What you need to know before moving to Toronto
13 Jun 2022

What You Need to Know Before Moving to Toronto

With a robust culture and arts scene and over 200 languages spoken, Toronto is considered one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world.

This year, The Economist named Toronto the fourth most livable city in the world. Metropolis Magazine ranked it as the number one livable city in the world, and Christie’s International Real Estate rated it as the world’s most coveted luxury real estate market.

The following list includes tips you should know before moving to Toronto. It will help you prepare for life in the largest city in Canada.

1. Get familiar with your bilingualism

Though in Toronto, English is used more often than French, it is a great place to brush up on your French or English skills given that they are co-official languages of Canada. 

You’ll also likely hear conversations in Cantonese, Italian, and Spanish, since it is one of the most multicultural cities in the country, and you’ll meet people from all across the globe.

2. Brunch is a big deal in Toronto

There’s a thriving culinary scene here that can make your mouth water, but these days Toronto’s food enthusiast scene is all about their obsession with brunch. 

With everything from smashed avocado on toast to the endless variety of pancakes and maple syrup available, the brunch menu is stuffed full of an array of food.

3. Transportation

There are three modes of public transportation in Toronto: subway, buses, and streetcars (trams). Although it might not get the best reputation with traffic and delays being fairly common, the TTC is still a practical way to get around Toronto. 

Because of its size, any mode of transportation that gets you to your destination is quite useful. You can buy tickets at stations, or you can purchase a Presto Card, which can be topped up and used for contactless payment. 

It is also possible to find a used bike at a reasonable price if you would like to cycle.

4. Get ready for snow

Winters in the city can be really cold (especially December through March), and snow usually covers the city between November and April. 

Winter boots that are solid and waterproof, along with plenty of warm layers of clothing, will let you manoeuvre icy sidewalks safely. In comparison with some of Canada’s more northern cities, however, it’s not as cold in Toronto.

5. A great place to indulge in a drink

Canada’s drinking age is 19, which is lower than its American counterpart of 21. Local beer connoisseurs will be delighted by the wide variety of ales and lagers available at the creative artisan breweries. 

Bars tend to close at 2 a.m. and the craft beer scene has flourished in recent years. If you drink, though, remember to do so responsibly.

6. The city has a huge underground section

PATH, Toronto’s famous network of corridors and stores underground, may sound futuristic, but it’s actually a 19 km-long network of tunnels and stores located underneath the city. 

While the cold winters make it difficult to travel, going underground is a great way to get around the city while also squeezing in some shopping therapy.

7. Be prepared to tip

Toronto is known for its strong tipping culture, with most restaurants, bars, and cafes expecting a 15%-20% tip on top of the bill. 

It’s convenient to carry cash for this purpose, but you can also add a tip to your bill when paying with a card that most places accept. As well, Toronto is known for great customer service!

8. Decide where to live

As a student in Toronto, you’ll need to pick your new home carefully to be able to survive the city’s high rents. 

If you are looking for shared housing, try websites like Roomster or Roomlala and check out student neighbourhoods like Kensington Market or Baldwin Village. 

If you are at a university or school that offers overseas placements, don’t hesitate to contact them for expert guidance and first-hand help in finding accommodation. Indeed, many offer on-campus housing.

9. The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)

A festival of cutting-edge filmmaking is celebrated in Toronto every September at the TIFF Bell Lightbox, which hosts screenings, lectures, workshops, and meet-and-greets. The events at TIFF have something for everyone, whether you’re a movie buff or a casual moviegoer.

10. It’s really safe here

Despite being North America’s fourth-largest city, it is also one of the safer cities in the world, so walking downtown at night is not a major concern. 

It is important to be aware, however, of certain areas that you should avoid at late hours. Also, remember to lock up your bicycles when you’re not using them.

11. It’s very dog-friendly

There will occasionally be a ticket given if your dog is in the park without a leash, and some apartments/rental spaces will have no-dog policies. On the whole, though, everyone enjoys their pets, and the K-9 community is thriving here.

12. Opportunities for employment abound in Toronto

While Toronto has an expensive housing market, it also has a diverse and growing economy, meaning it might be easier than you think to find a job (and a good one at that). 

Besides being an exciting city to live in, Toronto could also provide the ideal setting to begin your professional career, as it is a major hub for a wide range of sectors, including finance, film-making, education, and technology.

13. Toronto offers a welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ people

Torontonians are predominantly progressive, which is why the city has consistently been recognized for being a great place to live for LGBTQ+ individuals. 

Toronto Pride is an annual event of national significance, and its residents can feel confident living openly all year round.

14. There will never be a dull moment

The city of Toronto is enormous. This bustling metropolis, which is Canada’s largest, is filled with creative people and entrepreneurs and has quirky sites to visit, award-winning restaurants, and fun things to do on a Saturday afternoon. 

If you’re looking for more inspiration, Toronto’s bars and boutiques offer an array of hidden gems, from bohemian markets to niche bookstores.

For more information on Toronto storage units, please call Jiffy Self-Storage at 416-74-JIFFY (54339) or contact us here

Our representatives can help guide you through our selection of storage units and services, and make sure you are getting the most for your money. Contact us today for a quote and for more information on our services.

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Hammad Assan joined Jiffy Self-Storage in June 2012. He has over 20 years of experience in various Customer service, Sales and Management roles and is a Certified Self-Storage Operator through the Canadian Self Storage Association. His passion for sales and customer service has maintained Jiffy Self-Storage’s position as one of the GTA’s most successful Storage Facilities, as recognized by winning the Consumer Choice Award 22 years in a row, a perfect A+ rating with the BBB with zero complaints and a 4.5/5 Star Review rating on Google. Our tenants greatly appreciate his dedication to exceptional customer service and as a result Jiffy Self-Storage has been recognized and awarded for that. Please contact Hammad about any of your storage, parking, workspace or retail unit needs.

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