Are you looking to relocate to one of the most livable cities in the world? Calgary in Alberta, Canada is a great option for those who want to experience an affordable cost of living with all the benefits of a modern city. With low tax rates, free or low-cost health care and education, as well as high salaries, Calgary is an attractive city for those looking to start a new life in Canada.

Plus, thanks to its natural beauty and temperate climate, Calgary is among the 3 most livable cities in the world according to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Liveability Ranking 2022 report.

The cost of living in Calgary, Alberta, Canada can vary depending on several factors, including housing, transportation, and overall lifestyle. In this post, we will take a closer look at what you can expect to pay for these and other expenses in Calgary in 2023.

Housing

One of the biggest expenses for most people is housing. In Calgary, the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in the city center is around $1,600 per month, while a three-bedroom apartment in the same area can cost up to $2,800 per month.

Outside of the city center, the rental prices tend to be lower, with the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment around $1,300 per month and a three-bedroom apartment around $2,100 per month. If you’re looking to purchase a home, the median price for a single-family home in Calgary is around $450,000.

HousingMonthly average cost
1 bedroom apartment in city centre$1,600
1 bedroom apartment outside of centre$1,300
3 bedroom apartment in city centre$2,800
3 bedroom apartment outside of centre$2,100
Image by Robin Laurenson via motherpixels

Utilities

Another expense to consider in Calgary is utilities. The cost of electricity, gas, and water can vary depending on usage, but on average, you can expect to pay around $280 per month for all three.

Overall, the cost of living in Calgary can be relatively high, especially when it comes to housing and transportation. However, it’s important to keep in mind that salaries in this Canadian city are generally high as well, which can help offset some of these expenses.

The cost of internet service in Calgary can range from $50 to $150 per month, depending on the type of service and speed you choose. It’s also worth noting that some providers may offer discounts or promotions during certain times of the year.

UtilityMonthly average cost
Electricity, gas and water$250
Internet 60 Mbps+$90

Food

The cost of food in Calgary can vary depending on where you shop. Grocery stores like Safeway, Superstore, and Co-Op tend to be more expensive than discount stores like No Frills or FreshCo. On average, you can expect to pay around $3 for a loaf of bread, $4 for a carton of eggs, and $15 for a pound of chicken. Eating out at a restaurant can also be pricey, with the average cost of a meal at a casual restaurant around $20.

FoodAverage cost
Milk 1 litre$2.50
Loaf of bread$3
12 eggs$4
Inexpensive restaurant$25
Domestic beer 0.5 litres$7

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Taxes

Alberta is known for having one of the lowest tax rates in Canada, and this is a key draw for many people considering relocating to the province. With a population of over 4.4 million and approximately 1.6 million of those residents based in the capital city of Calgary, Alberta offers a high standard of living with a relatively low tax burden.

The low tax rate in Alberta is due to the province’s high basic personal amounts, which are the income levels at which residents begin paying taxes. Alberta’s basic personal amount is $19,369, which is higher than the federal basic personal amount of $14,398. This means that Alberta residents only start paying taxes on their income when they make more than $19,369. Additionally, Alberta has a higher average individual and household income compared to other provinces, which further contributes to the low tax rate.

The income tax rates in Alberta range between 10% and 15%, with marginal income tax rates ranging between 25% and 48%. It’s also worth noting that Alberta’s lowest tax bracket has a higher salary range compared to other provinces and territories, meaning that residents can earn more before they are subject to higher tax rates.

Transportation

Another significant expense in Calgary is transportation. The city has reliable public transport, with buses and trains running frequently throughout the day. The average monthly cost of a Calgary Transit pass is $112. If you prefer to drive, expect to pay around $1.60 per litre for gasoline.

When it comes to car insurance, the rate you pay will depend on several factors such as your driving record, age, and the type of vehicle you drive. The average cost for basic liability coverage in Calgary is around $1,200 per year or about $100 per month.

TransportationAverage cost
Public transport pass one-way$4
Public transport monthly pass$112
Gasoline per litre$1.60
Car insurance$100 a month
Image by Chris Amat via Travel Alberta

Healthcare

When it comes to healthcare, Alberta has a publicly funded system that provides all residents with access to free or low-cost medical services. The Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP) provides coverage for medically necessary hospital and physician services and is available to everyone in the province. There are also a number of additional programs and services available to those who qualify.

Albertans are eligible for coverage through the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP) as soon as they become a permanent resident of Alberta. As long as the individual is living in the province, is registered with AHCIP, and has valid identification, they will be able to receive services from any doctor or hospital in the province.

To be eligible to receive coverage from the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP), you must have a legal status in Canada and make your home in Alberta. Additionally, it is mandatory that you are physically present in the province of Alberta for at least 183 days within any 12-month period.

Education

Education in Alberta is provided through the public school system, which is funded and administered by the provincial government. All children aged 6 to 16 are entitled to attend public schools, and tuition is free for residents of the province. Additionally, post-secondary education at an accredited institution in Alberta is also subsidized, meaning that tuition fees for students studying in the province are significantly lower than tuition fees for students studying outside of Alberta.

When it comes to higher education, there are many universities and colleges in the province, such as the University of Calgary and Mount Royal University, that offer a variety of different programs. Additionally, trades training is also available through trade schools located throughout the province.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, the cost of living in Calgary can vary depending on your personal lifestyle and the location you choose to reside. It is important to keep in mind the monthly costs of housing, transportation, food, and utilities when budgeting if you are thinking about moving to Calgary. However, it is also important to remember that the city offers a high standard of living and also offers high salaries to offset the cost of living. It is also possible to reduce your living expenses by cooking at home, shopping at discount stores, and looking for deals on transportation and other expenses.

If you need any assistance moving to this amazing affordable city in Western Canada. Get in contact.


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.

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