Is Montreal cheaper than Vancouver?

When considering a move to a new city, one of the key factors to evaluate is the cost of living. In Canada, two highly sought-after cities for residents and newcomers are Montreal and Vancouver. Both offer unique experiences and opportunities, but how do they compare in terms of affordability? In this article, we will explore the cost of living in Montreal and Vancouver, examining various factors that contribute to the overall expenses in each city.

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Cost of Living in Montreal

Montreal has long been known for its lower cost of living compared to other major Canadian cities. Housing costs, transportation expenses, and even food and entertainment prices tend to be more affordable in Montreal. The city offers a range of housing options, from affordable apartments to spacious homes, catering to different budgets and lifestyles.

Cost of Living in Vancouver

On the other hand, Vancouver is often regarded as one of the most expensive cities in Canada. Housing prices in Vancouver are notably higher compared to Montreal, with limited availability and high demand driving up costs. Transportation costs, including public transit and fuel prices, are also generally higher in Vancouver. Additionally, food and entertainment expenses can be relatively steep in this coastal city.

Factors Affecting Cost of Living

Several factors contribute to the overall cost of living in a city. These include housing prices, transportation costs, food expenses, and entertainment expenditures. It is essential to consider these factors when comparing Montreal and Vancouver.

Comparison of Housing Costs

In Montreal, the cost of housing is relatively affordable compared to Vancouver. Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center averages around $1,200 CAD per month, while outside the city center, prices drop to approximately $900 CAD per month. In Vancouver, however, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center can range from $2,000 to $2,500 CAD per month, making it significantly more expensive.

Comparison of Transportation Costs

Transportation costs in Vancouver are generally higher than in Montreal. A monthly public transit pass in Vancouver can cost around $98 CAD, while in Montreal, it is approximately $86 CAD. Additionally, fuel prices in Vancouver tend to be higher, contributing to the overall transportation expenses.

Comparison of Food Costs

Food costs in Montreal are generally more affordable compared to Vancouver. Groceries and dining out options in Montreal tend to be cheaper, allowing residents to save on their food expenses. In Vancouver, grocery prices and restaurant bills can be noticeably higher.

Comparison of Entertainment Costs

When it comes to entertainment, Montreal offers a wide range of affordable options. From free festivals and events to affordable movie tickets and cultural activities, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the city without breaking the bank. In Vancouver, however, entertainment costs can be higher due to the city's higher cost of living.


In conclusion, Montreal generally offers a more affordable cost of living compared to Vancouver. Housing costs, transportation expenses, food prices, and entertainment costs are often lower in Montreal, making it an attractive option for those looking to save money. However, it is essential to consider personal factors, such as job opportunities and lifestyle preferences, when making a decision about where to live.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is Montreal cheaper than Vancouver overall?

Yes, Montreal is generally considered to be cheaper than Vancouver overall. Housing, transportation, food, and entertainment costs tend to be more affordable in Montreal compared to Vancouver.

2. Are housing costs significantly different between Montreal and Vancouver?

Yes, housing costs in Vancouver are significantly higher compared to Montreal. Rent and property prices in Vancouver are among the highest in Canada, while Montreal offers more affordable housing options.

3. How do transportation costs compare between Montreal and Vancouver?

Transportation costs, including public transit and fuel prices, are generally higher in Vancouver compared to Montreal. Monthly public transit passes and fuel prices contribute to the overall transportation expenses in each city.

4. Are there any notable differences in the cost of food and entertainment between Montreal and Vancouver?

Yes, there are notable differences. Food costs, including groceries and dining out, tend to be cheaper in Montreal compared to Vancouver. Similarly, entertainment options and activities are generally more affordable in Montreal, offering residents more budget-friendly choices.

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