There is a multitude of reasons why people from across the globe apply for a Permanent Resident Visa to Canada. The country boasts of many wonderful Canadian Cities to live in and work. For instance, the country offers thousands of high-paying jobs across its vast lands.
Canada is a highly diverse and immigrant friendly country as can be seen from its huge immigrant communities. It is said that 1 out of 5 Canadians were born outside of the country. Its spectacular and unique scenery attracts many people to apply as immigrants. Lastly, the country is also proud of its high standard of living in the world. Those who are given a Permanent Resident Visa are eligible to apply for Canadian citizenship after only 3 years. As many as 250,000 people from all over the world migrate to Canada every year.
If you are considering migrating to Canada to live or work, you will be most interested to know which are the best Canadian cities for immigrants. We have prepared a list of the Top 12 Choice Cities in Canada for you to consider. You can find out a lot about each city’s culture, economy, and many attractions.
And when you find a city you are most interested in, you would surely want to know how you can relocate in the most affordable way.
5 free movers’ quotes has partnered with over 200 licensed and professional moving companies from across the globe who can deliver high quality residential and business relocation services for state to state and international moving.
No matter where you are coming from, we have the best moving solutions for your move. Read on to find out what your best moving choices are in Canada and how you can best move your home or business to your chosen destination.
Your arrival in Canada will be an exciting yet anxious time. Watch the video below to get tips on how to prepare for arriving in Canada.
According to the inaugural list of the best countries in the world by the World Economic Forum, Canada is the 2nd best country globally. It trails Germany which took the number 1 spot. Canada also came in #1 for high quality of life and # 2 for citizenship. These rankings were based on the following factors:
Moving to Canada from the US takes more than just packing up moving boxes or finding a new home. Before anyone can move to Canada, it is necessary to apply for Canadian Permanent Residency with Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
It is best to visit Canada before planning the logistics of your relocation so you can determine where you would like to live if your application for residency is approved. Americans with a passport card, NEXUS card, and a valid US passport can stay in Canada for 180 days visa-free.
People who frequently travel between the US and Canada can apply for a NEXUS card which can be used at the borders of both countries. Applications are available for a minimum fee in paper and online.
If you spend 3 years in Canada, you could qualify for dual citizenship which means you get Canadian citizenship without giving up your allegiance to your country of birth. But dual citizenship also has its downside – you will need to pay dual taxes and in certain cases, render military service. But for many people, these cons are outweighed by the benefits of dual citizenship such as social security programs.
You can choose the type of permanent Canadian residency that is most suitable to your situation. Options include Skilled Workers and Professionals, Quebec Selected Skilled Workers, Canadian Experience, Provincial Nominees and Family-Sponsored, and Investors and Entrepreneurs. You can review each category for migrating to Canada.
Once you are approved for permanent residency, you can rent a moving truck or hire a moving company providing international relocation services. You should make a list of all items you plan to bring into the country and the value of each item. You can also make a list of items for shipping at a later date. Two copies need to be given to customs officials when you enter the country. If you are hiring an international moving company, you must provide copies to the driver of your moving truck.
As a soon to be Canadian immigrant, you may already have an idea of your city or town. It is also possible that you are torn between 2 Canadian cities and still making up your mind.
Most immigrants choose their destination based on several factors such as already having relatives in the area, having visited and liked the city before the relocation, done some research and think it ideal due to weather, employment, or amenities.
Canada is a huge and diverse nation with many provinces and municipalities that you can choose from. Even if you have already arrived in Canada, you can still explore other municipalities in your province or outside it. The important thing is to ensure that you get the best Canadian living experience.
MoneySense Magazine has published a list of the best places for Canadian immigrants in 2013. The factors they considered included unemployment rate, population growth, violent crime, cost of housing, transportation, weather, percentage of immigrants among the population, and average household income.
If you are considering becoming a Permanent Resident in Canada, you should look closely at British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario.
Would you like to know the pros and cons of living in Canada? Take a look at a listing of the most popular moving destinations for immigrants.
Here are the top relocation choices In Canada for Immigrants ranked 1 to 10.
