As the largest settlement in the Canadian province of Quebec, Montreal is known for its severe winters and several nicknames, such as MTL, The City of Saints, La Metropole, Festival City, Paris of North America. If you’re moving to Montreal soon, you probably have plenty of questions, dilemmas, and doubts about whether it’s the right decision. However, there’s a lot to like about moving to Canada and living in MTL in particular, including people, environment, job opportunities, and the dining scene.
Of course, no place is without drawbacks, so rest assured that we’ll cover all the bases and provide vital information and necessary details for your relocation. Keep reading and find out what benefits await you in the most significant city of La Belle Province.
Get to Know Quebec Before Moving to Montreal
Known as the Beautiful Province, Quebec is a predominantly French-speaking province in eastern Canada. It takes pride in its countless lakes and rivers that were an inspiration for its name in the indigenous language of Algonquian, meaning “where the river narrows.” It is the largest province in Canada, and its capital is Quebec City, while La Metropole represents its economic and cultural center.
If you want to start from scratch in an environment packed with plenty of amenities, MTL can be your best bet. It can provide you with breathtaking scenery, as well as excellent education and professional opportunities. Let’s take a look at some of the employment options and find out how an expat could get a perfect job offer.
One of the Largest Primarily French-Speaking City in the World, After Paris
If you’re wondering why is French so widely-spoken in Canada, particularly in Montreal, you have to dig a little deeper into the 400-year-old history of the province and its first settlers. As the second most spoken European language, French ranks sixth in the world. Furthermore, around 300 million people from Europe, Africa, North and South America, and Asia speak this language. With its incredible European look and specific culture, MTL attracts many foreigners from a wide range of French-speaking areas.
Montreal vs. Vancouver
Vancouver is considered one of Canada’s most densely-populated and most ethnically diverse cities. If you have doubts about what place to choose when it comes to living standards and amenities, we might help you select the location ideal for you and your family. Although Vancouver is so famous for its beauty, livability, and sports, we would like to share with you some of Montreal’s features and advantages.
5 Reasons Why Montreal Might Be a Better Place to Live in Than Vancouver
When thinking about moving to Canada, what is the first place that comes to your mind? Maybe Ottawa, because it’s the capital? Large urban centers of Toronto and Vancouver, perhaps? Surely, they are appealing cities for expats and can give you a high-quality lifestyle.
But, have you thought about MTL?
Whether you’ve already done some research or don’t have a clue about La Metropole, we can offer a new perspective of the city before you hire an international moving company and pack all your belongings.
We’ve put together a shortlist of advantages to share with you. So, here’s what you may expect after moving to one of the most important and amazing Canadian cities:
- It is North America’s number one host metropolis for international events
- Can boast the safest streets above sea level
- It is one of the cheapest bigger cities in North America to rent a home. In MTL (and Quebec in general), landlords can’t legally ask for a security deposit from their tenants before they move in
- MTL is walkable and can provide you with more intimacy than Vancouver or Toronto
- There’s plenty of snow during the winter months, while Vancouver can be grey and rainy from October to May
Place Crammed With Food and Drink Options
Lots of people are attracted to Paris of North America due to mouth-watering dishes and top-notch restaurants, and you’ve probably heard different things about Montreal’s food and its famous beer. Well, probably everything you’ve heard is true.
Montrealers use their lunchtime to enjoy tasty bites and to socialize. One more thing that is probably crucial when it comes to the laid-back atmosphere is the renowned Canadian beer – it is cheaper here than anywhere else in the country. So, if you are a gourmet and enjoy exploring new tastes, MTL can offer you plenty of spots where you can try its delicacies.
Getting a Job in Montreal
If your native language is English, you shouldn’t worry about relocation to Canada, since both French and English are official languages. However, things get complicated if your prospective destination is Montreal and Quebec in general, and you plan to get a job here. The reason is simple – it’s a francophone city. Why would it otherwise be dubbed Paris of North America, right?
Foreigners could face some issues while looking for a job in La Metropole, but that shouldn’t discourage you. If your wish is strong, breaking the language barrier is achievable. You just have to find the right tips for learning a new language and learn about the most important documents needed to travel abroad.
Things to Know About Job Opportunities Before Moving
Knowing that more than a quarter of Canada’s labor force consists of expats can provide you with a better picture of the Canadian economy. As one of the global leaders in the software and high tech industry, this country needs tech workers. Here is the list of the industries that have demand in specific fields, such as:
- Personal services
If you’re planning to live in Canada and stay as a permanent resident, then you need to apply for a skilled worker permit. To find out more details and get the latest information about citizenship, visit the website of the Government of Canada.
7 Tips for Anglophones Looking for a Job
If your knowledge of French is modest at best and you only know how to say “Bonne Journee” and “Merci,” then it’s obvious you need to undertake additional measures. Simply put, as an English speaker, your chances of finding a proper job could require more patience and effort.
Here are some tips and tricks that can help you when looking for a job as an English speaker:
- Most English speaking colleges have some sort of job programs for students or can provide you with its exclusive online job banks. So if you’re a student, check out what universities and colleges have to offer.
- Take into consideration the suburb of Westmount. It is a prosperous, English-speaking community, meaning you should go down there, hand out your CV and wait to land an interview.
- If there’s nothing appropriate for you, you can always count on summer jobs. They are seasonal but can be your financial lifeline until you find something better and more stable.
- Start building your network. Even volunteering looks better in your resume than having no experience at all. And who knows, sometimes volunteer positions turn into full-time jobs.
- Don’t wait for the perfect chance – apply everywhere
- Learn the language. Fortunately, there are so many options, such as online courses or apps.
- Be proactive and make up for your lack of French. Job opportunities are all over the place, just look and listen carefully – who knows what chance may appear.
Find a Neighborhood to Your Liking
Thanks to Montreal’s atmosphere that could be described as something between Europe and America, you can choose from a variety of places to stay, depending on your needs. MTL is jammed with different residential areas with a specific ambiance and a distinct character. Still, several among them stand out because of their particular lifestyle and a vast array of events and activities. These are just some of the best neighborhoods in Montreal:
- Centre-Ville (Downtown)
- Le Plateau-Mont-Royal
- Le Sud-Ouest
- The Village
MTL Is the Student Capital of North America
If you want your children to receive an excellent university education at the best price, you should consider Montreal’s tertiary studies. It has 11 university-level institutions, and students pay some of the cheapest tuition in the country. Within the city’s borders, there are four world-class universities:
- Mc Gill
- University of MTL
Things That Make Montreal the Most Unique Place in Canada
If you are looking for a place where you could enjoy enough tranquil life in an area with beautiful nature, a wide range of employment options, excellent education, and savory food, then MTL might be what you are looking for.
La Metropole is much more than a specific location on an island in the Saint Lawrence River. Living in it has a bunch of advantages and can make you feel as real Montrealer. So, take one last peek into Festival City’s features and be sure what to expect after moving to La Metropole:
- One-third of the city’s households do not own a car and travel by public transport
- The public transit system is operated by STM Montreal which includes buses, taxi buses and the subway (Metro)
- MTL has a system of public biking – BIXI
- It has the Underground Area, one of the largest underground networks in the world
- It takes pride in its vibrant street art with plenty of murals and graffiti
- You can get poutine, a local delicacy made of potato, everywhere and anytime