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Expat stories

Shubhendu Tripathi photo
Expat Advice: Moving from India to Canada
Shubhendu Tripathi
Has been living in Canada for 5 years

Expat Advice: Moving from India to Canada

Short Bio
Shubhendu Tripathi is a software engineer and the founder of AWSAP Consultancy Services in Kitchener, Canada. Originally from India, Shubhendu landed a tech internship through AIESEC and moved to Quebec in October 2014. Before starting his own consulting company, Shubhendu worked as a SAP ABAP Developer for Leclerc Foods and co-founded MealSurfers, a platform for those looking to earn an additional income with their cooking. 

What made you decide to relocate to Canada? How long have you been here?
I am lucky to have grown up in an era of disruption. Whether it was Apple or Facebook from the USA or BlackBerry from Canada, these new companies were changing the way business worked. However, it really made me think that what was so special about the culture of North America that all the leading tech companies were coming from the region. And when I got accepted for an international internship in Canada, I decided to come see it for myself. It was more than 5 and a half years ago, and I still surprise myself with the innovative companies and people that I meet here on a daily basis.

How did you search for a job in Canada? Any tips for those seeking similar work?
I was a part of AIESEC, a leading student organization. It was this organization which helped me secure an internship in Canada. 

There are many ways to find work in Canada. Apart from AIESEC, one can also check out Canada.ca. They have a lot of information if you are looking to get work. Always remember, Canada is a very welcoming country especially if you are talented in your field and are really passionate about it.

What was the visa process like? What type of visa did you apply for?
Overall, the visa process took me two months or three. As to the visa type, I applied for the W2 worker visa. To obtain it, you should provide your education history, a job offer letter, CAQ, Labour Market Opinion number (now called LMIA – Labour Market Impact Assessment). As I remember, the visa cost me about 170-200 CAD. 

Did you have to apply for another type of visa to keep on working in Canada after the internship? 
It was for the same kind of work permit but with extended dates.

If you could travel back in time, would you change anything?
I have had many adventures in Canada. From learning to speak in French to failing miserably in alpine skiing. Each experience has only made me feel more alive. I wouldn’t want to change any of it.

What are the best things about living and working in Canada?
There are all kinds of jobs and companies. If you want a normal 9-5 corporate job or want to work with an innovative startup, there is something for everyone. Quality of life is very good. Irrespective of your background and your country of origin, you will always feel at home.

What have been some of the most challenging moments so far?
The winter ;)

According to Numbeo, the average cost of rent for a one-bedroom apartment in downtown Toronto is C$1,708. Is it true? 
Yes. The rents have increased in the last few years. While Toronto and Vancouver stay on the expensive side, Montreal, Calgary, and Edmonton have decent rental rates considering the salaries in those cities.

Can you name a couple of websites that can help in finding an apartment in Canada and Toronto specifically?
Kijiji.ca and Realtor.ca are the two popular sites.

Is it affordable to buy a flat in Toronto?
This depends on a lot of factors:

  1. Do you have money for downpayment already?
  2. Do you have a permanent job? A lot of jobs in Canada are contractual. If you are self-employed, it’s a bit tricky (not impossible) to get a mortgage approval.
  3. The real estate in Toronto is a bit unpredictable right now. The government is bringing a lot of changes to control the price rise. It will be more clear by the end of Q1 of 2018.

A few words about public transport in Toronto. Is it essential to have a car?
If you have to commute within Toronto, you have a lot of options in Subway, buses, streetcars, cheap uberPOOL. If you live in the suburbs and want to commute to Toronto for work, there is efficient and not so expensive Go trains and buses.

If you live in/around Toronto and your work is in the Suburbs or outside 50km radius, you really need to have a car. Owning a car while living and working in Toronto is both expensive and not worth it.

Do you have any advice for tech people considering job relocation to Canada?
Always keep yourself updated with the latest technology trends. Especially in the following – AR, VR, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. Another important thing to do is to make sure that your skillset is not concentrated in one direction. Employers would normally prefer a Full Stack developer anytime over a backend or frontend programmer.

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Salary calculator

$ 58000

A minimum base salary for relocation starts at $ 58000 per year, while more leading roles (architects, team leads) can bring you gross annual income of $ 90000, without bonuses.

*The figures are imprecise and reflect the approximate salary range in this country. Keep in mind that the salaries you’re offered when relocating may differ from those you can get already living in the country.

