Moving to Canada

Best Provinces In Canada To Live And Work

Written by Andy Peterson
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There’s no denying that Canada is looking for skilled workers, but how do you choose where to live? Today we’re going to explore two of the best Provinces and a handful of cities within them so that we can give you a taste of what each city has to provide.

Related: Is Canada a good place to live?

We’ll discuss the unemployment rates, types of jobs, schools, and more so that you can get a better idea of which city might be right for you. With a little planning and hard work, not only can you succeed in these cities, but you’ve got a chance to create the lifestyle that you’ve always wanted for you and your family.

Let’s take a look at some of the best provinces in Canada to live and work in!

Ontario

Ontario has a lot going for it when it comes to employment and living the good life. If you are considering immigrating to Canada, the province of Ontario has a substantial population of immigrants already, providing a helpful infrastructure for adjusting to a new country. If you speak a foreign language, the odds are that someone else speaks it too, so you’ll have a little support.

Related: Everything You Need To Know About Ontario

It also happens to be home to the city of Toronto, which is the biggest city and also headquarters to several large industries. Let’s take a closer look at some of the cities which you have to choose from in this province.

Burlington

One popular choice for those looking for gainful employment is the city of Burlington, located in southern Ontario. Boasting an unemployment rate of only 5.6%, you’ll find that not only jobs are available but you’ll get a little statistical bonus. In Burlington, the income is higher than the average income of the entire province!

Note: Learn More About the City of Burlington Here

There are a number of industries which are prominent there, such as electronics, food processing, , environmental, chemical, business services, and more! Real estate prices are good, though as in any city, prime locations are going to cost a little more, but you can get great deals if you are willing to commute a bit to work.

Burlington has one of the milder climates, as far as Canadian cities go. If you are a nature lover, this city is also a great choice as you can get the best of city living but have Nature waiting for you close-by when you want to get away by yourself or with the family.

Healthcare facilities in Burlington are excellent, and there are several colleges and schools to choose from. The community’s diversity means that there are lots of great food choices, and the crime rate is low. All in all, it’s a great city to start your new life in!

Oakville

Just a 30-minute drive from downtown Toronto is another southern Canadian gem of a city and it’s called Oakville. They have an unemployment rate of 6.4% and if you’d like a taste of Toronto living without those Toronto costs, then Oakville might be an excellent fit for you.

Note: Learn More about Job Opportunities in Oakville here

Living in Oakville means that you have access not only to the Oakville job market, but you are close enough to take advantage of opportunities in Hamilton or Toronto. It’s a prime location to set as ‘home base’ because you can take advantage of the excellent real estate prices that Oakville provides.

Living here is cheaper than in any North American city already gives you a huge advantage for making the type of life that you are envisioning. Many eldercare pharmaceuticals and life sciences companies find their home here, so you can certainly work locally, but having 3 cities to choose from for your employment greatly increases your odds of success.

As far as education for your children, Oakville is home to many schools that consistently rank high, and you’ll be able to spend more time with them, as Oakville and Canada, in general, have a very healthy point of view when it comes to balancing work and your personal life.  

So if you want to triple your chances of getting the best job possible, Oakville is a great place to get you started.

Ottawa

If you don’t want to feel like you’re getting lost in the crowd, Ottawa has a smaller population than many cities and a whole lot to offer. Their unemployment rate is 5.3%, and there is a lot of demand for management, applied sciences, law, and education. Speaking of which, Ottawa is considered one of the most well-educated cities in the country!

Public transportation is extensive so that you can commute quite easily, and English is understood just about everywhere. However, learning a little French before you go can certainly help endear you a little with the locals.

Note: Job opportunities with the city of Ottawa here

The cost of living is slightly higher here than in the previous two cities we’ve mentioned, but it is still very much competitive and affordable. With the high education standards, you can also prepare the kids for success in Canada for when they grow older. The crime rate is very low, so it’s a safe place with excellent living standards and many business opportunities.

Note: Learn About Ottawa Population Stats Here

We should note that some of the top-paying positions available for those who work in the tech sector may be found in Ottawa. Analytics managers, Database administrators, Computer Hardware Engineers – if you’ve got the skills, they are very much in demand here, so be sure to keep Ottawa in mind if this is your specialty.

It’s a booming job market with the best in education available for you and your children.

Toronto

Our final Ontario entry is Toronto, and despite its size of 630 square kilometers this city boasts an unemployment rate of only 5.8%. If you are looking for culture, technology, and the arts, you’ll soon find out why Toronto is considered to be one of the happiest cities in the world! So, what does this city bring to the table to earn this?

For starters, excellent health care standards lead to many people choosing this city to retire in so that they can be self-sufficient and still enjoy the taste of the city. There is a lot of sightseeing to be done if that’s your thing, and the community is also quite diverse, so in all likelihood, if you are immigrating here, then there is an infrastructure already in place to help you adjust.

Note: Learn About Jobs available with the City of Toronto Here

The local schools are excellent, and with the size of the city, there are a number to choose from before you take the leap. The crime rate is also quite low, so it’s not only a big city but one of the safest cities around in the bargain.

The cost of living will be a lot higher here, however, and though it is still affordable, this is something to keep in mind when moving to Canada for employment. That said, if you want a little more excitement and a whole lot of opportunity, Toronto is one of the best choices that you can make.