Thousands of new Canadians settle in Ottawa every year. Residents say the city is neither big nor small. It is definitely a green and environment-friendly city with plenty of beautiful parks. It also provides many services such as OSICO and LINK for new immigrants to help them start a new life.
Many immigrants also choose Ottawa because of its professional opportunities. It is the nation’s capital and is mainly English-speaking.
Located in eastern Ontario on the Quebec border, it sits on the side of the huge Ottawa River. It is also transected by the Rideau River. On its north side is French-speaking Gatineau, Quebec.
Its climate is sunny although it has cold and snowy winters. It can also have drastic temperature swings in the spring and fall.
Ottawa is a diverse city with 1/6 of its population representing minorities. The largest minority group in the city is from Asia, a big chunk of which are Chinese immigrants.
Quality of Life in Ottawa
The city has a reputation for being family-oriented, quiet, and reserved. Residents are said to be laid-back and more into sports rather than nightlife.
It was ranked the 14th best city in world and 2nd best city in the Americas by Mercer. Canadian magazine MoneySense puts Ottawa #1 as best Canadian city. It performs well in surveys in terms of population growth, low crime, healthcare, and culture.
Ottawa also has the highest household incomes in the country. Canadian average household incomes top at $81,300 a year but in Ottawa, figures are at $89,400. The only low score that the city gets is for affordable housing. But compared to Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary, housing is still more affordable in Ottawa but a bit higher than Montreal or Edmonton.
Ottawa is also Canada’s 2nd cleanest city and 3rd in the world, according to Mercer. It was ranked by Forbes Magazine as the 4th cleanest city out of 300 cities surveyed worldwide.
Ottawa also offers a wide variety of employment opportunities. In 2016, over 9,600 new jobs were created in the National Capital Region alone. Its biggest employer is the Federal Government while thousands of others are in hospitals, schools, universities, and tourism. It is also often called the Silicon Valley of the North because of the huge presence of high tech companies in the city.
Ottawa also boasts of a highly educated workforce where half of the resident populations are university graduates. The city has the most number of engineers, scientists, and PhDs in the country. It has 2 major universities – the University of Ottawa and Carleton University.
The city’s public transport system is also quite good and used by over 350,000 people a day. Ottawa is also bike-friendly with more than 170 km of bicycle paths. You can mix cycle travel with bus travel and even take your bike on the O-Train.
Wondering what to do in Ottawa? There are plenty of wonderful sights and things to do here. There are a number of ways to get into sports such as cross-country skiing, yoga, downhill skiing, horseback riding, skating, cycling, kayaking, fishing, ice hockey, or rock climbing.
The city also hosts many festivals each year beginning with the Canada Day, Winterlude Festival, Dragon Boat Festival, Canadian Tulip Festival, and International Jazz Festival.
Some of the cons about living in Ottawa are too humid summers, very cold and long winters, no city-wide subway or light rail, and a lack of exciting nightlife.
The pros include easy to obtain rural or suburban lifestyles, moderately priced housing, high paying jobs, low crime rates, close to the USA and Quebec, outdoor opportunities, and excellent schools.
Is Ottawa your city? You can find out more about living in Ottawa and why it consistently ranks as one of the best cities in the world to live in.
Known as the beautiful province (la belle province), Quebec is the biggest province in the country and is home to more than 8.2 million people. It is famous for its rolling hills, vast forests, and numerous waterways. It is a multi-cultural province which has earned it the nickname of “Europe of North America”.
It is also the only province with French as its official language. The city of Gatineau is in western Quebec and is the 4th largest city in the province. Located north of the Ottawa River and directly across Ottawa, it forms the National Capital Region. Gatineau has an estimated population of 265,349.
More than 41,000 new immigrants arrive in the Ottawa-Gatineau region, mostly from China, South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, according to Statistics Canada.
Both these cities are regarded as cosmopolitan with diverse ethnicities. Some of its most popular neighborhoods include Centretown, Byward Market, Lakeview Terasse, and Lowertown. These areas are ideal for raising families and are located just outside both cities.
