What to Know Before Moving to Vancouver, BC
With its active lifestyle, excellent walk-ability and vibrant, diverse culture, Vancouver has earned a top spot among the world's best places to live. Even so, moving to a new city can be intimidating. If you're considering a move to Vancouver, we have some tips to help you get acquainted with your new home.
Move for the Wonderful Weather
If you like mild, warm weather, Vancouver is the city for you. Unlike most Canadian cities, Vancouver only sees occasional snow. Instead, the winters are characterized primarily by cool days and plenty of rain. (You’ll want to invest in an umbrella!) The summers are famously beautiful, with plenty of warm, sunny days.
A Neighborhood for Every Taste
Vancouver's size and diversity make it easy to find a great neighborhood. If you're looking for a single-family home to raise a family in, check out Arbutus Ridge, a quiet neighborhood with historic homes, great mountain views and quick access to Downtown and the university area. For a youthful, laidback vibe and close proximity to the ocean, try Kitsilano. Downtown is the bustling heart of the city and offers easy access to nightlife and culture. If you don't want an apartment or loft in the middle of Downtown, look at False Creek and Yaletown, which lie just outside of it. Chinatown, one of the most diverse neighborhoods in an already diverse city, is also a popular choice.
Education in Vancouver
Vancouver's public school system is inclusive and well-funded, so your kids can get a great education here. Two magnet schools, the Vancouver School of Arts and Academics and Vancouver iTech Preparatory, let high schoolers focus on specialized interests before college. There are also a wide variety of private schools to choose from. Vancouver is home to the University of British Columbia, one of Canada's best universities.
Navigating the City
When asked about the best parts of living in Vancouver, residents often cite the ease of getting around without a car. There are numerous bike and pedestrian paths winding through the city's greenways and streets, so it's easy to walk or ride almost anywhere in town.
For longer trips, there are plenty of buses and trains. The rapid transit system consists of automated trains that run frequently through the city, and several lines connect to the suburbs in case you wind up living a little outside of Vancouver proper. The bus system is also a popular way to get around, especially for destinations on the faster express routes.
Things to Do in Vancouver
One of the best things about living in Vancouver is the easy access to nature. Stanley Park, which won TripAdvisor's "best park in the entire world" title in 2014, is a popular recreation spot for locals and tourists alike. For a more strenuous hike, head up into the nearby mountains, or you can just relax, swim and play on one of Vancouver's many beaches.
There's always something going on in Vancouver. Live music is available at multiple venues every night, and the city is home to more than 50 professional theater groups so it's easy to catch a world-class show. It also hosts some of the world's best festivals, including the Vancouver International Film Festival, Vancouver Fringe Fest and several large music festivals.
Tips for Moving To Vancouver
Vancouver's popularity means that housing is at a premium, which some online scammers take advantage of. Never send money without seeing the home in person, signing a lease and getting the keys. This high-demand housing market also means that you need to start looking well in advance, as last-minute rentals can be difficult to find.
If you plan on using public transportation often, buy a Compass card. These inexpensive passes let you avoid the hassle of buying tickets every trip, and they're cheaper to boot.
The City of Vancouver has an excellent website that includes new resident guides to help you learn about the city in more detail.
Whether you're relocating for work, attending university or just enjoying a change of scene, Vancouver is a great place to live. When you’re ready to make the move, give You Move Me a call. We can help you with everything, including packing and unpacking, and providing moving supplies. We’ve got a custom moving solution to suit everyone. After all, our mission is to move you, not just your boxes.
With a bit of planning and some help from your friendly local movers, you'll be able to settle into your new home in no time.