate there and the process takes up to about 5 years! And that's only if they want you, they don't want that many people. I think you need to have a trade to make your application easier. I have never looked into it properly this is just stuff I picked up off him! It's a cool place though, I'd love to move there and ride my bikes around.

Malvolio who post's alot in the bike thread lives there, and he posts lots of absolutely spectacular pictures. I'm sure he will be along soon enough though.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 15:32   #3
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The nice thing about Canada is that it is massive and not too densely populated. The bad thing about Canada is that it is massive and not very densely populated. Swings and roundabouts abound.

Your question of the "best" place to migrate to is flawed as you never gave any idea of your personal tastes or interests, nor what your preferred living style is. So whilst I could recommend Alberta for it's impressive scenery and generally friendly people, you may not take to the constant winds or snowy conditions for several months of the year. Thus I turn the question back on you: what are you looking for in Canada that is not currently served by where you are living? What is it that you hope to gain? Do you have any requirements or needs to be served by your community? Is public infrastructure something you're looking for in a large city, or are you the type that needs a small community set against a lonely backdrop of desolate prairie stretching off to the horizon?

Answer these questions and myself as well as others can give you a much better idea of what Canada is like and how it would be for you.

Insofar as immigration goes, it can be difficult and will cost quite rather a lot. I've known a few people that have come this way from afar, and those that have done so recently never have anything positive to say about the process with many claiming of quite insane prices during the process of naturalization. But with how many people do come over I cannot imagine it too difficult really, and I do know that the process is made all the easier if you can find yourself a job placement beforehand (occasionally an employer will actually pay for your immigration costs - which I have seen several times before). This is a route I would suggest if you are skilled in a trade or well educated.

At any rate feel free to come up with more specific questions and I'll do my best to answer them, as I'm sure others will as well.

Lovely place Canada, but it's just a place - same as any other.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 15:34   #4
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Wait what? We don't want that many people ? You've never been in Montreal or Vancouver to say this. Half of Vancouver is Chinese and about a third of montrealers are foreigners.

The process to become Canadian may take a while but there is no way that it is difficult to come and live here, especially if you can actually do something useful as a job.


As for the beautiful scenery well... It depends where you live. If you live near a big city, you'll need to drive for a little while before you get to an isolated place. If you want to live somewhere isolated, be ready to be hum.... isolated. This country is bigger than you could possibly imagine so there isn't much outside of big metropolitan areas and those are all right next to the USA border, which means no scenery there. The only exception is Vancouver, which is the most beautiful place I have ever seen. It's closer to the USA and its a very big city in itself but it's also close to an infinity of absolutely astonishing scenery. Cons? Stupidly expensive to live at

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Old 26th Feb 2013, 15:38   #5
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I am from Canada.
I don't know how it is to immigrate here, assuming you have the requirements, and under the age of 50, I heard that its fairly easy. Of course it's easier if you have a job here already. As you tell the government you won't be on welfare (government paying you meanwhile you find a job), or if you have funds to start your own business (banks won't give you a loan.. keep that in mind), and of course, if you have both, then that's even better.

Assuming you are accepted immigrant, simply staying in Canada for 3 years (well after you complete the necessary forms and such) will make you a Canadian citizen.

But , again I am really no expert on this, best to get all that information in great details, before you come in Canada. See if you can talk to a CERTIFIED Canadian immigrants. I THINK you can have a double chance with Quebec, as Quebec wants to be special, as they want all their service to be available in both French and English (which is what all governmental services of Canada offers.... its Quebec, don't try and think about it, your head will explode), but I am not sure the detail about that. Just something to look into.

If you come to Quebec, though, you must learn French. Like it will be a requirement when you come, and also all jobs requires you that you speak both languages (it's not a law, but anything with customer relationship, it's a must. Montreal, the area that speak the most English in Quebec, everyone is bi-language.. but many prefer French as their English isn't great. Why? Because the Quebec government forces kids, where their parents didn't attend elementary and high school in French, to apply to a French school.

Ok, let's put aside immigration and all that. I trust you did or will do all your needed research, and consult with a certified immigration person and even call the government to know all the detail and your chances to immigrate here.

