Travel Thoughts

Canadian and Australian Societal Similarities

Canadian firefighter waving the Canadian flag, Canada Day, Banff, Canada

In my post, Canadians and Australians: Kindred Spirits, I wrote about why Australians like travelling in Canada so much, and the things the two nationalities share in common. I’ve had some further thoughts on the similarities between Canada and Australia – in respect to our countries and lifestyles.

If you compared the two in certain regions, you might find it hard to find parallels. Due to the immensity and diversity of Canada and Australia, which both contain varying states, provinces and cities, some places would not seem the same.

However Canada and Australia, whilst different in regions, are nations which have a lot in common. These are the Canadian and Australian societal similarities:

Both are considered “developed”

These massive countries are industrialised nations with established and effective infrastructure (relatively speaking), high GDP per capita and are categorised as developed countries. Generally, our governments aspire to maintain “reasonably” clean, organised cities with good standards for their taxpayers, in terms of cost of living, healthcare and education. Both have relatively strong economies with Canada and Australia both being listed in 2015, as two of the ten largest advanced economies by nominal GDP.

Both societies live by regulatory laws, especially in terms of public health and safety standards and precautions

In Canada and Australia you can start to feel like you are being a bit mothered, as if you’re in a nanny state. “Watch your step,” “Pay attention to the emergency procedures,” “No smoking here.” “Follow the rules!” I am happy to travel in a country where everything is pretty clear, well sign posted and warning me of impending danger…but sometimes it’s also fun to be in an environment where things are a little less regulated. There is nothing like being in parts of the world where things are more relaxed, and more chaotic. In Canada or Australia you are sure to encounter a number of endless signs, treating you like you have no common sense with lists of ‘how to’, ‘not do’ and ‘beware!’ Residents of these nations, generally speaking, follow traffic rules. And of course there is always the similar fact that the legal age to start drinking in both countries is 18.

Canada and Australia are part of the “Commonwealth”

As previous territories of the British Empire, these countries are full of street sign names beginning with King or Queen and share similarities in history, language and culture. Both Canada and Australia have a parliamentary democracy and are Commonwealth nations with the Queen as head of state. The Queen is on the Canadian $20 bill, yet she only makes the $5 note in Australia! Members of the Commonwealth are not legally bound to one another however being from a member state, many things like tourist and working visas, especially for the under 30’s, is made easier and simpler. Young people exchange frequently due to the Commonwealth synergy of Canada and Australia.

Both countries love their sport

Aussies are known sportspeople, who swim and surf in the ocean, live in areas of great wilderness and love their weekend Australian Football League (AFL) and Rugby. Canadians embrace activity also – the outdoors, climbing mountains and love their Ice Hockey, Lacrosse, Football and Soccer. Both these nations take part in the Commonwealth Games, otherwise known as the ‘friendly games.’ Australians tend to outshine in these games and probably do outperform their Commonwealth Canadian pals. No matter what, Canadians and Aussies will always hold a mutual respect for one another for their ‘get out there and do it’ mentality.

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