Immigration. Travel. Living.

Canada: about the retirement

Flag of Canada

If you are interested in moving to Canada for retirement, it is important to think carefully about the decision before making it.

Relocating to Canada with the mentality that life is easier there is a mistake many wannabe ex-pats make. Everyday expenses in Canada depend on your location and the lifestyle you live. The following guidelines should help you navigate through the process of moving to Canada for retirement.

Visa options

To relocate to Canada, you must first know the type of citizen you are and the type of visa that you will need. If you are from the U.S., entry into Canada grants you a tourist visa for over a hundred days. To stay longer in the country, you must apply for a residence permit. As a tourist, you can set up a bank account and even buy an apartment. If you are from any other country in the world, you will need to apply for a special type of visa.

Known as the parent and grandparent super visa, this visa allows the entry of persons with children who are permanent residents in the country or a citizen of Canada. A super visa must be renewed after two years. To qualify for this visa, you must provide evidence of a child promising to support you during your stay.

Permanent residency

If you are planning to stay in the country longer than the time limit for a tourist but you do not qualify for the family super visa, you can apply for a permanent residency. As a permanent resident, you will have access to certain services such as good healthcare and the possibility of Canadian citizenship.

There is no retirement visa in Canada. However, you can try getting a permanent residency in the following ways; having a desired set of skills, setting up a business, or having a second career during retirement. If you haven’t considered ways how to obtain a permanent residency, as a Non-US citizen moving to the country to simply retire, you will be seen as having no value to the country.

canada text overlay on black background


Every country tax its citizens. When you are residing there, you must pay taxes on your pension earned from your home country. If you are earning supplementary income from your home country, you might have to pay taxes too. This is known as double taxes. To prevent this, you should hire a financial advisor and an expert in tax laws to explain to you how to resolve this.  If you are a U.S. citizen, you may need to declare your global income to the IRS and Canadian revenue agency.

Cost of living

Living in Canada might be expensive or cheap to you depending on where a person lives and how he or she chooses to live in the country. There is always controversy over which is more expensive in Canada, housing costs, food items, or sales taxes. However, the cost of renting an apartment in Canada is still a bit lower than renting one in the U.S. food items are more expensive though.

If you have plans of driving in Canada, you must apply for a driver’s license, and ensure you learn the Canadian rules and safety standards. Note that the cost of gasoline is also more expensive in Canada than in the U.S. if you intend to spend just a few months in the country, you might need to buy private health insurance before traveling.

Hire a professional

Several issues are arising when one wants to retire to a foreign country. It can be helpful to hire the services of a financial planner to avoid complex tax issues, inability to choose a visa, etc. They will look at your retirement funds, the estimated cost of living, and other factors to help you evaluate the impact of moving to Canada on your finances.

Contact us