CTColette

Capetonians living in Canada

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CTColette

Hi Everyone,

I was wondering how many people on the forum was/is from Cape Town and if the immigration was difficult because I've heard from many people that Capetonians find it more difficult to settle in Canada. 

I think the reasoning is that Cape Town is very different than the rest of SA and we have experienced less crime than the other parts of the country which almost makes one feel like you are leaving a country that is still "okayish" where as people leaving SA from JHB really leave because it is an absolute nessesity.  Things have become totally unbearable around the JHB area so the only alternative is to leave the country.  I would love to hear from the Capetonians that made the move if they have had regrets, second thoughts ect.

PS:  I am still trying to convince my husband that we should leave but he loves his country..

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jones

Hi CTColette, 

I don't think the CT vs JHB argument has much merit on it's own. Being a Capetonian myself, it's about building a new future in a country which is willing to accommodate me. A country where education, safety and infrastructure is in place to facilitate said future. 

 

Let's not beat around the bush, Cape Town is amazing in most aspects but Canada is better. :) 

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CTColette

Thanks for your reply Jones!  I don't doubt that Canada is awesome hence me wanting to move over there :D  I am well aware that Vehicle insurance is a pain the butt and extremely expensive and many teachers protest ect but over all Canada is way better :D

 

 

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PsyCLown

I think it would depend on the reason you want to leave South Africa and the reason you picked Canada.

 

I love Gauteng!! I have lived in the Western Cape for around 4 or 5 years and it was not for me. I have lived in Pretoria and it was great! Durban is nice, however once again I much prefer living in Johannesburg - although this is based off spending some time in Durban when I was there for a friends wedding and with him visiting his family and not actually living there.

 

For me the reason I want to go to Canada is not due to the crime. It is a combination of things and various reasons. I do not believe any country is perfect, however I do believe certain countries would be better for certain people and I feel as if Canada is right for me. If the economic situation, government, crime, job market etc. all improved in South Africa I would still be attempting to move across to Canada.

Do not misunderstand this as me disliking South Africa, I will certainly miss it when I am gone.

Edited by PsyCLown
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KarinS

I am from Cape Town. We moved to Australia (Perth) 6 years ago and to Calgary a year ago. I really struggled to adapt in Aus. I was very homesick and missing everything about Cape Town, all the time. I was miserable and depressed. I met a few other Capetonians in Perth who felt the same way, while people from the rest of SA seemed to think Perth is heavenly!  I adapted easier in Calgary - I think due to the fact that the mountains are on our doorstep and maybe also since I came here with a more positive mindset. I was just so happy to leave Perth. I still miss Cape Town though. My sister, who has been in London for many years, and myself, were talking the other day about how we would love to move back. The lifestyle we had in Cape Town and which many of our friends and family still has, is second to none. Whether we would ever move back, I am not so sure. It will be too much of a financial risk for us at this stage.

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GrantM

Well... Here's an interesting one for you - on a "friendship" level.

I find the move from Cape Town to Canada last year similar to my move from Durban to Cape Town in 2008. When I moved to Cape Town I met a few people, they were friendly but you could tell they didn't want to be friends. Lots of talk about having a braai but never getting the invitation. It is VERY similar here, Canadians are really friendly but to crack an invite to join them for a BBQ or what not is not so easy. They just don't seem to want to invite people into their homes. I mean, we have invited a Canadian couple over this weekend. Their response was like, "maybe we should go out to eat at a restaurant". Meanwhile, we are like, "come to our place and we can have dinner and talk and not feel rushed".

On all other levels - it is a lot to get used to, and for a guy that doesn't like change... I think I'm settling in ok. My advice, miss things in SA, don't lose your heritage but don't try turn Canada into SA. You will fail, so integrate as best as you can and in time it will get easier.

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corwes

We are from Cape Town and moved to Toronto which is kind of the Joburg of Canada ( stock exchange , all the major companies headquarters etc.) We love it here.

We lived in Vredehoek and our place had very nice views over the city bowl. We were very sad to leave Cape Town and thought we will never get such a nice place again. Follow this thread to see what we ended up with.:

If you live in the Cape chances are that you are colder in your house in winter than what we are here. Central heating is amazing. Cost of living might seem very high if you convert it into rands but once you earn Canadian dollars it is not that high. Lamb is expensive but steaks are affordable . I have never eaten as many steaks as here.

Many people will tell you to not see it as moving away from something but rather to move towards something great.

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Chevelle

I really feel it all depends on you personally and this is something that has come to the fore for us very recently and I was about to bring this up in a new topic when this one appeared.

My question would have been for all those who lived along the coast in SA, how are you dealing with being landlocked (for those who are) like us in Calgary. I understand that it is each to their own but for me personally I spent a most Saturday evenings riding up to the Tokai Mast and whenever I got a chance and wherever the surf was I was there. Being in Calgary I really miss this. I know that the Rockies are "just down the road" but for me I could wake up in the morning and see the mountain right there and then check out the webcams for the surf and be there in 30 minutes and although there are a lot of things I do not miss about CT, these are the things that are starting to get to me personally and actually not just me. My daughter who is only 6 says she misses the beach and wants to know when we can go again! 