Annual net income:
$ 46134 € 0000

Monthly net income:
$ 3845 € 0000

Explore cities

General

Toronto, as a provincial capital of Ontario, is the most populous city in Canada. This city is well-known for music, theater, motion picture and television production. As a global city, Toronto is an international business and commercial center. Furthermore, this city is remarkably safe. Generally, the crime rate in Canada is much lower than in the United States. There are two official languages in Canada – English, and French, but French is the 12th most spoken language in this city. Another interesting fact is that 50% of the population of Toronto was born outside of Canada.

5th

largest city in North America

50%

of the population is foreign-born

50%

of Toronto's workforce possesses university degree or college diploma

2nd

most business-friendly city in the world after Hong Kong


Cost of living

Property prices
  • Apartment rent (small) in City Centre $ 1,332
  • Apartment (small) Outside of Centre $ 1,040
  • Apartment (big) in City Centre $ 2,353
  • Apartment (big) Outside of Centre $ 1,688
Utilities (monthy)
  • Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for big apartment $ 98
  • Internet $ 49
Transportation
  • One-way Ticket (Local Transport) $ 2.5
  • Monthly Pass (Regular Price) $ 114
  • Taxi 1km ride $ 1.4
  • Gasoline (1 liter) $ 0.9
Food & Restaraunts
  • The average food basket $ 46                                                                                                                                                                                       milk (1 liter), 1 bread (500g), eggs (12), local cheese (1kg), chicken breasts (1kg), apples (1kg), potato (1kg), water (1,5 liter), a bottle of wine, domestic beer (0,5l bottle)
  • Lunch $ 12
  • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course $ 55
  • Beer $ 5
  • Cappuccino (regular) $ 3
  • Coke/Pepsi (0,33 liter bottle) $ 1.4
Sports and leisure
  • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $ 42
  • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat $ 11

Healthcare

Toronto has 20 public hospitals and some medical research universities. For instance, there is a Discovery District in Toronto — a center of research in biomedicine. Here's the list of hospitals in Toronto. As English is an official language, it is very comfortable to communicate with doctors in Toronto without any trouble for expats. 

Medications are provided by pharmacies and medication counseling in Toronto and can be found easily. Here's the list of Toronto pharmacies that work 24 hours.  

Everybody, who lives in Canada has to apply for public health insurance. If you have it, you don't have to pay for basic services, because healthcare is paid through taxes. Furthermore, it is publicly funded and administered on a provincial basis. However, private insurance, which is usually offered by employers, includes more services. For instance, dental services, which are not included in public healthcare. Individually, Canadians spend about $3,300 per capita on health care.

More about Health care in Canada


Education

There is one interesting fact that in Canada the constitutional responsibility for higher education rests with the provinces of Canada. This means that there are different rules in higher education in every province. However, the organization of study programs is similar. There is the only difference between Quebec and rest Canada. In Quebec college is a pre-university programme and in rest on Canada college is a community college or technical school, where students can get a diploma, certificate or associate's degree. Moreover, universities offer Bachelor's, Master's and doctoral programs in different science fields.

Canadians pay about $5,040 for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, international undergraduate students pay about $11,920 and international postgraduate students pay near $35,550. 

Toronto's universities and colleges
More about higher education in Canada


Climate

Toronto, as a city with a humid continental climate, is considered as a place with warm, humid summers and cold winters with frequent snow. The average temperature in summer is 25°C (77°F) and in winter -3°C (28°F). Toronto experiences 4 seasons with different lengths.

 25°C

average summer temperature

-3°C

average winter temperature

301days

of measurable sunshine


Safety

Toronto, as a safe city, has a safety level of 64% safe according to Numbeo's rating. This city is in top 10 Safest Cities in the World according to the Economist Intelligence Unit. However, it is recommended to avoid the following areas: Jane & Finch area, St. Jamestown, Regent Park & Moss Park, Cabbagetown (after dark), Kipling & Albion area, Neilson & Finch, and the Malvern area. And about crime, Toronto is also very safe for residents.

64/100

Numbeo Safety Index


Economy

Toronto, as a city with a large economy, is considered as a financial capital of Canada. For instance, five largest financial institutions of Canada (the Big Five) are headquartered in Toronto. There is one interesting fact that the economy of Toronto is the largest contributor to the Canadian economy. The unemployment rate in this city is only 6,7%. That's why there are a lot of expats in Toronto.

