Dubai VS Canada: Living in Dubai or Canada

Is it better to live in Dubai or Canada?

That is a good question, since both places offer their residents a high quality of life.

If you are currently living in Dubai, you might be considering immigration to Canada for a variety of reasons.

Maybe, you live somewhere else in the world and are debating the pros and cons of moving to Canada versus Dubai.

There are many factors to consider when deciding on where to relocate abroad, such as the climate, cost of living, job openings, educational opportunities, healthcare, safety and other issues.

This article will compare living in Dubai or Canada and then you can decide for yourself which is better for you.

Table of Contents

Climate and Geography

Canada experiences all four seasons and its climate ranges from temperate along the Pacific coast to continental in the central region and Atlantic coast to sub-Arctic in the northern part of the country.

Examples of average high and low temperatures (in Celsius) for certain Canadian cities are as follows:

  • Vancouver – July (High = 22C and Low = 14C) / January (High = 7C and Low = 1C) 
  • Calgary – July (High = 23C and Low = 10C) / January (High = -1C and Low = -13C)
  • Toronto – July (High = 27C and Low = 18C) / January (High = -1C and Low = -7C)
  • Montreal – July (High = 26C and Low = 16C) / January (High = -5C and Low = -14C)
  • Halifax – July (High = 23C and Low = 14C) / January (High = 0C and Low = -8C)

Dubai has a desert climate with extremely hot and humid summers and mild winters.

During July, the average high temperature in Dubai is 41C and the low is 30C, while the average high temperature in January is 24C and the low is 14C.

Canada is the second largest country in the world, stretching from the Pacific Ocean in the west to the Atlantic Ocean in the east, while bordering the United States in the south and the Arctic Ocean in the north.

Coastal mountains and the Canadian Rockies are in the western region of the country; the Prairie Provinces are in the flat central plains section of Canada; the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River occupy the southeast lowlands; and to the east are the northern Appalachian Mountains and Maritime (Atlantic) Provinces.

Canada is a beautiful country with scenic mountains, forests, rivers, valleys, plains and around 2 million lakes.

Dubai is the capital of the Emirate of Dubai and has the largest population in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Situated on the edge of the Arabian Desert, Dubai is located in the UAE along the coast of the Arabian Gulf/Persian Gulf, bordered in the northeast by Sharjah, further to the south by Abu Dhabi, and the southeast by Oman.

Dubai has beautiful beaches to the west and sand dunes to the south and east.

Cost of Living

According to the website, the cost of living in Canada’s largest city, Toronto, excluding housing, is about $1,421 Canadian Dollars (CAD) per month for a single person and around $5,128 CAD for a family of four.

The average monthly rent in Toronto’s city center is approximately $2,448 CAD for a one bedroom apartment and around $3,925 CAD for a three bedroom apartment, while the average monthly rent outside of Toronto’s city center is about $2,085 CAD for a one bedroom apartment and $3,261 CAD for a three bedroom apartment.

By comparison, the website also reports that the cost of living in Dubai, excluding housing, for a single person is around $1,386 CAD per month and about $4,735 CAD for a family of four.

The average monthly rent in Dubai’s city center is approximately $2,649 CAD for a one bedroom apartment and around $4,594 CAD for a three bedroom apartment, while the average monthly rent outside of Dubai’s city center is about $1,501 CAD for a one bedroom apartment and $2,810 CAD for a three bedroom apartment.

Job Opportunities

Canada’s Job Bank reports (April 2023) that there are over 855,000 Canadian job openings throughout the country in all sectors of the economy.

According to economists, there is a strong demand for workers to fill jobs in Canada, especially as more and more Canadians retire.

As Dubai continues to transition from a petroleum-based economy to a knowledge-based economy, there is a growing demand for thousands of professionals to fill information technology and other white collar jobs in Dubai.

Nonetheless, there are many jobs in Dubai for construction workers and other blue collar workers, as well as “lower” skilled workers for hospitality, transportation and other jobs.

Average Salaries and Wages

The national minimum wage for jobs in Canada is $16.65 per hour (April 2023). Dubai does not have a minimum wage, however, employers are required to pay enough to meet the essential needs of their employees.

The average salary for someone working in Canada is $58,800 CAD per year, according to Statistics Canada (2021).

By comparison, the average salary in Dubai is about $94,795 per year (2021).

Business and Entrepreneurship

According to a worldwide survey of 17,000 people conducted in 2022 by US News & World Report, BAC Consulting and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Canada is the #10 best country in the world to conduct business and the #8 best country for entrepreneurs to start a new business.

The same survey found that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is considered the #58 best country to conduct business in and ranked #18 for entrepreneurship.

Banking and Finance

Canada has one of the world’s most accessible banking systems, with over 99% of adults having an account at a bank or other Canadian financial institutionDubai has a good reputation for the stability of its banking system and the UAE is even referred to as the “Switzerland of the Middle East” since it is so easy to conduct banking transactions there.

Income Taxes

Individuals working in Canada must pay federal income tax as well as provincial or territorial income tax on the money they earn.

The federal income tax rate varies, depending on how much a person earns, with the tax rates being 15 percent, 20.5 percent, 26 percent, 29 percent and 33 percent. Dubai does not have an individual income tax, but it does tax foreign banks and oil companies, for example.

Healthcare and Education

Canadian citizens and permanent residents receive free or subsidized universal healthcare, which is paid for through taxes. Citizens of the UAE receive free or subsidized public healthcare in Dubai paid for by the government. 