Being so geographically close, many people live in Gatineau but work in Ottawa. One of the many attractions of living in Gatineau is cheaper daycare, generous tax breaks for parents and cheaper houses with bigger lots.
What are other pros and cons of living in Gatineau? Immigrants can have the perfect opportunity to immerse themselves in the French language and culture. It goes without saying that bilingualism is a big advantage when it comes to jobs. But it is also fair to say that the language can work as a limitation. Language issues can cause stress.
Many prospective immigrants interested in living in the National Capital Region often debate whether to live in Ottawa or Gatineau. It is a big decision to make since it is from 2 distinct jurisdictions. Matters such as education, healthcare, and taxes are directly affected by the jurisdiction where you live.
Income taxes are lower in Quebec but one downside is fewer doctors and fewer choices for healthcare needs. Families with small children opt to live in Gatineau because it costs less to live here with childcare services subsidized.
The city of Waterloo in Southern Ontario is the smallest of 3 cities in the Regional Municipality of Waterloo. Why is the region a good place for newcomers to call home?
It is a thriving, exciting, and diverse community. Residents enjoy high living standards and a rich culture influenced by many parts of the globe. A newcomer has the choice of living in a mid-sized city or the countryside. Its economy is also rich in employment opportunities in a wide range of industry sectors from technology and manufacturing.
It is also a great place to study with highly respected institutions, world-class colleges and universities, and quality education for children.
The region also offers a mix of urban and rural living and abundant opportunities for cultural and recreational activities. Whether you prefer fly fishing on the Grand, skiing, or hiking, you have a full plate with over 3,000 acres of parkland.
It has many nations representing its immigrant population which makes possible one of the most authentic and biggest cultural experiences – the Oktoberfest.
The city is home to world-class talent producing innovative research and products. It is also home to the University of Waterloo, one of Canada’s most modern universities.
The city’s immigrant population is estimated at 25%. It also boasts of low unemployment rates and very affordable housing.
For more information about living in Waterloo, explore the possibilities of immigrating to Waterloo to live and work.
What does Brossard, Quebec have in common with other best places for immigrants to move to in Canada?
It shares many advantages such as high-paying jobs, low unemployment rates, affordable housing, and cultural diversity. It also boasts of a huge immigrant population which is estimated at 36%.
Brossard is the commercial hub in Montreal’s south shore and has one of the most highly diverse municipalities in the country. It is located in the Monteregie Region of Quebec and is part of the Greater Montreal Area. It is surrounded by four municipalities – Saint-Lambert, Longueil, Carignan, La Prairie. It has many parks scattered throughout and are connected to areas of the city by biking paths.
While French is the official language, other minority languages spoken according to the 2011 census include English, Chinese, Spanish, Cantonese, Persian, and Arabic.
It is primarily a residential suburb with many semi-detached homes and apartment buildings.
Do you wish to practice a profession in Quebec, or intend to pursue professional studies in the fields of engineering, health, applied sciences, law or business? The Ministere de l’Immigration, de la Diversite et de l’Inclusion offers specialized courses in these areas at intermediate and advanced levels. For information on how to register for a course, you can get more details from the official site of the government of Quebec.
This city is in the municipality of British Columbia and is part of Greater Vancouver. It is located south of Richmond and is bordered on the north by the Fraser River and the Point Roberts, Washington on the south.
About 23% of the population is made up of minorities, most of which are Chinese and South Asians. It is the biggest municipality in the Greater Vancouver Region and has one of the most significant agricultural areas in Vancouver. It is home to people who want to raise their families in quiet and safe neighborhoods surrounded by nature. The city is perfect for those who love the outdoors as it has plenty of parks, bike and walking paths, islands, and wildlife.
Many immigrants like the weather, it being the mildest in the country. Winters are not as cold compared to other cities in Canada and it has very little snow.
The city offers an extraordinary quality of life with its wide open spaces and abundant recreational opportunities. Its more than 100,000 residents are spread out among the residential communities of Ladner, Tsawwassen, and North Delta. It is important to note that the average household income is 30% higher than the average income in Canada.
