Surviving the Canadian Winters

Posted on Friday, January 21, 2022

woman in green jacket taking photo of snow



-40 degrees, 4 feet of snow, freezing rain. Just a few weather conditions to describe the climate in Canada. Living in the Ottawa valley doesn’t help make it any better. Canadian winters are some of the toughest out there and this guide covers all the tips and tricks to avoid freezing.

Bundle Up

Because it’s always so cold in Canada there’s a few articles of clothing that may benefit you in long run. The heat in your body leaves through your exposed skin and extremities first, so having a good pair of gloves and a hat is key. This small addition to your outfit can really change your whole outlook on the winter season. There are a few good places to find hats and gloves, but one of the best is right on campus. The Free Store has many free items available for you to take and there might just be a hat, scarf or glove calling your name. Otherwise, thrift stores and the Rideau Centre are your best bets for getting winter items.

Beyond a hat and gloves, you can invest in a Neck Guard/Buff/Balaclava. This item is great for protecting your face, specifically your nose and cheeks, during especially cold windy days.

Embrace the sunlight

The days are getting shorter and shorter - natural lighting becomes even more important to Canadians. There are many benefits to allowing natural light to flood the room you’re in, including but not limited to: warming up the room you’re in, benefits to your mental health, and motivation to get out of bed.

We recommend drawing the blinds to the rooms in your apartment or home and going for walks mid-day when the sun is at its highest and brightest.

Flipping things around

It’s REALLY cold outside, and we understand that you may not want to leave your house. Spending so much time indoors can get boring and repetitive after a while, thus small changes to your space can really help change your mindset or help you appreciate your indoor space from a new perspective. Whether that includes changing the direction of your ceiling fan or moving your bed to a new position.

Practice or implement some feng shui into your space! We’ve got a great article on how to get started.

Achieve efficient home heating

Heating your home during the winter is a staple of Canadian life. One way to heat your home more efficiently is to move anything obstructing vents. If you have a couch or sofa in front of your heater will restrict the airflow and not heat the rest of the room. Did you also know that your ceiling fan has a cold and hot air setting? MIND BLOWING! Be sure to hit that switch on the side of your ceiling fan that allows for it to spin clockwise and push the warm air that rises back down.

Heating can, however, get expensive quickly. The Ontario government has a support program to curb the costs of heating and cooling throughout the year. Depending on the number of people living in your living arrangement and your combined yearly income you can get credit up to $35 a month for your hydro bill. All you have to do is apply online at

Canadian winters may be some of the toughest winters out there but with these tips and tricks you can make them a bit more bearable.

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