And we are moving to… Calgary, Alberta! (Part 1 of 3)

After much deliberation we have decided to move to the beautiful city of Calgary, Alberta! The list of potential cities started out very large, and it was quite a challenge to choose, so we are relieved to finally know where we’re going. When comparing cities we looked at many factors, but the ones listed below were the most important for us.

  1. Urban location
  2. Good job opportunities/ strong economy
  3. Affordable
  4. Beautiful
  5. The “Je ne sais quoi” factor — French is one of my new country’s (wipe tear of happiness) official language, so I say things like that now
  6. Weather

A little about us before we begin. We are a couple of 20 somethings with no kids, who enjoy good food, the outdoors and city life. As far as work, we both have backgrounds in the oil and gas industry. We have been working on learning French for the past year, and are fluent English speakers. So with that in mind, lets get started!

Calgary, Alberta

  1. Urban Location: 5 out of 5
    Calgary is the largest city in Alberta and 4th largest in Canada. It has a population of 1.2 million of which 30% are minorities. I know that to many of you 1.2 million sounds small, but by Canadian standards it’s a actually quite large, and they will soon have 2 more people!
  2. Jobs & Economy: 5 out of 5
    Calgary is the Houston of Canada–as far as oil and gas goes, it is the place to be. Calgary also boasts one of Canada’s highest GDP per capita and a growing economy. I won’t bore you with all kinds of stats and numbers, but if you are interested in that, you can check this link out:
  3. Affordability: 4 out of 5 
    Calgary is affordable; not Montreal affordable, but affordable. In fact, Calgary’s housing prices are below the national average. A quick search on Craigslist will reveal that there are plenty of beautiful apartments to be found in the core of downtown for $1,000 CAD a month, or less! Living downtown is important to us, so this was a huge selling point.
  4. Beauty: 3 out of 5 
    Calgary is beautiful and modern, the only reason it doesn’t get a higher number is because I am comparing it to places like Vancouver and Montreal. It is worth noting that I am not taking into account Banff, since it is not Calgary proper. Fun fact: the city of Calgary has been named cleanest city in the world. Google it!
  5. Je ne sais quoi  (AKA “X factor” for all of you muggles) : 4 out of 5
    The beautiful Banff in only an hour and a half drive away!

  1.  Weather: 1 out of 5 
    Calgary is the coldest place in this list. The winters are long, with average low’s of -20 F. I keep reading that its a dry cold, and this is somehow better, but -20 F is -20 F.  As someone who has basically been living in a sauna for the past couple a years, I am not afraid to admit that I’m a bit scared. We will be arriving in early March (four months from now!), which is still winter over there, so I’ll be reporting on what -20 F feels like soon.  On the bright side, Calgary is supposed to be a very sunny place, so hopefully that helps!

In order to keep this post from going too long I will write about the other cities we were considering in a separate post.  Next week: Ottawa,  stay tuned!

So how about you? For those of you also moving, what city did you choose? Why? I would love to hear from you in the comments!

8 thoughts on “And we are moving to… Calgary, Alberta! (Part 1 of 3)”

  1. How exciting!

    Calgary really sounds like the place to be.
    It wasn’t even on my list but I’m adding it now.

    I’m a web developer and, so far as I can tell, with minimal research, Vancouver will be the place to be. The fact that it’s on the west coast also factored in. I want to stay near the coast and this side of the continent to stay, relatively, closer to family. The downside is that I’ve read that the cost of living isn’t very cheap but hopefully the job market is competitive enough for that to not be a big worry.

    I’m in the process of preparing to apply.
    Waiting on ECA and IELTS.
    Your blog has been really helpful.
    I’m glad you’re keeping up the posts.
    Hopefully I get an ITA and I’ll be back here coming back for tips.

    Best of luck!

    1. Hi Jose! I am glad you are finding the blog helpful. Vancouver looks amazing, we are trying to go visit next year, I’ll post some pictures for you when we do. Best of luck with the application!

  2. Hey don’t stop posting ! There is a few of us that follow y’all and I often come here to see if you have any updates ! Is there a way I can reach you for questions ? again thank you !!

    1. Hi! I am going to set up an email address for the blog, I get it to you tomorrow. I try to post something weekly, I hope to have an update out tomorrow night 🙂

      1. I never saw you post the email for questions 🙁 . My permit expires this year and I want to ask you a few questions regarding the timeline I’m planning for.

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