Is Toronto or Calgary cheaper?

When it comes to choosing a place to live in Canada, one of the factors that people often consider is the cost of living. Two popular cities that often come up in this comparison are Toronto and Calgary. Both cities have their own unique charm and advantages, but which one is cheaper to live in? In this article, we will explore the cost of living in both Toronto and Calgary, and compare various factors that contribute to the overall living costs.

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Cost of Living in Toronto

Toronto, the largest city in Canada, is known for its vibrant culture, diverse population, and bustling urban lifestyle. However, this comes at a price. The cost of living in Toronto is generally higher compared to many other Canadian cities. Housing costs, transportation expenses, food prices, and healthcare costs are some of the factors that contribute to the higher living expenses in Toronto.

Cost of Living in Calgary

On the other hand, Calgary, located in the province of Alberta, is known for its strong economy, beautiful landscapes, and a lower cost of living compared to Toronto. While Calgary still has its fair share of expenses, it generally offers more affordable housing options, lower transportation costs, and comparable food and healthcare prices.

Factors Influencing Living Costs in Both Cities

Several factors influence the cost of living in both Toronto and Calgary. These include the demand and supply of housing, transportation infrastructure, local taxes, and the availability of amenities and services. Additionally, the economic conditions and job opportunities in each city can also impact the overall living costs.

Comparison of Housing Costs

When it comes to housing costs, Toronto tends to be more expensive than Calgary. The high demand for housing in Toronto, coupled with limited supply, has led to skyrocketing prices in recent years. In contrast, Calgary offers relatively more affordable housing options, with a wider range of choices for both renting and buying.

Comparison of Transportation Costs

Transportation costs can also contribute significantly to the overall living expenses. Toronto has an extensive public transportation system, including subways, buses, and streetcars. While this provides convenient access to different parts of the city, it can also be costly. On the other hand, Calgary has a well-connected public transportation network as well, but the fares tend to be lower compared to Toronto.

Comparison of Food Costs

When it comes to food costs, both Toronto and Calgary offer a wide range of options. While prices may vary depending on individual preferences and lifestyle choices, the overall cost of groceries and dining out tends to be comparable in both cities.

Comparison of Healthcare Costs

Healthcare costs are an important consideration for many individuals and families. In Canada, healthcare is publicly funded, but certain services and medications may not be covered. When comparing Toronto and Calgary, the healthcare costs are generally similar, with both cities offering access to quality healthcare facilities and services.

Comparison of Education Costs

For those with children, education costs can be a significant factor to consider. Both Toronto and Calgary have reputable schools and educational institutions. While tuition fees may vary depending on the specific institution and level of education, there isn't a significant difference in the overall education costs between the two cities.


Overall, when considering the cost of living, Calgary tends to offer lower living costs compared to Toronto. While Toronto may have a more vibrant and diverse urban lifestyle, it comes with a higher price tag. However, it's important to note that individual circumstances, such as job opportunities and personal preferences, can also affect the overall cost of living in each city. It's advisable to carefully assess your own needs and priorities before making a decision.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is Toronto more expensive than Calgary?

Yes, Toronto is generally more expensive than Calgary in terms of overall living costs.

2. Are housing costs higher in Toronto or Calgary?

Housing costs are generally higher in Toronto compared to Calgary.

3. Which city has higher transportation costs?

Toronto tends to have higher transportation costs compared to Calgary.

4. Are healthcare costs higher in Toronto or Calgary?

Healthcare costs are generally similar in both Toronto and Calgary.

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