I work with two South Africans, one from Pretoria and the other from Hermanus and the guy from Pretoria loves it here, but the guy from Hermanus and myself find it very difficult to adapt. We just miss the fact that the beaches and mountains are right there.

So we have decided to do something about it :). All of what I am about to say hinges on us getting PR. If not then the plan changes drastically, so first prize is PR and then we can move to the next step.

Canada is huge with lots of places to explore and live IF (big if) you have the ability to do so. I am in a fortunate position where in order for me to get my job done all I need is a PC and a strong internet connection so I am not bound to being close to work. It has been mentioned a lot on this forum that the best place for you to settle is where you have the best chance of getting a job. This is what we did, we had to be in Calgary in order for me to work, however if we get the PR I can work for my company remotely. This gives us the ability to explore and so we have started looking at the coastline of Canada to see what will meet our needs.

I must admit that we have not done much exploration in the east. The maritimes looks great and could be something we could explore in the future if needed.

Immediately Vancouver was scratched off of the list due to the price of housing. I did do some research but it appears in Vancouver and its surrounds things are not cheap. We also looked at Kelowna and Kamloops but their summers are too hot for us.

In speaking to my colleague who lives in Vancouver, he brought my attention to Vancouver Island and so we did some more investigation and then I found @Cathy K posts on this forum and all of the wonderful pictures she has posted about Nanaimo (Thank you by the way :)). WOW! This blew our mind. I have seen some heated debate about living on the Island but for us this looks like the real deal! House prices are reasonable, its big enough to have almost everything, stunning scenery and pretty much everything that we need. Yes getting off the Island is not easy and yes Job prospects may not be the best ... but that is not relevant to us. Yes, it probably rains a lot but we feel that it looks like the place we want to be and we have to give it a try. I might even be back in the water and on a board soon enough... something I thought I would never do again. Yes grass is not always greener but we gotta take a chance.

In the summer we are going to take trip to the Island to scope it out and if we like what we see we are going to give it a bash next year and if that works out then hopefully buy a spot with views like Cathy has! But again as I said before it is all a matter of personal choice.

So to answer @CTColette it all depends on what you want. We weighed up the pros and cons of CT vs Canada and yes we were not convinced when we left CT but we took a chance and we are very thankful that we did. Even after what I have said above if you gave me the choice of CT vs Calgary, I would take Calgary any day.I firmly believe that it gives our children more options for the future and a better way of life for us all. The problem with this is it is not a quick and cheap decision to make and I had to convince my wife to do this. Now she never wants to go back.

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AdamYVR

I'm a Capetonian - made the move to Vancouver and all in all have not struggled at all.

I would say say the toughest times for me are January - May, as there is a lot of rain. That said, we don't have the struggles of freezing cold winters either - do it depends on what you are looking for.

Property prices here are insane and not worth the bang for buck, in my opinion.

Chevelle - personally I love the Okanagan (would live there if I could find work), but if you are going to check out Vancouver Island, be sure to have a look on the Sunshine Coast too. I'm actually currently on holiday in the area and the prices seem reasonable and the views and beaches are great!

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Cathy K

It helps that Canada has about two million lakes. Not quite the sea, but many even have waves.

Just remember that Kelowna is quite far from the sea, It's about as land-logged as Calgary.

We moved from the Garden Route to Vancouver Island. After 15 years I know our move would have been much more difficult if we landed up elsewhere in Canada. We even have our own "Suid-ooster" type winds at times.

Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast are very much like the Garden Route, just even more awesome.  It has its share of "Outeniqua Roes." People are normally more laid back. Vancouver Island is about the size of Israel and less than one million people call it home. It has everything, so commuting to the mainland isn't really necessary.

Our daughter's job demands that she spends two days per week in Richmond. The flight by floatplane takes about 15 minutes.

I believe that Capetonians will find many places they like in Canada, perhaps just not in the prairie provinces. Nelline won't swop her home for anywhere else. Hendie , an old Capetonian, moved from Calgary to New Brunswick.

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Hendie

@CTColette die skuif van Suid-Afrika na Kanada is 'n moeilike ene, en soos elders gesê, 'n mens moet dit vir die regte redes doen. Ek sou sê die eerste vereiste is dat albei partye van 'n egpaar (as julle getroud/"saam" is) moet die skuif wíl maak - sonder albei se motivering gaan dit maar têre. Ons het gevind dat die "af" dae vir my en Lyné afgewissel het, en dan was dit gewoonlik die ander ene wat kon help om moed in te praat en te troos. Julle gáán familie en vriende mis, maar hopelik sal julle weer vriende en "familie" hier ontmoet, en ek sou julle aanmoedig om ander positiewe Suid-Afirkaners op te soek en by hulle aan te klop vir raad en bystand.

