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Life in Ontario

Updated: August 17th, 2022

Ontario is located in east-central Canada, and is the most populous of all the provinces, with around 14-million people calling this area their home. It is also the 2nd largest province in Canada, covering 1.076 million km². The province of Ontario houses the national capital city (Ottawa), and the nation’s most populous city (Toronto). Here's all you need to know about life in Ontario, Canada.

Where is Ontario?

Ontario shares a 2700 kilometer border with the United States to the south (Michigan, Ohio, New York, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania), Manitoba to the west, James Bay and Hudson Bay to the north, and Quebec to the east.

Cost of living in Ontario

Cost of Living Ontario infographic | Life in Canada

Ontario has a reputation for having high costs of living, but salaries and the minimum wage of $14 are some of the highest in the country. Known for cleanliness, safety, and an abundance of quality public services, it is no wonder that more than half of the immigrants in Canada choose Ontario.

Though Ontario has high taxes and living costs, their high salaries ensure that residents enjoy one of the highest quality of life rankings in the world.


In many ways, Ontario is the center of most activity in Canada and has created a hub of economic, social, and political opportunities. In fact, the Federal government is the single largest employer of Ontarians.

Ontario has a diverse economy, with the main exports being automobile, machinery, and electrical parts. Most big car brand names are manufactured here, including Chrysler, Ford, and Honda.

Mining has been an economic factor for over 130 years, supplying the world with more than 30 kinds of metal and minerals. The many rivers in the province have created numerous opportunities in the hydroelectric energy field, with much of the country's electricity originating here.

Southern Ontario provides fertile ground for the effective production of small grains and fruit farming, especially close to the beautiful Niagara Peninsula.


Gooderham-or-Flatiron-Building-in-downtown-Toronto-Ontario-Canada | Life in Ontario

Ontario has the most diverse culture in Canada, with most of the population in the province being of English and European descent. Irish, Italian and Scottish people account for a large group of immigrants, which has also resulted in an astounding number of foreign-born people in the province at over 28%, compared to the country average of less than 20%.

Today, there are over 100 languages spoken in homes throughout the province, though 70% of the population speaks English.

Over 50% of Ontario's population follow a Protestant or Catholic faith, with close to 23% declaring no religious affiliation at all. As a diverse province, there are many places of worship for all faiths. 


Ontario offers quality, government-funded education to its residents from Kindergarten until the end of their secondary school career.

The province has top-rated universities including the University of Toronto which is ranked 18th in the world. Other Notable universities are the University of Ontario, the University of Ottawa, and Queen’s University.   

Ontario Attractions

ottawa-ontario-winter-wonderland | life in Ottawa

The most popular attraction in Ontario is the well-known Niagara Falls, the Lakeside Park Carousel in Catharine’s, the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa, and Parliament Hill and Buildings in Ottawa. The province offers outstanding outdoor recreational opportunities such as fishing, hiking, hunting, skiing, and more.

Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP)

Ontario is widely regarded as Canada's main economic powerhouse and the wealthiest province. The province possesses the most mature and diverse industrial sector in the country, as well as a large share of the country's natural resources.

The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) accepts applications under a number of immigration categories:  

Human Capital Priorities Stream (aligned with Express Entry)
French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream (aligned with Express Entry)
Employer Job Offer: In-Demand Skills Stream
International Students category
Express Entry Skilled Trades & French Worker Stream


What is Life in Ontario Like?

Life in Ontario is diverse and exciting, and there is truly something for everyone. You'll need to adjust to the vast distances. Ontario isn't small, and most residents believe a five-hour drive is relatively short. You'll need a car to get around unless you live in one of the major cities like Toronto or Ottawa.

What is the OINP Processing Time?

The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) can make decisions within 60 days. Following that, the next phase normally takes between seven and eight months. This may seem like a long time to you, but when compared to the typical processing period of 17 to 32 months, we can see that it is truly significantly faster.

What is the Human Capital Priorities Stream of Ontario?

Because of its effectiveness in attracting thousands of qualified immigrant workers to Ontario, the Human Capital Priorities Stream is recognized as the OINP's nerve center. To be considered for this stream, you must have a current Express Entry profile. If you are successful, you will receive 600 CRS points in addition to an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canadian permanent residency.

Is Ontario a Good Place to Immigrate To?

There are numerous reasons why you would wish to relocate to Ontario. For example, Toronto, the province's capital, is one of the world's most diverse cities. Indeed, more than half of the population was born outside of Canada.

Furthermore, there are several work options in Toronto and other towns. Many multinational firms have their Canadian headquarters in Toronto. Finance, technology, film and media, and tourism are all important industries.

Academically, Ontario is home to many world-class universities. The University of Toronto, University of York, McMaster University, University of Waterloo, University of Ottawa, Ryerson University, Carelton University, University of Guelph, and others are among them.

Ready to start a new life in Ontario, Canada? Let our professional immigration consultants help you.

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