Living in Canada: What You Need to Know (FAQ)

Written by: David Scott

Canada is considered by many an excellent country to live in. Not only do they provide free universal healthcare for all their citizens, but their economy has been performing well for the last 20 years. Canada has many natural beauties and federal environmental and recreational parks for citizens to explore for free. Is it worth moving to Canada? Let’s find out!

The people in Canada are notoriously very nice, and the main language spoken is English with various places speaking some French. Canada is also close to the high commerce of the United States, while providing a cheaper cost of living than the US and an excellent quality of life compared to other nations of the world. 

Average living costs in Canada

In 2022, Canada was the 25th most expensive country to live in in the world. Canada has a cost-of-living index of 70.22, which, compared to New York City, is 29.78% cheaper. Vancouver and Toronto are the most expensive cities to live in in Canada

Movingwaldo is an excellent source that breaks down the cost of living in Canada by various provinces and cities. Expenses such as insurance rates, groceries, cost of entertainment, and cost of transportation all vary depending on the region of Canada you move to. 

Is there a downside to living in Canada?

With any major life decision there will be downside. Moving to Canada is no different. Canada’s weather can be a turnoff to many people. In Canada, it gets cold. Depending on your place of residence, winters can last up to 8 months reaching lows near -40° F. Along with the general discomfort of cold weather, Canada requires clothes suitable for long, cold winters which can be an extra hidden cost when considering moving to Canada. 

Life in a Canadian city can be expensive. Taxes are higher, and the general cost of commodities in Canadian cities are higher than in rural areas. Canadian national parks and recreational areas are free for all citizens, which requires added taxes to maintain the organizations. 

Why should you not move to Canada?

Moving to Canada is a major decision, so it is important to consider both the positives and negatives. One of the daunting roadblocks to moving to Canada is the difficult immigration process. There is a limit to the number of people that can legally immigrate to Canada each year, which is around 250,000. 

The cap of 250,000 does not exclude any refugees the Canadian government wishes to accept. For this reason, it can be difficult to punch a ticket into immigrating to Canada. 

Housing in Canada is expensive and appears to be only getting more expensive. Owning your own home in Canada is becoming increasingly difficult causing many adults to stay at home until moving out and renting. Although housing costs are rising in Canada, they are still lower than housing costs in the US. 

Can a visitor get insurance in Canada?

Healthcare in Canada for non-Canadian citizens can be expensive. Visitors should explore their travel insurance options to find a comprehensive plan to cover their needs in case of an emergency. Visitors’ insurance for Canada can be purchased in your home country, in Canada, or in the US. 

How much is the insurance on visitor visa in Canada?

The cost of traveler’s insurance for a 14-day trip to Canada with $100,000 coverage and a zero deductible is typically in the range of $45 to $70 for a person in their mid-forties with no prior medical history. For a couple in their mid-forties the cost of traveler’s insurance is typically $85 to $140. 

Do you need insurance on visitor visa to Canada?

Other than a small number of cases where visitors were required to provide proof of insurance for the duration of their visit to Canada, visitors will not be required to have insurance on their visitor visa to Canada. 

Can foreigners buy insurance in Canada?

Individuals who are not citizens of Canada but are visiting the country can buy travelers insurance. Travelers insurance for Canada will accommodate health expenses and events you experience while visiting Canada. 

Who regulates insurance companies in Canada?

Property and Casualty (P & C) insurance companies in Canada are regulated by provincial or federal regulators referred to as Superintendents of Insurance. The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) regulates the federal solvency and financial soundness of most P & C companies (Information provided by the Insurance Bureau of Canada).

Is insurance regulated in Canada?

Insurance in Canada is regulated on both the provincial and federal levels. The most common insurance, property and casualty insurance companies, are regulated by governmental Superintendents of Insurance. 

Each province has its own insurance statute that is enforced by their respective Superintendent of Insurance. 

What is the role of the insurance regulator?

The role of insurance regulators in Canada is to uphold best practices throughout the various insurance industries and organizations. The Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators (CCRI) is an inter-jurisdictional association of insurance regulators that facilitate and promote an efficient and effective insurance regulatory system in Canada. Canadian insurance regulators serve public interest and work as a team to develop solutions to complex regulatory issues.  

Do non-citizens get free healthcare in Canada?

Non-Canadian citizens do not fall under the provisions set for free universal healthcare. Visitors’ healthcare and hospital treatments will not be paid for by Canada. 

In order to avoid hefty healthcare costs in the event of an emergency, make sure to purchase travelers insurance for Canada prior to your visit. 

Do foreigners get free healthcare in Canada?

In order to receive free healthcare in Canada, an individual must be a Canadian citizen or an immigrant who qualifies for permanent residence. If these requirements are met, the individual will have access to a single-player, universal healthcare system. 

Is health insurance required in Canada?

Canadian citizens are not required to have health insurance because they qualify for the universal healthcare system in place in Canada. Visitors are not required to have health insurance, but in the event of a medical emergency could receive large healthcare bills. 

To avoid a large healthcare bill visiting Canada, apply for and receive Canadian visitors’ insurance from a local or global insurance agency. When choosing a plan, make sure you not only stay within your means, but choose a plan that makes sense for the visit you are undergoing in Canada. 

Do I need to have health insurance in Canada?

Citizens and immigrants that qualify for permanent residence in Canada do not have to have health insurance to receive the benefits of the Canadian universal healthcare system. Visitors of Canada are not covered under this system and should apply for Canadian travelers’ insurance. To learn more about travel insurance, we encourage you to read our previous article on travel insurance.

Leave a Comment