top of page

Real Canada's Cost of Living: A Guide for Newcomers and International Students

Canada, renowned as a land of opportunity, presents a paradoxical challenge: a rising cost of living amidst relatively stagnant wages. In this post, we delve into the realities of salaries versus living expenses in Canada, offering practical tips for newcomers and international students to enhance their quality of life.


"Canada is a land of opportunities and dreams" - Max Medyk

Understanding Salaries in Canada

  • Young Professionals (25-34 years): This group earns an average salary of $46,900 yearly, amounting to a monthly income of about $3,908.

  • Mid-Career Professionals (35-44 years): With more experience, this demographic sees an increase, earning an average of $63,700 annually, translating to $5,308 per month.

  • Seasoned Experts (45-54 years): This age group tops the salary chart with an average yearly salary of $66,700 and a monthly income of $5,558.

Top-Paying Jobs in Canada

  • Medical Field: Anesthesiologists lead with an astonishing average salary of $358,908 per year.

  • Tech and Data Industry: Software architects, corporate controllers, and data scientists are among the highest-paid professionals, with competitive salaries in these sectors.

Cost of Living for Newcomers and International Students

  • Average Living Costs: A single person spends around $736 monthly excluding rent, while a family of four may incur costs of about $2,323.

  • Shared Accommodations: Many students opt for shared housing to reduce expenses. For example, renting a two-bedroom apartment in Toronto with roommates can be a cost-effective option.

Maximizing Housing Choices

  • Using Rental Platforms: Platforms like offer a plethora of housing options. Filtering for 'cheap' rentals can help find affordable accommodations.

Grocery Expenses

  • Average Spending: A typical grocery basket costs around $347 per month. Bulk buying, as in Costco, and dietary choices can influence these costs.

Transportation Costs

  • Public Transit vs. Car Ownership: Opting for public transportation, like a monthly bus pass in Halifax for $82.50, is a cost-effective choice. International students may receive complimentary transit passes from their schools.

Managing Clothing and Entertainment

  • Strategic Purchasing: Buying clothes during sales, such as Zara's quarterly 50% discount sales, can significantly reduce expenses.

Leveraging Part-Time Work and Side Hustles

  • Earning Extra Income: International students can work part-time and engage in side hustles, such as conducting 3D home tours, which can be lucrative and require minimal specialized skills.


Adapting to life in Canada, especially for new immigrants and international students, requires smart financial planning and resourcefulness. By understanding the salary structures, optimizing living arrangements, and exploring additional income avenues, you can make the most of your Canadian experience.

To ensure you make informed decisions and avoid common pitfalls, visit I'm Canada Immigrate for additional resources and legal support. Our expertise can guide you through the complexities of adapting to life in Canada.


bottom of page