Toronto vs Vancouver vs Montreal vs Calgary- Which Is The Best?

If you plan on relocating to Canada, you might be thinking of the best place to stay. Canada has many amazing cities that offer boundless opportunities to residents and Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and Calgary are some of its finest. 

In this article, we will be comparing Toronto vs Vancouver vs Montreal vs Calgary based on several factors including;

  • Cost of living
  • Popular job sectors
  • Geography
  • Weather
  • Transportation
  • Education
  • Weather

This comparison will provide you with a better understanding of the peculiarity and nature of each city and then you can decide which is best for you. So without much ado, let’s get rolling!

Cost Of Living/ Toronto vs Vancouver vs Montreal vs Calgary

No matter where you decide to live, this factor is key and should be considered carefully. 

The cost of living relates to the amount of money needed to cover basic expenses like housing, clothing, food, healthcare, and taxes in a particular place and time. 

It is an indication of the rate at which individuals survive and thrive in the city. Here we have provided you with a breakdown of general expenses in each of the cities. Follow through to find out which is most expensive, least expensive, and fits into your budget. 

Toronto – Monthly Cost, Rent, And Expenses

  • A family of four has an estimated monthly cost of C$4,534.05 without rent.
  • A single person has an estimated monthly cost of C$1,248.87 without rent.

Rent per month:

Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre2,132.23 C$1,850.00-2,500.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre1,765.87 C$1,500.00-2,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre3,471.86 C$2,900.00-5,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre2,708.11 C$2,100.00-3,700.00

Montreal: Monthly Cost, Rent And Expenses​

  • A family of four has an estimated monthly cost of C$3,936.39 without rent.
  • A single person has an estimated monthly cost of C$1,074.60 without rent

Rent per month

Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre1,284.84 C$995.00-1,650.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre838.08 C$700.00-1,200.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre2,257.26 C$1,800.00-3,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre1,464.71 C$1,100.00-2,000.00

Vancouver: Monthly Cost, Rent and Expenses​​

  • A family of four has an estimated monthly cost of C$4,352.32 without rent.
  • A single person has an estimated monthly cost of C$1,181.52 without rent.

Rent per month

Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre2,055.28 C$1,800.00-2,500.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre1,576.88 C$1,200.00-1,900.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre3,706.09 C$3,000.00-5,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre2,855.26 C$2,400.00-3,500.00

Calgary: Monthly Cost, Rent, And Expenses​​

  • A family of four has an estimated monthly cost of C$4,243.61 without rent.
  • A single person has an estimated monthly cost of C$1,193.93 without rent.

Rent per month

Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre1,217.99 C$1,000.00-1,500.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre1,022.84 C$850.00-1,200.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre2,148.77 C$1,750.00-3,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre1,625.79 C$1,400.00-2,100.00

Popular Job Sectors

Availability of jobs is another key factor to be considered when immigrating or is the avenue through which one can secure his livelihood. Lets us look at some of the popular job sectors in the four cities. 

Toronto Jobs

Toronto contributes about 20% of Canada’s GDP. This is to tell you its economic significance. Here are some popular job sectors in Toronto; 

  • Finance
  • Technology
  • Life sciences
  • Media
  • Tourism

Vancouver Jobs

Vancouver is another hub of opportunities. The key industries are;

  • Film
  • TV
  • Technology
  • Trade
  • Tourism
  • Construction

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Montreal Jobs

The popular job sectors in Montreal are as follows;

  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Technology
  • Aerospace
  • Textile Manufacturing
  • Tourism
  • Transportation

Calgary Jobs

Key industries in Calgary are:

  • Energy
  • Air space
  • Agribusiness
  • Financial services
  • Life sciences
  • Technology



  • Toronto is located on the north-western shore of Ontario, southeastern Canada. 
  • Vancouver is located in the lower mainland of British Columbia, West Canada.
  • Montreal is in the southwest of the province of Quebec and is an overnight journey from Toronto.  
  • Calgary is situated in southern Alberta

City Size

  • Toronto is the largest city in Canada. It covers an area of 630.2 square kilometers, with a maximum north-south distance of 21 kilometers. 
  • Vancouver is the third largest city in Canada and is named the most multicultural city in the world, having over 200 nationalities. In size, it covers an area of 115 square kilometers. 
  • With an area of 431. 5 square kilometers, Montreal is the second-largest city in Canada and the largest city in the province of Quebec.
  • Calgary comes as the fourth largest city in Canada and the largest city in Alberta.

River Or Lakes

  • Toronto is surrounded by Lake Ontario, Humber, Don, and Rouge rivers.
  • The English Bay, Burrard inlet, and Fraser Rivers surround Vancouver
  • You can find Saint Lawrence and Riviera des Prairies rivers in Montreal
  • Bow and elbow rivers are in Calgary


  • Toronto lies mostly on flatlands.
  • Vancouver is also on flats but some parts are hilly.
  • Montreal in the same vein, is flat and hilly
  • Most of the area in Calgary is hilly; not very flat


  • Toronto has lots of lovely beaches
  • Vancouver also has many beautiful beaches
  • As against Toronto and Vancouver, Montreal has no beaches
  • Calgary has no beaches as well 


  • There are no mountains in Toronto
  • Vancouver has several beautiful mountains
  • Montreal has a few mountains 
  • There are 6 named mountains in Calgary 


Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and Calgary are all urban cities that are rich in culture and beauty. 

