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Posted on July 07 2021

Low cost of living in Canada makes it a tough immigration competitor

By Editor
Updated July 25 2023

Are you looking for a world-class living experience in a progressive nation at affordable expenses? Look nowhere farther than Canada. The Mercer 2021 Cost of Living City Ranking Report has ranked the Canadian city of Vancouver 93rd on their scale, which is way below the US city of Los Angeles at 20th place and New York at 14th place.

Mercer, the American asset management firm that conducted this annual survey, is a leading company in its field.

The major factors that helped to achieve a low cost of living in Canada are its affordability and immigration policies that are progressive. These are reasons that a growing number of entrepreneurs come to Canada as immigrants via the country’s Start-Up Visa program.

The better performance as a financially more affordable destination with a great lifestyle and low cost of living in Canada is now a challenge to the USA. Forbes magazine has in fact given a heads up to Washington, stating that Canada is improving its prospects of attracting immigrant entrepreneurs and giving a boost to its economy better than the USA.

The significant fact is that the USA has made an attempt to pass a start-up visa for immigrant entrepreneurs for years. But no success was made.

At the same time, Canada, like dozens of other countries including Singapore and the UK have launched this visa idea and made this very successful.

Cities by the cost of living

Ashgabat is the world’s most expensive city for residents. The city is situated in Turkmenistan, by the Caspian Sea. The country is rich in natural gas and oil and is famous for its buildings of white marble. The country also has grandiose national monuments.

Hong Kong comes next on the list of the world’s most expensive cities. The third is Beirut.

In fourth place is Tokyo placed fourth while Zurich came fifth in the ranking of the world’s expensive places by Mercer.

Canadian cities and their appeal

There are 5 Canadian cities that came on the list by Mercer. They are:

  • Toronto – 98th place
  • Montreal – 129th place
  • Calgary - 145th place
  • Ottawa – 156th place

It’s amazing for Canada that fully 74% of the cities listed in the Mercer ranking weren’t any more affordable than Ottawa. The low cost of living in Canada this indicates becomes significant for the USA when it’s found that Washington DC was at the 51st spot in the list.

Mercer’s annual ranking of cities bases itself on its “Cost of Living” survey. Over 400 cities take part in this survey. The survey is conducted twice every year. It's designed to assist governments and multinational companies worldwide to determine strategies for compensation for their expatriate employees.

The “Cost of Living” survey observes over 200 goods and services. The survey considers things such as cost inflation, currency fluctuations, and instability of accommodation prices to calculate the cost of expatriate packages.

Mercer states that cities around the world are increasingly in competition with one another to attract both business people and residents.

Affordability - How businesses use it to find bases of operation

Mercer noted that once the COVID-19 pandemic changed the landscape of business, companies around the world accelerated their changing strategies to manage their mobile workforces.

Companies are seeking opportunities to install less costly forms of mobility instead of traditional long-term assignments. Among the methods applied were short-term assignments, one-way transfers, and foreigners hired internationally/locally. These efforts come besides attempting virtual assignments.

As Canada is scoring better by the day in helping businesses get the benefits of lower costs incurred, entrepreneurs find the country a highly attractive alternative to the USA.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to Canada, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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Cost of living in Canada


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