Snowbirds Stay Home, The Battle Cry of the World, Many are not Ready?

Are You Staying Home? If Not You have to Fly, Borders Now Closed Until 2021

With everyone staying home and in our communities, we all get to reflect on where we chose to live and perhaps retire.

During this time, many Canadians and Americans return home from where they live in the winter.  These folks are better known as Snowbirds. Most people find no pleasure in the cold and snow and don’t desire to embrace the activities in a four-season area.

There is a lot of talk of stay vacation until there is a coronavirus vaccine, but are Snowbirds ready for staying home and not going to warmer climates this coming winter?

On July 1, 2019, Emily Brandon, Senior Editor for U.S. News & World Report, wrote an article reviewing the top ten places to retire in Canada.

Emily stated,  “Here’s where Canadians report enjoying the highest quality of life.”

The information collected is the voice of the people who live in these communities.

The information was derived from Statistics Canada.  According to a Statistics Canada analysis of the Canadian Community Health Survey and General Social Survey data about average life satisfaction from 2009 to 2013.

As a Western Canadian, I was surprised by the list, but I thought it was important to remember an old saying, “Don’t Shoot the Messenger.”

I was born in one of these communities. I have never thought of returning to my birthplace to retire or even live.

Are you ready for the list?

The 10 Best Places to Retire in Canada

  • Saguenay, Quebec
  • Trois-Rivières, Quebec
  • St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Greater Sudbury, Ontario
  • Quebec City, Quebec
  • Saint John, New Brunswick
  • Sherbrooke, Quebec
  • Thunder Bay, Ontario
  • Moncton, New Brunswick
  • Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Many of these cities are characterized as medium-sized, and if you poll many snowbirds, I am sure most of these towns are not on their radar to retire or stay during the winter months.

Snowbirds, What is Your Mindset Until a Vaccine Found?

This week, Canada and the USA’s governments announced extending the border closures for non-essential travel until January 21, 2021.

Opening the world’s longest international border is coming, and unless there is a massive second wave of coronavirus, the border will open.

As provinces and states start to open up their communities, snowbirds might be hoping for a cure to ease their minds.  Summer does not last long, and the snowbirds have second homes to return to in the winter.  Will snowbirds return without a vaccine?

With some snowbirds feeling a bit uneasy about crossing the border any time soon, it is essential to discuss how they embrace the communities they usually leave in the winter.

Embracing Your Community

Immerse yourself in the community by attending local functions. (i.e. the indoor market, craft fairs, Remembrance Day functions, joining the recreational centre, enjoying the trails, the outdoor recreational activities, snowshoeing, ice skating, eating in many of the locally-owned restaurants, shopping at the local butcher, using many of the local business including live theatre and concerts and so much more.)

Stop focusing your attention on the cold.  Embrace the beauty of the frost-filled landscape; the snow creates incredible changes in nature’s glory days and winter activities you will find in Winter’s Wonderland-like no other place on earth.

Also, spend time volunteering yourself in your community; there are so many awesome things you can help with and many incredible people to meet.  You can help and still make social distancing work.


As many Canadians and Americans flock to the south in the winter, and I am not critical of this strategy when it is minus 30 C, I find myself wanting to look for refuge from the cold.

Many Canadians use up their healthier years of ageing, travelling and living in warmer global climates. If you are healthy, you are hardier than you think.  You can enjoy one winter; you might pleasantly be surprised.

As you age, travel insurance gets more and more expensive to the point of ridiculousness.  Travel insurance costs stopped my parents, who had spent their healthier ageing lives travelling and had to stop globetrotting.

I had an ageing uncle pass away in the United States, and the only economical way to bring him back to Canada was to have him cremated, ashes in an urn and driven across the border in the trunk of his wife’s car.  My aunt felt like a drug runner.

Don’t let the ageing process creep up on you and bite you in the ass.

Many ageing Canadians move back to Canada to live out their old and unhealthiest years in Canada, racked and stacked, waiting for the grim reaper in the later years of life. Ask the people living in long-term care centres how they are feeling now?

I would challenge more and more Canadians to plan the place you retire a little differently. Racked and stacked in long-term care centres is not great.  No matter what country you live in, long-term care centres are not where you want to be.

Don’t plan your best retirement years and leave the last years of your life to someone else. You could be talking decades of misery.

Raising Your Community’s Lifestyle Satisfaction Level, Where to Start?

  • If your community is not on the list of the most life satisfying places to live, what are you and your neighbours saying about your city?
  • Can your current community be a place you would love to call home, 365, 24/7?
  • Can you make your current town or city a place for a more satisfying lifestyle?
  • How do you create a more satisfying lifestyle in your community?
  • If you are not feeling good about your current community, what is the right community for you?

“Life is Short,” take time to ensure every minute of your long life is “Lifestyle Satisfying” right to your last breath.



From Our Happy Place to Yours, Be Healthy, Be Safe Until Our Next Post



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