The Okanagan: lipstick on a pig

The Thompson-Okanagan in British Columbia is one of the most overrated places in the country. Due to its warm summer weather and wineries it has branded itself as “Canada’s California” but is far from it.

We start with Kelowna.

Kelowna is a small city with a population just over 120,000. It’s very white: only 4.5% of the population is Aboriginal, and the visible minority group has risen to 7.6%.

During my time there, overhearing racial slurs was a nearly daily reality. Bumper stickers containing 88 or SS bolts (white supremacist symbols) were abundant and I saw them in traffic every day.

The small number of Aboriginal people appeared non-existent as most of them lived on a reserve outside of town. I don’t recall ever seeing or meeting a single Black Canadian there, although this seems to have marginally improved if the town’s homemade “rap videos” are any indication. The only time I heard of them (visiting) was when they were being threatened, called epithets, left notes to “go home” or muttered about behind their backs.

Crazy Christians

A large segment of the population is religious and old-fashioned. These conservative Christians frown upon being gay, being non-religious, being non-Christian, sex before marriage, and basically any ideas or values formed after the 1950s. According to statistics, over 58% of residents claim a religious affiliation – virtually all Christian. Nearly three-quarters of couples are married.

K-Town summed up

Kelowna can be divided into the following groups: hardcore Christians, the wealthy retired, the elderly, rich youth, Hell’s Angels and other criminal elements; the poor and addicted.

Retired & Old

It’s a popular retirement location: nearly 20% of residents are over 65. Catering to the retired and elderly fills a large portion of the city’s employment and funding as they are now the top demographic.


When I lived there it was well known that the Hell’s Angels “ran the town”. At the time other gangs were trying to muscle in. Nearby my quiet home next to a vineyard, an Asian gang member was arrested with an ear inside his pocket he’d kept as a souvenir. Such was life in “peaceful” Kelowna. Matters remain the same today in the city’s underbelly: whether it’s HA members beating a man to death, ongoing legal issues over clubhouses, cocaine smuggling operations, or more, the status quo continues. (In the early 2010s, Kelowna was among the most dangerous cities listed in Canada, but this appears to have improved in recent years.)


One comment said it best when describing Kelowna as “ostentatious luxury next to stark poverty“. It has become a town for the well-to-do. People with money retire there and live comfortably; their children and grandchildren grow up wealthy, not needing to work and treat others with disdain and contempt.

The Okanagan Living Wage report stated: “To make ends meet, a nuclear family in the Okanagan needs to bring in an annual income of just under $70,000.” The living wage is calculated to be $21.00/hour.

As absurd as it seems, anyone earning under that amount can essentially expect to live in poverty or at least uncomfortably as they struggle to make ends meet and survive. While Kelowna may look fun from afar or on vacation, it’s hell for those who aren’t wealthy. They can expect low-paying jobs, no advancement opportunities, serving the rich, and NOT partaking in any of the fun activities on display – which they can’t afford.

For example, despite the living wage, over 49% of residents had an income lower than $27,000. Nearly half that number had an income of less than $12,000. Only 44% worked a full-time job all year.


The city continues to have terrible drug problems: addicts and the homeless congregating downtown, sleeping in beaches and parks, and committing crimes. It’s regularly the number one drug capital in Canada for heroin and cocaine, and among the top of the list for other drugs. In 2017 it was fourth in all of British Columbia for illicit drug deaths.

Conclusion: Overblown

For all the raving about Kelowna, here is what you get: a small city in the interior with limited employment, absurd living costs, plenty of drugs and crime, a warm summer and a LAKE.

Yes, that’s it. All this hype for two things: a lake and warm summers. The lake is enjoyable, but most people can’t afford to buy or rent a boat to enjoy it. Summer days are hot (which can be terrible in the backlogged, horrendous traffic jams) and the nights are mild, warm, and comfortable – which is great. But that’s it. Its winters are fairly mild, but they still have snow and cold – hardly “California”.

So if you live any place with a relatively mild winter, beside a large lake, you are living the equivalent of K-Town life for a quarter of the cost and hassle. Almost all of Kelowna’s “activities” revolve around the lake, downtown bars and the drug scene (all of which you can find anywhere else). I can say personally that I loathed my time there, and consider its residents among the worst people I’ve ever met, rivaled only by Ottawa.

See: Kelowna Rants (enjoy the videos at the end).

Moving on we come to Vernon, which is about an hour’s drive north from Kelowna.

Vernon is a little dump town with a population of just over 40,000 people. Anecdotally, I can tell you that Vernon actually scares me because not once have I met a normal, well-adjusted person from that place. If ever there was a creepy, little hillbilly town hidden away and filled with inbred rednecks, Vernon is it! Imagine all of the problems of Kelowna, without the one benefit: the lake downtown. The only thing it really has going for it is a nearby ski mountain resort.

Other fun facts according to the last census:

Over 20% of residents are 65 or older. Median age is 47. The last time information was compiled it showed: 4.6% visible minority population; 5.5% Aboriginals; and 90% white. Unsurprisingly, racism is an issue in Vernon too, with lots of proud confederate-flag waving racists. (I’m not sure what confederates in the southern U.S. have to do with a hick town in B.C., but who said it has to make sense?)