Canada has a high-quality public education system, as well as many outstanding private schools, and several of its universities are listed among the top 100 best universities in the world, however, a university education is not free in Canada

Dubai has a world-class public education system, although most students attend private educational institutions, such as the many international schools located there, plus citizens of the UAE can receive a free university education.

Cultural Differences

The official languages in Canada are English and French, while the official language in Dubai is Arabic (English is also well-known). Canada does not have an official religion, whereas Islam is the official religion of Dubai.

People living in Canada can show affection in public, but this is prohibited in Dubai.There is no dress code in Canada, however, there is a dress code, particularly for women, in Dubai. Canadians eat many different types of foods, while people living in Dubai tend to eat Arabic cuisine.

The weekend is on Saturday and Sunday in Canada, whereas it is on Friday and Saturday in Dubai.

Social Life and Leisure Activities

People who live in Canada are generally known for their friendliness, particularly toward newcomers, as well as their compassion and humility.

Equality and multiculturalism are also important to Canadians. Individuals living in Dubai are often busy with various activities, many belong to beach clubs or sports clubs, and hospitality is important. There is a social hierarchy in Dubai, with Emiratis holding the highest status, followed by expats from Western countries, then expats from The Philippines and India, and then laborers.

Canadians enjoy a wide range of leisure activities, including ice hockey, snow skiing, soccer, golf, tennis, basketball, biking, hiking, camping, along with reading books, watching television and movies, going to concerts, dining out and shopping.

People who live in Dubai enjoy water sports, motor sports, bicycling, soccer, golf, tennis, falconry, horse racing, and visiting the desert, as well as reading books, dining out, shopping, and watching television and movies.

Safety and Security

The 2022 Global Peace Index ranked Canada as the #12 most peaceful country in the world and US News & World Report listed Canada as the #7 safest country in 2022.

The UAE was rated as the world’s #60 most peaceful country in the 2022 Global Peace Index.

Conclusion: Which Country Is Better for You?

Only you can decide if living in Dubai or Canada is better for you and your family.

This brief comparison shows that both Canada and Dubai are great places to live and have a high standard of living.

Canada is much larger the entire UAE, so if you might consider To Immigrate from UAE to Canada if you would prefer to have plenty of open space. In the event that you are a bit concerned about Canada’s cold winters, you may want to explore living in Vancouver, which has some of the mildest Canadian weather and beautiful beaches as well.

As you know, Dubai is a very hot place to live and global climate change is likely to cause the temperatures to soar even higher, so relocating to Canada, where the winters may become more moderate over time, may be a wise choice. If freedom and equality are important to you, especially if you are a woman or an expat worker temporarily living in Dubai, then you may want to move to Canada.

Starting a new company and conducting business may also be easier living in Canada than in Dubai.

Furthermore, Canada borders the United States, so if you would like to travel to the USA and/or conduct business with the US, this is easier to do as a Canadian permanent resident or citizen.Finally, the Arabian Gulf/Persian Gulf region is relatively peaceful right now, but there is always the potential for conflict and violence, whereas Canada is one of the most peaceful and safest countries in the world.

In the event that you want to immigrate to Canada, it will be important to find out if you are eligible for one of the several Canadian immigration programs.

Since 2012, Our Visa Immigration Experts to Canada crew was been collaborating with authorized immigration consultants who can evaluate your eligibility for immigration to Canada and guide you through the process if you qualify.


Discover Frequently Asked Questions from Our Support

Is it cheaper to live in Dubai or Canada?

The cost of living in Dubai and Toronto is comparable or even slightly less expensive in Dubai. There are, however, many smaller cities and towns all across Canada where it is generally much cheaper than living in Dubai.

Is Toronto or Dubai better?

Whether Toronto or Dubai is better is an individual judgment call, as both are truly great places to live. There is extremely hot weather in Dubai during the summer, but mild weather during the winter, whereas it is very cold in Toronto during the winter, but there is mild weather in the summer. Toronto has beautiful beaches situated along Lake Ontario, while Dubai has beautiful beaches along the Arabian Gulf/Persian Gulf. The largest cities in Canada and the UAE both have excellent restaurants, places to shop, quality schools, and many options for sports. So, it depends on who you are (including if you are an Emirati or a foreign expat living in Dubai) and what you want in life for yourself and your family.

Is it better to live in Canada or Dubai?

Whether it is better to live in Canada or Dubai depends on what is most important to you and your family.

Canada is the second largest country in the world and offers many amazing places to live, while living in Dubai and the UAE is also incredible, but it is a much smaller geographical area. Canada and Dubai both have nice weather during certain times of the year, but it does get cold in Canada during the winter and it is extremely hot in Dubai during the summer.

Canada is one of the most peaceful and safest countries, whereas Dubai is also peaceful and safe, but located in a “dangerous neighborhood” where there is always a risk of conflict. It may be better to live in Canada than Dubai in terms of the amount of freedom and equality that Canadians have, including gender equality for women. Canada is one of the most immigrant-friendly and tolerant countries in the world, so if you were to relocate somewhere outside of Dubai and the UAE, Canadian immigration would be a good option.

Is it more expensive to live in Canada or UAE?

It is more expensive to live in UAE than to live in Canada, since there are many smaller Canadian cities and towns where the cost of living is quite low. On the other hand, if you live in Toronto, Montreal or Vancouver, then the cost of living would be similar to living in Dubai or even slightly more expensive. Thus, it depends on where you live in Canada.


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