$1448

Minimum monthly salary

$3911

Average monthly

salary


People

Expat communities are common in Toronto because there you can connect with other expats, find friends and help, if it is needed. Here are some of them:

InterNations 
Expat Meetups in Toronto

  • General

    Toronto, as a provincial capital of Ontario, is the most populous city in Canada. This city is well-known for music, theater, motion picture and television production. As a global city, Toronto is an international business and commercial center. Furthermore, this city is remarkably safe. Generally, the crime rate in Canada is much lower than in the United States. There are two official languages in Canada – English, and French, but French is the 12th most spoken language in this city. Another interesting fact is that 50% of the population of Toronto was born outside of Canada.

    5th

    largest city in North America

    50%

    of the population is foreign-born

    50%

    of Toronto's workforce possesses university degree or college diploma

    2nd

    most business-friendly city in the world after Hong Kong

  • Cost of living

    Property prices
    • Apartment rent (small) in City Centre $ 1,332
    • Apartment (small) Outside of Centre $ 1,040
    • Apartment (big) in City Centre $ 2,353
    • Apartment (big) Outside of Centre $ 1,688
    Utilities (monthy)
    • Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for big apartment $ 98
    • Internet $ 49
    Transportation
    • One-way Ticket (Local Transport) $ 2.5
    • Monthly Pass (Regular Price) $ 114
    • Taxi 1km ride $ 1.4
    • Gasoline (1 liter) $ 0.9
    Food & Restaraunts
    • The average food basket $ 46                                                                                                                                                                                       milk (1 liter), 1 bread (500g), eggs (12), local cheese (1kg), chicken breasts (1kg), apples (1kg), potato (1kg), water (1,5 liter), a bottle of wine, domestic beer (0,5l bottle)
    • Lunch $ 12
    • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course $ 55
    • Beer $ 5
    • Cappuccino (regular) $ 3
    • Coke/Pepsi (0,33 liter bottle) $ 1.4
    Sports and leisure
    • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $ 42
    • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat $ 11
  • Healthcare

    Toronto has 20 public hospitals and some medical research universities. For instance, there is a Discovery District in Toronto — a center of research in biomedicine. Here's the list of hospitals in Toronto. As English is an official language, it is very comfortable to communicate with doctors in Toronto without any trouble for expats. 

    Medications are provided by pharmacies and medication counseling in Toronto and can be found easily. Here's the list of Toronto pharmacies that work 24 hours.  

    Everybody, who lives in Canada has to apply for public health insurance. If you have it, you don't have to pay for basic services, because healthcare is paid through taxes. Furthermore, it is publicly funded and administered on a provincial basis. However, private insurance, which is usually offered by employers, includes more services. For instance, dental services, which are not included in public healthcare. Individually, Canadians spend about $3,300 per capita on health care.

    More about Health care in Canada

  • Education

    There is one interesting fact that in Canada the constitutional responsibility for higher education rests with the provinces of Canada. This means that there are different rules in higher education in every province. However, the organization of study programs is similar. There is the only difference between Quebec and rest Canada. In Quebec college is a pre-university programme and in rest on Canada college is a community college or technical school, where students can get a diploma, certificate or associate's degree. Moreover, universities offer Bachelor's, Master's and doctoral programs in different science fields.

    Canadians pay about $5,040 for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, international undergraduate students pay about $11,920 and international postgraduate students pay near $35,550. 

    Toronto's universities and colleges
    More about higher education in Canada

  • Climate

    Toronto, as a city with a humid continental climate, is considered as a place with warm, humid summers and cold winters with frequent snow. The average temperature in summer is 25°C (77°F) and in winter -3°C (28°F). Toronto experiences 4 seasons with different lengths.

     25°C

    average summer temperature

    -3°C

    average winter temperature

    301days

    of measurable sunshine

  • Safety

    Toronto, as a safe city, has a safety level of 64% safe according to Numbeo's rating. This city is in top 10 Safest Cities in the World according to the Economist Intelligence Unit. However, it is recommended to avoid the following areas: Jane & Finch area, St. Jamestown, Regent Park & Moss Park, Cabbagetown (after dark), Kipling & Albion area, Neilson & Finch, and the Malvern area. And about crime, Toronto is also very safe for residents.

    64/100

    Numbeo Safety Index

  • Economy

    Toronto, as a city with a large economy, is considered as a financial capital of Canada. For instance, five largest financial institutions of Canada (the Big Five) are headquartered in Toronto. There is one interesting fact that the economy of Toronto is the largest contributor to the Canadian economy. The unemployment rate in this city is only 6,7%. That's why there are a lot of expats in Toronto.

