Quality of Life in Ottawa, Canada

Purchasing Power Index 85.58   High
Safety Index 68.35   High
Health Care Index 67.42   High
Climate Index 44.46   Moderate
Cost of Living Index 72.33   High
Property Price to Income Ratio 12.37   High
Traffic Commute Time Index 39.52   Moderate
Pollution Index 28.91   Low
ƒ Quality of Life Index: 151.56   High

Minimum contributors for an underlying section: 132

Maximum contributors for an underlying section: 366

Last update: February 2024

Sign Up for Our Newsletter:
Your Email Address:
Leave a comment:

Your name: Sign In

Your email address (optional):

Your comment (no HTML):

9 Comments so far
Maria on Feb 01, 2024:
Hello,I am Canadian.Before,Canada used to be a country with a high standard of living,low crime rates and ect.But after all the migrants came,Canada s quality of life went downhill.Im happy that I moved out of this country before it was too late.I currently live in Spain and I feel much better living here than Canada.And because of our problem.Many migrants are moving out of the country because of this situation.If you live in Canada,THEN MOVE OUT OR HERE AS SOON AS YOU CAN BEFORE IT'S TO LAT
Mikel on Jan 09, 2024:
Canada went to absolute chaos after all the migrants and refugees came,
Crazy house prices and forget about quality of life.
Mikel on Jan 05, 2024:
This city used to be amazing before all the migrants and refugees came.After they came.Ottawa s quality of life went downhill because or migrants and refugees causing crime.Really sad to see on what this city has turned into.
Anonymous 2 on Nov 19, 2023:
Ottawa and its surrounding communities used to ne one of the most beautiful places on earth. Rich lush land, lots of parks, close to nature, and the people were friendly, costs were modest, and the Canadian dream was attainable. This has now dramatically changed. Basically since 2019. Housing prices are beyond the reach of most people, rents have skyrocketed and utilities are beyond comprehension. It is no joke that it is said that Canada has the highest mobile plans in the world. Now, unfortunately, electricity (which used to be one of the cheapest) is jumping. Although, to be fair, it is NOT so much that utilities are increasing but that taxes are far outstripping what the middle class can afford. My heating went from about $80 a month in the coldest months in 2019 to $160 a month in 2021 to $230 a month in 2022. Food prices have also far exceeded the "official" inflation rates. Many of my friends are now considering leaving Ottawa. I have already left. In regards to safety, now that I am in Asia, I can compare better. Ottawa is no longer the safe carefree city it once was. I think that many locals are experiencing the "frog on the heating water" syndrom.
Steve on Apr 02, 2023:
Cannot recommend this place to anyone, what a mess.
Felipe on Feb 05, 2023:
Can't wait to be out of here, back to my homecountry (Spain).

It's like everyone here is under influence, drunk or high. And not in an amicable way.
Azif on Jan 26, 2023:
THe downtown of ottawa is a zero culture nightmare. Streets smell of cannabis so bad, it is diry, so many crazy hobos around
In general people smell canabis here like cigarettes, but the problem is that cannabis smoke is so terrible that if you pass through this smoke, and you dont even breathe, you feel the intoxication effect through the skin later. It is like a chemical weapon.It is a zero culture nightmare to have streets like that.
Not only streets smell of drugs and make you drunk, public areas like parks and stairs are not maintaned during the winter time, so you always have to climb through the snow if you wanna go somewhere. The abcence of maintainense, and constant smell of drugs and diesel. There are still many beautiful buildings from the past. But in 2023 it is not suitable for civilized life,
Canada showed great example what happen if you legalize drugs.
Anonymous on Dec 17, 2022:
Hello my name is Monkey I'm From South Africa And Evil Villain send me to ottawa:( can someone tell me plane from ottawa to south Africa pls;(
Igg on Apr 29, 2022:
The previous commenter painted an image of essentially Gotham City and I want to say that this isn't quite accurate. Some of the things are true (like immigration being difficult) but some of the things mentioned aren't really quantifiable. Who you meet and the culture of wherever you go or work or see in the community is going to vary drastically, so much. This is a geographically large city and the vibe downtown is not the same as the vibe in Orleans and is not the same as the vibe in Herongate, and is not the same vibe as Little Italy or Chinatown. But these things don't actually have to do with the *average* quality of life so much as what you as an individual are looking for.

Regarding average quality of life, as of the time I'm writing this, here's what my thoughts are:

Healthcare here can be difficult to access until you have a primary healthcare provider. You may end up on a waitlist for that. I recommend any of the Community Health Clinics.

Housing varies, but buying an actual house here right now is something you'd need to be wealthy to do. I don't think this is unique to Ottawa per se, but prices have at least doubled since 2016. Downtown and other neighbourhoods either have new condos or are currently building them. Gentrification is happening. Take of that what you will.

I can't speak much to education but there are, I believe, 4 post secondary institutions here. Carleton, La Cité, Algonquin, and uOttawa. I think most of anglophone Ottawa forgets La Cité exists. I've been a student at all of the other schools besides La Cité. My general impression is that you get more out of Ottawa as a student than as a permanent resident. But this isn't necessarily true of other cities with more to do.

There are a lot of museums here. Ottawa has a reputation for being boring, which is understandable to me. But I think it's also a matter of individual preferences and where you seek entertainment. But most of the city definitely is boring, at least for having the population it does.

The public transit system is so bad it's being audited by the province, if I recall.

Safety-wise: I would say that Ottawa is fairly safe. I personally feel safe going outside at night downtown as a visibly marginalized person (I use a mobility device, and I'm trans), but not everyone does. I don't like our police but I don't know if they are better or worse than other places.

Air quality has been fairly bad downtown, but there are a lot of neighbourhoods that feel almost rural. If you're wearing a proper mask anyway like you should be, it shouldn't be an issue.

Groceries and other costs are higher downtown than in other neighbourhoods. Something that costs $27 downtown might be $12 in Herongate.

I imagine commutes are probably not good initially for people new to the area, because there are a lot of one way streets in some areas, and it can get confusing where you're supposed to go.

Wheelchair accessibility in the city is better than Montreal but worse than Toronto, in my opinion. There are a lot of heritage buildings here that people aren't willing to renovate. Finding places to rent with a wheelchair is a nightmare, but not impossible if you can afford it. Looking around the times of May 1 or Sept 1 for move-ins generally means rent is more manageable since that's when students move. Outside of that timeline you may be gouged.

Tl;dr Ottawa is a place of contrasts etc