Advice & Hints for Immigrating to Canada.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 1:38 PM GMT
    This is for all the Canadian members. icon_cool.gificon_cool.gif

    I am seriously considering relocating to Canada with lieu to becoming a Canadian citizen. But first things first, I need advice and hints.

    Also any useful information about Canada would be helpful. Which is the best city to live in? Is the cost of living expensive? What about finding a job?

    Feel free to comment. Please only don't waste my time or yours with useless comments, I am serious and only got time for genuine posts.

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  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 2:49 PM GMT
    Bring your own igloo, we just sold out.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 2:55 PM GMT
    charlitos saidBring your own igloo, we just sold out.


    LMAO

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 3:46 PM GMT
    Where you locate depends on what sort of life you want.

    If you are material/success/career oriented then Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto would be the safer bets. If you are worried about finding a good pay job with your current skills, then Alberta or Yukon are probably the places to look at. Montreal has fewer job opportunities, but is the better choice if you are mostly into a great variety of artistic culture, streetlife, education, public transportation and "joie de vie". If big cities are not your thing, then there are medium cities to check out. And of course, most of Canada is rural so there is a lot to choose from there as well.

    It may be easier to get your Canadian permanent residency while still in your home country, before coming over here. I went through the process 6 years ago. Things may have changed since then. But at that time the govt web site was pretty good about guiding me through the process. (I eventually needed to get a lawyer to help me, but you might not need one.) If you want to settle in Quebec, you might have to go through a Quebec immigration process. All the provinces have some form of an immigration program that works with the federal program. Admittance is (or was) based on a point system. You get points for communication skills (English/French), youth, education, marriage & kids, career field, and things like that.
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    Nov 18, 2013 3:50 PM GMT
    Bring $800K for a crappy house and another $60K to renovate the kitchen and basement - if all those HGTV shows are to be believed.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Nov 18, 2013 4:41 PM GMT
    My cousin's finance was offered a job in Canada, but due to a past DUI they won't let him enter the country.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 10:13 PM GMT
    Vancouver could be a top 3 choice.
    not that cold, well winter time sure, but thats no big deal; also it doesn't snow here as much as other provinces.
  • dunnox

    Posts: 5

    Nov 18, 2013 10:24 PM GMT
    One of the biggest things to consider where to move in Canada will be your career and what field you work in. Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton are the biggest cities (in that order).

    It's tough to summarize this without generalizing a bit but it might be helpful for you. This is based on what I know.

    British Columbia is resource heavy (forestry, natural gas, coal). Vancouver is the largest city. Really diverse but housing and cost of living is expensive.

    Alberta is the energy hub (oil sands). Calgary and Edmonton are the large cities. There's a lot of work opportunities here in general but people of technical background (engineers, technicians) are highly sought after. Calgary is expanding fast and maturing into a large city but relatively speaking, it isn't a hub of culture and night life. Also to keep in mind, Alberta is the most conservative of the Canadian provinces. Although by American standards, Alberta is pretty progressive.

    Saskatchewan and Manitoba have mostly medium sized cities and small towns. Known for potash and mining. Lot's of job opportunities but much more rural.

    Ontario is the largest province. Southern Ontario is very urban including Toronto and surrounding cities. Toronto is the financial and economic capital of Canada. A thriving business sector and some manufacturing in nearby municipalities. The region also has a strong tech sector (especially in the Waterloo area - home of Blackberry). Toronto is the most diverse city in Canada; one of the most in the world. 4th largest city in North America. If you're an urban creature, you would definitely like Toronto. The surrounding areas are suburban so if you're a commuter, it's still a good option.

    Quebec is French. Montreal is the largest city. It's much more European than the rest of Canada. Very progressive but also with a strong separatist element. There are large firms headquartered in Montreal but french is pretty much a requisite.

    The maritime provinces (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, Newfoundland)are beautiful and in general pretty relaxed. Halifax is the largest city, located on the Atlantic coast. Economically, the region has been struggling with the collapse of fishing stocks in recent decades. But there's oil off of Newfoundland and possible shale gas expansion, so there's cause for optimism.

    The North (Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut) is cold and desolate. Biggest sector would be mining. Most places are isolated and the cost of living is really high. There are no cities. Just medium sized towns and villages.