    $1448

    Minimum monthly salary

    $3911

    Average monthly

    salary

  • People

    Expat communities are common in Toronto because there you can connect with other expats, find friends and help, if it is needed. Here are some of them:

    InterNations 
    Expat Meetups in Toronto

Climate


  • Climate

General

Vancouver, as the most populous city in British Columbia, is a coastal seaport city in Canada. This city is in the list of top 5 cities in the world for the quality of life. As a global city, Vancouver hosted a lot of international events and conferences. Furthermore, Vancouver is ranked among Canada's most expensive cities to live in and, according to Forbes, this city is on the 6th place in the world with the overpriced real estate market. At the same time, Vancouver is the 10th cleanest city in the world. Another interesting fact is that Vancouver is the second-largest destination for immigrants.

3rd

most “livable place in the world”

10th

cleanest city in the world

35%

of the population is foreign-born

15M

tourists visit the city each year


Cost of living

Property prices
  • Apartment rent (small) in City Centre $ 1,442
  • Apartment (small) Outside of Centre $ 1,093
  • Apartment (big) in City Centre $ 2,901
  • Apartment (big) Outside of Centre $ 2,013
Utilities (monthy)
  • Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for big apartment $ 62
  • Internet $ 53
Transportation
  • One-way Ticket (Local Transport) $ 2
  • Monthly Pass (Regular Price) $ 73
  • Taxi 1km ride $ 1.5
  • Gasoline (1 liter) $ 1
Food & Restaraunts
  • The average food basket $ 53                                                                                                                                                                                         milk (1 liter), 1 bread (500g), eggs (12), local cheese (1kg), chicken breasts (1kg), apples (1kg), potato (1kg), water (1,5 liter), a bottle of wine, domestic beer (0,5l bottle)
  • Lunch $ 12
  • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course $ 51
  • Beer $ 5
  • Cappuccino (regular) $ 3.2
  • Coke/Pepsi (0,33 liter bottle) $ 1.6
Sports and leisure
  • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult  $ 39
  • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat $ 11

Healthcare

Vancouver is a city with high standards of healthcare. There are a number of clinics, hospitals, medical research universities in this city. Here's the list of hospitals in Vancouver. As English is an official language, so it is very comfortable to communicate with doctors in Vancouver without any trouble for expats. Furthermore, you can visit a special service for people who are looking for a family doctor. 

Medications are provided by pharmacies in Vancouver and can be found easily. Here's the list of pharmacies that work in Vancouver.   

Everybody, who lives in Canada has to apply for public health insurance. If you have it, you don't have to pay for basic services, because healthcare is paid through taxes. Furthermore, it is publicly funded and administered on a provincial basis. However, private insurance, which is usually offered by employers, includes more services. For instance, dental services, which are not included in public healthcare. Individually, Canadians spend about $3,300 per capita on health care.

Canadian Health Care
More about Health care in Canada


Education

There is one interesting fact that in Canada the constitutional responsibility for higher education rests with the provinces of Canada. This means that there are different rules in higher education in every province. However, the organization of study programs is similar. There is the only difference between Quebec and rest Canada. In Quebec college is a pre-university programme and in rest on Canada college is a community college or technical school, where students can get a diploma, certificate or associate's degree. Moreover, universities offer Bachelor's, Master's and doctoral programs in different science fields.

Canadians pay about $5,040 for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, international undergraduate students pay about $11,920 and international postgraduate students pay near $35,550. 

Universities, Colleges and Business schools in Vancouver
More about higher education in Canada


Climate

Vancouver, as a city with an oceanic or marine west coast climate, is considered as a place with cool, dry summers and wet, warm winters. The average temperature in summer is 22°C (72°F) and in winter 7°C (45°F). Vancouver is one of the wettest cities in Canada.

 22°C

average summer temperature

C

average winter temperature

11days

of snow per year


Safety

Vancouver, as a safe city, has a safety level of 64% safe according to Numbeo's rating. However, lock your car every time you walk somewhere as Vancouver has the highest car break-in rate in North America. And about crime, Vancouver is very safe for residents.

64/100

Numbeo Safety Index


Economy

Vancouver, as a city with a big economy, is considered as one of the nation's largest industrial centers of Canada. Port Metro Vancouver is the biggest port in Canada, which does more than C$172 billion in trade. Furthermore, Vancouver is now a center for software development, biotechnology, and video game development. Vancouver is also one of the most diverse cities in Canada, so it can be an ideal place for expats.

