While not quite as expensive as Toronto's or Vancouver's, Calgary's cost of living is still relatively high in some aspects. Mercer's 2022 Cost of Living Survey placed Calgary 141st out of 227 cities surveyed, making it the fifth most expensive city in Canada.

Cost of accommodation in Calgary

Housing is likely to be the biggest expense expats in Calgary will incur. There is a significant shortage of affordable accommodation in the city, which has driven up rental prices in the city centre and forced many families into the outlying areas and suburbs of Calgary.

Cost of entertainment in Calgary

Luckily, most of what Calgary has to offer in terms of lifestyle is focused on the outdoors and is therefore relatively inexpensive. With an abundance of green spaces, expats in Calgary will likely spend most of their time on the hiking and biking trails in the Rockies instead of splurging their hard-earned dollars at a shopping mall.

Cost of eating out in Calgary

In terms of dining opportunities, Calgary lags behind the more cosmopolitan Canadian cities. While much of the cuisine is American, expats can explore the city to discover some of its hidden culinary gems. Those who like to eat out will find the cost quite reasonable.

Cost of education in Calgary

Expats relocating to Calgary with children will be glad to know they have the option of sending their child to a public school in the province at no cost. Alberta’s education system benefits from extensive government funding, and some of the province’s best performing public schools are in Calgary. Nevertheless, childcare outside of school hours can be eye-wateringly expensive, and expat parents with little ones will have to budget for this.

Cost of transportation in Calgary

The cost of travelling in Calgary is relatively affordable, especially compared to other major Canadian cities. A monthly integrated travel pass is the most cost-effective means of getting around in Calgary. While taxis are readily available in the city centre, they are not cheap. Running a vehicle is also becoming increasingly expensive, so expats should consider car ownership carefully.

Cost of living in Calgary chart

Prices may vary depending on product and service provider. The list below shows average prices for August 2022.

Accommodation (monthly rent in a good area)

One-bedroom apartment in city centre

CAD 1,372

One bedroom apartment outside city centre

CAD 1,160

Three-bedroom apartment in city centre

CAD 2,630

Three-bedroom apartment outside city centre

CAD 1,989


Milk (1 litre)

CAD 2.32

Loaf of white bread

CAD 2.88

Chicken breasts (1kg)

CAD 13.82

Rice (1kg)

CAD 3.12

Dozen eggs

CAD 3.77

Pack of cigarettes

CAD 16

Eating out

Big Mac meal

CAD 11.99

Coca Cola (330ml)

CAD 2.25


CAD 4.89

Bottle of beer (local)


Three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant

CAD 82.50


Mobile call rate (per minute – mobile to mobile)  

CAD 0.28

Internet (average per month)

CAD 86.63

Basic utilities (per month for a small apartment)

CAD 237.33


Taxi rate/km


City centre bus/train fare

CAD 3.60

Petrol (per litre)

CAD 1.78

Expat Health Insurance

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If you’re thinking about taking out private health insurance, our trusted partner Cigna Global is very aware of all the difficulties that expats can face when it comes to healthcare in a new location, so they have created a range of international health insurance plans specifically designed for expats, which you can tailor exactly to the needs and ensure access to quality care for you and your family.

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