  • With sweltering summers, beautiful and colorful autumns, snowy winters, and sopping wet springs, Toronto offers the best all year round and it also has a long stretch of lakeshore.
  • Surrounded by sea and mountains, Vancouver offers epic and scenic views. 
  • Montreal would be an ideal spot for you if you love the French style and architecture
  • Calgary is a city surrounded by beautiful craggy mountains and offers lots of outdoor recreational activities.


Among the many things Canada is famed for is its harsh and often extremely cold weather. You may really have to consider your options based on the weather or climate conditions in each of the cities. 

Weather In Toronto

  • Toronto experiences extremely low temperatures from November to February. Sometimes the temperatures fall as low as minus 20 degrees Celsius.  
  • In July, the temperature rises to as much as 35 to 36 degrees Celsius

Weather In Vancouver

  • Vancouver probably has the best temperatures among the four cities, especially during winter. The normal temperature in Vancouver is about zero degrees or sometimes,  – 1 to – 2 degrees Celsius.
  • In summer, the general temperature of Vancouver is between 24 – 26 degrees Celsius and the maximum temperature is not up to 30 degrees. Summers are always lovely in Vancouver.

Weather In Montreal

  • The weather in Montreal is harsh compared to that of Toronto. During winter, the temperature goes down to around minus degrees Celsius marks.
  • In summer, especially in May, the temperature can rise up to 37 degrees Celsius high which is such a huge fluctuation in temperature within a couple of months.

Weather In Calgary

  • Calgary is famous for its cold weather. In the months of January and February, it can get extremely cold.
  • You can expect temperatures as low as – 32 degrees in January.
  • The good news is that summers are more favorable and you can expect fair weather


It is very important for a city to have good public transportation infrastructure. 


All four cities including Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and Calgary have great public transportation infrastructure. They all have trains that connect them to other cities in Canada. Local buses are also available.

Metro service

  • Toronto has an old metro service 
  • In Vancouver, you will find an automated sky train 
  • There are several metros in Montreal
  • In Calgary, the C train function as a metro service


  • Toronto’s streetcar system covers almost every part of the city and it’s really fun to travel in.
  • Vancouver and Montreal have no streetcars
  • In Calgary, the C trains also serve as streetcars. They do not only go on the streets but go underground as well. 

Water Transport

  • You will find many ferries in Toronto. They transport people from downtown Toronto to Toronto Islands.
  • In Vancouver, there is a sea bus that takes you from the coastal Vancouver areas to the islands in Vancouver.
  • Montreal also has ferries.
  • Unlike the other cities, Calgary does not have any water transport.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Calgary Better Than Toronto?

The better city between Toronto and Calgary would depend on your preference. While Toronto is a hub of great entertainment, Calgary offers a laidback lifestyle, outdoor activities, and a lower cost of living. Both Toronto and Calgary have strong economies and job opportunities.

Is Calgary Better Than Vancouver?

In terms of career, if you’re pursuing a career centered around oil and gas, technology, or healthcare, Calgary might be the ideal option. However, if you’re looking for a creative or arts-related career, Vancouver would be a better option.

Which Is The Better City To Live In Montreal Or Toronto?

Toronto features a huge sports stadium, a standout skyline, and a plethora of museums and art galleries while Montreal is quieter and more subtle with its city gardens, obscure museums, and historical buildings.

Which City Is Best For Live In Canada?

There are a lot of great places to live in Canada but Burlington comes off as the best. Burlington is located at the southwestern end of Lake Ontario and is the ideal place for those who want to live in a big city but in close proximity to nature.

Why Do People Move From Toronto To Calgary?

Compared to Toronto, Calgary’s cost of living is less expensive. This includes housing and taxes. 

Is Calgary Or Toronto Safer?

Toronto and Calgary are both great places with family-friendly neighborhoods and amenities ranging from schools to parks. However, when it comes to the question of safety, Toronto appears to be safer. The city has a crime rate of 31% which is below the national average, with violent crimes being 28% lower.

Which Canadian City Is Most American?

Most American Canadians prefer to live in Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. 

Is Vancouver Better Than Toronto?

Toronto will be the perfect option if you want to live in a big city with a lot of things to do. But if you’re looking for a smaller and more reserved city, Vancouver might be preferred.

Is It Easier To Find A Job In Toronto Or Montreal?

Compared to Toronto, Montreal has a lower unemployment rate of 4.7% which is nearly 1% below Canada’s unemployment rate.

Is Montreal Colder Than Toronto?

Montreal is almost 10 degrees colder than Toronto during the winter and receives nearly double the amount of snow.


There you have it – Toronto vs Vancouver vs Montreal vs Calgary – Which is best? All four cities are great, to say the least. They contribute immensely to the GDP of Canada and offer limitless opportunities to its residents. 

However, while they offer great benefits, it is important you consider the factors we listed above to help you make the right choices. 

We recommend that you weigh your options and select a city that is both budget-friendly and suits your needs.

What are your thoughts? Do you prefer Toronto to Vancouver or Montreal to Calgary? We would like to get feedback from you. Kindly drop your comments in the section below and share this post. 

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