Calgary and Edmonton are two of the largest cities in Canada. They both offer a range of attractions, amenities, and opportunities that make them desirable places to live. But when it comes to choosing between Calgary vs Edmonton for new immigrants, which is the better option?

Calgary and Edmonton are two of the most vibrant and exciting cities in Canada, each with its own unique character and charm. Both cities are located in the province of Alberta and offer a high standard of living, with a relatively low cost of living compared to other major Canadian cities.

However, they differ in many ways that make them appealing to different people, let’s take a look at some of the key differences between these two great cities.

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Calgary overview

Calgary is a city in the province of Alberta, Canada. It is located in the southern part of the province and is the third-largest city in Canada by population. The city is situated in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, making it a popular destination for outdoor activities such as hiking, skiing, and camping.

Calgary is known for its strong economy, which is primarily driven by the oil and gas industry. The city is home to many major energy companies and is a major center for the Canadian oil and gas industry. Other key industries in the city include finance, technology, and healthcare.

The city is home to the University of Calgary, which is known for its research in fields such as energy, environmental science, and health. The city also has a strong cultural scene, with many museums, galleries, and theatres. The annual Calgary Stampede is a major event in the city, celebrating its western heritage.

Calgary is also known for its high standard of living, with a relatively low cost of living compared to other major Canadian cities. The city has a diverse population and offers a variety of amenities, making it a popular place to live and work.

Edmonton overview

Edmonton is the capital city of the Canadian province of Alberta, located in the central region of the province. It is the second-largest city in Alberta and the fifth-largest city in Canada by population.

Edmonton is known for its strong economy, which is diversified across several industries, including technology, healthcare, and education. The city is home to the University of Alberta, one of Canada’s top research universities, and is also a major center for medical research and healthcare.

Edmonton is also known for its vibrant arts and cultural scene, with many museums, galleries, and theatres. The Edmonton International Fringe Theater Festival, the second-largest fringe festival in the world, is held annually in the city and attracts thousands of visitors. Edmonton is internationally renowned as Canada’s “Festival City,” with a staggering 50+ festivals held each year. The city also has a strong sports culture, with the Edmonton Oilers (hockey) and Edmonton Eskimos (football) being popular local teams.

Edmonton is also known for its high standard of living, with a relatively low cost of living compared to other major Canadian cities. The city has a diverse population and offers a variety of amenities, making it a popular place to live and work. The city also has easy access to the great outdoors, with Elk Island National Park, the North Saskatchewan River and many other places to explore just a short drive from the city center.

edmonton skyline

Calgary vs Edmonton economic comparison

Calgary and Edmonton offer different economic opportunities to their residents. These can include the cost of living, job markets, and house prices. Let's take a look at how they differ in these areas so that you can make an informed decision when deciding which city is right for you.

Cost of living

Calgary

Calgary is great for those looking to save money on their cost of living. The cost of living in Calgary is lower than in Edmonton, with the average rent being substantially lower. Housing in Calgary is also much more affordable; while prices have been steadily increasing over the past few years, they remain significantly lower than in many other major cities.

Edmonton

Edmonton is slightly more expensive when it comes to living costs. The average rent is higher than in Calgary, as well as being on par with prices for comparable cities such as Vancouver and Toronto. However, housing prices are still relatively affordable in Edmonton, and the city offers more competitive wages than Calgary.

Job market

Calgary

Calgary is known for its oil and gas industry, which has been historically strong. The city also boasts a vibrant tech sector, with many startups flocking to the area to take advantage of the business-friendly environment. Furthermore, there are plenty of other industries in the area, including finance, manufacturing, construction, and more.

Edmonton

Edmonton is also known for its oil and gas industry, though it has been struggling due to a downturn in recent years. The city does have an emerging tech sector and is home to many startups. Additionally, there are plenty of other industries in the area, including finance, healthcare, and manufacturing.

Housing market

Calgary

The housing market in Calgary is one of the most affordable in Canada, making it an attractive option for those looking to purchase a home. The average sale price for a single-family dwelling in Calgary was just over $500,000 in 2020, significantly lower than comparable cities such as Vancouver and Toronto. The city also has a wide range of housing options, ranging from apartments and condos to single-family homes in various Calgary neighbourhoods.

Edmonton

The housing market in Edmonton is slightly more expensive than in Calgary, with the average sale price for a single-family home being just over $380,000 in 2020. However, there are still many affordable housing options available in the city, from apartments and condos to single-family homes.

calgary bridge

Calgary vs Edmonton quality of life comparison

Calgary and Edmonton both offer excellent quality of life for their residents, though there are some differences to be aware of. Let's take a look at how these two cities differ when it comes to transportation options, safety, and more.

Safety

Calgary

Calgary is known as one of the safest cities in Canada, with low crime rates and a strong police presence. The city also has plenty of community initiatives to help keep residents safe, such as neighbourhood watch programs and emergency response teams.

Edmonton

Edmonton is also generally considered to be a safe city, with low crime rates and a strong police presence. The city has many programs in place to help keep residents safe, such as neighbourhood watch programs and emergency response teams.

Weather

Calgary

Calgary has a generally pleasant climate, with warm summers and mild winters. The city does have its occasional snowstorms, however, which can make transportation difficult at times.

Edmonton

Calgary has a generally pleasant climate, with warm summers and mild winters. The city does have its occasional snowstorms, however, which can make transportation difficult at times.

Amenities

Calgary

Calgary city has a variety of amenities that cater to the needs and interests of its residents. Some of the key amenities in the city include:

Calgary has a thriving arts and culture scene, with a number of theatres, museums, and galleries. The city is also home to the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and the Alberta Ballet.

Calgary has a diverse culinary scene, with a number of restaurants, bars and cafes that serve a variety of cuisines. The city is also known for its craft breweries and distilleries.

The city has several hospitals and health clinics that provide quality healthcare services to its residents.

Calgary Transit has a well-developed transportation infrastructure, with numerous roads, highways, and public transportation options.

Edmonton

Edmonton, the capital city of Alberta, offers a variety of amenities that cater to the needs and interests of its residents. Some of the key amenities in the city include:

Edmonton has a large park system, with over 160 parks and natural areas throughout the city. The city is also home to the North Saskatchewan River, which offers great opportunities for hiking, biking, and fishing. River Valley is the largest urban park in Canada, comprising more than 160 kilometres of maintained pathways and 20 major parks.

Edmonton has a number of shopping centers, including West Edmonton Mall, which is the largest mall in North America. The city also has a number of unique boutiques, specialty shops, and farmers’ markets.

The city has a number of sports and recreational facilities, including Rogers Place (home of the Edmonton Oilers National Hockey League team), the Commonwealth Stadium (home of the Edmonton Elks Canadian Football team), and the Victoria Golf Course.

Edmonton has a thriving arts and culture scene, with a number of theatres, museums, and galleries. The city is also home to the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and the Edmonton Opera.

Edmonton has a diverse culinary scene, with a number of restaurants, bars, and cafes that serve a variety of cuisines. The city is also known for its craft breweries and distilleries.

The city has several hospitals and health clinics that provide quality healthcare services to its residents.

Edmonton has a well-developed transportation infrastructure, with a number of roads, highways, and public transportation options, including buses, light rail trains and a bike-sharing system.

Edmonton is known for its festivals and events, such as the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival, the Edmonton Folk Music Festival, and the Edmonton Heritage Festival.

Conclusion


Nicola Wightman

Nicola Wightman is a regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) under the College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants (CICC). Her professional immigration consultant number is R706497.

Learn more about Calgary

You will find helpful information about setting up in this vibrant and lively city.

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