Like Kelowna, it is a car town with terrible transit (85% of residents drive); the last stated unemployment rate was nearly 10%; over 17% of families are low-income, and housing is unaffordable for most people (source). I can guarantee things are much worse than is publicly-known, but it’s difficult to get information since it’s a small shit town and it’s rarely compiled.

Drugs and crime continue to spiral. In 2017, small creepy Vernon was listed as one of the top ten most dangerous places in Canada, although this had dropped to 24th by 2018 – still staggering for a city of less than 40,000, compared to the entire country. There were over 300 drug overdoses in 2017 as well. 

At last we come to Penticton:

It’s about an hour’s drive south of Kelowna, and has a population of just over 40,000 people. Over a quarter of its residents are aged 64 or older. We have the same story as before: 9% unemployment rate; over 70% of couples are married; employment is crap: most jobs are low skill and pay minimum wage, farm workers make barely above that. Again: 80% of residents drive; almost 19% are “low-income”, the ‘visible minority’ and Aboriginal populations combined total 11.5%, and 90% of the population is white.

Penticton is a cute little town with some nice beaches by the lake. You can stand on a hill and basically see the entire town from start to finish. Its residents are marginally better than Kelowna and Vernon. However, crime has begun to increase and was the highest in the Okanagan Valley in 2017. It’s listed in the top 20 most dangerous places in Canada, again.

So this is the Okanagan in a nutshell. Sure, there are plenty of other little shit towns sprinkled around, but they’re so small they aren’t worth writing about, and nobody who requires employment or has a family is going to move there due to lack of resources. It’s simply the same people who were born and raised there who stay and will die there. End of.

Canada’s “California”? Hardly (unless you mean the drug trafficking and crime) !

The takeaway:

The Okanagan is white, expensive, and over-hyped. If you move there expect to be broke, struggling, hurting for work, and treated like human trash by the rich scumbags who have retired there. You can’t even enjoy the ‘benefits’ of small city living because the place is chalk full of bikers, various warring gangs, drug trafficking and more. God forbid you aren’t white – you will be a virtual pariah. The same goes for being non-religious (if your social group doesn’t include bikers and drug traffickers). You will basically have the worst of every world and have settled for it all because of a lake. Enjoy!

Kelowna: Rants

Not long ago I heard Kelowna described as a “right wing shithole”. Yep, that about sums it up. A racist, nasty, disgusting cesspool of self-absorbed older wealthy white men, seniors, and their scum-of-the-earth spawn. I’ve been meaning to make a post on it for awhile, but I haven’t worked up the stomach yet. You have no idea how much I truly loathe that place – I would rather live in Ottawa!

Are you a crazy conservative nutjob Christian? You’ll love Kelowna.
Are you a white supremacist? You’ll love Kelowna.
Are you wealthy, retired and unimaginative? You’ll love Kelowna.
Do you aspire to live in a Jersey Shore reality series? You’ll love Kelowna.
Do you ingest or sell copious amounts of cocaine? You’ll love Kelowna.
Have you just been patched in as an H-A member? You’ll love Kelowna.
Are you a crack addict who enjoys sleeping on beaches? You’ll love Kelowna.

These comments are right on.

So without further ado, here are some rants:

“If you live in a big city, but fancy blistering isolation amongst a flock of narrow-minded and suspicious bushwackers, look no further. Pretty, yes. Pretty rough.


“If there is hell on Earth, Kelowna is it. Tempting to love there in the beginning after you’ve vacationed there and fell in love the with scenery. Once you move there, you will remove the rose coloured glasses as start to see what Kelowna really is, Hell.

1. Very few jobs and they all pay minimum wage even if you have a degree. A high paying jobs would be working at Costco, seriously! 

2. Steroid Monkeys, Hell’s Angels, other gangs, durg addicts, stuck up women[even the fat ugly ones], and a whole lot of retards. 

3. White rich snobs who you will be wiping the ass of to get their crumbs. You will hear the dried up corpses talk about their most recent trip to Mexico, the fine wine they drank, and other useless crap.  

4. You will be broke and working/welfare all the time. 

5. Bring Single and Poor in the Okanagan is the equivalent of having full blown AIDS and advertising it on a shirt anywhere else. Yes, you will have to date some really fat and gross creature just to get laid. Very True!!! 

6. The 100 year old members of City Council and their dislike of anything considered a new fangled contraption or idea. 

7. Racism and lots of it. 

8. Lost of Chachi’s and female Britney Spears clones. 

9. The new Bermuda Triangle for STDS in Kelowna. 

10. Just don’t move to Kelowna or area unless you like being an flat assed broke outcast who is treated like a leaper.  

11. More clicky thank highschool. 

12. I could go on and on but I would be typing all night. Expensive!!!! 

So if you are thinking of moving to Kelowna, remember that German couple a few years back to moved to Kelowna from Germany, because they fell in love with Kelowna during a vacation. Well in the end their employer fucked them over, no one on Kelowna would help them and the couple borrowed a huge amount of money to move back to Germany(maybe someone here can pull up the link to this story). 

I personally would rather live in Kabul, Afghanistan or Iran rather than live in Kelowna again.


