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Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Discussion forum for expats moving to or living in Canada.

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Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2006 8:25 pm

Hi there,

I stumbled across this site quite by accident! But am glad I did it's just what I'm looking for Smile I was born in the UK but my Dad is Canadian & I have Citizenship, which should be coming bcak to me in the next couple of months, so I plan (hopefully) on coming out beginning of next year. I want to live in either Burnaby or New Westminster as have family there, but was wondering if there was anyone in the Vancouver area that recommend how I can meet people? I'm in my thirty's & looking to hopefully meet & make new friends, any advice would be greatly appreciated!!!


Regular Poster
Regular Poster
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2006 10:22 pm

Hi Tigger,

A warm welcome to Expat Focus, and congratulations on your quest
to relocate to BC. A gorgeous area of Canada...have you been yet?

Here are a few links to get you started:

Please let me know if you have any specific questions, or if you would
like more information on free relocation management support for home finding, mortgage, move of household goods etc.




Toronto Executive Suites - Info: Here


Frequent Poster
Frequent Poster
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2006 11:41 pm


Welcome here.

You are only one of a growing group of UK types that has Canadian citizenship thru a Parent. What an advantage for you, not having to go thru the Immigration qualification process, like others have to do. Do you know how lucky you are?

How to Meet people?

Same as where you are now. Be friendly, be interested in what THEY have to say to you. Get involved in being a volunteer of some kind. Learn a new skill like sailing, scuba diving, skiing, or cross country bike riding.

Keep away from singles bars. Better place to meet ladies? The supermarket. I'm not kidding. Everybody has to buy food sometimes. so be happy and be ready to strke up a conversation about the price of mushrooms, or the newest kind of smoked cheese that is one sale. Take a cooking class, lots of single ladies there.

British Columbia's weather on the coast will be just like the UK only wetter. The dogs have moss on them, from all the rain. They do get the odd sunny day though. The interior is much different, and the Okanaghan valley's lakes are the place to go for your summer vacation.

Questions? Ask me here.

Cheers Jim Bunting in Toronto.


Forum Legend
Forum Legend
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2006 2:13 pm

That's great, thanks for the websites, though Jim I'm a lady!! How about meeting guys over mushrooms Smile

I know I'm really lucky, a friend of mine & her husband are trying to relocate to New Zealand, & are going through all kinds of hassle! I'm just waiting for my new citizenship to come back, get my passport & off I go!!

I'm planning a trip to Vancouver in the next couple of months, but my family used to live out there (before I was born) & have pretty much grown up on the tales of the loveliness of Canada!

The rain not a problem, I have seen the sun since September last year!!!

Quick question, how do you guys pay tax on your salarys? Do you do tax returns or is it already deducted every month from the tax office (like here) ?



Regular Poster
Regular Poster
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2006 8:46 pm


Sorry the screen name could be either gender, (grin ).

Your pay cheque has these deductions, each pay period.

Federal tax, Provinicial tax, Canada Pension deduction, and Employment Insurance, plus the BC health insurance monthly deduction. About a third of your gross goes to taxes.

Explanation...........Your income bracket, plus your marital status, decides the amount of tax you will have deducted at source by your employer. They forward it to the different levels of Government. The fed tax is the higher amount, the Provincial tax is the lesser amount. The two combined, depending on your annual income will range from 22 to 30 percent tax. To get a 30 percent annual tax rate you would have to have a annual income of OVER 100,000 dollars, or 50,000 pounds.

The Canada Pension Plan is a mandatory deduction for all workers in Canada, It gives you a pension at age 60. EI is a national plan that covers you IF you become un-employed, due to no fault of your own. It pays you 60 percent of your last wage rate, for up to 28 weeks untiil you are employed again. The deduction is based on your gross income, and your employer also matches your EI contributions to the plan, paid in to the Government every pay period. Most places here pay every two weeks, and many have a electronic banking plan that deposits your pay into your bank account automatically . Many Canadians ( me included ) do all their banking by home computer, paying bills and moving money around. We ( Canadians ) are also the worlds biggest users of debit cards, for the ease of use. I haven't been in my bank branch for about 6 months, I don't need to go there to do my business with the bank.

I live in Ontario, so I am not that familiar with the BC medical plan costs, but all of us in Canada are covered by a Provincial plan in the Province where we live. It is similar to the UK's National Health service. but with some better features.

Annual tax returns are as follows..........The employer issues a tax form, know an a T4, in February of each year. It lists your Gross income, for the year, and the amounts of Fed and Provinicial tax that you have paid. You use these figures to do a Tax Return, most of us use a tax calculator computer program to do that, and many of us file our taxes by E-file, from our home computers, to the fed income tax department. Each person gets a basic annual exemption of $8,000 that they pay no tax on. There are a wide range of other deductions, too many to list here, but the main idea is to have a REFUND , at the end, not a balance owing!!. If you do have a refund coming you can ask to have it deposited to your bank account by electronic means, instead of waiting for it to come in the mail.

