Top 8 Cities to Live & Work in Canada



Updated On 15 September 2023


Read Time 9 minutes


Are you considering to begin your study abroad experience in Canada? Let me tell you, as an international student, this will be one of the best and most fruitful decisions of your life.


Canada is renowned for its high-quality education system, stunning landscapes, and welcoming multicultural environment. With its diverse cities offering unique opportunities, international students often face the delightful challenge of choosing the perfect place to study, live, and eventually work in Canada.


So, in order to help you make an informed decision, here are the top 10 cities in Canada that cater to the needs and aspirations of international students.


Top Reasons to Study in Canada

Studying in Canada is an attractive option for international students, and there are numerous reasons why Canada is one of the best study-abroad destinations. Here are some of the top reasons to consider:


  • Canadian universities and colleges are known for their world-class education and rigorous academic standards. 


  • A degree or diploma from a Canadian institution is recognised globally, opening doors to career opportunities across the globe. 


  • The Canadian government allows international students to work part-time for up to 20 hours per week while studying there. 


  • Another common reason is the country’s multicultural environment that celebrates diversity, making it easier for international students to adapt and thrive. 


  • Canada is one of the safest countries in the world, and its low crime rate and political stability contribute to a secure environment for students.


  • One of the most beneficial reasons to study in Canada is PSW (post-study work). The Canadian government allows international students to work for up to 3 years in the country after completing their studies, which is an excellent opportunity to gain highly valuable work experience. 


  • Moreover, Canadian institutions are at the forefront of research and innovation in various fields. As a student, you'll have access to cutting-edge research facilities and opportunities to collaborate on groundbreaking projects.


Best Cities to Study and Work in Canada for Internationals

So, if you are all set to start your study abroad journey, here is a guide for you that describes the best cities to work in Canada.



Montreal, nestled in the heart of Canada's Quebec province, is perfect for international students seeking a vibrant city to study, live, and work. Around 3,50,000 international students from different parts of the world move to study in Montreal each year, fostering a multicultural environment for all and making it one of the best city in Canada to live and work


In Montreal, the monthly cost of living for international students is somewhere between 1300 CAD and 1600 CAD. Moreover, when it comes to job opportunities, Science and technology areas have a lot of potential in Montreal.


However, the climate in this city is often unfavourable. Other than this, you can find numerous convenient transit options at affordable pricing as an international student. Some of Montreal's top colleges and institutions include: 

  • McGill University
  • Polytechnic School of Montreal

  • University of Montreal

  • HEC Montreal

  • Vanier College



Toronto, Canada's largest and most dynamic city, offers international students an enticing trio of educational, living, and working advantages. When it comes to job opportunities, the city boasts a robust job market, with opportunities in finance, tech, healthcare, and more. Therefore, it is one of the best places to live and work in Canada.


For international students, the average cost of living in Toronto is between 1,500 CAD and 2,000 CAD per month. Some of the best universities in Toronto for international students are:

  • University of Toronto

  • Centennial College

  • George Brown College

  • York University

  • Seneca College

  • Humber College



Vancouver, nestled on Canada's west coast, offers a comfortable setting with incredible natural beauty. It is one of Canada's fastest-growing and greenest cities, which makes it one of the best place to live and work in Canada for immigrantsMoreover, the city's robust job market and strong economy offer post-graduation employment prospects.


Vancouver is, nonetheless, somewhat more expensive than other cities. The average cost of living in Vancouver for overseas students is around 2,700 CAD to 3,800 CAD per month. The best universities in Vancouver to attend include:

  • University of British Columbia 

  • Simon Fraser University 

  • University Canada West 

  • Columbia University 

  • Vancouver Island University 



Ottawa, Canada's capital, offers international students a unique blend of academic excellence, quality of life, and career opportunities. It is one of the most beautiful and best city in Canada to work and liveMoreover, Ottawa's safety, cleanliness, and green spaces make it a pleasant place to live, and its manageable size ensures easy navigation.


