Toronto vs Montreal – Which is the Best City to live?

Which is the best city for immigrants between Toronto vs. Montreal.

If you have ever wondered which of Toronto vs. Montreal is the best city to move to or you are looking to move to a city on the east of Canada, then Toronto or Montreal are most likely the obvious choices.

By many factors, Toronto and Montreal are the biggest and most sort after cities on the eastern side of Canada, and both have so much great things to offer when it comes to residing, studying or working there.

Nevertheless, the best city amongst the two will depend on your choice of lifestyle. Do you love the fast-moving and busy highlife lifestyle or the slow pace, quiet and reserved lifestyle?

Influence of Personality and Interest in Toronto vs Montreal Choice

The city of Toronto is best when it comes to earning money. However, this is negatively impacted by the price of higher living costs with a much more work-centered lifestyle, Montreal, on the other hand, is far more laid back and reserved.

Additionally, the beautiful European influence in the city can often make it feel as though you are living in another country.

The differences between Toronto vs Montreal will definitely appeal to different people based on personality and interests, but the great thing about Toronto vs. Montreal being so different is found in their core culture, ambiance, and frame of mind.

Nonetheless, it doesn’t really matter what type of personality you possess, one of these cities is surely right for you.

Therefore, if you have narrowed down your list to between Toronto vs. Montreal but still struggling to make a final decision, you should continue to read through this comparison guide concerning the most significant areas you need to consider when it comes to living in either city.

1) Toronto vs Montreal Cost of Living Compared to their Average Salaries


The average salary of Toronto as of September 2019 was CAD59, 399 which really isn’t bad until you compare it to the cost of housing.

A one-bedroom apartment in Toronto will cost you about CAD2, 300. Consequently, that average salary doesn’t seem to be very much any longer.

In addition, the average cost of owning a house sits a little over CAD800, 000. This means it would ideally be more economical to reside just outside the city to be able to have a more comfortable lifestyle, should your salary be on the lower end of the scale.


The average salary for Montreal trails behind Toronto at CAD56, 438. However, the good news with Montreal is that this city has lots of far more affordable housing compared to Toronto.

A one-bedroom apartment here goes for about CAD1, 500, housing is even cheaper just outside the city, also the average cost of buying a house is estimated at CAD421, 000 (Best Cities in Canada).

Thus, your salary might be lower in Montreal; there is, however, no doubt that your money will go a lot further in sponsoring your living.

2) Toronto vs Montreal Crime Rate

There is absolutely no significant difference between Toronto vs Montreal when it comes to crime, whether violent or petty crimes.  As far as big cities are concerned either have relatively low rates of crime reported each year.

In 2017, Toronto was even declared the safest major city in North America, while, Montreal has been able to cut its crime rate in half for the last twenty years. Both cities pose similar crime rate data across the board.

The only real difference, moreover, is in the numbers of residents of Montreal which says they feel safer walking alone at night than the numbers of residents of Toronto who do not.

3) Finding a Job


Presently, the median unemployment rate in Canada as a whole is 5.5%, while the rate in Toronto is 6.2%, this implies that Toronto’s unemployment is sitting higher than the national average.

In the past year, the rate of unemployment has continued to decrease, but the rate hasn’t really been stable for a number of years now and it often fluctuates between low five, and high seven.

A couple of factors are attributed to the rate being fairly high, these mainly are younger people and immigration.

Toronto is revered as a great city to reside and work, but it really isn’t as plain as it looks, so when young ambitious dreamers move in, or immigrants from other countries who are looking to start a new life arrive here, there is the struggle to find a Job which often does not come as quickly as they would have preferred.


Montreal fairs are quite better as it regards the job market with the unemployment rate currently at 4.7%.

This is not only a lot below the national average; the province has also seen its unemployment rate stabilize at a low level. Moreover, this is good news for anyone looking to live in Montreal and find a job.

Statically, you are most likely to get a job quicker in Montreal than in Toronto, however, statistics can only be true in reality to some extent.

The most important thing to put at the back of your mind when it comes to securing a job in Montreal is that you need to be able to speak French.