“I agree with all the negative opinions on Kelowna!! I wish I would have read up more before moving here, and regret ever moving here – biggest mistake of my life!!


“After reading the posts here, why are you tradespeople and movers still thinking or actually moving to Kelowna. There is no work in Kelowna that will pay you what you need to get ahead. A 1st year machinist will be working at McDonalds for $8.50/hr. There is no work in Kelowna unless you are a drug dealer or you like making minimum wage in the service and food industry.

To alj and Mike: See you on the hard streets or working at Wendys.
To Paul shykora: Yodillolaliehoo. I’d love Kelowna if I was a Millionaire and already had a hot wife from South America. Other that that, you will be making minimum wage, kissing rich people’s asses for scraps,and living with 3 other roommates just to pay the bills. Like another poster, I would rather live in Iran or Afghanistan before moving back to Kelowna. Kelowna is hell if you have no money.

So, people who plan or even want to move to Kelowna, please please please take my advice and stay away from Kelowna. It is indeed HELL.


“Now this is a jackass!!! “Oh boy, I’m a juice monkey who bought my house with money from my rich parents or money from drug dealing. Yes, my parents are proud because I hang around with organized crime figures. My celebrity friends must really appreciate this post which in essence links them with Hells Angels!

Again another real reason not to move to the Okanagan aka the Brokeanagan. Is your daddy a Hells Angel or a transvestite working downtown? 

Boy you are tough. You can threaten people to knowck them out on the internet because you are a red nick hillbilly moron. Do you watch UFC too little retard!? Is your girlfriend a bleach blonde bimbo with an IQ of 30. Don’t worry we will lave the shithole Kelowna to the shithead aka YOU! 


“The only way you could afford a new house is if your mommy and daddy bought it for you!!
This is what I mean about the dickheads who live in Kelowna. It is a shithole so yes stay away!!!
Kelowna will be like Mad Max in about 30 years when all the water dries up and all you are left with is scumbags.


“I have to agree with most peoples comments on Kelowna, BC I have lived here my whole life and as a young adult there is no oppurtunity to get ahead in this town if your doing Legit work. No one can live off 12 bucks an hour! People come here with big dreams to suceed but they get caught up in the partying scene and using coke, they have to leave with no money all debts to go work elsewhere. In my opinion the only way to make money and survive in kelowna is to grow weed or be a coke dealer (not that I advise anyone to do so) but all the young adults here are driving around with esclades, bmws,hummers etc are drug dealers. Kelowna is run by the Hells Angels and everyone knows it! So for all you legit people -good luck surviving in this shithole full of chachy people, steriod monkeys and coke heads and HA’s


“loved your quote its amazing how many people hate kelowna people


This is a perfect example why not to move to Kelowna, jersey shore bitches who think they know what their talking about. HA’s Omg your so tough and so ‘kelowna’ it’s pethadic

Go back to jersey shore…totally gross..totally kelowna


“I moved to Kelowna from Calgary as I wanted nicer weather and to be close to water. The summers were awesome, winters were nice too. But….the cost of living was very high and good paying jobs are very few and far between. I worked harder and for less money in Kelowna as a draftsman than I did doing the same job in calgary. They call this the Sunshine Tax!! The stress and pace of work life was no different than in Calgary. I returned to Calgary after 3 years and my salary doubled.

I realize now that to move to Kelowna I want to be retired and have my finances in order because you dont want to have to work for a living in the Okanagan!!


“I have lived in Kelowna for approx. 2o years now and I can tell you it has gone downhill as far as I’m concerned.Yeh the lakes and ski hills are nice.There are alot of average paying jobs here (approx.$12/hour).Min. wage is not $15/hour as someone posted it is around the area of $9/hour although many places pay a little more than that.One of the biggest problems in Kelowna is the huge lack of affordable housing.If you don’t have a very good paying job here its hard to get by. People here are having trouble finding places to rent (very expensive) and the cost to buy a home has sky rocketed in the last few years and will probably continue to rise. Kelowna has become a place for the well to do.The homeless and the drug addicted street creatures continues to grow and have become quite a problem in the last few years( mitting crimes and break ins) and all the while our incompetant mayor,in all her wisdom,wants to build more highrises for the rich people to live in.So before moving here you really might want to look into thses things further as the lakes and beaches may not look so good if thats where your sleeping because you can’t afford housing.


“Kelowna is the WORST city in Canada in terms of making a living. The cost of living here is HORRENDOUS!!!!!!!!


“I’ve lived in kelowna for the last 10 years and belive me kelowna is not that great there is tons of work but most of them pay minimum wage and if you don’t bring a lot of money good luck buying a house, have a look at the mls website. kelowna is a small city, very small around 100,000 people live here. and for those saying 15$ an hour is minimum wage let me tell you something there is a metal shop down the road from my house and they have a big sign “now hiring” it lists all the trades they need like certified welders and they will pay an ammazing 9$ an hour. if you are retired kelowna is a great place, it has nice mild winters and lots of sun in the summer, but if you are not retired kelowna is a bad place to live, its a nice place to go on holidays but not to live. haven’t you heard of the sunshine tax? someone saied there is a lot of millionaires here …. its their summer homes i can guaranty you they didn’t make their money here. you really want to know how great kelowna is just google Aaron Derbyshire.


