Do you really want to live in the United States

The United States and Canada are very different countries that both have different benefits to them, but if you had the choice, where would you live?


Dalton Derie, Blogger

During the election of 2016, many people threatened to leave the United States and move to another country, typically that country was Canada. But what makes Canada better than the United States?

Image result for map of north america


It is a well known fact that Canada is way more lenient when it comes to laws. In 1968, they passed a law declaring that every citizen would receive free healthcare. Basically, it works like Medicare, but everyone that lives there gets it. And while the healthcare is considered free, it really isn’t. The cost of healthcare is covered by the taxes of Canadians. This means that the taxes are higher in Canada, then they would be in America, for some people. The Fraser Institute said that the average cost of taxes is roughly 5,789 dollars annually for each person. Free healthcare is only beneficial if you don’t have to pay as much for taxes.

The American healthcare system has a very simple system to it. It is there when you need it and when you don’t. You have a setup plan that you pay for and it is there for you to use, but you are still charged for it even if you don’t. There isn’t necessarily a way to get free healthcare, except for those on Medicaid and Medicare. However, most Americans get their healthcare paid for them by their employers.

Healthcare isn’t the only thing that Canada is “famous” for.


While no country is perfect, Canada and the United States are two countries that are on the list of countries to immigrate to.  Each year these two are chart toppers as to which one is the country to live in, and up until 2017, America was in the lead.

The United States has a lot of things going for it. The economy has never been better, and things like civic engagement are at an all time high, so what is it that is bringing them down when it comes to immigration?

According to the OECD Better Life Index, the countries that rank the highest have also rank higher in categories, such as community contact and life satisfaction. That is why Norway, Denmark, and you guessed it,Canada ranked higher than the United States. If it was based just on jobs, income, or housing, then United States.

So it really comes down to a few factors that may your decision to move to either of these countries.

Population can be a huge factor, because it is hard to find a place in a packed country and it is a different environment to get used to. Being able to find work is important. In order to survive anywhere, a steady source of income is crucial. Climate can be a big factor. Just like population, getting used to the new surroundings is difficult, so it is important to make the change as easy as possible.


Education can be a very touchy subject. Everyone has their own ideas about how they think the education system should be run. The United States and Canada have very similar education systems. Both do their best to try and keep the federal government out of the school system as much as they possibly can.  On the same token, they also divide their schools into districts and they are regulated by individual states.

Not that one country is worse than the other, but according to the U.S. News, the United States is number two on the list of countries that have the best education, right behind the United Kingdom. Canada falls right below America, landing the third position on the list.

Because education is such a necessary part of life, it is very important that the country you live in has a good education system set up. In this case, you really can’t lose. Both Canada and the United States have good education for their citizens. If you are looking for the best, the United States would be the choice for this particular category.


This is where America really shines the brightest. They may not be at their best when it comes to more modern necessities, but the have their basics needs are in tip top shape.

It is a good time to be working in America right now. The unemployment rate is at the lowest point that it has been in years.  It is at 3.8 percent, as of February of  2019. Which is 2 percent better than Canada’s rate, which is sitting at 5.8 percent. The average annual income of a Canadian is 49,504 dollars, while Americans make on average 59,039 dollars based on a 2015 study.

Surprisingly enough, the incomes for the same job is about the same in these countries. In the U.S., a physician makes roughly 187,000 after taxes. A physician in Canada, doing the same job, makes just less by earning 186,000. According the Washington Post, in many different countries, not just America and Canada, the wages are all very similar and only different by a matter of dollars.

Using this data we can see that in the United States you typically make more than if you lived elsewhere.

However the cost of living can be a big factor in affecting how much money you actually get to spend.

Cost of living

The cost of living is different everywhere. Things just typically cost different amounts in different places, which can play a role in why people make different amounts. There are many different factors that will manipulate the cost, making everyone’s overall cost different. How much you make, where you live, certain needs that you use can all effect how much money you are spending and how much the cost to live is.

In order to make this an equal comparison, we will use Las Angeles and Montreal as our examples. Since these two places have similar populations, their overall cost will be close to the same amount.