Ons het geland in Calgary, en die stad het goed vir ons gesorg, dis vriendelik, skoon, en veilig. Ons (ek en Lyné) het egter terugverlang na die atmosfeer van die Kaapse skiereiland. Dié het ons hier in New Brunswick aan die kus weer gevind. Soos wat Cathy hierbo gesê het, sal 'n mens baie dieselfde kry aan die weskus, alhoewel dit waarskynlik nader aan die kosmopolitaanse gevoel van Kaapstad sal wees as hier by ons wat mens meer aan die Kaapse platteland laat dink.

Op die ou end moet julle besluit wat julle uit die lewe wil hê; 'n vinnige op-en-wakker, kapitalistiese bestaan, dan Calgary, Toronto. Vir 'n meer landelike en "laid-back" Kaapse gevoel, een van die twee kusstreke, wes of oos. Wes = Dúúr, Oos = Goedkoper ;).

Sterkte met julle planne!

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Nelline

@Cathy K jy is reg, ek sal nie maklik my "ooskus-eiland" vir n ander plek verruil nie. @Hendie jou vergelyking van die Ooskus wat meer voel soos die Kaapse platteland vs die Weskus meer soos Kaapstad self, is nogal in die kol dink ek. Ons het oorspronklik in Ottawa geland en die stad was goed vir ons maar ons het nooit werklik "tuis" gevoel nie. 

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Guest

Een dag as ek groot word sal ek 'n igloo by die see koop en aftree... Maar nou is dit tyd om 'n bietjie geld te maak sodat ons kan die igloo bekostig. Dit sal 'n klein igloo wees...  Enkelverdieping vir ou bene ?

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MaryJane

@AshB, now how you gonna fit us all in a klein igloo? :P Meer geld vir n groot een...

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Guest

@MaryJane not sure yet but we have to make do... Don't want to be weighed down about a mortgage but rather a great quality of life. 

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Cathy K

An igloo? You're going to retire where? :lol:I

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Guest
43 minutes ago, Cathy K said:

An igloo? You're going to retire where? :lol:I

@Cathy K :lol: Well a modern day one on a beach / coastline somewhere on the east...at least

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Nelline
2 hours ago, AshB said:

@Cathy K :lol: Well a modern day one on a beach / coastline somewhere on the east...at least

YES! You can come and be my neighbours!

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Chevelle

Thanks @AdamYVR!

My wife is not keen on small towns, but I will check out the Sunshine Coast and see what is there (LOVE Google maps and street views :) ). Enjoy your holiday, must be awesome being there!!!

The Okanagan just seems too hot in summer but we will still keep this as an option. As you said @Cathy K, Canada has a lot of places that we could enjoy!

I have just been watching some videos on Tofino ... just amazing ... really hope we can make this work!

Long Beach:

coxbayaerialre2008_bh2010.jpg

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CTColette

Wow I am so happy for everyone's replies.  It really helps with making the right decisions.  I think we would have to be near the coast.  We all love the sea and my husband is a keen fisherman, who regularly goes out on the boat around Cape Point to catch some Snoek or Yellowtail.  We would have to be near a big city for my husband's work but neither one of us care for a rushed life style and we want to have it more relaxed.  I am not one that likes the heat so very hot summers won't work for me.The kids enjoy being outside and we would need a place where they have that space and freedom.  I can't imagine trying to keep them in a small flat or duplex with no garden some where in the city.  :o  

It sounds like everyone of you have their little piece of heaven over there or you are well on your way to have that.  

 

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Cathy K

Chevelle, Tofino is a very small village and quite isolated (though still beautiful). Also have a look at Victoria, and Comox. Nanaimo is a city (according to Canadian standards). 

CTColette, Nanaimo ticks of most items on your bucket list and it is still affordable. The lovely rural Lantzville is about two kilometers from Nanaimo and perfect for anyone who dreams of their own farm or smallholding.

This is what I see when I go out our front door. The view from the living room is even more spectacular. 

10547953_916930771655378_684129081374951

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Chevelle

@Cathy K that picture is just so amazing, thank you for sharing.

Yes I was reading up on how the guys from Nanaimo take a day trip to go surf in Tofino so our expectation is to live in Nanaimo and then travel to Tofino when we can. Apparently the drive from Nanaimo to Tofino is also something to behold!

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CTColette

@Cathy K That picture certainly makes me think of the Cape so I think you have hit the nail on the head with the best spot for us to settle if my husband can find work around that area. I grew up in Mossel Bay so small town setup would be great.  Alternatively we can have a weekend break away to Nanaimo if we had to settle in another City not to far away.  Thank you for sharing with us.  Keep adding pictures :D

 

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Lizelle

Cathy, I hope that picture was not taken today, otherwise I am EXTRA EXTRA jealous :)

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Cathy K

Lizelle, no. The blossoms on that cherry tree is opening and the weather is mild. My crocuses are blooming. The spring garden should be in full bloom within the next month: peonies, tulips daffodils, rhododendrons....

The distance between Nanaimo and Tofino is about 200km but it is a long, twisting road that goes through the mountains as well as through the Pacific Rim National Park. The trip itself can take at least half a day.  

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