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The truth about Vancouver

The truth about Vancouver

Old Oct 16th 2016, 1:32 pm
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Default The truth about Vancouver

Evening all,

My family and I are looking to migrate and my wife is putting on the pressure for vancouver. She has visited before but I have not.

Through alot of research I seem to find directions very mixed views on the city in all elements

Employment
Drugs
How friendly people are
Rain days

And the list goes on. Can anyone please give me an honest and upto date opinion on all?

We have 2 young children and I work in Construction (roofing) in a senior role of management but am willing to work at any level

Thanks all
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 1:55 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

I see based on your other threads you are looking at Australia as well.

Before you decide on location/country, do you know your immigration routes for visas/PR for Canada?

Drugs are in every city its just Vancouver has a influx of drug issues with fentanyl overdoses but these are generally around the Downtown Eastside (DTES) of the city - I am a Youth Worker for a non-profit drop-in in the city so I know a bit about the homeless issues. Housing is expensive downtown and in Metro Vancouver

Its rains a lot in winter - its raining now btw!

Last edited by beckiwoo; Oct 16th 2016 at 1:57 pm.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 2:02 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by beckiwoo View Post
I see based on your other threads you are looking at Australia as well.

Before you decide on location/country, do you know your immigration routes for visas/PR for Canada?

Drugs are in every city its just Vancouver has a influx of drug issues with fentanyl overdoses but these are generally around the Downtown Eastside (DTES) of the city - I am a Youth Worker for a non-profit drop-in in the city so I know a bit about the homeless issues. Housing is expensive downtown and in Metro Vancouver

Its rains a lot in winter - its raining now btw!
Hi

Yes looking at australia as I have been and know parts and what it is all about. But we are having a few sticky times with visas

My wife is pushing for canada but having never been and seeing alot of negatives online I am very apprehensive
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 2:10 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by darryl23 View Post
Hi

Yes looking at australia as I have been and know parts and what it is all about. But we are having a few sticky times with visas

My wife is pushing for canada but having never been and seeing alot of negatives online I am very apprehensive
But you've checked your visa eligibility for Canada? It's just that if you don't qualify for a visa without a job offer (most people don't), then you might not be able to choose your location in Canada anyway, you'll just have to go wherever you can find an employer willing to sponsor you and could end up in Manitoba or Alberta instead so probably no point in spending too much time researching one location until you know where you will end up. If you know you'd get PR and can therefore go anywhere you choose, or if you have a company transfer option to somewhere with offices in Vancouver, then ignore me completely but just thought I'd mention it!

If Vancouver is definite, before spending tens of thousands of pounds on moving your family to Canada, a visit would be fairly essential I'd think. Maybe you could try and visit this winter to see what you think of the weather etc? Lots on the forum can give you opinions (FWIW, I like Van), but you really need to check it out yourself ideally.

And there are loads of threads about Vancouver if you fancy a bit of light reading - grab a cuppa and get searching!

Best of luck with it all.

Last edited by christmasoompa; Oct 16th 2016 at 2:16 pm.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 4:10 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

I've lived in Canada (Toronto) and currently live in the US. I've visited Vancouver (even tried to move there once but only lasted a month after my employer and the recruitment company got into a dispute).

Vancouver is very safe. Obviously there are drugs and crime in all cities but Vancouver is one the safest cities I have ever visited.

There is some fairly visible homelessness downtown. The official story is that this is due to unaffordable housing. I suspect the milder weather (in Canadian terms) may also attract homeless people from other places but I don't have anything to back that up.

Yes, it rains a lot. There is a lot of cloud and rain from fall to spring. However, summers are usually sunny and dry. So it gets more rain than London (about twice as much) but it also gets as much sunshine as Eastborne which (along with a couple of others) claims to be the sunniest place in the UK.

People often call Vancouver a beautiful city but I disagree with this assertion. Paris is a beautiful city IMO. Vancouver is a modern city that just happens to be in a beautiful setting. But if you like the great outdoors, mountains, sea etc then it's a great place to be.

Affordable housing is a big concern. Real estate in VERY expensive. If you can't afford to live near work, you could have a horrible commute.

If nightlife is something you value, then I think this is the aspect of Vancouver that disappointed me the most. It's not on a par with Toronto or Montreal.

Overall, a safe, clean city and a fine place to raise a family. But I would recommend a visit if possible to take a look for yourself.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 4:27 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

My opinions, based on 17 years living here ...

Originally Posted by darryl23 View Post
Employment
The BC economy is doing well at the moment. Unemployment is low. Construction is an economic driver of the Provence. This is a good time for someone in your industry to be looking for work. Off the top of my head I can think of 6 roofing contractors who are looking for a senior manager to run a business while the owner transitions into retirement. There are opportunities to buy a business too on very favorable terms. The boomers want out and there is a dearth of talent coming up behind them.

The main industry association is the Roofing Contractors Association of BC. Members here Find a Member - Roofing Contractors Association of BC

Drugs
Yes, we have those. Which ones do you want?

How friendly people are
No one will think you are anything special because you are British. That said, they will not look down on you as an immigrant. People will take you as they find you. In general, social interactions are at a friendlier level than you are used to in the UK. If this is not your experience it is probably you.

It can be hard to make friends as adults as most of the people you meet have established social lives with existing friends and family. If "making friends" is a priority then do things other immigrants do. Life is such that friends will come along - usually when you are least expecting it.