“tons of gangsters, drug dealers and grow ops…thats bout it.


“drug dealing is a trade in kelowna. thats almost the only way your going to bring in all the money!! i have been in kelowna for 24 yrs and thats al kelowna has to the BEST drugs you can get! so if you plan on movin, have fun and im sure ill see some of you on the streets at one point. 


“i have lived in very many places. I grew up in chilliwack, BC. Ten years ago I moved to different areas of alberta and also northern saskatchewan.( i was born in Sask.) I was living in fort mcMurray before i moved to Vernon, BC which is 35 minutes from Kelowna. I have been here 4 years and I am going back to the prairies.I cant afford the car insurance . Example, I have 1987 toyota .In alberta I paid approx. 500 to 600 a year basic PLPD insurance. Sask. was even cheaper 400 dollars per year. I come to BC and with my 40% driving discount I am paying for basic insurance ( no collision either)(R U ready for this?) 840.00 per year. This is just one of the reasons. Rents for a 1 bdrm apt. in Vernon start at 800.00 per month. Carpenter labourers make 8.00 bucks an hour and not too many people make 15.00 dollars an hour. I used to love BC but not anymore . It has been built on rich retirees and rich immigrants. If u move to kelowna or the lower mainland make sure U bring lots of money because it is geared and set up for the wealthy and retired. Many families are moving because there is as they say no bread and butter in the okanagan. Companies wanted to move in but they can’t afford to set up shop because land is too valuable to be wasted on providing jobs for the average working class. The city councils make more money selling any land available to rich developers who will grease their palms too. Well i am just seeing it like it is . I cant afford to live here anymore and I work for a school district and make over 20.00 per hour. Its the cost of living in canada’s lotus land i guess


“I’ve lived there for the last 18 years. If it wasn’t for my kids, I would be gone from this place in a heartbeat.


“Kelowna has been on a steady decline over the last number of years. The infrastructure is falling apart, crackheads are everywhere. Traffic is awful…Most of the big events like wakefest and the regatta are gone. The city council is a group of old f*&ks that think golfing and their 44.1 million dollar indoor swimming pool are the only things you should be allowed to do here. 

The RCMP spend more time checking the exhaust systems on boats and motorcycles during the summer than dealing with the real problems this city has.

A vacation spot? Sure there are some decent mountain bike trails, skiing, the lake is lame compared to the Shushwap, there isn’t really any “culture” here, there’s alot of wiggers and Paris Hilton wannabes. 

I find North Shore, West Van, Penticton all better places to be.

If you’re an old fart, Kelowna is a good place to curl up and die. The city itself is in it’s last throws…..Unless an intelligent and competent city council can be elected to turn this city back into the fun place it once was.


 “well here we go,i have been in kelowna for about 9 years,i personelly think we have a greater problem here than people think,it’s not just about the junkies,the alcoholic’s,the homeless,We here all about these thing’s everyday,but nothing gets done,the reason is we the police,the politicians,can’t and will not tell you the truth,kelowna is the home to biker’s,to organized crime they are in control of our comunity,they bring million’s of dollars here why would anyone want to stop this,we here about the police arresting this guy and that guy and moviong homeless people away claiming how much money was confiscated and how many (little guy’s)were arrested,if they were serious they would have cleaned this place up a long time ago,wake up people it’s time we got the truth,you cannot cut the tail off the snake it grow’s back,you have to cut the head right off,because soon all of or a good percentage of people are and will be on drug’s,who is going to run our work places,guess who and what will happen to beautifull keowna,or should we call it crackona……….cain


“Lived here since 1980 and when I think back to the good old days here I want to fucking cry.Expensive, lower wages on average,too busy for it’s size, too much growth too quickly…and so on goes the domino effect. Better have lots of cash or make lots, because you will require it. As a tradesman who makes approximately 70k a year I live in a 40 year old semi shithole that I bought and drive a 14 year old truck and wear old clothes just to afford things that I want to do, LEAVE KELOWNA every weekend to go into the mountains!!!


“The Court House in Kelowna is Very Very Corrupt. The Judges have a way to create desperate family situations that foster teen runaways to feed their hooker Habit. The worst Whoremonger amongst them is Judge M. Bishop and T.R. Brooke

Watch out, avoid this town


“kelowna is for the ultrarich. nothing is relative in this community. living cost far exceeds income.more than comfortable incomes seem to ‘get by’. drugs and crime sprouting up all over. community has a ‘nimby’ attitude.ccommunity spawns self-absorbed, self-righteous individuals.far too right wing politics for the amount of pot heads in community.way too many bible thumpers. way too many pesticides. way to many uptight,latte drinking soccer moms.way to many hummers,way to many malibu wakeboard boats. way to many wanna be’s…

just my 2 cents and i am entitled


“Been in Kelowna 14 years, now, and ready to puke…City is beatiful, but has little or no work and few well-paying jobs, even though I’m university educated ! I make far less than if I lived in Calgary or Vancouver ?

