Canadians can visit hundreds of countries in the world. We can trek and travel on every continent with little hassle. But in which countries are the locals happiest to see the maple leaf on your backpack? Read on for our list of 9 countries that are most friendly to Canadians, and why that might be so.
9 Countries Most Friendly to Canadians
While China’s a little bit prickly with all countries when it comes to tourist visas (you’ve got to get one in advance of your trip) this Asian superpower is one of the top emerging markets from whence tourists come to Canada. It’s also the provenance of many of our immigrants. So, when Canadians visit China we can be assured that we’ve got good press going for us. It doesn’t hurt, either, that one of the most famous foreigners living in China is Canadian. Mark Henry Rowswell, or “Da Shan” as he’s known in China, is an A-list performer and television personality for the 1.3 billion Chines
By and large, Swedes look at Canada as a kindred spirit. We’ve got similar geography and weather and a shared love of hockey, and both nations pride themselves on a just, fair and comfortable governance of the people. Visas are a snap, too — as opposed to other European Union countries, Sweden allows Canadians to stay three months out of every six without arranging any prior visa
More than 11 million of Canada’s 15.6 million tourists in 2011 were from the United States, according to the Canadian Tourism Commission. Of course, it’s easier for U.S. citizens to get to Canada than for people of any other nation; the borders and paperwork are some of the simplest to navigate in the world. We like going there too! In 2007, it was our number-one destination outside of Canada, with 17.8 million visits by Canadians to the States, according to Statistics Canada. With the U.S. dollar continuing to be low, now’s a good time to search for cheap vacations to visit our southern neighbour.
Brits make up the second largest group of foreign tourists coming to Canada every year, according to the Canadian Tourism Commission. We filled up the return flights too! The U.K. was our third most-popular trip after the U.S. and Mexico in 2007. Shared history and language are two of the draws for Canadians looking to go to the U.K. We’re well-liked once we arrive. The easy working holiday visa arrangement between the two countries means many U.K. residents have fond memories of their trips to Canada, and are sure to be welcoming in return.
India comes in just after China as being the emerging market to send us the most tourists. We return the favour by being the fifth leading source of tourism dollars brought to the subcontinent. About 220,000 Canadian tourists visited India in 2009, according to TheStar.com. Most who were surveyed on return finding Indian people “warm and helpful.” That sounds nice after the winter, doesn’t it?
The French make critical remarks about the quality of our French language here, but they say very nice things about Canadian culture. According to one survey, the French are among the top peoples of the world to laud Canada for our tolerance of people from different races and cultures. More than 300,000 French people visited Canada in 2011, and about 100,000 Canadians fly to France each year.
With nearly 50 percent of the people from Saskatchewan having German heritage, there’s good reason for Canadian travelers to plan to visit Germany. Additionally, German tourists made nearly 300,000 visits to Canada in 2011.
A survey found that Australians are likely to think of Canada as a place where the government respects citizen’s rights and freedoms. A shared history and similar situations as huge countries with few people give Canada and Australia a camaraderie hard to find elsewhere in the world.
Not only does Canada have a large Haitian immigrant population, but Canada gives generously in foreign aid to Haiti. According to CBC News, Canada gave nearly $330 million to Haiti in the 2009-2010 fiscal year.
Now that you have read our list of 9 countries that are most friendly to Canadians, which country would you like to visit first?
About the Author: Allison Rosemont is a retired statistician. She spends her winters in Florida and the Caribbean and summers in Ottawa.