    I think I covered everything. Again, this is based on what I know and my opinions. Don't mean to offend anyone. icon_smile.gif

  • d11l

    Posts: 188

    Nov 18, 2013 10:24 PM GMT
    Aristoshark saidUseful information:

    1. It's cold up there. Like really, really cold. Dress warmly.
    2. Learn to enjoy Kraft Macaroni 'n' Cheese, which they adorably call "Kraft Dinner" or just "KD". They sometimes eat it with maple syrup. Actually, they eat nearly everything with maple syrup.
    3. Become very polite. Unless you're the fat, out-of-control mayor of the largest city. Then, like Cartman, do what you want.
    4. Learn to misspell words in a quaint olde English fashion, such as putting useless "u"s into words like color and neighbor.
    5. Learn to like hockey. Or at least pretend to care.
    6. Half their money is in weird-looking coins. They also have cute names for money like "loony" and "toony". They think they're living in Warner Bros. cartoons. Actually, they kind of are.


    You're wrong...
    We only eat maple syrup. Everything else is just seasoning.
  • Pontifex

    Posts: 1882

    Nov 18, 2013 10:33 PM GMT
    d11l said
    Aristoshark saidUseful information:

    1. It's cold up there. Like really, really cold. Dress warmly.
    2. Learn to enjoy Kraft Macaroni 'n' Cheese, which they adorably call "Kraft Dinner" or just "KD". They sometimes eat it with maple syrup. Actually, they eat nearly everything with maple syrup.
    3. Become very polite. Unless you're the fat, out-of-control mayor of the largest city. Then, like Cartman, do what you want.
    4. Learn to misspell words in a quaint olde English fashion, such as putting useless "u"s into words like color and neighbor.
    5. Learn to like hockey. Or at least pretend to care.
    6. Half their money is in weird-looking coins. They also have cute names for money like "loony" and "toony". They think they're living in Warner Bros. cartoons. Actually, they kind of are.


    You're wrong...
    We only eat maple syrup. Everything else is just seasoning.


    I'm sorry fellow Canadians. I may be the one responsible for that comment. Although I may have been under the influence at the time....

    Please remember to respect the moose. They are kind of like cows in India. They wander the streets of our largest cities searching for processed cheese. If you provide one with a slice of kraft cheese he may grant you a wish.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 10:33 PM GMT
    Vancouver is by far the most beautiful with the best standard of living, however, it's also the most expensive place to live in all of North America (you can save yourself money by moving to Manhattan it's that ridiculously expensive).

    Job-wise in Vancouver (and the rest of BC) - good prospects. The economy here is healthy and full of opportunity. Like anywhere else though - it's who you know not what you know. Network and connect as much as you can wherever you decide to move to.

    Good luck!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 10:37 PM GMT
    Error saidHave skills that the government desires and you're set.


    This. A few years ago, I almost bought an apartment in Vancouver and looked into applying for permanent residency. I couldn't even get the points required to begin the application process (and I'm no slouch). You've just got to have a skill that is in short supply in Canada.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 10:44 PM GMT
    Asking what the best city is is impossible to answer. If you like, big, Montreal or Toronto.

    If you hate the cold and love the rain, Vancouver.

    If you don't mind something slightly less isolated than the arctic, testicle destroying temperatures winter lows, 20 feet of snow, a spring that starts in June and a fall that starts in August, choose Alberta - you get a free cowboy hat.

    Personally I think anyone would be crazy to choose anywhere but Toronto (if they're choosing out of the larger cities) but that's just my opinion. The great lakes keep it relatively mild (by Canadian standards) in the winter...towns inland and outside Toronto can be much colder and see snow far sooner. Its unlikely we see snow in Toronto until at least December and by March its warming up again. Even in Jan/Feb there are many snow free days. Every now and then though we get dumped on and panic.

    We also elect absurd mayors but its better than stepping on a needle in Vancouver or having your tongue cut out by the language police in Montreal.
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    Nov 18, 2013 11:30 PM GMT
    Error said
    eagermuscle saidBring $800K for a crappy house and another $60K to renovate the kitchen and basement - if all those HGTV shows are to be believed.

    Where the hell is that? lol Obviously, like the US, it depends where you're talking about.

    Where I am from, 800K would get you like 6000 square feet of luxury.