Cost of living is VERY high, most landlords are bast*rds, too, in this town, that’s IF you can even find a reasonable place to stay. After your rent is paid, and car insurance, you’ll always stressed out and broke… 

There’s lot of rich, wealthy old people who come here but little of it is invested into local industry or business, it all goes into the bank… 

As a result, several hundred people apply for just ONE job, employers knows this and are cunning, demanding and/or exploitative, especially if you are over 30…? 

Banks flourish here, real estate agents are greedy, exploitative *ssholes, in general, employers are both cheap and demanding, expect you to be on-call and available, 24-7.

The drug scene is annoying and they (dealers) walk around, paranoid, thinking everyone is a “cop” or going to bust them…? 


“We’re not cops, man, but if any of you punks piss on my lawn or play your music too loud, I’ll just come over and give you a good ole fashioned Okanagan lickin !
Ha ha !


“I can’t wait to leave, I’ve never been so broke in my life. I work a shit job, for shit pay and all the while serve rich retirees who talk about boating and vacations.

I have a university education and constantly look at other cities for employment. I came here from the East coast and miss my People seem into themselves and protected from the world. If there was any place that presented the divide between rich and poor. It is Kelowna, probably because its so small. People are nice here but far too clicky. It needs a does of reality because it doesn’t live in it.
Its not all that.


 “if you like drugs, gangs and bear mace, then kelowna is perfect for you…even more so west kelowna


“Ohhhhhh Kelowna. I lived there for 4 years and moved to Edmonton 3 years ago. Here’s the skinny. Kelowna is beautiful! The winters arent too cold. Summers are hot and you have a lake to jump into whenever you want. HOWEVER…and this is a big however. It is VERY expensive to live in. Gas is WAY more than Edmonton and if there’s a long weekend coming you better gas up before Wednesday or you’ll be shelling out another 10 cents a litre come Thursday. There are plenty of jobs, and they all pay mimimum wage. Lots of places to rent that you won’t be able to afford. The crack heads congregate downtown and especially at city park, right on the water. Wouldn’t you if you were homeless? That park bleeds into an area of million dollar homes that have huge problems with crack heads in their yards. Pine beetles are a HUGE problem that no one seems to care about. If you have’t heard of them, they are a nasty little pest that are eating up the woods, leaving trees dead, dry and standing. That means you can expect fires frequently. You may be evacuted. What next. Ok let’s talk wages. In Edmonton where the cost of living is less I make 50 percent more than Kelowna working the exact same job. People want to move there for the landscape and climate and employers know this and know you’ll work for nothing. Trust me you won’t be able to afford it. Unless you already have money or own a business or land some super high paying job, you will be screwed. You’ll be depressed looking around at all the fun activities that you can’t afford to do. Boating, skiing. Even camping is like 40 bucks a night. The city got too big too fast. The whole power grid is whacked out so there are constant power outages. And as many have touched on there is no culture. You can party there for sure but if you’re into the arts scene or anything like that, forget it. But…it sure does look nice. Kelowna is a place for rich people to retire, rich kids to go to school, or regular people to visit for a weekend of partying.


“My husband and I are both educated and find it almost impossible to get ahead in this city. We purchased our house five years ago, and if we stay, we are looking at a bad retirement.

Yes, the weather is great compared to the rest of Canada. Summer’s are hot, but because of the dry climate, it is wonderful. 

It is hard to find good paying jobs here, even if you have the education.

The culture SUCKS here. If you enjoy living around a bunch of white people, then Kelowna is for you. It feels like a LA or Las Vegas want-to-be town. Small town trying to be big mentality. 

If the cost of living was better, I would be able to justify living here, but to me, it’s not worth it unless you have a low mortgage rate and you have a good job.


 “I have been living in kelowna for about 2 years now and I gotta say it’s pretty lame ….. I grew up in northern BC and moved here due to the spouse’s job. Most people who like Kelowna are people from the flatlands of Canada who think the only places that exist in BC are kelowna and Vancouver. Kelowna is the most over-rated town in the Okanagan ….. and the crappiest. If you are thinking about moving to the Okanagan I would suggest looking into the Kootenays or northern BC FIRST where the wages are better, poeple are nicer, and the cost of living is half of what it is here ….. I really hope to get out of this shithole one day!!


“This city blows. I just moved here and can’t find a job. I have my doctorate degree and I’m only trying to find something to just get by, even minimum wage, until I’m registered in my profession in four months. Don’t move here unless your business is general contracting… that way you can buy up as many real estate lots for $100,000 and build $600,000 homes. You can then get rich selling them to all these idiot Kelownans, who I simply don’t understand what they do for a living to afford a home here.


“Kelowna is just plain ugly. Our winters here are PATHETIC, with a sickening lack of snow. The people here care too much about wine and golf and are far too snobby. The town seems to be controlled by retirees who think they can control the world because they pay taxes. And lastly the town looks like a slum. Some parts of Kelowna look like Detroit and there are weeds and invasive trees EVERYWHERE you look. Its almost embarrassing to live in Kelowna.


“Kelowna may well be a beautiful place; it’s got amazing scenery, a beautiful lake, and the summers are hard to beat. 

But there’s no work – none. There was some work here before 2008 happened, but that’s all dried up now, and unless you don’t mind working graveyards at a gas station for $8/hr it’s definitely not a place where you’re going to be able to get ahead.  

