Nicolas, an expatriate Java developer in Montreal, joined the Maplr family in June 2021.
He tells us about his expatriation with his wife and his first impressions of life in Montreal. He is now an active member of the Maplr community. A Toulouse native and former rugby player, he shares with us his passion for sports and parties.
Discover his testimony and his feedback after several months in North America!
Expatriate developer in Montreal since June 2021, interview with Nicolas.
Hi, I'm Nicolas I'm from Toulouse, I've been living there since I was 2 years old, and I was born in the Paris region (there has to be a default).
I did a BTS IRIS (computer science) and then I finished my schooling as an apprentice in an engineering school in Rodez in the Aveyron (long live the aligot, the roquefort and the tripoux). I played rugby for 19 years, which explains why I am a consumer of férias and other village festivals!
I am now an expatriate Java developer in Montreal at Maplr.
Why did you become an expatriate developer in Montreal?
I decided to go abroad to discover another culture and try a new experience. I know a couple of friends, living in Montreal, who told us a lot about life in Canada. When we had the opportunity to go, we took it.
How was your expatriation to Montreal?
Did you encounter any difficulties during your expatriation in Montreal?
I had no real difficulties during my expatriation. The only constraint for us was to postpone our departure following the closing of the immigration basins because of the Covid.
What do you think of the support offered by Maplr?
The people dedicated to the support are very available despite the time difference, it was reassuring to have an support to prepare the work permit and not forget anything.
Maplr also offered us webinars on life in Montreal, which allowed us to project ourselves while waiting for our departure.
If you also work in tech and want to know more about life as an expat developer in Montreal, you can register for the next Maplr webinar.
What do you like most about the Maplr community?
The Maplr community is quite young, which allows us to quickly participate in happy hours (after work in Quebec?) and outings, which allows us to quickly meet people who have a similar background to ours. On these occasions, we share our experiences, tips and good addresses.
Activities are organised very regularly with the Maplrs: weekly futsal, blind test evenings, sports events in bars and soon my first chalet!
Activities are organized very regularly with the Maplrs: weekly futsal, blind test evenings, sports events in bars and soon my first chalet!
Expatriate Java developer in Montreal
What kind of reception did you get from the Canadians?
Canadians are very welcoming and polite. The use of first names can be quite surprising at first, even for me, who is very familiar with first names, but you soon get used to it.
I always feel like I'm making the right choice in restaurants: The waiter always gives me an "Excellent!" at the end of my order?
What do you think of the cost of living as an expat in Montreal?
Toulouse is not Paris, in addition to being relatively close to the mountains, the sea and the ocean, life is less expensive. Life in Montreal is a bit more expensive but with the salary of a developer here, I think the purchasing power is more or less equivalent. Food seems a little bit more expensive to me but that's okay, we live in a small town.but it's okay, we live quite well.
Please note that taxes and tips are not included in the final bill, either in restaurants or bars.
What do you like most about Montreal?
I arrived just a few months ago, in the middle of summer, everyone wants to enjoy it as much as possible after the winter and the Covid. What I like here is to lounge in a park, have a drink and meet new people.
The Quebec expressions sometimes lead to funny situations and I could see my first raccoon.
In addition, Montreal is close to many national and provincial parks, which makes for great hiking and a change of scenery from the Pyrenees, Haute-Garonne and Ariège.
What is your favourite neighbourhood and why?
I currently live on the Plateau, nearMont Royal Avenue. I like this area a lot because there are many shops, restaurants and bars nearby which allows you to do everything on foot or by bike. Moreover, I am close to Laurier Park and La Fontaine Park, barbecues and festivities are often organized there in summer. In the winter you can go there to enjoy the outdoor skating rink on the park's lake (from what we can tell).
As an expatriate developer in Montreal, what are the differences with France?On the professional side ?
On the professional side, the work/life balance is very important here. The team I work with welcomed me with a smile and kindness. The project manager remains available and our well-being is important. The beginnings are quieter than in France.
Any final advice for future expatriate developers in Montreal?
The first piece of advice I could give is about your pet. If you are coming with a pet, remember to check that there is still room on your flight for your pet before you book the tickets.
My last piece of advice: don't worry too much before the departure, I stressed a lot for not much in the end. Especially as we are not alone and we find ourselves with a nice community ready to help us in case of a problem.
Anything to add?
The poutine is gonna be, wait for it... LEGENDARY !
Want to try an adventure in Canada?
Do you also want to discover Quebec, go on a road trip or wander through the great outdoors? Then join the Maplr family.
Are you looking for a Java developer position like Nicolas? At Maplr, we can help you find your IT job in Montreal and help you with all the phases of your relocation. Our French-Canadian team is here to guide you and give you all the information you need to start your new life in Montreal with confidence!
Join our community now and become an expatriate developer in Montreal.