It has 180 square meters of farmland, wetlands, commercial districts, industrial areas, and residential neighborhoods with historic homes. It also produces some of the best vegetables and nursery plants. Its fertile soil is ideal for farming but the city is also home to important industries such as communication, tourism, energy, transportation, and manufacturing. Delta port is the largest container terminal in Canada.
Cost of living is generally higher in Vancouver compared to other Canadian cities. It is an expensive city to live in and has the most expensive housing market in Canada. Fortunately, housing costs in Delta are much lower – $436,000 in North Delta while in Vancouver homes rarely go below the $1 million mark.
Saanich, BC is a district in Vancouver Island that is part of the Greater Victoria area. Its population as of 2011 was 109,752 which makes it the most populated area in the Capital Regional District. It has a diverse community of artists, entrepreneurs, builders, and families.
It is the location of the University of Victoria and the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory. It has varying rural and urban landscapes, with a long stretch of shoreline of sandy beaches. Its most popular parks are Mount Douglas Park, Gyro Park, and Mount Tolmie Park. The city is bordered by 6 municipalities, including the capital, Victoria.
Transport is an important consideration when looking for where to live in Canada. Saanich is serviced by BC Transit and there are more than 700 bus stops in the city. Residents are also encouraged to use their bikes and there are sufficient bike paths and trails for safe cycling around the city.
The Vancouver Island Technology Park can also be found in Saanich. It is one of the key drivers of its local economy. Its vibrant and diverse economy with local, regional, and global connections and a highly skilled workforce makes the city a very ideal place for investment.
Many people would say that Saanich and the rest of British Columbia are the most beautiful in Canada. However, they would also quickly point out that the cost of living is very high, wages are lower than in Toronto or Montreal, and housing costs and taxes are astronomical.
On the other hand, residents would also point out that you can’t compare Victoria to other Canadian cities because the quality of life is simply incomparable. If you like the idea of living in paradise and are ready to pay the cost, then you will definitely like Saanich.
Halton Region consists of the communities of Burlington, Oakville, Milton, and Halton Hills. It is less than an hour away from Toronto, Canada’s largest city. It is located along the shores of Lake Ontario. For the last 4 years, the region has been voted the Safest Place to Live in the Greater Toronto Area and the Safest Region in the country.
The Halton region is also rapidly growing and has a close to 30% immigrant population. With its central location, unique and breath-taking scenery, and family friendly neighborhoods, the city of Burlington in the Halton Region is ideal for immigrants to move to.
What makes Burlington one of the best places to live for immigrants?
In addition to its high safety index, excellent neighborhoods, central location, and fabulous landscapes, the city has over 580 acres of park lands and a high quality of life. The best hiking in the world is done here along the Niagara Escarpment and Bruce Trail.
The climate is continental with cold and dry winters and war, and humid summers.
Housing remains affordable in the region, with average home prices at $556,000 for a single-detached home.
The local economy relies on manufacturing and automotive sectors. Its biggest employers include Boehringer Ingelheim, Fearmans Pork, Cogeco Cable, Joseph Brant Hospital, and the Halton School Board.
It is a fun and exciting city that plays host to two big events annually – Canada Ribfest and the Sound of Music Festival.
You can find out more about living, working, or doing business in Halton Region from the District Immigration Portal.
Regina, capital city of Saskatchewan, is the 2nd biggest city in the province. It is a commercial and cultural center of southern Saskatchewan. It is a flat plain with very few topographical features except for Wascana Creek.
It is located on a waterless and treeless plain but it has ample parklands and open spaces. Over 300,000 trees and other shrubs were hand-planted.
It has a dry continental climate with cold and dry winters and warm summers that can be extreme at times.
In its 2011 census, the city’s population stood at 193,100. 98% of its population speaks English with less than 2% French speakers. Other minority languages spoken include Filipino, Vietnamese, Chinese, Ukrainian, Punjabi, Urdu, German, and Spanish.
The city also hosts various festivals throughout the year such as the Craven Country Jamboree, the Cathedral Village Arts Festival, and the Regina Dragon Boat Festival.