The people are dicks. Either they’re snobby and stuck up, rich and stuck up, poor and stuck up or just plain assholes – they’re all dicks. The women are retards, and as noted in several posts above the guys are steriod monkeys. Every other person is a coke head, alcoholic or drug dealer. 

The only people that have money here are the retired ones, and they don’t spend it – at least not here (well, they do spend money at the golf course, but that’s it). If you’re in business for yourself as I am, you’ll quickly learn that all they do is nickel and dime you to death, because the culture of this hell hole is “cheap, cheap, cheap” while demanding “best, best, best”.  

Taxes are insane. After you spend two weeks working at a gas station earning a whopping $500, you’ll have $125 taken for income tax and another $60 will go to HST. Apart from government taxes, everything is rediculously expensive, so the little bit of cash you have left won’t go very far – might make up little more than half of your rent payment (that you share with 5 other roommates because you can’t actually afford a house to rent by yourself.) 

I heard a great saying the other day about Kelowna – it went: “To live in Kelowna you either have to be retired or retarded. If you want to leave Kelowna with a million dollars you first have to arrive here with two million”. That about sums it up.

Can’t believe I still live here. Think it’s time to move on 😉


 “Couldn’t agree more. I’m born and raised here, and let me tell you, this place has deteriorated hugely over the past 20 or so years. The people are stupid, arrogant assholes who drive like they’re playing Grand Theft Auto, it’s FULL of criminals and human scum, and is overcrowded and expensive beyond belief. The lake is filthy anywhere near town, so forget about going to the local beaches,unless you want swimmers itch, and forget about going boating, unless you want to get killed by some drunken retard in an over powered speedboat. It WAS very nice here once upon a time, but now it’s just fucked…it’s been ruined. Too many goddamn people here, now. The summers aren’t even as nice as they used to be, either.


“Kelowna is definitely a hard place to live. I lived in Calgary my whole life and moved out to kelowna with my boyfriend about 2 years ago and it was a huge struggle for about the first year until my boyfriend found a job up north… which kind of defeats the purpose of living here for him. If you are not coming out here with a lot of money or coming with a fairly high paying job, it will be a struggle to get by. Housing is expensive and the jobs suck… compared to calgary anyways. I heard on the radio that you need to make at least $70000 a yr to be comfortable here, so that’s definitely something to consider. My best friend moved out here for 6 months and hated it and moved back to calgary, mostly due to not making any money and people who get Seasonal Affect Disorder get it really bad here. The locals can be pretty stuck up too, some are super nice tho, but the whole nightlife scene is pretty shitty with kinda trashy ppl. BUT the outdoor activities are really great…


“This town is a drug spot.. cant imagine a lower quality of life now.. I wonder who’s gonna see this… There’s No jobs here for people without drivers licenses that are not fast food / retail .. Planning on moving to Fort st john or to Alberta .. Need $$


“Kelowna is a shithole which is overcrowded with douchebags like the ones in the pathetic “Kelownafornia” video. Look it up on youtube. On the bright side, if you happen to be a complete douchebag, you’ll love kelowna.


“Left SK 4 years ago because of the cold winters, but the people in Kelowna are colder!!! Winters may be a “bit” warmer, but the cloud blanket is almost unbearable – so dull and dreary, one wants to commit suicide. As well, I didn’t think the winters would be as cold as they are and didn’t think they would have snow that would stay as long as it does. Very disappointed in the winters!!!

Now the summers suck – it is 25 – 30 in SK, and here this month it has only been 15 – 25 – what a total disappointment in the weather!!

BC does stand for Bring Cash!! Unbelievably high and not many good paying jobs – employers here really take advantage of the workers – underpaid and no benefits, purely sticking to 2 weeks vacation (in SK it is 3 weeks)

And the people!!!!! Well, where do I begin – snobs, inconsiderate, impolite – I guess if you are rich, you fit in!!!

Yes, I know what your response is – well, then go back to SK – I would but have a husband who actually likes it here (think he is has too much pride to return to SK and doesn’t want to admit the place sucks!!)


 “Well, I was born here in Kelowna in 1969 and grew up here for the most part, and all I can say is that it sure was nicer back in the day than it is now – nicer people and less of them, better summers (it’s June 30, the Canada Day long weekend, and its overcast, raining, and about 17 degrees C. Last year was the same), none of the traffic nightmares we have now, very little crime and drug problems, and very affordable (a new 3 bedroom house in 1980 was about $45,000, depending on where you bought). Now it is an overcrowded and very expensive place with very few good jobs, major crime, drug, and homeless issues, and a population of arrogant, stuck up morons. People that move here act like they’re members of some sort of exclusive club, or something, and it’s all about how you look; very superficial. Everyone looks the same – white shades and tattoos – and drives the same kind of vehicle – a jacked up truck if you’re a guy, or a sports convertible type if you’re a girl. For those of limited means, a Pontiac Sunbird. Not a lot of original thinkers here. So, if you do decide to move here, bring lots of cash, make sure you have a job lined up before moving, and don’t expect to make any real friends any time soon.


“Groceries have been trucked in from Calgary to help the Kelowna food bank weather an unexpected surge in demand.