When you come for a visit , if you are looking for work here. be sure to make it clear that you are a CANADIAN CITIZEN, as most employers will ASSUME that with your Accent, you will need to get a Immigration permit or Permanent Resident card to work legally here in Canada. Put that fact right out front in any interview for a position that you may be applying for. Put your Canadian passport right on the table, at the interview, so there is no misunderstanding about youir ability to legally work in Canada, right away.

Accent? Yes of course you will sound different than we do having lived in the UK all your life. I put it this way........ No body thinks THEY have an accent, but to their ears everybody else DOES.

A thing that you will like here is this.

Local home telephone use,,,,,,You can talk as long as you like, in the local calling area, for hours if you want, for no charge. You pay a flat rate per month, about 15 pounds, for the phone service, the only extra is for Long Distance calls, like back to the UK. For long distance calls, you can buy a discount phone card, with a face value of 10 20 or 30 dollars, at the corner store. This allows you to talk to the UK for as little as 3 P a minute. It does require that you dial a long access number,. but it sure is a saver on the regular rates. By using a long distance discount card, yuyo pay less, than if you had charged the call to your home phone account.

Like BBC TV programs? We have it here on the cable tv service.

My advice about meeting people still goes, but I'll add that being into sports will help, and so will being willing to learn new things.

Questions? Ask me , here.

Jim Bunting. Toronto.


Forum Legend
Forum Legend
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:13 am

Thanks Jim, that's really good advice/info. I've struggled to find out stuff like that as a lot of the books I found were about HOW to become a Canadian Citizen with the points & stuff, but was a bit vauge on things like tax & stuff.

I plan on putting Canadian Citizen in big bold letters on my CV! Also I'm not the least bit shy so meeting people shouldn't be too hard! I quite liked your sailing idea actually, not something I'd be able to try in the middle of West Yorkshire! Smile


Regular Poster
Regular Poster
Re: Moving from the UK to Vancouver

Post Posted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 1:00 am

Hey Tigger"

Small world , my first Wife was from Barnsley. I called her the Wakefield terrier, when she got going 12 to the dozen. Sadly she died of complications from her asthma. A product of growing up in the coal burning days of the 50's in Yorkshire. I met her here in Canada when she was here for a year working as a nanny for a wealthy family with twin boys.

We had 12 good years as a married couple, untill she got really sick and then we found out she had advanced lung cancer, and she was gone in 5 months. Nothing they could do for her, except pain meds.

OK on to better and happier themes.

If I recall, you are going to the Vancouver area, yes? If so lots of water sports are available in that region, both fresh and salt water, and once you are there, the local recreation centre will have lists of clubs and groups for all kinds of things to do, mostly free .

On money...........AS you might expect, how much you save will depend on the CHOICES that you make. For instance, how much rent do you pay per month. You can splash out and get a very fancy apartment, on your own, or get a shared place with one or two other women, and spend a lot less for rent. The same wih clothes buying, and deciding if you should buy a car, or use public transport to get to work. A wise person tries NOT to spend money that they haven' MADE yet. Conserve your savings as much as you can, at first.

There is a tendency to "want it all now" and it can be dangerous, depending on how much money you can bring with you from the UK.

A few bits of advice, if you don't mind. Don't bring ANY electrical items of any kind from the UK, they won't work here as our power is totally a different kind. Same thing for any type of VCR or CD player. The North American systems for those things are NOT compatible with those in the UK. Same thing for mobile phones, a different type of coding .

Food.........You will find some brands here that you will recognise from over there. Most UK people have a big shock when they go food shopping for the first time in Canada. First the size of the stores, then the variety of the foods, and the amount of fresh tropical fruits and vegetables that we eat here all year long. My second wife, Brenda is from The Bahamas, so we eat lots of fruit and vegetables that you don't see in the UK, like papaya, mango and breadfruit, as well as chinese bock choy and Mexican chilies and peppers.

Night life...............Cimemas, and dances and sports, as you might expect , but with a Canadian twist, such as the idea of beach parties, at night with a big fire of drift wood, and a corn boil. We grow and eat sweet corn on the cob, and it is a summer time staple at family gattherings. Great with some butter, salt and pepper, and a cold beer. Outdoor cooking is done on propane barbies, and in BC with all the rain, most people keep the barbie in their garage, so they can cook when it is raining outside, with the door open of course!!!. Good Alberta beef, fresh seafood of all kinds, and what ever else they can cook on a grill, are year round faves.

Driving..............On the right, please!!!

BC gets lots of rain, which you are used to..............It also gets snow in the interior away from the coast, and very high snow fall levels in the mountains. It pays to take a winter driving course from the BC Automobile Club, to be trained in winter driving AND how to prepare yourself and your car for snow country.

OK lots to absorb right? More questions? Ask me here.

Jim Bunting. Toronto.


Forum Legend
Forum Legend
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