The city's status as a political and economic hub opens doors to internships and employment in the STEM fields. Additionally, compared to other cities, Ottawa's average cost of living is fairly low, somewhere between 1,100 CAD to 1,400 CAD per month. A list of some of the best educational institutions to attend in Canada are as follows:

  • University of Ottawa
  • University Saint Paul

  • Carleton University

  • Dominican University College

  • Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology



Quebec is the second-largest metropolitan area after Montreal and a highly safe place to live and study in CanadaThe province's strong job market, especially in technology and aerospace, offers promising career prospects post-graduation. 


The interesting fact is that this city has the lowest unemployment rate in Canada. Additionally, Quebec's affordable cost of living and accessible healthcare contribute to a high quality of life. The average cost of living in Quebec for internationals is around 1,200 CAD to 1,400 CAD per month. 


Some of Quebec's top colleges and universities include:

  • LaSalle College 

  • Dawson College 

  • John Abbott College 

  • Vanier College 

  • TAV College 



Edmonton, nestled in Alberta, is another best city to live and work in Canada for international students seeking a balanced Canadian experience. On average cost of living in the city is around 1,000 CAD to 1,200 CAD per month. This makes it an ideal place to study without excessive financial burden. 


Edmonton is also known as the ‘City of Festivals’ due to its large number of events and other outdoor activities that take place every year. Moreover, the city's strong economy, particularly in the oil and gas industry, presents solid job prospects for graduates. Some of the best universities to study in Edmonton for international students are:

  • University of Alberta

  • Concordia University of Edmonton

  • MacEwan University

  • Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

  • The King's University College



Calgary, situated in the heart of Alberta, offers international students a dynamic environment for education, living, and career advancement. Calgary's strong job market in sectors like energy, finance, and technology opens doors for post-graduation employment. 


Further, the average cost of living in Calgary for international students is around 18,00 CAD to 2,000 CAD per month. Some of the top universities to study in Calgary are:

  • University of Calgary

  • Mount Royal University

  • Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

  • Alberta University of the Arts

  • Rocky Mountain College



Waterloo, a city in Ontario, ensures a comfortable and secure living environment for international studentsIts lower cost of living compared to larger Canadian cities makes it budget-friendly for students. The average cost of living in Waterloo for international students is around 1,400 CAD per month.


Moreover, with a thriving tech industry, including the presence of major tech companies and startups, Waterloo presents excellent job prospects for graduates. Some of the most prestigious universities in the city are:

  • University of Waterloo

  • ST. Jerome's University

  • Wilfrid Laurier University

  • St. Paul's University College



Q: Which is the most affordable place to live in Canada?

A: The most affordable place to live in Canada can vary depending on individual circumstances and priorities. However, generally speaking, smaller cities and towns in provinces like Calgary, Sherbrooke, and Brunswick tend to have a lower cost of living compared to major metropolitan areas like Toronto or Vancouver. These regions often offer affordable housing, lower utility costs, and reasonable daily expenses, making them attractive options for international students planning to study in Canada.


Q: Which cities are the best to find jobs in Canada?

A: Some of the best cities to find jobs in Canada include:

  • Toronto

  • Vancouver

  • Calgary

  • Ottawa

  • Montreal


Q: Which Canadian city is the best for international students?

A: Montreal, Vancouver, and Toronto are often considered some of the best Canadian cities for international students as these cities offer a rich cultural experience, amazing educational institutes, and high-quality living standards for international students.


Q: Which is the best city in Canada to live and work for Indians?

A: Toronto, Ontario, is often considered one of the best cities in Canada to live and work for Indians. It has a diverse Indian community, excellent job opportunities in various industries, and a multicultural atmosphere that makes it easier for Indian students to settle in.



In conclusion, Canada's diverse cities offer something for every international student. Whether you're drawn to the economic opportunities of Toronto, the natural beauty of Vancouver, or the cultural richness of Montreal, Canada welcomes you with open arms. With a high-quality education system and strong career prospects, Canada remains a top choice for those seeking an enriching international experience. Choose your city wisely, and you'll find a second home where you can study, live, and work towards a brighter future.


Have a word with our proficient counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC) for more specific information. If you are unable to travel to our offices, we offer online counselling services via our website. Our dedicated counsellors will provide you with the best guidance regarding your application to study in Canada. Apart from this, our expert counsellors will also provide assistance in the visa process for your successful study abroad journey. Don't hesitate to contact us at or call us at 1800-1230-00011.

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