Thus, if you know little or no French at all, then you will have a hard time trying to find a job, particularly a well-paying job.

4) Toronto vs Montreal, Weather Conditions


In Toronto, you will expect to spend at least five or six months of the year living in extremely low temperatures, that is, less than ten degrees on average, so living in Toronto requires thick skin and lots of coats.

Another good news is that for the remaining part of the year, the weather will be much kinder to you, with an average of above twenty degrees, or twenty-five in the summer; also, keep in mind that Toronto is among the windiest cities in Canada, thus, the winter winds can be relentless.


It is important to know that Montreal is a really cold city, in the winter months the average temperature is consistently below zero, even in spring the temperatures nevertheless, still range from between two degrees to fifteen degrees on average.

Similarly, summer months in Montreal often will feel a little extreme, that’s when the weather finally shifts; there will be three months of about twenty-six degrees of temperature daily, in association with high humidity on most of the days because of lack of crosswinds.

These long seasons of cold weather and intense heat can take a little while for you to get used to as a newcomer.

5) Culture 

Certainly, Montreal being dubbed the French capital of Canada, you would expect there will be a huge cultural difference gap between these two cities.

Toronto is a modern city with a classic North American look, vibe, and way of life. Whereas, Montreal has a more French-European disposition in the same areas.

Montreal’s focus on work-life balance is quite huge compared to Toronto, the city has an artsy vibe and a reserved demeanor expressed in most residents notwithstanding being a big city.

Toronto on the other hand, moves at a faster pace in its everyday life, here, everyone seems to be in a rush, in addition to holding their career as the focal point of their lives.

Thus, if you relish a fast and quick pace of city life in conjunction with the stress that comes with it, Toronto covers both perfect for you.

If however, you desire a city that doesn’t remind you of your job all the time, then Montreal is the better place for you.

6) Things to Do


In searching for the things to do it is quite simple as Toronto is about the high rise buildings and a skyscraper landscape, therefore, there are numerous tours of the city you can embark on to explore the view of the city from hundreds of meters above the ground.

You would discover the amazing sights and sounds of the city’s towering buildings which do not end even when the sun goes down because at night the city comes alive as bars and restaurants begin the nightlife, people head out to unwind from a long day.

Many cruises through the city are available, also is the waterfront dining on the spectacular Humber River.

Above all these, are the several festivals that are held in the city for the most part of the year, thus, Toronto is continuously booming with energy. Also, there are numerous hiking trails and parks just outside the city.


The city of Montreal is full of mesmerizing architecture, diverse neighborhoods, gardens, and restaurants serving amazing mouthwatering food. Its cobbled streets, meandering alleys, and quintessentially French cafes spotted all over the city, make for a delightful time out, any time of day.

Montreal like Toronto has many festivals which are held throughout the year, this implies that you will never run out of fun things to do.

Montreal is famed for its ardent vibrant nightlife, the city attracts visitors who want to celebrate or party in style from all over.

Also, there are several hiking trails, and parks just outside of the city should you feel like spending some time in the wild.

Conclusively, Toronto vs Montreal have many things in common despite their diverse difference, and when it comes to positivity and vibes both have a lot in common, these cities have a lot to offer you, in addition to the experiences you can have.

However, there is definitely an obvious contrast when it comes to the cost of living and the culture.

Hope this article inspires you to make a decision to choose which city suits your personality and interest better.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the standard cost of living for a Nigerian living in Lagos and a Nigerian immigrant in Toronto?

According to Numbeo, the standard cost of living in Toronto, Canada is:

  • Family of four estimated monthly costs is 1,460,712.30₦ (4,451.71C$) without rent.
  • A single-person monthly costs estimate is 403,106.76₦ (1,228.52C$) without rent.
  • Toronto is 104.17% more expensive than Lagos without rent.
  • However, rent in Toronto is, on average, 1.48% lower than in Lagos
Which city is more friendly between Toronto vs. Montreal?
According to popular polls and opinions, many think Montreal is a more friendly city compare to Toronto, because of its obvious European vibe and attitude