I’ve been back in Canada for over six months now, and I must say that it has been difficult readjusting to Canadian life. Although it has been nice to be with my family, and there are some perks this side of the Atlantic, (maple syrup flavoured whisky!) I have to admit that my nostalgia for the UK is still very much present. I’m thrilled to announce I will be going back to the UK next month on an Ancestry Visa, so I will soon again be reunited with everything I miss about Great Britain. Until then, however, here’s a list of things I miss about the UK:
Of course, this is number one on the list. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, pub culture is just not a thing in Canada. It really is a shame.
2. Taxes Added Before Checkout
This is a huge annoyance I completely forgot about until coming back to Canada. Taxes are added after checkout, so the price tag on the shelf is actually not the price you will pay. It’s nice being in the UK where the price you see is the price you pay. No surprises!
3. Easy Travel
This is more specific to London, but generally, transit is so much more efficient over in the UK than here in Canada. Not to mention how close the UK is to Europe! The options for travel are far more diverse than Canada, where apart from the States being our next-door neighbours, we just have a lot of nature. Canadian holidays are typically going to the cottage, and holidays in the UK are going to France, Italy, Spain, etc… I'd much rather the latter!
4. The Weather
Now, this is more specific to southern England where it doesn’t get too cold but still gets warm enough in the summers to be able to suntan. Canadian summers are just so humid and brutally hot, and the winters are cold enough to freeze your fingers off. I miss the less extreme climate of London where my shoes don’t get wrecked in the winters from slush and the salt they use to melt the ice. (That being said, the UK really needs to step up their game in the air conditioning department.)
5. Cheaper Alcohol
I’m not talking about the alcohol you buy in pubs or bars, because depending on where you go drinks can be MUCH more expensive than in Canada... (hello, London). I’m talking about your average shop that sells alcohol. For example, I love a cold bottle of Heineken. If I were to get a 12 pack of 330ml bottles, I’d be paying £11 at Tescos. That translates roughly to $19 Canadian. However, if I were to buy the same pack of beer at the Beer Store in Ontario, I’d be charged $28.50, and that’s BEFORE tax. Essentially I’m paying over $10 more for the same product in Canada that I would be in the UK.
6. Cheaper Phone Plans
I’m not entirely sure why Canada has such expensive mobile plans, but they do, and they’re some of the most expensive in the world. Plans here are upwards of $100 (58GBP) and don’t even necessarily include unlimited data. Complete ripoff.
7. 'Free' Prescriptions
Well, not necessarily “free,” because they’re paid for through taxes, however, it is nice not to worry about paying hundreds of pounds for life-saving drugs. Unless you’re exempt, you just pay an £8 dispensing fee and that’s it. I used to work at a pharmacy in High School and the number of people that would come in without insurance and would have to pay hundreds– or even thousands of dollars for their prescriptions was heartbreaking. We have socialised health care, why not socialised prescriptions? Oh, and birth control in the UK is COMPLETELY FREE. Get it together, Canada!