Its most important industry sectors are natural gas sectors. Farm and agriculture is also a vital component of the local economy. Other important employers in the city include Exxon Mobil, Crown Life (insurance), and Viterra, one of the world’s biggest grain handlers.
What makes Regina ideal for new immigrants? It is a city with thousands of people moving in from all over the world, making it a truly multicultural and dynamic place to live.
Housing prices are lower in Saskatchewan than other major Canadian cities, making home ownership achievable for most residents. Unlike other provinces, no personal premiums or personal charges are required for basic health services. In addition, the sales tax is lower than other provinces. Maximum commute time to major cities takes 20 minutes, making transport more affordable.
All year round recreation is also available in the district. Its many lakes are ideal for boating, swimming, canoeing, and ice fishing. Winter activities include skiing, tobogganing, and snowboarding.
Want to know more about the possibilities of immigrating to Regina? You can watch a quick presentation about immigrating in Saskatchewan below.
Choosing St. Albert as your moving destination in Canada may be one of the best decisions you can make. It is a flourishing city located just minutes from northwest Edmonton. The city offers a family-friendly lifestyle complete with all the amenities you could ever want.
This beautiful city was ranked # 1 Best Place to Raise Kids by Canadian magazine MoneySense. It is a safe and prosperous city with around 64,645 residents.
Why does it rank highly as a great moving destination for immigrants in Canada? Its unemployment rate is just 4% with incomes that are among the highest in Canada. Crime rates continue to fall and housing costs are stable and affordable.
It has also been voted as one of the healthiest cities in the country. It is very easy to stay fit because of outdoor opportunities are aplenty for hikers, joggers, and bikers. From June to October, the city hosts the biggest outdoor farmers’ market where fresh and organic products such as fruits and vegetables are available.
In addition to high incomes and low crime, the city also boasts of clean air. It also has plenty of doctors that make access to good healthcare easy.
Although winters are cold, there is much sunshine all year round. Located on the fringe of Edmonton, it has a regional trading area exceeding 1 million people and more than 2,400 active business establishments.
The city has 3 school districts that provide learning opportunities for children. Opportunities for studying include Francophone studies, French immersion, university degrees, sports academies, Integrated Digital Technology, and many registered apprenticeship programs. Post- secondary institutions in the area also include MacEwan University, the University of Alberta, and Northern Alberta Institute of Technology.
The city is happy to receive new residents and help them transition into the community. Once you have been approved for Permanent Resident Visa, you can request for New Resident’s Package to learn more about settling in St. Albert.
According to BMO senior Economist Robert Kavcic, Guelph is the best place to find jobs. This small city located 90 km west of Toronto leads the pack with its population inflow, tiny unemployment rate, and robust job growth. As a new Canadian immigrant, you could take advantage of it strong economy and abundant job opportunities.
Located in southwestern Ontario, it has a population of 121,688 and is often called the Royal City. It is close to Waterloo and downtown Toronto. Due to its low crime rates, clean environment, and high standard of living, the city has consistently ranked as one of the best places to live in Canada. It also boasts of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.
What are the pros and cons for immigrants who choose to move to Guelph?
This region of Ontario has cold winters and warm summers with high snowfall and rainfall. If you are coming from a warmer climate, it might take some time to get accustomed to the cold.
It is the 5th fastest growing city in the country. While historically, the population of Guelph has been predominantly British, other visible minorities are South Asian, Chinese, Filipino, Black, Latin American, Japanese, and Arab.
The city has a diversified economy with manufacturing as its leading sector and education a close second. Its 3 largest employers are Linamar, the University of Guelph, and Upper Grand District School Board.
Many of its natural attractions are located near the 2 rivers which transect the city, Speed River and Eramosa River. Important landmarks include University of Guelph Arboretum, Guelph Lake, Hanlon Creek Park, Exhibition Park, and Royal City Park and Wellington Street nature sites.
You surely have a lot of questions about arriving in Guelph as a new immigrant. You’ll want to know about finding jobs, housing, and educational opportunities in the area. Check out their official site to learn more about Guelph Wellington immigration.
