By Nkechi Bianze.

Canada is a nation of immigrants. The multicultural diversity is fascinating as well as breath-taking

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I didn’t expect prolific differences between the UK and Canada, but I must confess there’s been a non insignificant culture shock. When I arrived Canada for the first time at St. John’s international airport, I was shocked that there were no long queues like I had always been used to seeing at Heathrow Airport terminals. That was the very first time I was checked into the city in less than 20 minutes after flight landing… and this is a record for someone who is landing in a country for the very first time.

1st comparison
1. Safety and Crime rate:
Canada has one of the lowest crime rates. Not only amongst developed countries, but amongst all the countries in the world. I remember my friend who visited me two weeks ago from the US was surprised at the way people went about their activities with very little fears of theft and robbery. In the UK, there is a much higher possibility of theft, identity theft, robbery, domestic violence, murder and voluntary manslaughter, rape and most other crimes. One is generally safer living in Canada than in the UK.

2. Immigration:
Canada is the largest country in the world after Russia. The UK is less than half Ontario. Ontario is only one of the nine provinces in Canada. However, while the UK has a population of about 65million, the US 350million; Canada has just about 35 million. Canada is seriously sparsely populated, and therefore more welcoming of immigrants.

Although obtaining a Canadian visa is by far more difficult than it is to get a UK visa, life is much more better as a landed immigrant in Canada than it is in the UK. No one reminds you to leave, they actually want you to stay. This can be linked to the sparse population. The Brits will always find a way to remind you that you aren’t one of them. I think the British should learn one or two things from Canada about how to treat immigrants. The status quo in the UK at the moment seems to be like they are in a competition with their pasts to make immigrants live more miserably. There’s a systemic intolerance for immigrants.
Judging from my experiences and observations; international students in Canada are much happier than those in the UK.

3. Houses:
Houses in Canada for the average person are of much higher quality than those in the UK. The rooms are more spacious, the laundry and kitchen facilities are more appealing to the eyes and seem to be of higher quality. Overall, I prefer a typical Canadian house to a typical UK house (if all other factors assumed equal). You basically get more for your money.

4. Standard of living:
Canadians tend to have a better standard of living than the Brits. I’m yet to find out why as this doesn’t reflect in their economic states. I will research more on why this is so and get back to you.

5. Overall ranking and residents’ satisfaction/happiness:
Canada consistently ranks above the UK in overall rankings and for best country to live in (almost always either the 1st, 2nd or 3rd). Canadians are said to be a happier people than the Brits. I can testify to this in a way because I’m much happier here than I ever was in the UK. A lot of people may argue this, but much of the British glory is actually historic. And by this I mean Great Britain thrive mainly in the history of their past glory. You can check these up on Google.

Almost 1 in 2 (Nigerian) international students in the UK wants to leave for Canada. I’m yet to see one in Canada who wants to leave for the UK (many of them will say God forbid). Far more people in the UK want to move to Canada than you would find those in Canada who want to move to the UK. This sends a message because most often than not, people move to where they think life would be better for them.

So far, I haven’t made the big knacks. These might be the little details, but like they say, the devil works in subtle details. These little things are the everyday things that leave a lasting impact in the heart of the average person.

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