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How to budget your money in Toronto

Despite the many career advantages of an internship abroad, unpaid opportunities can be a stress on your finances. To get the most out of this exciting chance to live and work abroad, learn how to slash the cost of living in Toronto. These helpful tips on how to save money in Toronto will mean more money for sightseeing and traveling while you’re interning abroad.


1. Be a savvy grocery shopper

No matter what, if you’re buying your food at the grocery store, the chances are that you’re saving money on your meals. Cooking is far cheaper than eating out. That said, if you want to go one step further, Torontonians can download the Flipp app, which basically clips coupons for you. Shopping at places like Kensington Market and Chinatown will also help you save money, plus it will be an interesting cultural experience at the same time.


2. Master Toronto’s public transportation system

When it comes to getting around the city, taxis and Ubers may be convenient, but if you’re traveling alone, taking public transport, biking or walking is by far the most economical option. Toronto offers excellent public transportation, which includes a system of buses and three metro lines with 65 stops.


3. Enjoy Toronto’s beautiful parks, neighborhoods and markets

There are so many beautiful and free places to hang out and explore in Toronto during warm months. Stroll through the Distillery Historic District on a sunny Saturday to check out the old Victorian industrial architecture. Walking along the Habourfront Centre boardwalk is another free and entertaining way to explore the city. The St. Lawrence Market, Toronto’s biggest market, provides a lively local atmosphere for wandering around and checking out the different stalls and stands – no purchase necessary.


How to save money in Toronto


4. Check local museums for free days or student discounts

See the best of Toronto without shelling out your life savings by scheduling your museum trips based on which days offer a discount. After work on Wednesdays, interns can check out the Art Gallery of Ontario for free. Thursdays the Bata Show Museum offers free admission, while the Royal Ontario Museum has discounts on Friday afternoons. For movie fans, Rainbow Cinemas offer half-priced tickets on Tuesdays.


5. Keep an eye out for free events

Toronto hosts free concerts and other community events on a regular basis. Yonge & Dundas Square and Mel Lastman Square, for example, are common venues for fun and free events. The Canadian Opera Company also hosts events open to the public. These cultural events are a great way to enjoy Toronto on a budget.


6. Bring a lunch and snacks to work

Eating out can end up being a major stress on your budget. The more you cook and pack your lunch, the more money you’ll have for travel and sightseeing. Preparing some lunches on Sunday evening for your week ahead will make it easy to opt for staying in next time you feel pressured to eat out for lunch.


How to save money in Toronto


7. Consider getting a CityPASS for sightseeing

Admission fees can be steep if you want to see many different Toronto museums and attractions. If you want to try and see several different sights, paying for a Toronto CityPASS could be a worthy investment as it offers discounted admission for places like the Royal Ontario Museum, CN Tower and the Toronto Zoo.




Now that you know how to save money in Toronto, learn more about how to boost your career with an internship in Canada.




1. based on Toronto, by Rick Harris, CC-by-2.0

2. based on toronto city hall, by paul bica, CC-by-2.0

3. based on Toronto Skyline, by Abi K, CC-by-2.0

Photos and blog by Elizabeth Trovall

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The International Internships Blog is a collaboration by The Intern Group staff, alumni and current participants to give you career advice & tips, program information, & so much more!