Consistently, Canada has been named several times as one of the most livable countries in the world. But Filipinos and citizens of other countries should weigh Canada’s pros and cons before making a decision.
The glowing feedback and rankings among the most liveable places make Canada an easy choice for many Filipinos looking for a place in which to settle and set up a second home.
When it comes to education, health care, environment, economy, commerce, and leisure, Canada offers more than other countries that are popular migration choices.
Many OFWs, or overseas Filipino workers, realize that it’s best for them to stay in Canada with their whole family and spend retirement there. Meanwhile, there are others who find it difficult to adjust and return to the Philippines after a few years.
Here are some pros and cons when it comes to Canadian living.
The Canadian advantages
Primarily, a lot of overseas Filipino workers enjoy bigger salaries abroad because they earn Canadian dollars. This means that they also get to save more and can afford things that they normally wouldn’t be able to in the Philippines.
There are tax benefits for various individuals. Raising children in Canada will also provide you with tax advantages because the government is supportive of families and the welfare of children. The age of the child, as well as the financial capacity of the parents, will be determined to know how much support will be given and how much tax can be deducted.
Education is also free in Canada; but their public schools are relatively better because teachers, libraries, school facilities, and cafeterias are properly maintained by the government. You can guarantee that free education will not compromise the quality and treatment of children.
Better health care system.
Health care in Canada is free regardless of the severity of the condition, thanks to the government’s Universal Health Care program.
Filipino immigrants only need to stay for at least three months to start availing of the health benefits. The free health services are not limited to certain clinics and hospitals. You can simply go to the health care center of your choice and avail yourself of free treatment.
The environment in Canada is also cleaner because the government ensures that the surroundings are clean, waste is properly disposed of and drainage systems are well-maintained. There are also strict laws that protect the forests and environment.
Free quality education.
Not only does Canada offer free education, but it is also of high quality. When compared to the Philippines where public schools have up to 65 students per teacher, do not have sufficient chairs and books, unclean toilets, and underpaid teachers, Canada’s quality of education is delivered through an adequate supply of required materials necessary for the optimal learning experience. We may avail of similar things in the Philippines, but only at schools where fees are beyond the reach of the general population.
Available jobs to deserving applicants.
Finding a job in Canada is made easier by effective and reliable social services.
People of various ages will discover how these agencies can help them find the right job according to their education level, skills, and age.
You can also get insurance plans for free as soon as you get employed. There are more programs offered by the Canadian government that will help workers afford food, rent, and other basic needs for the entire family.
More opportunities for those who strive.
Many of the things that are normally available in the United States are also offered in Canada because it is a first-world country. To those who wish to reach their ambitions and goals in life, Canada offers opportunities for all, although pockets of the population may be averse to the idea. Canada also offers healthy surroundings, community parks, and majestic attractions, many of which are free and ideal for young families.
There are also a lot of attractions, parks, and entertainment areas where the whole family can relax and enjoy. Vacation spots are located in different areas and employees are given weeks of vacation leave with pay to unwind each year.
Child tax benefit.
Depending on your income and the age of the child, Canada grants funds for you to raise your child until the age of 18. You can find more information on the Canada Revenue Agency website at www.cra-arc.gc.ca.
There is no age discrimination.
The age limit and “pleasing personality” currently being practiced in the Philippines may be a thing of the past as Canada does not discriminate against elder members of the society entering the job market.
Some Canadian disadvantages
Families far apart.
One of the biggest challenges that come with migrating to Canada is leaving loved ones, relatives, and friends in the Philippines. You have to deal with fewer Filipino friends abroad. This is on top of living on the other side of the world where communication arrangements need to adjust the time difference.
Canada can be a very cold place to live.
Another drawback is learning how to quickly adjust to the culture and environment. Some Filipinos find the cold climate very uncomfortable and easily get sick. You may need to wear a winter jacket for up to seven months at temperatures that drop down to minus 30 degrees Centigrade. Such an experience could drive you to long for the warm confines of the family home in the Philippines.
High tax rates.
Even with the tax deductions and benefits, you might also be surprised at relatively high taxes ranging anywhere between 20 percent and 30 percent of your income. This will depend on which bracket you belong to and your other sources of income. You also need to pay about 15% when buying goods. In short, Canada can be an expensive place to live. The silver lining is that at least you know where your tax money goes and having paid that much amount of tax means you are earning enough.
Finding desired jobs can be hard.
Companies may be looking for “Canadian experience”, but how can you get one if they all ask for such experience? So many immigrants leave their white-collar jobs back in their home countries and settle for jobs such as taxi drivers, sales crew, or janitors.
Deciding to live and work in Canada is a huge decision. But knowing the quality of life that it offers for you and your family, migrating should be an easy decision.