Canada is a very fast place, so you have all different scenes you can go to. If you want a New-York style, then you can't go wrong with Toronto. It's pack with people, and living there is expensive... not New York expensive but still is expensive. If you want quietness, and be close to nature (although subject to a lot of tourists during certain period of the year), you have the town of Banff in Alberta, which is in the Banff National Park. So if you like nature, then this is pretty nice place.
You also have Montreal in Quebec. This city is fairly unique. It has a lot of history as it's own of the early cities founded once the settlement came here. It is said that it has this Paris look to it, and the down is very young, due to the the great number of high reputable universities all in or close to downtown. Ignoring surrounding schools, because they are, you have: McGill University (English), Concordia University (English), Universite de Montreal (French - minutes away from downtown), and University de Quebec a Montreal (UQAM) (French), Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal (French minute away from downtown).
McGill is the oldest university in Montreal with the highest reputation, Concordia is the largest university in Montreal with 2 campuses.

If you really want to live in an "classical old time" environment, then you have Quebec City, in Quebec. But you need to know French.

If you want quietness environment, but still in a big city, you have Ottawa in Ontario. The capital city of Canada.

And they are a lot and I mean a lot more.

As I live in Montreal here is what I can tell you about it:
-> It's nice place to live
-> It is a bit on the expensive side, rent or buying or food is not cheap.
-> Due to the lack of any competition what's so ever in teh Supermarkets, food prices are expensive.
-> Taxes.... and I mean TAXES! Government will take about 50% of your salary in taxes, and you have 5% federal taxes (Canada), and you have naturally provincial taxes, which in Quebec are ~9% calculated after the 5% federal tax So that makes it 9.975% from the sales tax just for Quebec.
-> Schools and Universities are dirt cheap
-> Internet, you have small companies, but the 2 big players: Bell (DSL), and Videotron (cable), are you main ISP. Bell is cheap, but you get crap in every single way, with possibly broken DNS server, depending where you live. And Videotron, while pricey, gets you a pretty good solid service. Despite what theory books says, cable, in Montreal is much faster and reliable than DSL. Bell promotes it "Fibe" plan.. this is not FIBER. Notice the 'R' missing. It's DSL. Don't be fooled.
-> To live "comfortably" in Quebec, you want at least a 40k wage or more. If you do 30k, you won't be able to afford a decent place
-> Montreal and well the province of Quebec is filled with corruption, duplicated department from Canada, and miss management which all leads to high taxes, and still be in serious deficit. (Ahem: http://www.iedm.org/27-quebec-debt-clock)
-> Quebec has the most services and laws to protect the consumer and you living here.
-> You get to experience pretty much all the weathers of the world in one place from extremely hot to extremely cold.
-> People don't know how to drive.
-> Signs in roads.. get a GPS, especially if you are new here. Once you know your way, then it's fine.
-> If you open a business, please note that all signs, including company logo, needs to be in French and English, where French is put first, and in noticeably large letters, then English. Big stores like WallMart don't care, they just pay the penalty every time they receive it. It's nothing for them.. for a small business, the fees aren't nice. Who enforces this? Get ready for this! The Language Police. I kid you not. Quebec has a Language Police. The reason for all this, is that Quebec is scared of "loosing its French". Already they are freaking out that 20% of kids go to English College and after University after graduating from high school, as it's only at this point, you can pick a decision to go to an English school
-> Schools in Quebec are actually very good, English like French.

Every city has it's up and downs. There is no perfect city, of course. Well I don't know what else to say, if you have question just ask away.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 16:35   #6
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Though I'm much younger and still living at home, for me Toronto is too busy. I go to university downtown and I find the hustle and bustle to be a bit overwhelming and crowded. There are also a lot of snobby people downtown, plus a lot of oddballs, especially on the subway. I live just outside the city and its a 45 minute subway ride to school, but driving is relatively quick if there isn't traffic. I find in the larger cities though traffic is a large issue. Despite the size of Canada, you're either urban or rural, and in urban areas there are just too many people and too many cars for the roads to handle, at least in my experience of Toronto and some of Mississauga. We do have a lot of nice scenery though, driving to Blue Mountain or Muskoka Woods, so if you live closer to the edge of the city you can experience some really nice views.

