Why I fell in love with Montréal

January 14, 2021

I came to Montréal in August 2018. This was a first for someone like me living across the Atlantic. Bright-eyed, from the very first weeks, I was happy to experience a new environment and imagine what the future held in store. However, I couldn’t imagine what life in Montréal would be like after I graduated university. In fact, all my points of reference were in France. I felt like my family, friends, interests and future were waiting for me there, while I was having this experience. I have been living here for over two years. I created very close friendships, points of reference, and feel at home in Montréal. The answer to my initial question, about whether I would like to stay in Montréal, is now obvious. In only two years, I came to love living in Montréal, which I now consider my home. If you have just arrived in Montréal or would like to live here, you will be asking yourself these questions. Where do I want to settle down? Where do I want to live? Where do I have a chance of advancing professionally? I will tell you about Montréal’s three advantages, which I’m sure you will come to love and which will convince you to live here.

Good quality of life

Culture! Montréal’s many theatres, concert halls and creative venues are what attract me to this city. There is access to culture that is encouraged, easy and very affordable. You need to dare to discover the city, and then experience the pure enjoyment of cultural events such as improv nights that are open to everyone. Montréal provides an unparalleled quality of life that really surprised me. My international friends and I almost all share the same bus story. Quebecers stand in line before getting on the bus, which is something I wasn’t aware of. I was especially surprised when I was turned away by the bus driver because I had cut ahead of the line without realizing it. This story is one example among many of proof that there is a culture of respect in Montréal. People are very respectful in this city, where you feel good and safe. This is a real plus, which reassured my parents when they came to visit me. What I also love about Montréal are the green spaces and large parks located a stone’s throw from downtown Montréal and its high-rises. It’s really nice to go on a picnic and walk around in nature between classes or after having worked in a high-rise. The word I associate the most with Montréal is “pleasant,” because regardless of your lifestyle, you’ll fit in.

A historic city alive with creativity

Montréal is a city searching for creativity that exudes electrifying energy. I felt this very quickly in my first year of university. In fact, there is a very optimistic way of thinking about all types of plans, one that pushes you up, allowing you to achieve. As a result of this, Montréal has been growing exponentially at breakneck speed. If this city is appealing, it’s also because of the opportunities it provides career-wise. This is highly motivating for students who are completing their studies, to continue their careers in Montréal and develop here. I would say that it’s the perfect place for achieving success in a new career or business. It’s a historic city that is very open and with a great future. Although it’s a big city, you can easily fit in.

A city that is open to the world

Montréal is a melting pot of cultures. You will discover North American, Canadian and Québec culture, but also those of expatriates such as yourself. I love feeling as if I’ve gone on a trip just by changing neighbourhoods, seeing different types of architecture and hearing different languages. This diversity shows an openness to the world that is easily accessible. As a French person, I quickly became comfortable here and found the simple pleasures that I may have missed when away from France, such as certain types of food. Just across the street from where I live, they sell the best croissants I have ever tasted.

Although I’m still very French and love French culture, it’s been two years that I’ve been discovering myself in Montréal. As I already mentioned, I have my points of reference and I’m starting to find my place here. All conditions are favourable for me to want to stay in Montréal. I am in my final few years of school and I’m keeping all my options open along with the awareness that I could easily fit in here. While in school, I recommend that you get a job in Montréal. This will allow you to more easily integrate the work force afterwards. I choose Montréal, an initiative of Montréal International, hosts recruiting events for international students in the Greater Montréal Area at which you can meet different employers in the city. There will be numerous job offers at these events. I choose Montréal also hosts Discovery Days so that international students can find out more about a specific company, while being given the opportunity to do an interview for different job offers, such as Google Stadia Discovery Day, Ericsson Discovery Day, etc.