$1459

Minimum monthly salary

$4467

Average monthly

salary


People

Expat communities are common in Vancouver, so there you can connect with other expats, find friends and help, if it is needed. Here are some of them:

InterNations 
Expat Meetups in Vancouver

  • General

    Vancouver, as the most populous city in British Columbia, is a coastal seaport city in Canada. This city is in the list of top 5 cities in the world for the quality of life. As a global city, Vancouver hosted a lot of international events and conferences. Furthermore, Vancouver is ranked among Canada's most expensive cities to live in and, according to Forbes, this city is on the 6th place in the world with the overpriced real estate market. At the same time, Vancouver is the 10th cleanest city in the world. Another interesting fact is that Vancouver is the second-largest destination for immigrants.

    3rd

    most “livable place in the world”

    10th

    cleanest city in the world

    35%

    of the population is foreign-born

    15M

    tourists visit the city each year

  • Cost of living

    Property prices
    • Apartment rent (small) in City Centre $ 1,442
    • Apartment (small) Outside of Centre $ 1,093
    • Apartment (big) in City Centre $ 2,901
    • Apartment (big) Outside of Centre $ 2,013
    Utilities (monthy)
    • Basic (Electricity, Heating, Water, Garbage) for big apartment $ 62
    • Internet $ 53
    Transportation
    • One-way Ticket (Local Transport) $ 2
    • Monthly Pass (Regular Price) $ 73
    • Taxi 1km ride $ 1.5
    • Gasoline (1 liter) $ 1
    Food & Restaraunts
    • The average food basket $ 53                                                                                                                                                                                         milk (1 liter), 1 bread (500g), eggs (12), local cheese (1kg), chicken breasts (1kg), apples (1kg), potato (1kg), water (1,5 liter), a bottle of wine, domestic beer (0,5l bottle)
    • Lunch $ 12
    • Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course $ 51
    • Beer $ 5
    • Cappuccino (regular) $ 3.2
    • Coke/Pepsi (0,33 liter bottle) $ 1.6
    Sports and leisure
    • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult  $ 39
    • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat $ 11
  • Healthcare

    Vancouver is a city with high standards of healthcare. There are a number of clinics, hospitals, medical research universities in this city. Here's the list of hospitals in Vancouver. As English is an official language, so it is very comfortable to communicate with doctors in Vancouver without any trouble for expats. Furthermore, you can visit a special service for people who are looking for a family doctor. 

    Medications are provided by pharmacies in Vancouver and can be found easily. Here's the list of pharmacies that work in Vancouver.   

    Everybody, who lives in Canada has to apply for public health insurance. If you have it, you don't have to pay for basic services, because healthcare is paid through taxes. Furthermore, it is publicly funded and administered on a provincial basis. However, private insurance, which is usually offered by employers, includes more services. For instance, dental services, which are not included in public healthcare. Individually, Canadians spend about $3,300 per capita on health care.

    Canadian Health Care
    More about Health care in Canada

  • Education

    There is one interesting fact that in Canada the constitutional responsibility for higher education rests with the provinces of Canada. This means that there are different rules in higher education in every province. However, the organization of study programs is similar. There is the only difference between Quebec and rest Canada. In Quebec college is a pre-university programme and in rest on Canada college is a community college or technical school, where students can get a diploma, certificate or associate's degree. Moreover, universities offer Bachelor's, Master's and doctoral programs in different science fields.

    Canadians pay about $5,040 for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, international undergraduate students pay about $11,920 and international postgraduate students pay near $35,550. 

    Universities, Colleges and Business schools in Vancouver
    More about higher education in Canada

  • Climate

    Vancouver, as a city with an oceanic or marine west coast climate, is considered as a place with cool, dry summers and wet, warm winters. The average temperature in summer is 22°C (72°F) and in winter 7°C (45°F). Vancouver is one of the wettest cities in Canada.

     22°C

    average summer temperature

    C

    average winter temperature

    11days

    of snow per year

  • Safety

    Vancouver, as a safe city, has a safety level of 64% safe according to Numbeo's rating. However, lock your car every time you walk somewhere as Vancouver has the highest car break-in rate in North America. And about crime, Vancouver is very safe for residents.

    64/100

    Numbeo Safety Index

  • Economy

    Vancouver, as a city with a big economy, is considered as one of the nation's largest industrial centers of Canada. Port Metro Vancouver is the biggest port in Canada, which does more than C$172 billion in trade. Furthermore, Vancouver is now a center for software development, biotechnology, and video game development. Vancouver is also one of the most diverse cities in Canada, so it can be an ideal place for expats.

    $1459

    Minimum monthly salary

    $4467

    Average monthly

    salary

  • People

    Expat communities are common in Vancouver, so there you can connect with other expats, find friends and help, if it is needed. Here are some of them:

    InterNations 
    Expat Meetups in Vancouver

Canada
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