Nova Scotia

While Nova Scotia wasn’t always the first choice for immigrants, times have indeed changed. Nova Scotia launched a program called the Atlantic Immigration Pilot back in 2017 in part to meet the growing demand for skilled workers. They accomplished this by assisting employers with making connections to those who wish to immigrate and reducing visa processing times to no more than 6 months for Nova Scotia and other participating regions.

In Cape Breton, one company even offered free land to those who wanted to come and work for a period of 5 years!

Halifax

While trawling and fishing jobs abound, those aren’t the only jobs to be found in the East Coast city of Halifax. You can enjoy scenic living and still take advantage of local jobs in the tech or education sector, and a number of government jobs are up for grabs as well.

Note: Learn About Jobs available in Halifax, Nova Scotia Here

The unemployment rate is sweet at just 5.7%.

Whether you want to live in the city or the country or find a location with a little of both, you can accomplish this easily in Halifax. The cost of living is low, and as an added bonus, property taxes are lower here as well. There is also a heavy bend for environmental awareness, so this is one of the cleanest cities in Canada.

The crime rate is low here, lower than the provincial average. Also, the education standards are excellent.

If you want to start your new life in a coastal region where there are job opportunities and where real estate is significantly lower than North American costs, Halifax in Nova Scotia might be just what the doctor ordered.

Alberta

Since announcing the start of their Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program in 2017, Alberta has begun attracting more and more immigrants looking to cut the time on their application process and quickly relocate where there are jobs a-plenty and a good life to be had.

A number of industries are seeking skilled workers, especially in relation to energy and tech, and one of the best cities in Alberta to get started on your new life is Calgary.

Calgary

The largest city in Alberta, Calgary, also plays an important role in Canada’s oil industry and boasts some jobs in tech, the financial sector, transportation, and more. With an unemployment rate of 7.2 % as of 2020, there’s no denying that many opportunities are there for the taking.

Note: Learn more about jobs available in Calgary here.

Calgary also has the advantage of a diverse population, which is always an advantage in getting started. As far as the city itself, education standards are high so there are excellent schools available. The crime rate is low and real estate is quite affordable. With it’s low pollution levels and superior sewage treatment, Calgary has even earned the title of ‘the world’s cleanest city’.

If you are looking to settle in the Alberta province, then Calgary is definitely worth your consideration!

British Columbia

British Columbia is a great place for immigrants and houses a wide variety of industries that are looking for skilled workers. Demand is so much, in fact, that programs are in place, such as British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program, to help those who would like to immigrate to British Columbia in connecting with businesses in need of skilled workers.

While Vancouver is an excellent choice, we’re going to explore another excellent city that has some perks of its own. Let’s take a closer look at Abbotsford.

Abbotsford

Another city with a large immigrant population, Abbotsford, reported an unemployment rate of 4.6% for 2020 and offered many opportunities for those looking to relocate to Canada to make a better life. When we say that the immigrant population is large, we aren’t kidding. Over 26% of the residents in Abbotsford were born outside of Canada, and over 50 languages are spoken here!

Note: Learn more about the jobs available in Abbotsford here.

Located about an hour east of Vancouver, Abbotsford offers the feel of “small-town living,” and housing prices are much lower than nearby Vancouver. Employment is available in several industries, such as Aerospace, Construction, Trade, Manufacturing, Health Care, and Transportation. As far as transportation goes, if you don’t have a car, you can get a monthly bus pass for about $52, and schools in this area are excellent.

Summers are a little short, but winters aren’t so bad, with temperatures very rarely falling below freezing, even in the chilliest months (December through January).

If you prefer nature and a small-town, more community-driven atmosphere, then Abbotsford just might be a perfect fit for you.

Quebec

Quebec is an eastern province that makes up 1.6% of the overall mass of Canada. It has an enormous number of possibilities for those who wish to live there, as well, with a wide range of industries headquartered here. As a bonus, kids growing up here will likely become fluent in both English and French!

Montreal is a favourite of anyone looking to relocate to Quebec, and we’ll tell you why!

Montreal

As of October 2020, the unemployment rate in Montreal was at 7.2%, slightly higher than some of the other cities that we have listed, but still quite a promising number. First off, the rent is quite low, with apartments available at 400 Canadian dollars monthly and houses available in ranges of $500 – $700 a month.

Note: Learn more about the jobs available in Montreal here.

Many industries are based here, and so opportunities are quite diverse. Jobs are available in tourism, electronics, pharmaceuticals, transportation, telecommunications, software engineering, and more! It’s also considered a safe city, but we should note that many of the top schools will require your children to speak French.

While there are English-speaking schools, French is considered the primary language in Montreal and is also quite pervasive in business, so this is something that you will want to prepare yourself and your children for if you are considering a move to Montreal. The benefits of living here are certainly worth it, so you’ll be delighted that you did!

Conclusion

Canada is a land of opportunity and deciding which regions to include in the space that we’ve allotted was certainly tricky. We hope that the cities which we’ve provided will give you a great glimpse at the diversity of lifestyles and advantages that may be had by choosing to live and work in Canada.

Whether you want the city life, the country life, or a little bit of both, Canada is ready, waiting, and so are its jobs! We wish you and yours the best in your new life!

About the author

Andy Peterson

Andy Peterson is an author and writer for Livethenorth.com. He has lived in Canada for his entire life. He enjoys exploring the country and traveling from coast to coast. Andy is an expert when it comes to knowing how to LIVE THE NORTH, and enjoys teaching and telling about the True North.

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