Vancouver or Toronto

Many international students struggle when choosing between studying in Vancouver or studying in Toronto. Although being in the same country, two cities have always had a friendly rivalry for a long time. So, if you are still thinking about which city to choose, here are a few points to consider when making a choice:

Vancouver has one of the wettest and foggiest climates of Canada’s cities. At times, in winter, it can seem that the rain will never stop. Unusually for a Canadian city, Vancouver has relatively mild winters with little snow. The cold air from the Arctic that sweeps over the rest of Canada in winter is unable to reach Vancouver. The Rocky Mountains block it.  Compensating for the the wet winters, Vancouver usually enjoys excellent summer weather characterised by very pleasant, warm days with abundant sunshine. 

Toronto’s climate is modified by its location on the shores of Lake Ontario. The Great Lakes location is the source of Toronto’s summer humidity. Although Toronto is one of Canada’s warmer cities in winter, winters are still severe, with snow on the ground most days between mid-December and mid-March.  Compensating for the the wet winters, Vancouver usually enjoys excellent summer weather characterised by very pleasant, warm days with abundant sunshine.

The Greater Toronto Area is the most populated metropolitan area in Canada with nearly 6.5 million residents. In comparison, the Greater Vancouver Area has just under 2.5 million people calling it home.

One of Vancouver’s best features is its surrounding mountains. North and West Vancouver, which are just over the bridge from downtown Vancouver, are home to three main mountains. Mount Seymour, Cypress Mountain, and Grouse Mountain are open for both winter and summer activities. In its turn Toronto offers Toronto Islands to spend some quite weekends on. 

Cool neighborhoods
Both cities are homes to unique neighborhoods brimming with locally owned and operated restaurants, cafés, and boutiques. Toronto has Kensington Market, Distillery Historic District, The Entertainment District and Queen West and Vancouver is proud to offer The Drive, Main Street, Kitsilano, and Yaletown.

Public transit
Vancouver and Toronto have fully accessible subway systems, buses and small ferries to carry you across to North Vancouver or from the mainland to Toronto Islands.

Its surrounds
Incredible cities and towns surround Vancouver. Whistler is less than a two-hour drive away and is home to one of North America’s top ski resorts. There’s also the stunning Sunshine Coast, the Okanagan and its award-winning wineries, Vancouver Island, and Seattle and Portland just over the border in the United States.

One of the most important factors for international students to consider when choosing between two cities:
According to BudgetDirect Groceries prices in Toronto are 7.93% lower than in Vancouver, but Restaurant prices in Toronto are 2.16% higher than in Vancouver. When it comes to housing, renting 1 bedroom apartment will cost you:

In city centre
Tor $1762.78
Van $1897.16

Outside city centre
Tor $1387.88
Van $1431.71

Average net salary (After tax): Toronto – $3283.71/mth, Vancouver – $3289.18/mth

Always on your side!
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