Nearly 11,400 kilograms of non-perishables were delivered this week to the Ellis Street depot, where applications for assistance are up 12 per cent from this time last year.

Calgary food bank spokeswoman Kathryn Sim says that city’s food bank had a surplus of stock and its corporate partners want extra food to go where it’s needed most.

The Kelowna food bank is still counting on a successful Christmas in July campaign as it hopes to raise $50,000 and 100 tons of food. 

It hasn’t met its targets in the past two summers.

Kelowna food bank manager Vonnie Lavers says donations are down because businesses and households have been struggling to make ends meet.(Kelowna Daily Courier)

Move to kelowna and you’ll be eating out of the food bank and the bank will repo your house. Google kelowna foreclosures…’ll see what I mean.


 “It’s not that Kelowna isn’t a beautiful place. It is. For maybe 5 months of the year. It is a bit overrated for what you really get, which is about 4 months of hot, sunny weather, horrible traffic and drivers, exorbitant cost of living, major crime and drug problems, and some of the stupidest, most annoying people on Earth. Lots and lots of them.


“Kelowna is such a dump and I hate living here. Everyone who says that this area is beautiful has obviously never seen neighborhoods inland. The city only cares about the lake shore and doesn’t give a crap about much inland. All you have to do is drive around and see the neglect of properties and that there are weeds growing shoulder high everywhere. It seems that I’m the only one that cares about the look of this town. I’m also tired of the people that think Kelowna is the “California of Canada”. I’ve got news for you. Kelowna has never been, isn’t and will never be part of California. If you want to live in California, I would highly suggest that you move there and don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Take the “world class” wineries and golf courses with you. I think that Kelowna should return to being family town and this whole Jersey Shore attitude toward the Okanagan should die a painful death. I think that Kelowna has the potential to be a wonderful place to live, its just that we need a mayor and city council that doesn’t sniff glue all day long. Anybody who thinks the Okanagan is the most beautiful place on earth has obviously never traveled around the world, or even around BC for that matter. There’s a region to the north of the Okanagan called the Shuswap that is MUCH more beautiful than the Okanagan and there’s the Kootenay region too. The things I dislike about Kelowna and the Okanagan just simply fail to exist in those places.


“kelowna is a beautiful place. But living in a 3 dimensional strip mall sucks balls. there’s no soul in this town. a big long mall along a dirty highway.


“a company sniped me offering 11$ an hour more than I was making back home. I have bee here 4 months and absolutely hate it. never seen so many hillbillies driving pickups. no one walks, biking is deadly, downtown has no nightlife, when I read comments that say “fun” I assume they moved from one suburb to another. all my coworkers friends ive met act liberal but are young republican scum. they all have frustrated wives that are locked away in mountain fortresses with nothing to do all day. They have shitty house parties recounting the same tales over and over again “big white, earls, flashbacks, mountainbiking”. fucking lame. this place is stuck in the eighties. Its so honk here it hurts. rich douchebags driving around too scared to walk because there scared of one crystalmethhead, its not east hastings lol. the women are blond and coarse, its like the descendants of hitlers youth migrated to canada. sheesh the rascism! ” moved here from the hongcouver” I feel sorry for kelownens. NO variety, NO fun, NO clue, NO choice…

maybe these mountains obstruct time, feels like ive been here a year already

no amount of money is worth living in this shithole that time forgot.


 “I did a stint here before 2001 to 2003 and all youd see downtown is HA wearing their colors, back home they cracked down on them and even built a new prison for them. now into my fourth month this time and cheetahs has degenerated into some sort frathouse full of local douchebags. flashbacks has no more cougars 😦 earls food sucks for the price. gashouse is too far. im from a big city and am used to public transit or walking, when you walk here the hillbillies look at you as if your poor. when you look down on the highway from mount boucherie you can see a snake of back smog hovering over the highway. its nasty.


“Moved to Kelowna from Vancouver 2 years ago and it ‘s been a major disappointment . Encountered more problems with vandalism and unfriendly people than I’ve experienced in Vancouver in over 40 years . Very dog unfriendly as well and no one seems to know what a leash is. Customer service is essentially non exsistent and people in general are as dumb as hammers. A very nice city park but the rest of the city has all the ambience of a giant strip mall replete with the absolute worst drivers in the western world . Bu bye K town


“Stay away from kelowna..reminds me of a Mexican resort the people that work there are poor and struggle. While the people that visit are well off and comfortable. Lived here all my life and it is a smug snotty environment of people who think there so great cause they live in “kelowna” ya good for you two months of summer wow not worth the low paying grind. Recently moved to red deer Alberta I make triple than I made in that fog bowl dreary hell hole and I can actually afford to have fun. No room for advancement for any career minded individual. stay away from kelowna or you will pay….literally


“I have lived in Kelowna for 10 years now.I was a semi driver for most of it.I got lucky..that’s all.There is no industry at all,and no employment.It doesn’t matter what education you have.No economy is no economy and that’s it.I was making about 60% of what a truck driver would make elsewhere.As of Dec.2012,the housing market is on the verge of collapse,but rent is not coming down-sooo many people are desperate to milk renters to pay their mortgage as they bought high and now that property has fallen 20% they can’t make the payments.For sale signs everywhere on houses and vehicles KELOWNA IS FOR SALE-that simple.There is no hope here in Kelowna for anyone unless they have a net worth of at least $500K. The division between rich and poor is huge.

