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Is it worthwhile emigrating to Canada?

Updated: Jun 12, 2020

My brother moved to Canada in 2016 (…. or around that time, not too sure about the timelines). He moved with his wife and 1.5yrs old kid.

Before moving to Canada, he spent 2 years in Kuwait. Since moving to Canada, he has built up his life, career and most importantly…. future for his 2 boys.

Of course, moving to any new country is never easy. Canada is not too different, even though the language is English and there are a lot of Indians around.

This was their journey in the last years (ups and downs):

- Lived with a friend’s parents for the first month, top priority was looking for a job,

- Walked from super markets to home, with the groceries, with a kid,

- Found a job in his own field within a month of landing in Tornoto, (he had almost 10yrs of work experience before moving to Canada),

- Lived in a basement with barely a full window for almost 7 months, in order to build up a base,

- Managed my nephew’s health issues, trips to hospitals,,

- Got his driving licence during this time,

- Bought a car a weekend before joining his job,

> bought the one he could afford, rather than the one he wanted to buy,

> car was a necessity due to his work travels,

- Learnt to drive on right side, while being scared, since he didn’t drive for 2 yrs before moving to Canada (being in Kuwait),

- Signed up for a day care for his kid, dropping and picking him up everyday,

- My sister in law, got a job in sales, required to work on weekends,

- Managed house n kid over the weekend,

- Bought a condo, when they were feeling settled and were thinking of moving to a rented house,

- Build up relations, helped friends set up in Canada, celebrated life and festivals with them, helped them move homes,

- Hosted our parents in 2018 and 2019,

- Hosted us in 2018, on our first trip to Canada, took us to Niagara Falls and all the Indian restaurants (we really miss good Indian food in Germany),

- Learnt to manage the cold weather (there is cold and there is Canada winters), driving in the snow,

- Achieved another milestone, bought a beautiful detached house in 2019,

- Had his first tenants, who were a similar family to his - the family moved from Chandigarh to Canada with a 1yr old kid,

- Has applied for his family’s Canada passport this year.

- Works for one of the biggest Canadian banks now.

Since the time he has moved to Canada, it has been struggles and success. For him, though, it had been totally worthwhile for the future and life he has built up.

While Canada is an ideal and relatively easy option to move to, it has it own sets of challenges. Moving to a new country is not easy and its the same when moving to Canada. Key points to focus on are :

  • Cold weather : I have been living in Germany since 2014. The lowest temperature that we experienced was about -10 degrees. I thought this is what real winters feel like. And then, we went to Canada. The cold weather is like no other. I met my brother's friends and my colleagues, who have been living in Canada for almost 8-10 years. Each had their own story n version of how worse winters can be.

It is a slightly more of an issues for those coming from tropical countries.

  • First jobs : The first job can be a hit or miss. Since a new immigrant does not have a work history (and usually local qualification), the employers are a bit hesitant to hire. This means that in some cases, the first job can be significantly lower in designation and salaries, based on your experience levels. This factor is especially important for those who are in mid to senior level positions as this can be an unsettling situation.

  • Expensive : Canada is an expensive country, more so, if you are living in bigger cities like Toronto. This is in comparison to Germany's cost of living. Comparing Canadian costs to India will be unfair. The rents can be managed based on the home's proximity to the city's downtown. I have couple of school friends, who own houses, and stay about 45 min to 1 hour drive from the city,

  • Home prices : In my personal opinion, the housing prices are highly inflated in Canada. The main reason for this is the tendency of the local and the foreign buyers to buy properties for investment purposes. The intention is to flip the property in short duration to make a neat profit. While, this works well for those with money, for most of the new immigrants, it makes for a tough choice between renting and buying a home. Again, the comparison is in context to Germany, where a comparable property might costs significantly lower.

  • Hire and fire policy : Canada's proximity to USA means that the companies also adopt a hire and fire policy. The job security is on the lower side when compared to Germany. Europe in general has some of the most stringent employee laws. What is comparable in both countries (Germany and Canada), is the strong social security system, which ensures that your basic needs are taken care of by the state.

To conclude, Canada is a very beautiful country and offers one of the easiest immigration options right now. The people are warm and friendly, and the English language makes it an ideal destination for professionals. The country is large enough to accommodate the new influx of immigrants and offers decent professional opportunities. What is the best is the availability of the Indian food and culture throughout Canada, especially during Indian festivals.

Canada is an ideal destination to build up your dreams and future, and most importantly, the future for your kids.

It always helps to have a mentor, who has worked and lived in Germany for some of the best brands. For personal consultation with Arun Mahajan, book a time with him.

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