411 Blog

The 411 on Moving to Toronto


We asked our product management co-op student, January, what it was like to move to Toronto for the first time. From rush hour traffic and finding an apartment to searching for the best bars and restaurants, this is what January had to say.

A few pros & cons about life in the city 

This is my first time working in Toronto, even though it is my third coop term with the University of Waterloo. Just as with the other places I’ve worked, Toronto has its own pros and cons.



Finding an apartment in Toronto

Before I moved to Toronto, all my friends had told me that housing here was very expensive. While at first I was worried about finding a place to stay for the next four months, I ended up finding a room in a nice house for only $500 per month. Compared to Waterloo, Toronto has way more housing options in terms of apartments, condos, and houses, so everyone can find something to suit their needs. The prices vary by location, with the downtown core being more costly than uptown.

One of the more common ways to find housing in Toronto is through a housing agency.

I recommend a more innovative, more convenient, and less costly method to find a place. My friends and I used Airbnb to find our accommodation. It offers many housing choices for affordable prices and renters can contact the landlord directly to negotiate the price.

A friend of mine found a room in an apartment downtown for $200 less than the average price of rent. This is a great option for people to find a place to stay for a short period of time. However, there are also some down sides of using Airbnb, such as the fact that you can only view the places online and pictures don’t always match the actual situation. However, reading the reviews can help you decide.

Driving tips in Toronto

Google had told me my house was only a 10-minute drive away from work, which I thought was very convenient. My thoughts changed as soon as I got to the stop-and-go traffic on the DVP. It ended up taking me twice as long to get to work! I’ve discovered driving in the city is not very fun, especially during the winter and during rush hour. But I have to say, the many highways in Toronto are very useful for getting around.


Another difficulty I’ve found is driving downtown because of all the volume. It’s almost impossible to turn before the light turns yellow, and finding parking is very time consuming, but this is understandable since Toronto is one of the biggest cities in Canada. If driving isn’t for you, the public transit is convenient and links every place in Toronto together.

Working in the city

I’m currently completing a degree at Waterloo that includes several co-op terms. This term, I took a position as a Product Manager coop student here at 411.ca. The work environment at 411.ca is different from my previous work terms. The environment here is very welcoming and friendly. Since 411.ca is a SME (not a large company), I’ve had opportunities to meet and talk to everyone at the company, including executives and the president. I have had chances to experience different tasks related to marketing and IT. I look forward to working on some of the exciting projects we have coming up over the next few months.

Discovering my favourite local spots

While I enjoy the cheaper price of food and the wide selection in Toronto compared to Waterloo, I have yet to discover my favourite restaurant. So far, the top one on my list is Kinka Izakaya, which is a Japanese restaurant serving Izakaya (appetizer-style) dishes. Guu always has a great atmosphere but most importantly, the food is always amazing. The menu is not as big as an all-you-can-eat one, but every dish is very delicious.









I’m still looking for restaurant suggestions, so comment below or Tweet us @411dotca with your recommendations!

Care has worked in marketing, PR and communications for small and multinational brands in Canada and abroad. Coming from a family of small business owners, Care is passionate about helping small business, freelancers and entrepreneurs succeed by maximizing the return on their marketing investments.