Best Places To Live In Vancouver For International Students

AtlanticRide Team

This Article was Reviewed by The Chief Editor, Godfrey

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Best places to live in Vancouver: Vancouver is always with good tidings for everyone, with some of the best places to live in including Downtown, Kitsilano, and Burnaby.

Vancouver is regarded as one of the most livable cities in the world. It is one of Canada’s most populated metropolitan regions, with a population of 662,248 people, and 2.6 million people in the Metro Vancouver area, according to the 2021 Canadian census, making it the third-largest metropolitan area in Canada

Vancouver is a fantastic place to study and a top pick for international students, ranking among the top 5 cities for education and quality of life. Numerous esteemed universities in the city are well-known for their outstanding academic programs which includes the following:

  • University of British Columbia
  • Simon Fraser University
  • University Canada West 
  • Emily Carr University of Art and Design
  • Vancouver, City University.

Vancouver is unique because of its energetic and multicultural student population. It has a sizable number of international students and offers a welcoming and diverse community.

Vancouver has lots of opportunities for overseas students to explore the great outdoors in addition to its academic offerings. The city is well-known for its outdoor leisure pursuits, which include:

  • Hiking
  • Skiing
  • Skating

This allows students to balance their academic pursuits with a healthy and active lifestyle. Below we explore some of the best places to live in Vancouver as an international student.

READ ALSO: 15 Best Cities And Places To Live In Alberta, Canada

Best Places To Live In Vancouver, Canada For International Students

As an international student, you might wonder where the best places to live are and how much it costs to live in Vancouver, especially for students. 

The cost of the rent will represent a large part of your monthly budget. For this reason, you should choose your area of residence well. Below are some of the best places in Vancouver that might suit your lifestyle, preferences, and budget as an international student.

1. Downtown Vancouver

Downtown Vancouver

Downtown Vancouver is a bustling hub of activity, offering a blend of culture, entertainment, convenience, and a plethora of accommodation options ranging from sleek high-rise apartments to cozy studio suites. 

The proximity to major universities like the University of British Columbia (UBC) and Simon Fraser University(SFU) makes it a prime choice for students seeking the ultimate urban experience. 

With myriad transit options, including buses and SkyTrain stations, navigating the city is a breeze from your Downtown abode.

2. Kitsilano

Best Places To Live In Vancouver For International Students

Kitsilano, affectionately known as “Kits” by locals, located along the city’s stunning coastline, offers natural beauty and laid-back charm, with the majestic mountains as a backdrop. 

Living in Kitsilano offers international students a welcome respite from the city’s bustle while being close to the university. 

With its vibrant arts scene, organic markets, and endless outdoor activities, it’s no wonder Kitsilano ranks high on the list of places to live in Vancouver for students seeking a balanced lifestyle.

2. Commercial Drive

Best Places To Live In Vancouver For International Students

The neighbourhood of Commercial Drive, popularly known as “The Drive” by locals, brings to life vibrant street art and a bohemian atmosphere that’s truly infectious.

As an international student, living on Commercial Drive allows you to immerse yourself in Vancouver’s rich cultural tapestry. From cozy cafes to ethnic eateries serving mouth-watering cuisines worldwide, every corner of The Drive tells a story. Plus, with affordable housing options and easy access to transit, it’s no wonder why so many students flock to this dynamic neighborhood. 

4. Mount Pleasant

mount pleasant

In Mount Pleasant, creativity thrives, and community spirit flourishes. Between Main Street and Cambie Village, Mount Pleasant exudes a hip and eclectic vibe that’s hard to resist. 

As an international student, living in Mount Pleasant offers a unique opportunity to tap into Vancouver’s vibrant arts scene and connect with like-minded individuals. 

With its close-knit community feel and easy access to transit, Mount Pleasant is undoubtedly one of the top places to live in Vancouver for students craving a mix of culture and convenience.

5. Burnaby

Burnaby is another best places to live In Vancouver

Situated just east of Vancouver’s city center, it is home to Simon Fraser University (SFU), consistently ranked among Canada’s top comprehensive universities and the British Columbia Institute of Technology.

Studying and living in Burnaby offers numerous benefits that contribute to a fulfilling academic experience and a well-rounded lifestyle. 

One of the key advantages is the city’s proximity to nature, with vast green spaces, parks, and other recreational opportunities right at your doorstep. 

From hiking trails in the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area to strolling along the shores of Deer Lake Park, international students in Burnaby can easily escape the hustle and bustle of city life and connect with nature’s tranquility.

Burnaby offers a range of housing options to suit different budgets and preferences, including apartment rentals, shared accommodations, and homestays with local families. 

The city’s efficient public transit system, including buses and SkyTrain, provides convenient access to SFU, BCIT, and other educational institutions, making commuting hassle-free for international students.

