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The Best Provinces to Live and Work in Canada [2021 Exclusive Guide]

October 7, 2021BY Dale Carroll

Choosing a new country is a big decision.

Canada is a big country. Your experience in the nation—and the immigration programs that will be open to you—can vary wildly from province to province.

That’s why we wanted to take the time to create this extensive guide to the various provinces in Canada. We want you to have all the information so that you can make an informed decision about moving to our beautiful country. 

What makes Canada so special?

Immigrants are flocking to Canada right now, and with good reason. It’s a multicultural nation that welcomes over 310,000 immigrants into the country every single year. 

The economy is strong, the educational system is top-notch, the tech sector is growing, and Canada’s universal healthcare system is one of the best in the world. 

How to choose which Canadian province to move to

In some regards the province you will want to move to may depend on the immigration programs that are available in that process, as well as the location of any employers who might want to sponsor you, any existing family members that might be bringing you over with family-based immigration, or any schools you’ve been accepted to.

Yet if you’re trying to decide between immigration programs or provinces you can make some decisions based on the culture of the province, the climate of the province, the cost of living in the province, and the amenities that would be available to you in certain parts of the province.

British Columbia

Vibrant cityscapes, diverse cultures, and booming employment make BC an excellent choice for any immigrant. Culture, nightlife, and a wide variety of restaurants contrast with gorgeous natural landscapes to create a province that has something for everyone. It’s home to a rainforest (the Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve), numerous ski resorts, and incredible opportunities for both hiking and kayaking. 

You don’t have to live in Vancouver, either: Surrey offers a wealth of opportunities; Saanich has the lowest unemployment rate in Canada and Victoria is full of old-world charm.

The cost of living is higher in this province than any other, though this is also offset with higher wages and low unemployment. 

Programs for immigrants include programs for skilled workers, healthcare professionals, qualified semi-skilled employees, and programs for entrepreneurs. 

Ontario

Ontario offers similar economic opportunities to British Columbia but does so while providing a lower cost of living. The quality of life is exceptionally high: low crime, gorgeous landscapes, and a healthy job market ensure that you can build a life for yourself.

Choose the right area in Ontario to get the experience you want: the urban lifestyle is quite different from the rural one. There are in-between options: Hamilton and Thunder Bay offer amenities and job opportunities in a modest-city environment, meaning you don’t have to choose Ottawa or Toronto. 

No matter where you choose to live you’ll be in some of the safest cities in the world. 

Ottawa offers several programs that immigrants can take advantage of, including: the Human Capital Priorities Express Entry Stream, the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Express Entry Stream, the Employer Job Offer: In-Demand Skills Stream, the International Students category, and the Express Entry Skilled Trades & French Worker Stream. Reach out to our offices to discover which immigration office is right for you. 

Quebec

If you’re a native of a French-speaking country then you’ll be right at home in Quebec, where French, not English, is the official language of the province. 

It’s also an excellent location for individuals who want to immigrate by starting businesses in Canada. It has worked hard to keep operating costs low for business. It serves as the Canadian center for venture capital and has the lowest tax rate on corporate profits in North America.

It’s also facing labor shortages, which means there are plenty of job opportunities to choose from. There are numerous educational opportunities, including access to McGill University, one of the top in the country and in the world. 

The cost of living is very reasonable, and is lower than the cost of living both in British Columbia and in Ontario.

There are numerous immigration programs to choose from, including programs for permanent workers, business people, temporary workers, foreign students, families, and enterprises. 

Alberta

Don’t want to pay provincial income tax? Then Alberta’s worth a look. The cost of living is low, the economy is strong, and there are thousands of wide-open spaces to enjoy. Jobs are available in the oil, finance, and tourism fields. The province is also home to multiple colleges, universities, and trade schools.

Alberta is welcoming to numerous faiths, including Hindus, Muslims, Jewish, and Buddhist peoples. 

Alberta is also actively seeking immigrants thanks to massive labor shortages. They offer the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program for people with skills to fill job shortages, programs for self-employed farmers and entrepreneurs, programs for foreign graduates, and more. 

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is widely acknowledged as one of Canada’s most beautiful provinces. If you’d like to enjoy a seaside lifestyle in a place that offers one of Canada’s lowest costs of living, then Nova Scotia is the place to be. The pace of life is a lot slower here compared to the rest of the country, a fact that’s appreciated by many. 

There are fewer job opportunities in this province than there are in some of the others. If you want to immigrate to Nova Scotia you’ll want to make sure you have a solid, long-term job opportunity lined up.

One of the easiest ways to move to this province is to apply to a Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP). These programs favor those who meet certain labor market needs, as well as physicians, entrepreneurs, and skilled workers. There’s also an express entry program that may benefit many immigrants.  

Which province has the best education in Canada?

British Columbia is widely recognized for having the best school system, followed closely by Ontario and Alberta. This information is based both on K-12 indicators and on college and university indicators. This is also based on the skills and outcomes of adults in the working population.

Which province has the best healthcare in Canada?

British Columbia scores the highest grade on Canada’s health report card. It’s also got the third-best healthcare system in the world, ranking just behind Switzerland and Sweden. 

Within Canada, Ontario is in second place, followed closely by Quebec and Alberta. 

What’s the most beautiful province in Canada?

Beauty is subjective, but Nova Scotia is widely considered to be Canada’s most beautiful province. Rolling green hills and coastal sea cliffs mingle with gorgeous fishing villages to create a truly unforgettable landscape.

What’s the safest province in Canada?

Quebec is ranked as the #1 safest province in Canada, with Canada’s lowest crime rate. In addition, Quebec had fewer dangerous crimes than other provinces.

Need help immigrating to Canada?

You’ve got many options. Once you’ve chosen the province you want to live in you’ll also need a great deal of help to ensure that your immigration application is as strong as possible.

Our immigration attorneys have decades of experience helping people just like you achieve their dreams of living, working, studying, and becoming a permanent resident in the Canadian provinces of their choice. 

We have attorneys who speak fluent Punjabi and Mandarin and are ready to help.

Get started by calling our Surrey office at (604) 394-2777 today.

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