In the meantime get used to being asked to have a nice day by people who don't mean it. It is preferable to being told to **** off by people who do.

Rain days
It can rain. Oh boy, can it rain. The fall is the worst. From now until Christmas is the real rainy season. You do have to put this in context. Though the volume of rain looks scary, the amount of time it is raining is less so. It is just when it rains it really rains.

The rain is not consistent. The North Shore has twice as much rain as the City of Vancouver. This, in turn, has twice as much rain as the southern suburbs such as Tsawwassen or White Rock.

Depending on where you live you will probably find that is rains less of the time than in the UK. Wherever you live you will experience more sunny days than anywhere in the UK. Even in November we will likely get a few sunny days.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 4:40 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by JonboyE View Post
In the meantime get used to being asked to have a nice day by people who don't mean it. It is preferable to being told to **** off by people who do.


It can rain. Oh boy, can it rain.
I half expected there to be something on this thread about the 'brutal' stormy weather I keep hearing about on CBC radio news
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 5:35 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Vancouver is nice and of the places in BC, only place I have liked living.

Low crime, easy to get around without a car, a fair amount of activities to do.

Downside is the city is very exspensive for housing both to rent and own so you need a high income to survive there and even higher income to thrive.

Rain it does, but you get used to it.

Drugs every city has those issues, Vancouver's tends to be more open and visible but largely isolated visibility wise to one area of downtown, but this area isn't unsafe either, I've connected buses there many times late at night and never felt unsafe.

If anything I feel less safe now in a city of 80k.

Only downside to Vancouver for me was rent, couldn't make enough in a month to rent an apartment.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 5:37 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post



I half expected there to be something on this thread about the 'brutal' stormy weather I keep hearing about on CBC radio news
Not nearly as bad as in NS though......
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 5:58 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by JonboyE View Post

Yes, we have those. Which ones do you want?
That was I was going to say at first.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 7:03 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post
I half expected there to be something on this thread about the 'brutal' stormy weather I keep hearing about on CBC radio news
There were remnants of a Pacific typhoon that hit the coast of BC this week. It's in the news because it's such an unusual event. A storm of this calibre hits Vancouver maybe once a decade. Not worth fussing over given the context of this thread.

In terms of climate, Vancouver (and coastal BC) experiences overcast and rainy winters, but sunny and warm summers. The autumns and springs are longer in Vancouver (and coastal BC) than anywhere else in Canada, with autumn getting more rainy each month as it transitions from summer to winter, and spring getting less rainy each month as it transitions from winter to summer. Autumn foliage begins in September and is only peaking right now in mid October, but will linger well into November. Gardens generally stay green through the winter. Then the first spring blossoms appear in February. March the city is pink in cherry blossoms. Tulips and other spring flowers emerge in April. Elsewhere in Canada, spring begins to show its face in May.

For a nature enthusiast or a gardener, Vancouver is a gem, and it is the rain that is mainly responsible for the green lushness. If you do not appreciate nature or the outdoors, the appeal of Vancouver may be lost.

Edit: Here's a climate graph for Vancouver.



Notice the trend of increasing rain until winter and then decreasing rain until summer. Vancouver's famous rain is actually just a seasonal rain that happens in the late-fall winter months, mainly from November until February. July and August have little rain and in fact can often have drought-like conditions.

For a random comparison, here's London, where the rain falls fairly equally, with the most rain falling in July, August, and November:



My point is that these are two very different experiences of rain in two areas known for rain.

Last edited by Lychee; Oct 16th 2016 at 7:27 pm.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 10:06 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by Lychee View Post
There were remnants of a Pacific typhoon that hit the coast of BC this week. It's in the news because it's such an unusual event....
I was just having a bit of fun following other comments on another thread previously.
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Old Oct 16th 2016, 10:14 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by BristolUK View Post
I was just having a bit of fun following other comments on another thread previously.
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I'm saying nought

You do need to note though Lychee, the Vancouver scale is double the size of the London one precipitation wise so not an entirely fair comparison
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Old Oct 17th 2016, 4:02 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

Originally Posted by Stinkypup View Post
I'm saying nought

You do need to note though Lychee, the Vancouver scale is double the size of the London one precipitation wise so not an entirely fair comparison
Good point. If you take 50 mm as being the London average, Vancouver trounces London on rain from September to April - that's 8 months !
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Old Oct 17th 2016, 4:04 pm
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Default Re: The truth about Vancouver

We have lived in North Vancouver for 7 years now and this spring we will be moving over to Halifax. It is a wonderful place to live. We have lots of friends but I am very outgoing and make friends easliy. We are moving because we can never afford a home here. the average home is about a million and still in need of serious updates!! So off to Halifax we go where we can afford our own little patch of dirt even if we have to shovel a lot of snow off it! So if you are selling in England and have a big wadge of money to bring then go for it! As for drugs and bad areas dont you have them everywhere? We have 2 young girls and would love them to grow up here but our dream of home ownership will never be realized here. Mountains, sea and beautiful country to explore everywhere you look. You wont regret it if you have the $$$, if not and you do want to buy a house then I would look elsewhere. Also services are really great, lots of great free services to use for mums and children and hospitals are fab. The obsession with the weather is an English thing and once you get here you will realize it really feels no different to England but much less wind and fog!
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