What to know before your move to Manitoba

7 Things to know and do before moving to Manitoba

Replete with lakes, rivers, mountains, and prairies, Manitoba is one of Canada’s most gorgeous provinces. Consequently, it is often referred to as one of Canada’s three prairie provinces — the other two being Alberta and Saskatchewan. It has several cities brimming with opportunities and is an overall great place to settle into.

Moving to any new city or province is a pretty stressful endeavor, especially if you aren’t caught up on what to expect. It is important to consider all factors before moving to Manitoba to ensure it matches your lifestyle and goals. 

This article will provide you with an essential checklist of everything you need to know about moving to Manitoba

Moving to Manitoba: Everything to know and do

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1. First steps before moving to Manitoba

Finding a job 

In April 2023, Manitoba’s unemployment rate was 4.8%. Manitoba experienced the largest monthly job gain of 2.6% in transportation and warehousing. 

The most in-demand jobs in the province of Manitoba are registered nurses, heavy equipment mechanics, heavy equipment operators, transport truck drivers, food and beverage servers, software developers and accountants, to name a few. 

When finding a job in this city, it is important to look for employment vacancies and use internet job postings. Indeed and LinkedIn are examples of well-known sites.

Government of Manitoba (April 2023)

Getting there 

You may make an informed decision on how to move to Manitoba by looking into these options for transportation. 

Flying is the most convenient way to move to Manitoba. You can book your flight to get there, for example through its major airport, Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport.

If you prefer an alternative mode of transportation, numerous cities in Manitoba offer bus services by companies like Greyhound and regional bus operators too.

Traveling via train is a great option too, Via Rail Canada is the country’s main train service provider, or you can drive your car and plan your trip.

Must dos before your arrival 

You may find it exciting and challenging to move to Manitoba. You will be more prepared for your new life in the city if you are aware of these things beforehand.

  • Prepare for the snow and rain in Manitoba because the city is covered in snow for 132 days of the year! 
  • Begin packing your belongings and make moving arrangements, whether you plan to hire a moving company or transport your items yourself. Find out more here.
  • If you are moving to Manitoba from outside of Canada, ensure you have the necessary visa or residency status. This might include a work permit, study permit, or permanent residency application through the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program.

2. Upon your arrival in Manitoba

Must dos right upon your arrival

  • Get familiar with your neighborhood, and make sure to take note of the important emergency numbers.
  • Locate the essential facilities like the nearest hospital, police station, and fire department for your safety and in case of emergency.
  • Change all your officially listed addresses. In order to do this, start by downloading a Manitoba address change checklist or accounts that need to be canceled. Instead of having to notify all the relevant public and private organizations individually (which can be time-consuming), MovingWaldo can help you update your address in five minutes with every service provider, in a few clicks. 
  • Once you have handled all your administrative tasks, you should also get yourself a local phone number if you come from outside of Canada. The most popular phone services in Manitoba include Bell, Rogers and TELUS. Find out more information on how to change your address with your telecom provider

Exchanging your driver’s licence

According to Manitoba Public Insurance, if you have moved to Manitoba, you have 15 days to change your address on your registration and driver’s licence. To change your address, you must visit an Autopac agent or a MPI Service Centre in person. 

Upon your appointment, the agent will provide you with a new photograph, updated address information and provide you with the new documentation stating your address change. Please note, there is a $10 fee associated with getting your new driver’s licence so be sure to bring your wallet and proper identification. 

Setting up a bank account 

When moving to Manitoba, it’s essential to establish a local presence by setting up a bank account. The main banks you can find in Manitoba are Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), ScotiaBank, TD Canada Trust, BMO and CIBC which have multiple locations across the province. 

Getting health insurance

Getting health insurance in Manitoba can be obtained through the Manitoba Health Centre or private health insurance. 

If you’ve relocated to Manitoba from a different province or territory and plan to reside in Manitoba for six months or longer, it is suggested to submit your application for Manitoba Health coverage within three months of your arrival in the province.

3. Best places to live in Manitoba

If you prefer quaint towns over big metropolitan cities, there are plenty of places in Manitoba you’ll love to call home. The following are some of Manitoba’s best cities.