Taking the basic necessities into consideration, housing, transportation, and food, the cost to live in Montreal is roughly 1,800 dollars, while Las Angeles is around 2,000 dollars. So the amounts are close, but America still costs more money. This number can change if you require more than just the basics and even less.

Quality of life

Before we can compare the two countries and determine which one has a better quality of life, we have to rule what the definition of quality of life actually is. It can be concluded that the factors that make for a better quality of life are life satisfaction, being healthy, having a good education, a good social structure, being in a safe environment, and being allowed to have specific freedoms.

Now, that essentially means that everything that has been previously discussed plays a role in the definition of the quality of life. Taking in all of the information listed, both countries can make a clear case for having a good quality of life, but if it were a competition, Canada would take this one. Overall, you can see that they provide better resources that would make someone have a better life.

But if that isn’t enough, according to the U.S. News for the year 2019, Canada ranked number one on the charts while the United States wasn’t even close, ranking 17th.

What exactly does that mean for both these countries? Well, it doesn’t mean that the citizens of the United States don’t have good lives, but they just have a lot of catching up to do. Though, it could be worse. Looking on the bright side, there are many countries in the world and ranking 17th isn’t completely bad.

For Canadians, they are living good lives. This can show that now is the time to move to Canada, if you have been hesitant. They are at the top of their games and with all of the benefits they offer, it all makes sense as to why they have the best quality of life going for them.


Safety is a huge deal. In my opinion, it should be held very highly and should be on the top list of things to consider if you plan to live in either of these countries. However, there are many different types of safety that should be considered and should be a part of the overall discussion of safety.

Financial safety may not be very common, but it is one to be take quite seriously. Both countries are very secure economically, but that does not always mean that your money is always squared away. Medical bankruptcy is a major problem, but it is much more common in the United States than in Canada. So that would mean that financially, Canada is safer than the United States, but it is not something that you should be worried about.

Fortunately enough, both countries have an insurance, so to speak, set up that if banks lose your money, in an event such as a market crash, you will still have your money up to a certain amount. This protects you from losing all of your money in an event that is not your fault.

Healthcare goes to Canada for this one. In a way it ties in with the financial section, in the sense that healthcare is free in Canada so there are no risks involved in using it. It is risk free because there is no cost involved in it.

As ridiculous as it may sound, safety from animals is a big deal. Big game animals can be dangerous and can lead to serious injuries and even death. This is more common in Canada, because they have larger animals that can be more aggressive. While these animals can be found in the United States, they are more abundant up North and so there is a higher risk of an actual account. In order to make sure that you stay safe, hunter safety classes are available and the obvious one, to just avoid them at all costs are all options.

Climate can also effect ones safety and the weather around them. Cold temperatures can lead to hypothermia, which can be very deadly. It is obvious that Canada is North to America, which makes their country colder whether they like it or not. That would make for more deaths by freezing prevalent to that area. That does not mean that it can not happen in the United States, but it just isn’t as common. In order to escape the freezing temperatures, you must move South. The further you go, the warmer it will be and the safer you will be from hypothermia.

Natural disasters, such as tornadoes and earthquakes. Both can occur in either country, but in the case of tornadoes, they are much more common and serious in the United States. If one find itself in Canada, it would be very unlikely for it to do any major damage, in regards to someone’s life.

Earthquakes are common for both countries, but because the United States essentially lives on a shaky tectonic plate, it is much more of a problem that the United States is facing. Earthquakes are not very common in either country, so there is not real concern facing either of the countries.

For the most part, there should be no real reason to be concerned in either of these countries. Both are very safe places to live and in the rare occurrence that something does happen, there are many individual systems that both countries have set up to make sure that the people effected land back on their feet.

Overall review

These two countries are very different, which makes it hard to actually compare them. Both have such great strengths that make them unique. Unfortunately, both have weaknesses as well. Which makes the question harder to answer, if you had the choice which one would you live in? Honestly, it depends on the person and what they are looking for in a country. If they want a good environment, with free healthcare and a better quality of life, Canada might be for them. If they are looking for a good job, with a nice income and democracy practically flowing from the sewers, the United States might be for them. Either way you look at it, both countries are great in their own ways, so there really isn’t a wrong answer. You just need to do what is best for you.

Now, with all the information right in front of you, the decision is yours. Do you really want to live in the United States?