    I think most of those shows are filmed in Toronto and Vancouver. Obviously you'd get more for your money in Saskatchewan!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 18, 2013 11:40 PM GMT
    Vancouver is seriously awesome .
    But costly . Especially housing
  • Apparition

    Posts: 3529

    Nov 19, 2013 12:56 AM GMT
    I havent been too many places outside southern ontario, but I live where a third of the country lives.

    Geographically it is all the same here. Flattish boring farmland. Drive a half hour in any direction (without traffic) and you are on a farm. Even in toronto mostly.

    There will be pockets of trees and open fields anywhere in southern ontario. Toronto is a big metro area of 3 million people on a lake they dont use recreationally, but the only exciting parts are maybe 10-20 blocks along the main road north-south and maybe 30 blocks east west. The rest is just miles and miles of non-descript suburbs.

    Pretty much every other city here (from 300 000-500 000 size cities are really just suburbs too, with a little "mainstreet" in each one for historical value). If you dont live in downtown toronto, it doesnt matter where you live really, all the same life.

    There is no real entertainment or culture in any of the cities other than toronto because Toronto is a black hole an hour away that just sucks up all the things that are held in southern ontario. (northern ontario is way huge, but just a billion acres of trees and lakes and mosquitos)

    If you want a nice quiet life in the suburbs, you can live anywhere in southern ontario interchangeably, house prices more than 40 minutes from toronto are pretty much all the same give or take a hundred grand. A typical 3 bedroom house nothing special with a back yard maybe 35mx15m is 350K$ and up. A townhouse a little less. In toronto the same house would be a 800 000$- million$ or so.

    You are not owning property anywhere in southern ontario for less than $200 000 and that would be a place students would live.

    There are no slums in ontario pretty much, propery taxes take care of that...a few thousand dollars a year for the cheap houses means you cant just speculate leaving a house sit. Virtually every house in ontario is occupied, and because of snow it is heated or the water would freeze, so they need heat, thus power, and a roof too or the property bylaw guys would be after you.


    compared to SA, you wont see any black people to speak of, outside of toronto, but lots of asians of all kinds.

    good jobs are hard to actually get, but once you have one, you are pretty much set for a while, people dont change jobs too often here.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2013 1:49 AM GMT
    You're from South Africa.
    If I were you, I would spend one week anywhere in Canada in winter before going too far in my plans...
  • Karl

    Posts: 5787

    Nov 19, 2013 2:14 AM GMT
    me too.
    I've been contemplating for this all the time.
    What I should do next if I have a master degree there?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2013 3:11 AM GMT
    Well, didn't get much out of it except for information about the weather. Contemplating this move myself specifically for independence and tolerance.
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    Nov 19, 2013 3:16 AM GMT
    d11l said
    Aristoshark saidUseful information:

    1. It's cold up there. Like really, really cold. Dress warmly.
    2. Learn to enjoy Kraft Macaroni 'n' Cheese, which they adorably call "Kraft Dinner" or just "KD". They sometimes eat it with maple syrup. Actually, they eat nearly everything with maple syrup.
    3. Become very polite. Unless you're the fat, out-of-control mayor of the largest city. Then, like Cartman, do what you want.
    4. Learn to misspell words in a quaint olde English fashion, such as putting useless "u"s into words like color and neighbor.
    5. Learn to like hockey. Or at least pretend to care.
    6. Half their money is in weird-looking coins. They also have cute names for money like "loony" and "toony". They think they're living in Warner Bros. cartoons. Actually, they kind of are.


    You're wrong...
    We only eat maple syrup. Everything else is just seasoning.


    What about poutine? I FUCKING LOVE POUTINE!!!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2013 4:01 AM GMT
    GAMRican said

    What about poutine? I FUCKING LOVE POUTINE!!!

    Alan has his priorities straight <3
  • Apparition

    Posts: 3529

    Nov 19, 2013 4:47 AM GMT
    okay other information about how it is to live here. Based on a complaint from a guy from india.

    it is lonely. you will maybe nod to your neighbours if you share a driveway. but more than one house away you will probably have no clue who lives there. People really dont have time for other people or care about them unless they intersect in something interactive. If you have kids (probably not) you might know a few more neighbours.