Furthermore, Burnaby’s strategic location offers easy access to Vancouver’s bustling city center, where you can explore world-class attractions, shopping districts, and cultural landmarks. 

Studying at the Simon Fraser University isn’t just about academics—it’s about embracing a holistic approach to education that encompasses both mind and body. 

From attending classes which promise to be a transformative experience to exploring the campus’s countless amenities and hands-on learning opportunities, makes me eager to want to pursue my intellectual passions in SFU

And let’s not forget about the vibrant community that thrives at Simon Fraser University, joining a student club and doing what I love most—volunteering at any local charity would surely be a great idea.

With the warm and welcoming atmosphere that permeates the campus, giving a sense of belonging,  I’m sure students would definitely excel academically and make a positive impact on the world. 

Key Takeaways To Living In Vancouver As An International Student

As we journey through some of Vancouver’s best neighborhoods for international students, remember that the perfect place to live is ultimately a personal choice. Some key takeaways to live in Vancouver as an international student include:

1. Budget-friendly accommodation

As international students, budget considerations often weigh heavily on our minds. Thankfully, Vancouver offers a variety of affordable places to live in Vancouver that won’t break the bank. 

Neighborhoods like East Vancouver, particularly around Commercial Drive and Renfrew-Collingwood, provide more budget-friendly accommodation options while offering convenient access to amenities and transportation. 

Additionally, exploring shared accommodation options or student housing cooperatives can further stretch your housing budget, allowing you to allocate more resources to your studies and explore the city

2. Public Transportation

When choosing where to live in Vancouver, it’s essential to consider transportation options and accessibility to your educational institution. Fortunately, Vancouver boasts an efficient public transit system, including buses, SkyTrain, and SeaBus, connecting various neighborhoods to universities and colleges across the city.

Places to live in Vancouver along major transit routes, such as those near SkyTrain stations or key bus routes, offer convenience and ease of travel, minimizing commute times and maximizing your time for academic pursuits and exploration. 

International students can also take advantage of discounted transit passes and explore neighborhoods, cultural attractions, and recreational activities.

3. Networking Opportunities

Vancouver is a hub of business, technology, and innovation, offering numerous networking opportunities for international students. Attend career fairs, workshops, and seminars to connect with industry professionals, mentors, and potential employers.

4. Community Engagement 

As an international student, you can join campus clubs, student organizations, and volunteer initiatives to expand your social network and make meaningful connections. 

Also, participate in cultural exchange programs, language exchanges, or community service projects to contribute positively to the local community.

5. Work and Study Opportunities

Work and study opportunities in Vancouver present a significant advantage for international students, enriching their academic experience and preparing them for future career endeavors. 

Vancouver’s thriving economy, characterized by technology, finance, healthcare, and tourism sectors, offers diverse employment prospects for students seeking practical experience and supplementing their income.

Co-op programs, internships, and part-time jobs are valuable avenues for international students to immerse themselves in the local workforce and apply their academic knowledge in real-world settings.

These programs help students acquire critical abilities that are highly sought after by employers in a variety of fields, including communication, teamwork, problem-solving, and time management.

By taking part in co-ops, students can switch between academic study terms and paid internships in fields that align with their degree program. These structured programs provide hands-on learning opportunities, allowing students to gain industry insights, network with professionals, and build a strong foundation for their future careers.

Internships offer students short-term placements in companies or organizations where they can gain practical experience and exposure to different aspects of their chosen field. 

Internship experiences can be instrumental in helping students clarify their career goals, explore potential career paths, and make valuable connections within their industry of interest.

6. Educational Excellence

Vancouver is home to world-renowned universities and colleges, like the University of British Columbia (UBC), Simon Fraser University (SFU), and Langara College. These institutions offer top-notch education and research, innovation, and networking opportunities.

7. Quality of Life

Vancouver ranks among the most livable cities globally, thanks to its high quality of life, excellent healthcare system, and commitment to sustainability. Enjoy a safe and welcoming environment that prioritizes well-being and environmental conservation.

Final Thoughts

As you embark on your academic journey in Vancouver, remember that the city is not just a destination—it’s a canvas waiting for you to paint your story. Whether you’re drawn to the vibrant pulse of downtown living, the cultural tapestry of eclectic neighbourhoods, or the serene tranquility of nature’s embrace, there’s a place for you in this dynamic metropolis. By exploring the best places to live in Vancouver and embracing each neighborhood’s unique experiences, you’ll find a place to call home!


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About the Chief Editor

Godfrey Ogbo, the Chief Editor and CEO of AtlanticRide, merges his environmental management expertise with extensive business experience, including in real estate. With a master's degree and a knack for engaging writing, he adeptly covers complex growth and business topics. His analytical approach and business insights enrich the blog, making it a go-to source for readers seeking thoughtful and informed content.

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