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Old 10.03.2021, 23:44
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Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Hey y’all!

I’ve been living in CH for around 5 years now. Love it here and made a lot of friends and connections. Born and raised around the Genevan border so I’ve always been/lived in the area and have an EU passport. my family is just one hour away.
I speak French and English fluently.

Anyways. I have the opportunity to move to Montreal with my firm and would get promoted in the process.
I LOVE Switzerland in general but considering the fact that I’m still young (23) and I’ve never lived outside of Europe, I think that it would be a good opportunity to live in North America for a while.

Anyone that moved to Montreal from Switzerland or vice-versa could provide some insights? Will I lose a lot of quality of life by moving to Montréal? Is it a crazy move? I would have a decent salary (pretty much the same chf salary but in CAD) and benefits for Canada.

If I listen to my heart I feel like I should do it and I can always come back to CH in a few years if I don’t like it there.

What would y’all do?
  #2  
Old 11.03.2021, 00:13
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Canada, in a heartbeat.

It was described to me once as "All the best things about USA, France and UK, rolled into one".

Vancouver is better, (IMHO) but if you speak French already, Montreal is mighty fine.

Regards

Ian
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Old 11.03.2021, 00:44
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Listen to your heart and make the move. Not for the money or promotion, but for the experience. Getting that opportunity sounds great! I know that living in different countries has educated me more than university... and in your case is moving to a country where you speak the language fluently already a pretty safe bet and not a crazy risky move at all.
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Old 11.03.2021, 07:24
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Oh my god... what are you waiting for? Getting packing
  #5  
Old 11.03.2021, 07:41
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Do you extreme taxes?

Do you like extreme cold?

Do you like not having electricity for days or weeks due to the extreme cold?

Then Montreal it is!

(I have nieces, nephews, and former in-laws there)

(my late wife moved from Montreal to CH and never looked back)

Tom
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Old 11.03.2021, 07:41
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

In a word, weather! Incredibly cold winters (-20 not uncommon) with snow on the ground much of the winter. The center of Montreal is an underground city with shops normally on the high street buried underground. Skiing a few hours away is available but it isn’t the alps. Mind you when it’s that cold you aren’t tempted to do so many runs. In Montreal public transport is fairly good but trains limited to commuter runs and infrequent services to Toronto and Ottawa (and New York if the border reopens). You likely will need a car (Search for “Block Heater”).

For the Spring/Autumn just search for ‘freezing rain’.

Summers are hot and humid. Low 30s quite common with humidity in the high 80-90%. And the mosquitoes!

Quebec has been hit quite hard by the pandemic, probably the worst in Canada. And the vaccine roll out is even slower than here.

In normal times I would say the quality of life is better in Montreal, despite the weather. But it is going to be some months before things return to normal.

But you are young, go for it. (And check out Crescent Street)
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Old 11.03.2021, 07:50
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Once we were also considering this. Montreal being very very cold was a big factor for us. Also distance to family was a factor, so it may depend on many factors. Overall Canada may be a better place to be located in a longer term but depends a lot on one's particular situation. You probably know that Montreal is quite expensive, comparable to Switzerland.
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Old 11.03.2021, 07:56
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Coming from the Canadian prairies it's hilarious to see everyone writing about the "extreme cold" in Montreal!!!

Hahaha, you've experienced nothing if you think it's Montreal is cold for Canadian standards.
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Old 11.03.2021, 07:59
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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Coming from the Canadian prairies it's hilarious to see everyone writing about the "extreme cold" in Montreal!!!

Hahaha, you've experienced nothing if you think it's Montreal is cold for Canadian standards.
True, but Montreal in Winter is a lot colder than Geneva. Not as cold as Saskabush, but cold.
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Old 11.03.2021, 08:10
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Oh, and the French. The French spoken in Quebec is a patois that originates from 17th french spoken in Normandie. Lots of different words or words use differently. An example is Dépanneur, which is a corner store open all hours. The accent is very nasal and sometimes very difficult to understand. Bonjour is used for both hello and goodby. etc.

You may find communicating in English a lot easier. And that is fairly easy in Montreal, but impossible in the rest of the province.

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Old 11.03.2021, 08:52
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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Oh, and the French. The French spoken in Quebec is a patois that originates from 17th french spoken in Normandie. Lots of different words or words use differently. An example is Dépanneur, which is a corner store open all hours. The accent is very nasal and sometimes very difficult to understand. Bonjour is used for both hello and goodby. etc.

You may find communicating in English a lot easier. And that is fairly easy in Montreal, but impossible in the rest of the province.
Oh my god it's hardly a patois. French in 2021 isn't anywhere near as splintered as German. Different accent and a handful of regional or archaic words, that's all.
I'm not sure why people keep repeating this myth that they must have read in some English tourist guide from the 60s.
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Old 11.03.2021, 08:58
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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Oh my god it's hardly a patois. French in 2021 isn't anywhere near as splintered as German. Different accent and a handful of regional or archaic words, that's all.
I'm not sure why people keep repeating this myth that they must have read in some English tourist guide from the 60s.
If that was true the TSR wouldn’t subtitle Québécois films, ... in French.
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Old 11.03.2021, 09:01
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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Hey y’all!