Neighborhood

Characteristics 

Winnipeg

Province’s capital city

Brandon 

Second-largest city in Manitoba

Neepawa

Small town located in the Escarpment 

Springfield

Manitoaba’s largest rural municipality 

Minnedosa

Manitoba’s Valley Paradise 

Steinbach 

Third-largest city in Manitoba 

Setting up home services 

There is only one provider for electricity in the province of Manitoba, being Manitoba Hydro

The water and sewer services in Manitoba are provided by the Municipal Water and Sewer Program. The application can be done via their website or get in touch with their customer service for assistance.

Manitoba offers their residents affordable internet services through companies like TELUS and Shaw. Learn more about the best internet providers in Winnipeg.

Should you rent or buy?

As of August 2023, the median cost of buying a property in Manitoba is $351,445; as of October 2023, the median rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in Winnipeg, NB is $1,295.

The rental market in this province is equally competitive, too, because of high demand for rental apartments. Trusted websites such as Redfin, Apartments.com and Zumper are often used to find available apartment listings and property or engage with real estate agents for assistance.

CREA (August 2023) & Zumper (Oct 2023)

How do Manitoba leases work?

Tenants may either get a Fixed-Term Lease or a Month-to-Month Lease for their rental property. The fixed term tenancy is applicable for a fixed period of time whereas the month-to-month tenancy is applicable for a month at a time.

All leases are supposed to include information regarding the landlord and tenant’s responsibilities, the term of lease, the utilities provided, and other pertinent information.

Before signing a lease, you should go through the Manitoba Residential Tenancies Act.

4. Cost of living in Manitoba

To show the cost of living in Manitoba, we will be using Winnipeg as an example. 

Category

Monthly cost

1 bed apt rent outside city center

$1,278.64

Groceries

Numbeo’s grocery list 

$296.48

Utilities

Electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage

$235.19

Internet with 60 Mbps

$85.25

Transit pass

$107.80

Entertainment 

Meal, taxi, movie

$83.80

Gym membership 

$47.94

Total

$2,135.10

Numbeo (Sept 2023)

5. The weather in Manitoba

In Manitoba’s main city of Winnipeg, the climate is usually cold, experiencing a lot of rain in the dryer months of July and August. The average annual temperature is 3.5 °C | 38.3 °F, with rain being about 646 mm | 25.4 inches per year.

Whereas in Brandon, you will experience chilly weather with average temperatures of 3.1 °C | 37.7 °F. Brandon has annual precipitation of around 610 mm | 24.0 inches per year. 

6. What to do as a local in Manitoba

Residents of Manitoba take pleasure in going on weekend getaways to their well-known cities of Winnipeg, Brandon and Steinbach. When moving here, people adopt and immerse themselves in the local culture. 

Manitoba is known for its lakes, beaches and rivers. After a work week, locals love to spend the day at the beach without ever traveling far. One of the most popular is Grand beach stretching 3 km along Lake Winnipeg. 

Manitoba is home to many festivals including the Icelandic Festival during the month of August. Locals love to volunteer and show their support of the tradition including art shows and contests. 

Manitobans love the outdoors, more specifically ice fishing. If you would like to become a true local, be prepared to learn a lot about fishing!

7. Fun facts about Manitoba

  • For the past 16 years, Manitobans have been holding the title for the largest consumption of Slurpees from 7-Eleven in the world!
  • In Churchill, Manitobans are encouraged to leave their car doors open in case someone is escaping from a stray polar bear.
  • If a polar bear wanders into the town, they are held in a Polar Bear Detention Center.
  • One of the most popular local sauces in Manitoba is Honey Dill. Apparently, it was created after someone stole someone else’s sauce recipe and messed it up.
  • Winnie the Pooh was named after the city of Winnipeg.
  • There are an average of 27 thunderstorms in Winnipeg every year and the city is covered in snow for 132 days of the year.

Conclusion

Moving to Manitoba is an exciting experience that promises a unique experience. It offers an appealing lifestyle, making it attractive to individuals, young professionals, and families alike. The province has several family-friendly neighborhoods to offer to its new residents.

In need of a trusted moving company to move you to Winnipeg? Discover the 5 best movers in Winnipeg.

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Ann Nacario

The author

Meet Ann – our head writer with a knack for making moving and city living a breeze. From the many details of moving to picking the perfect moving company, she’s your guide. Ann has a friendly yet detailed approach to ensure your move goes off without a hitch. When she’s not writing about relocation, it will always be on her mind, but you’ll catch her spending time with her three furry friends.

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