What You Should Know When Planning To Conduct Research In Canada

We’re headquartered in Toronto Canada but frequently work in the United States so we’re able to provide a uniquely Canadian or North American perspective. We also routinely partner with European based research agencies as part of their North American team. Understanding the Opportunities for new product launches in Canada.


Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories.
Research conducted in Canada focusses largely on the 8 of the 10 provinces. We group these provinces into the following geographic regions, and typically conduct research in the largest cities within the provinces as noted:

  • Western Canada – British Columbia (key city: Vancouver), Alberta (key city: Calgary or Edmonton), Saskatchewan (key city: Regina) and Manitoba (key city: Winnipeg)
  • Central Canada – Ontario (key city: Toronto), Quebec (key city: Montreal)
  • Eastern Canada – refers to Central Canada and Atlantic Canada together.
  • Atlantic Canada – New Brunswick (key city: St. John), Nova Scotia (key city: Halifax)

If you only wanted to conduct qualitative research in one market to ‘represent’ Canada, we would recommend Toronto.


Canada has two official languages, English and French.  At RI, we speak both.

English is the predominant language spoken in Western Canada, Central Canada and Nova Scotia, and research is thus conducted in English.

  • In Quebec, the majority of the population is French speaking and most research is conducted in French (with simultaneous translation provided for English speaking clients).
  • New Brunswick had the highest bilingualism rate outside Quebec so here, you may choose to conduct research in French and/or English, depending on the project.

Bilingual (English/French) in-house moderating and translation services provides consistency at every stage of the process, resulting in more accurate results.





Toronto is our ‘local’ market but cities in Canada and the United States are easily accessible with daily flights operating out of Toronto’s airports: Pearson International Airport and Billy Bishop Airport (also referred to as The Island Airport).

U.S. and International travellers require a valid passport to enter Canada. Once in Canada, you can travel freely across provinces.


The table below shows the time zones in Canada:

Standard Time Zones Daylight Saving Time Zones
Newfoundland Standard Time (NST) = UTC-3:30. Newfoundland Daylight Time (NDT) = UTC-2:30.
Atlantic Standard Time (AST) = UTC-4. Atlantic Daylight Time (ADT) = UTC-3.
Eastern Standard Time (EST) = UTC-5. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) = UTC-4.
Central Standard Time (CST) = UTC-6. Central Daylight Time (CDT) = UTC-5.
Mountain Standard Time (MST) = UTC-7. Mountain Daylight Time (MDT) = UTC-6.
Pacific Standard Time (PST) = UTC -8. Pacific Daylight Time (PDT) = UTC-7.


Canada is often associated with cold weather and snow, but in reality, Canadians enjoy four distinct seasons. Daytime summer temperatures can rise to 35°C (95°F) and higher. Winters are mild and wet on the west coast, in cities such as Vancouver while lows of -25°C (-13°F) are not uncommon in winter in central and eastern Canada.  More moderate temperatures are the norm in spring and fall.  Spring is generally pleasant across the country. Autumns are often crisp and cool, but brightened by rich orange and red leaves on trees. The Weather Network