I’ve been living in CH for around 5 years now. Love it here and made a lot of friends and connections. Born and raised around the Genevan border so I’ve always been/lived in the area and have an EU passport. my family is just one hour away.
I speak French and English fluently.

Anyways. I have the opportunity to move to Montreal with my firm and would get promoted in the process.
I LOVE Switzerland in general but considering the fact that I’m still young (23) and I’ve never lived outside of Europe, I think that it would be a good opportunity to live in North America for a while.

Anyone that moved to Montreal from Switzerland or vice-versa could provide some insights? Will I lose a lot of quality of life by moving to Montréal? Is it a crazy move? I would have a decent salary (pretty much the same chf salary but in CAD) and benefits for Canada.

If I listen to my heart I feel like I should do it and I can always come back to CH in a few years if I don’t like it there.

What would y’all do?
Montrealer here. I loved my city but I haven't looked back (mostly) since arriving in Switzerland.

Montreal is great for having fun. No comparable scene in Switzerland from what I've seen, whether Basel, Zurich or Lausanne. But I was younger then!
Taxes in Québec are ridiculous but it's easy enough to make enough money to live comfortably.
It will be much easier to live in the suburbs around the island of Montreal and work in the centre thanks to the new Réseau express métropolitain.
The present 'corona situation' is very strict and I am worried about the authoritarian tendancies of the different paliers of government.
The weather is not for everyone. Hot humid summers and cold cold winters. Not so much fun to spend either in the city.
  #14  
Old 11.03.2021, 09:03
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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If that was true the TSR wouldn’t subtitle Québécois films, ... in French.
I'm bilingual French/English and I put subtitles for all English films because the regional differences are annoying and I miss a lot. They're helpful.

Are you francophone anyway?
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Old 11.03.2021, 09:09
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

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Oh my god it's hardly a patois. French in 2021 isn't anywhere near as splintered as German. Different accent and a handful of regional or archaic words, that's all.
I'm not sure why people keep repeating this myth that they must have read in some English tourist guide from the 60s.
No myth.

My niece (from Trois-Rivières) went to Disneyland Paris to a work for a summer.

Every time she spoke in French, people would respond in English (which she didn't speak or even understand at the time, 2000 or so) as they couldn't understand her Quebecois!

Tom

P.S. We have a Quebecois dicionary at home, which is quite fun to peruse if you are bored.
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Old 11.03.2021, 09:11
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Go for it! You are still (so) young and this sounds like a fantastic opportunity, especially if it also involves a promotion!

You could easily move back to CH in the future, and your experience in Canada will look good on your CV (it technically counts as North American work experience).

I worked in Montreal for about 6 months and loved it. The only thing I found "difficult" was understanding the French spoken in Québec, but you get used to it, a bit like getting used to hearing Swiss-German vs High German.
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Old 11.03.2021, 10:08
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Go... but look into the details. To use the reverse example someone in Montréal could be considering a move to Geneva today but they really like opera, jazz and nightclubs... so the move wouldn't work too well; or they imagine Geneva with its lake, the views of the Jura and Salève... and end up with a view of the railway line and a concrete office block. But working out what you like and where you'll be is half of the fun.
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Old 11.03.2021, 10:15
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

At 23, without a doubt, go - you can always come back.
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Old 11.03.2021, 10:38
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

French are often a bit of dicks when it comes to language (well, maybe more than a bit). They often ridicule and humiliate those that make even slightest grammatical mistakes, seen that enough times either on myself or others.

But when it comes to Quebecois, there is a special unison how everybody I ever met feels so superior over them and ridiculing gets dialed to 11. I don't get it, most folks would be happy somebody actually keeps up using their crappy badly designed language outside of Europe, but no.
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Old 11.03.2021, 10:42
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Re: Geneva (Romandie) vs Montreal? Tough decision

Another Canadian chiming in here. I am not a fan of big cities myself, but given your age and the fact that you haven't lived abroad yet I say go for it! Moving to a different country is a huge opportunity for personal growth and gaining a new perspective on the world, even if it can be stressful. And Montreal is a great choice.



But as someone else has said, my only reservation is that now might not be a great time to move there. Corona has hit Quebec really hard, and the lockdowns have been much more strict than here, so a lot of things that make Montreal great aren't really available right now (e.g. restaurants, nightlife).


And even though Canadians are super friendly, I can imagine it's also a difficult time to make new friends. A friend of mine started a job abroad during corona and was obliged to work from home, they quit after a few months and moved back to CH because they felt so completely cut off from the world.



What is your timeline for moving there?
 




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