    People at work will chat with you, but dont expect to make too many friends there (you can work with people for years and if you change jobs you will never see them again)

    In general the races are civil to each other since nobody in canada really did much historically wrong (the natives are pretty much on reserves and keep to themselves, or basically pass for white off reserve, nobody really pays much attention to them). The blacks are carribean (and have that machismo thing) or actually african (which also tend not to have a slavery chip on their shoulder) so they are very different than american blacks in movies.for the most part EBONICS thankfully doesnt exist here. By second generation they are pretty much all oreos. Asians are pretty much integrated by second generation (most of them now) and pretty much quiet, reserved and mostly background wallpaper as far as tension in white society (in ontario at least - elsewhere they are invading rich people more denigraded for being wealthy than any particular race). Anyone showing a lot of religion in general will be generally shunned as annoying, this includes christians, muslims, and any others. Jews in ontario are invisible, you are far more likely to see mennonites with horse and buggies than jews for instance.

    Lately anyone under 30 is pretty much a cell phone zombie, so they are background annonymous walking figures you wont interact with. You will learn to feel superior to the angry, flamboyant, annoying, boisterous, warmongering always complaining americans you see on tv, and make fun of them, while secretly devouring every decent product they make. You will consider 99% of Americans ignorant hicks and the other 1% just like you only more successful.


    Pretty much if you tell someone at work or of little consequence that you are gay you will get a shrug, or a "I have a gay uncle" or something if they are 0-45, boomer ages will be politically correct about it to your face, seniors think everyone younger is crazy so just add you to the pile. Recent brown immigrants would be slightly more hostile and try to convert you to their cause, but afterward avoid the subject if forced to be together. Neighbourhoods are in no way segregated by race, and rarely by wealth, most people are middle class, very little horrific poverty and very little ostentatious wealth on the high end...rich people tend to live out in the country rather than in walled enclaves like the US. You can walk at night anywhere safely (except maybe one sector of toronto where black people are that is always in the news due to bad housing design and it is a poorer area, but mostly exaggerated, but has some gang violence...but they mostly kill each other a few times a year nothing serious). Non-domestic murders in canada are maybe a few hundred a year, and that would be mostly idiots with personal grudges late at night and drug related.

    Canada does not suffer from the cult of "veteranitis" so you will never hear about anyone being a soldier, or shipping out, or even know any soldiers or know where they train etc.

    50% of Canadians are from SMALL towns, and are decent people and stereotypically polite. Canada is a very linear country so everyone lives by the US border. Unless they are from the EAST coast they tend to stay in the areas they were born in, and are more likely to move singly, rather than with families. Once people start families, they dont move out of province anymore.

    Big towns have lots of immigrants, smaller towns will have none. You might get paid a little more working in a large city, but otherwise pay is based on the job not the area. (alberta is an anomoly, they pay more because nobody actually can stand being there in the winter and it is all oil money, which inflates things) tends to be a lot of younger guys there with big trucks and redneckish by canadian standards.


    As far as fashion, from December to March you will be wearing THIS on nice days.

    winter-clothes-s.jpg?w=655

    REAL Canadians consider this to be acceptable down to -25C

    02656h.jpg?file=media%2Fcontent%2F_maste

    in summer, we all have fond memories of this:
    1336578279302_ORIGINAL.jpg?quality=80&si

    Air conditioning in summer at home is not quite standard, as it is expensive and most people just suffer through the few weeks in July (or lately february) when it is 30C and humid as fuck. It is rarely every really "nice" except a few days which you will remember fondly and think of more as "at least it isnt TOO HOT or TOO COLD like it will be soon). From November to February it is basically dark after work, but May to September is is light out til 9pm. You will shovel show out of your driveway every morning if you plan on driving which takes at least half an hour by hand. This is rare, but fell in 12 hours:

    541539_10151463230905115_1774446634_n.jp

    oh ya, non-existent intercity public transportation, no trains, one bus a day type of thing
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2013 5:01 AM GMT
    With respect to the longer posts in here, Apparition's pretty much got it nailed. Nivek, dunnox and k3l3k0 also provide some great information.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Nov 19, 2013 5:12 AM GMT
    Americans want moar footage of Rob Ford!!!! He's the funniest thing out of Canada since John Candy.icon_smile.gif
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    Nov 19, 2013 6:11 AM GMT
    Apparition said ...(the natives are pretty much on reserves and keep to themselves, or basically pass for white off reserve, nobody really pays much attention to them)...



    lmao! (so true)