Compared to the states we have much higher taxes, but we also have the free healthcare, but I'd consider that a double edged sword. I find that most emergency and hospital visits are slow. There just aren't enough doctors for the number of people here, especially because a lot of the immigrants don't have their own family doctors, so they decide they'll go to the hospital for something a general practitioner could have taken care of. There's also the issue of caregivers when you're actually in a hospital. My grandmother was in the hospital for a couple years before she passed away, and there just weren't enough nurses to provide adequate care, and my family felt that the nurses just didn't care about the patients. They gave a 70 something year old women a shower, put on the tiny fabric cloak thing, than sit her down still wet in the TV room because it was easy to watch her. My mom and either me or one of my siblings would end up going to the hospital every day just to ensure my grandmother was fed and we took care of her.

Others have mentioned education, our government subsides it I believe for Canadian citizens so you end up paying roughly 1/2 of what it would cost if you were an international or foreign exchange student. Some of the more expensive programs are 7k a year plus books if you commute, roughly double if you're living on residence and require a meal plan. Foreign exchange programs are roughly double the tuition costs, at least from what I've been told from other students at my university.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 16:53   #7
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They have bad roads and say 'aboot' instead of 'about'.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 16:56   #8
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Been to Calgary and Vancouver as the in Laws live there. Vancouver is my dream place to live but to old to more. If I had the slightest chance of moving there I'd be gone tomorrow. The friendliest place I have ever been. Been to Vancouver 4 times and love it
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 17:31   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mansueto View Post
Compared to the states we have much higher taxes, but we also have the free healthcare, but I'd consider that a double edged sword. I find that most emergency and hospital visits are slow. There just aren't enough doctors for the number of people here, especially because a lot of the immigrants don't have their own family doctors, so they decide they'll go to the hospital for something a general practitioner could have taken care of. There's also the issue of caregivers when you're actually in a hospital.
Caregivers are over worked, and their morals are low, and doctors, do their education here (which cost peanuts compared to the U.S), and flee to the U.S for the money. That really screws up our system. Also, you have elderly that goes at the hospital for a paper cut. Come on! Go at the clinic if you must, leave the hospital for real emergencies. I guess that's the problem when its free.

But honestly, despite its imperfections, off the shelf medications are virtually free, or free, compared to the states, and despite it's flaws, I prefer to wait for several hours in a waiting room for non life threatening problem, then be in dept the rest of my life, because I didn't advice my insurance company in advance about the accident that I got into myself, or I am simply not approved because I got a cold once and its somehow linked to my leg being broken or whatever, which is a big problem in the U.S unless you have the uber expensive plans, or work in a large company that can get you the proper insurance coverage plans.

Quote:
Others have mentioned education, our government subsides it I believe for Canadian citizens so you end up paying roughly 1/2 of what it would cost if you were an international or foreign exchange student. Some of the more expensive programs are 7k a year plus books if you commute, roughly double if you're living on residence and require a meal plan. Foreign exchange programs are roughly double the tuition costs, at least from what I've been told from other students at my university.
Concordia University has a nice cool calculator: http://www.concordia.ca/admissions/t...te/calculator/
But those fees are for Quebec.

Just to demonstrate the fees difference:
Engineering, Bachelor degree, 12 credit in a semester. and you live in Quebec: $ 1,545.73, this includes health insurance (in Quebec, if you above 18, and have a chance to take health insurance from your work place or school (Universities), you are obligated to take it).

Same but foreigner: $ 8,307.59 with health insurance.

