Advice for Visitors to Canada
Moving to Vancouver
Welcome to Vancouver! Here are some quick facts about the city:
- Size: 113 sq. km. Population: 560,000 Area Population: 2 million
- Largest Port on the West Coast of North America Largest City in British
- Third Largest
City in Canada (Toronto is first , Montreal second)
- Annual Rainfall: 1219 mm (48 inches) 10% of that during the summer
(For comparison: Seattle gets 36 inches a year and San Francisco 21
- Average Temperatures: 3°C (37.4°F) in January 18°C (64.4°F)
- Daylight: 16 hours in June / 8 hours in December.
- Features: Vancouver is surrounded by water on three sides and is overlooked
by the Coast Mountain Range with peaks above 1,500 m. (4920 feet)
A quick tip for those moving to Vancouver: you may want to visit www.cic.gc.ca
where you can download or order A Newcomers Introduction to Canada.
Where to live?
Downtown Vancouver caters largely to those who enjoy high density living
and there are many new apartment complexes under construction. There are
also many restaurants and entertainment options in this area. New homes
are also being built in Surrey which is a great area for families as there
are more than 88 parks in the region. Richmond is also an area with new
home development and relatively low costs. It is best to take a drive
through Vancouver and check out the different neighborhoods for yourself
to see where you feel most comfortable. Visit www.bcpassport.com
for more info on moving to Vancouver.
If you are moving your family, there are many services available to help
make your move smoother. Visit the Vancouver
Newcomers Guide website and the Neighborhood Houses website
where you will find helpful information on social, educational, recreational
and cultural services for the whole family.
Health Care Insurance
All citizens and permanent residents of Canada are covered by Medicare
for basic health care. In BC, this is called the Medical Services Plan
(MSP) you should apply for medical coverage as soon as you arrive. It
takes about three months and you will not be covered until that time.
If you are moving to Vancouver from another part of Canada you can arrange
to remain under your present health care until you are eligible for The
MSP. If you are coming from another country it is best to have travel
health insurance provided by a private health care company until you are
covered. For more information contact MSP at (604) 683-7151.
Other helpful services:
society of BC (604) 684-7498
MOSAIC - multilingual
multicultural non-profit organization (604) 254 -9626