The Province of Alberta is a favorite destination of skilled immigrant workers. It is proud of its robust economy which relies heavily on the oil and gas industry.
Edmonton, capital city of Alberta, is located on the North Saskatchewan River and surrounded by Alberta’s central region. It is the 2nd biggest city in the province with an estimated population of 899,447.
In its 2006 census, European ethnicities formed the biggest clusters of immigrant groups in the city mostly from English, Scottish, German, and French origin. Visible minorities accounted for 22.9 % of the population.
Why is Edmonton considered one of the best places for immigrants to live in?
Many of Canada’s new immigrants grab the opportunities of the country’s excellent education system. The oldest and biggest university in Alberta is the University of Alberta located in Edmonton. Students can avail of government loans and grants to attend private institutions.
It sits at the center of the country’s 6th biggest metropolitan area with large urban communities such as Sherwood Park and the cities of St. Albert, Spruce Grove, and the towns of Morinville and Devon. There are several employment areas outside the city but within its metropolitan area including the Nisku Industrial Business Park and the Edmonton International Airport.
The city’s river valley has the biggest stretch of urban parkland in North America. It has the largest number of parks per capita compared to other Canadian cities and its river valley is 22 times bigger than Central Park in New York City. Its parks and streets also have the highest concentration of healthy elm trees.
There are public and private golf courses in the river valley. In the winter, cross country skiing and skating are quite popular.
The province celebrates many festivals especially during the summer. The Edmonton Fringe Festival is the 2nd biggest in the world, next to Edinburgh’s. Folk music festivals in Calgary and Edmonton are also founded by immigrants and host many multicultural events. With so many events going on throughout the year, Edmonton is often called the Festival City.
Find out more about job opportunities in the Province of Alberta and why you should choose Alberta to live and work in Canada.
The city of Calgary has the highest number of immigrants than any other city in Alberta. From high culture to pop culture, professional sports, or rock and roll music, it is all in Calgary.
Why does Calgary stand out as a moving destination for new immigrants?
Ranked among the world’s cleanest, safest, and healthiest cities, Calgary offers a high quality of life.
The city is rich in historical and iconic architecture. The Husky Tower is the tallest building in Canada outside of Toronto. Its rotating restaurants and impressive view is a must see for all residents and visitors alike. Calgary Stampede is also a world-renowned landmark in the city. Spruce Meadows is an equestrian facility that has earned national and international respect for show-jumping contests.
The city also boasts of its International Avenue where you can see the world in just 35 blocks. Complete with authentic Asian restaurants, sari shops, and acupuncture clinics, you’ll see many amenities right here in the city.
Being so close to Banff and Canmore gives you access to the wonderful views of the Rocky Mountains. These famous mountain destinations are a mere 60-90 minutes away where you can ski, snowboard, or go ice climbing at world class resorts.
The city also has uniquely diverse neighborhoods and inner city communities. You will never want for urban amenities or access to the outdoors. Housing in the city remains affordable with median home price at $457,000. Due to a steady flow of new residents and a strong economy, Calgary continues to develop properties that provide a diverse mix of single detached homes, historic homes, and multi-family dwellings for renters and house hunters.
Food trucks are a phenomenon in the city with a dizzying array of international cuisines. Whether you crave southern BBQ, noodles or tacos, you can have your fill.
With more sunny days than any other major city and being less than an hour away from the Rockies, Calgarians surely enjoy healthy and active lifestyles.
The suburbs are locations for large Canadian distribution facilities like Walmart, Costco, Sears, Canadian Tire Group, Sysco, and Home Depot. This has resulted in a boom in the transport and logistics sectors.
However, due to declining oil prices, Calgary and Edmonton have experienced recession in 2015 which is expected to continue.
Visit life in Calgary to get tips for Calgary jobs, housing, schools, and many more.
Now that you have seen the most recommended cities for Canadian immigrants, take your pick and get ready with your moving plans.
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Welcome to Canada and we wish you the best in your new Canadian adventure!