In the U.S, it's like what? ~20k a semester depending on the college you go, plus additional administration fees and what not.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 17:47   #10
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Having lived in Canada for the grand total of three weeks in my entire life, I have concluded that it is the most awesome place I've ever been to. Mainly for the extremely nice people, although I think Australia might even have Canada beaten there I've got relatives who emigrated at the start of The Troubles in the early '70s and have lived there (Simcoe, ON) since. I'd love to live and work there, but it will probably never happen because of the massive upheaval it would be and the commitments I have here. I'm planning a nice Ontario-Pittsburgh-Panama(FL) holiday though! I have relatives all over North America!
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 20:10   #11
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They have bad roads and say 'aboot' instead of 'about'.
I've been all across Canada and I have never heard anyone say "aboot", ever. Lots of people do say "eh?" at the end of every sentence in Saskatchewan, though
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 20:15   #12
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I've been all across Canada and I have never heard anyone say "aboot", ever. Lots of people do say "eh?" at the end of every sentence in Saskatchewan, though
All the Canadians I've met it sounds more like 'a boat', never head any of them say 'aboot'
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 20:22   #13
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haha that's true. But we say A-boat, not about... but that's on the west, not the east.
While I didn't go across the country to really know, I never encountered a person say either where I am. But I like how Canadian just embraces this stereotype on us, and just have a good laugh with it, eh?
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 20:29   #14
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Lol, it was supposed to say aboat but I posted it on my stupid phone with its tiny screen...
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 20:47   #15
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never heard anything but the regular "about" and I have been in BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 21:04   #16
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Oh, I've heard plenty of Canadians pronouncing it "aboat" instead of "about" in my time, and also lots of additional "ey?'s" but I don't mind either, I just find them quite endearing. Nothing so trivial could put me off liking some of the nicest people I've ever met Australians also say "hey?" at the end of their sentences a lot, but that doesn't bother me in the slightest either, for much the same reason!

Punctuating that gave me a headache. Mostly because I know it's probably wrong
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 21:06   #17
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Look forward to this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6pbCr577RI0

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Old 26th Feb 2013, 21:10   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phinix View Post
I was wondering how many of you guys live in Canada?
I'm planning to move to Canada before I die, so wanted to hear from you where would be a good/best place to move to
About half the folks in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are from Scottish descent. You want to leave Scotland, its funny because my mother dream about moving there, she love the place so much that she learnt Gaelic (No Joke O.O).
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 22:11   #19
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Hahaha Guys, thank you so much for a such a huge introduction to the subject
I had fun reading your posts. I'm very happy to see so many Canadians willing to explain me few things

"aboot", people don't know how to drive... hmmm - sounds like Scotland !

Now seriously. My dream is to move to Canada. It is not something urgent, but if I could find all I need and it could go smooth I could even move this year

I'm not planning to study there, I've finished uni years ago, have more than 15 years of experience in IT, etc. What I'm after is a nice simple life, not huge cities etc, something "slower and quieter". I'm lining toward Vancouver and generally west side.
French is out of question - I already speak 4 languages and never wanted to learn french, that language freaks me out So I guess Quebec is out

Weather - I really miss snow.. I mean I REALLY miss it. I don't mind -20C temps, as long as I get snow and around 20-25C in summer then it's perfect. All those woods, lakes, mountains in Canada puts smile on my face when I think of it, so that is why I want Canada...

I kinda like White Rock - why? They made few episodes of X-Files there and it's about 400km from Roslyn, WA - where whole Northern Exposure was filmed! I LOVED Northern Exposure, this is also a reason why I want to move to Canada, similar climate

So yes, ideally I would be looking for a middle size town to live in, or maybe suburbs of Vancouver.
Most of it depends on place where I would find job and I'm guessing there won't be much IT jobs in small towns... I don't know how much do IT earn - do you have any clues? For example how much does simple IT support technician earn in Vancouver area, then Database developer, then IT manager. Just for comparison.
Some other questions:
  • what is minimum wages
  • what do you mean by expensive life, housing, food, can you give example?
  • what about rain - does it rain a lot in British Columbia area? Like how many days in a year and how many days in a year does it snow. Also average temps in summer.
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Old 26th Feb 2013, 22:20   #20
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Well you should learn it, as if you are outside of Quebec it's seen as a big plus to have both languages. As you have other places that speak French. And you might work in an office environment that has offices in Quebec or in those small regions that speaks in French.

And what I am saying is not some kind of secret trick to get more chances a job, this is like well known fact and talk about a lot.

Anyway, here is a great site to get you started:
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/index.asp

And if you have any odd questions or require assistance and don't know where to start, you always have Service Canada: http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/home.shtml

Oh I don't know if you have family in Canada, but if you are sponsored by one of them, it's a BIG win for you in increasing your chances to immigrate to Canada.

When you apply, be sure that everything is legit and clear. You can always call for assistance in getting to know a certified immigration layer and such, so that you don't screw up, and have a smooth experience.
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