Cost of Living In Calgary, AB

Calgary definitely isn’t the cheapest city in Canada. Still, it is far more affordable than some other big places like Toronto and Vancouver. Today, I’m going to break down the estimated costs of housing, transport, and other essentials for living. If you’re thinking about moving to Calgary, do not skip this article!

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Housing

Considering that Calgary is a major city in Canada, its housing prices are relatively reasonable. 

The average cost of a furnished studio outside the city center is a bit less than $1000. 

In case you want to live downtown, the same size apartment would set you back about $200-300 more. Renters are expected to pay a full month’s deposit, so be prepared to lay down some cash upfront. 

As for the bills, they amount to anywhere from $120-250 per month, depending on your house/apartment size. If you’re interested in buying a detached home, you can do it for around $420,000. 

The housing market took a big hit due to the COVID pandemic, which caused the prices to drop. However, Calgary’s real-estate board predicts that the prices will pick back up in 2021, so those who’d like to buy a house should do it as soon as possible.

Transportation

Even though Calgary has a decent public transport system, the network isn’t as spread out as in some other major cities in the country. This means that having a car would do you a lot of good in terms of convenience. 

With that being said, the costs of having a car in Calgary are pretty low. A liter of gas currently costs less than $1. Those who don’t have their own vehicle can opt for Uber or taxi. In the case of the latter, the starting tariff is $3.80, and each km passed will add $2.0 to that.

If you live close to the train or bus routes, it would be wise to invest in a monthly pass. It costs $109, while a one-way ticket goes for $3.50. The good news is that riding on the C-Train between downtown stops is free of charge.  

Dining 

Like in every other city, the prices of meals vary depending on the restaurant. Let’s take a look at fast food first. A combo meal in most fast food joints will set you back around $10. 

A main course in a mid-range restaurant costs anywhere from $14 to $20. A good way to save a few bucks would be to order daily specials, something which most eateries in Calgary offer.

As for beverages, a regular cappuccino goes for $4.45, while beer can be bought for between $7 and $10. A bottle of Coke or Pepsi usually costs a bit more than $2. Do know that tips are expected, so having a few drinks can result in a hefty bill.

Recreation

Being so close to the mountains, Calgary is a heaven for winter sports enthusiasts. It’s important to point out that skiing on the slopes of the Rockies isn’t a cheap experience.

Those who are learning to ski should be prepared to blow up to $200 a day. This amount covers the instructor, equipment, and access to the slopes. Experienced skiers or those who have their own gear won’t have to pay as much. The ski lift tickets cost from $50 to $127, depending on the resort.

Aside from skiing, other popular forms of recreation include swimming, fitness, and outdoor activities. You can swim in one of many public pools for as little as $2 (commission for adults). Gym memberships cost around $66 per month and an hour on the tennis court is $22. 

In case you like being active outdoors, McHugh Bluff park is a great place for jogging and hiking. As you’ve probably guessed, you can enjoy the park for free.

Healthcare

Canada is known for its excellent healthcare, and the province of Alberta is a shining example of that. The Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan is available to anyone with a legal residence in Canada. If you apply for the plan, you’ll get full coverage for visits to the physician and even some dental and surgical services.

For those who are not covered under the AHCIP, a doctor’s appointment could cost up to $100. With that in mind, I sincerely advise you to apply for the insurance plan and ensure your peace of mind.  

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