There are many families-one in five that use the food bank(if it even has food)and many people are homeless and hungry.Many people cannot afford to ESCAPE Kelowna.Get the idea?Thinking of moving to Kelowna?Don’t make the same mistake that I and many others did.If you are here and are thinking of bailing-don’t wait…it wont get better just worse.The municipal and provincial governments have failed.BC has the highest poverty rate in Canada.BC has no poverty reduction plan like other provinces and no,the BC Liberals have no affiliation with the federal Liberals and no,they don’t care about the people.If they did,things would not be as they are.


 “The Okanagan Valley is far from a fabulous place to live, especially if you actually need to make a living here. Sure there’s the lake and all the great outdoor activities, but unless you’re wealthy from making money elsewhere, have rich parents, or are a drug dealer, there’s little in terms of real employment opportunity, especially when you factor in the cost of housing and property. The vast majority of available jobs are in the service industry, which don’t pay near enough to support the cost of living. Nursing is also a big industry, due to the ever increasing geriatric take over of the area. The municipal government of the past 10 – 15 years has driven out most real tourist dollars opting to cater to retirees, and banking on the growing housing market to be the primary industry of the area before the market crashed. This has resulted in a severe lack of events during the summer that used to be a massive draw, and at least allow those working in the service industries to make a comfortable living particularly in the summer months. The area has become a sad mix of rich Jersey Shore wannabes, retired old farts and everyone else trying to make a living and/or raise a family. Anyone born without a silver spoon, wanting to live here on a 40 hour week, best of luck!


“I have lived here in Kelowna for a year and half, as I met my partner who lives here. I came from white rock bc, and I tell you, I can hardly wait to get out of this unfriendly selfish place, along with born again christians trying to tell you what to do, and if you are gay, watch out. I am a very kind and outgoing person, but if you are that way here, you get the look. My partner has been here since she was 13, and has always wanted to leave here, now is our chance, once her place sells, that’s another story, as the realistate market is not moving, and they want your place for nothing. So there it goes.


“Hi living here is not all that great. Cost of living is sky high…making real friends is also difficult because people care clicky. Lots of plastic people who have money and drug dealers galore. Unless you know you can get a good job here I wouldn’t move to this city. Its a nice place to visit in my opinion. I moved here 6 years ago and couldn’t even get a job with my teaching degree because I don’t know the right people to talk to. Every time I even try to approach the district they give me the same answers. For the first 3 years I honestly thought this place is a shit hole! I have met liars and con artists and down right dirty, ugly human being in this city.I will have to move from here go back to school and live some where more affordable. With the money I can take a flight anywhere and enjoy life comfortably and not struggle to meet ends meet.


“Moved here in 2002 with money.Trying to escape Kelowna without money now.If you want to move here,please rethink for your own good.If you want to leave,like me,do it before you run out of money. If you have no money left like me and want to leave,God help us.


“Kelowna is an absolute dump, nothing to do there, cold in winter too hot in summer, people are rude, filled to the brim with crime, horrible transit, terrible job opportunities, zero affordability.

I left as soon as I could. I now happily live in Vancouver. Most of my family sadly is in bed with the drug trade. You can’t make it in kelowna without doing such drastic illegal things.


 “Exactly. The people in this town are downright horrible. Yes, the majority are good and decent, but for a city this size, it’s unreal the amount of lowlife scumbags who live here, as well as arrogant, selfish, Jersey Shore wannabe idiots. Most people who move here will end up hating it, unless they’re rich enough to buy and ensconce themselves in a nice, expensive house in one of the outlying areas.


“I moved there from Vanouver. Lasted 2 years. the place is a dump. Nothing but an overgrown BC town filled with inbred pick up truck driving idiots. 

What’s comical is people who live there actually act like they’re snobs and live in this world class resort town. I guess they figure that Kelowna is the only place on earth with wineries and lakes. Go figure. 

Move there if you’re a small minded, small town Albertan who has never seen anything of the world. You’ll find many of your kind there and fit right in with your jacked up pick up truck, motorcycle, and boat.


 “Wow, pretty much sums it up. Well put. Yes, for some reason, every moronic retard in the country seems to think that “K-Town” is the be-all and end-all of the universe.


“You need to be making at least $40,000 a year to have a decent life here, and making real friends is difficult if you don’t already know someone or aren’t from here. People who move to Kelowna and manage to make a go of it behave as though they are members of some uppity, exclusive club, or something. It’s not Hawaii or Monte Carlo, for Christ’s sake! Get over it (AND yourselves)! There really is a disproportionate amount of truly fucked people here….way more than anywhere else I’ve been and lived (and I have travelled extensively). Assholes and idiots are the order of the day in Kelowna, with a few genuinely nice people thrown in.


“Gotta agree with you, james. I’m born and raised in Kelowna, too, and it breaks my heart watching it go from being a safe, sane, family-oriented summer vacation town to the dark, sick, evil, nasty loony bin it is now. And it’s all because of the types of people who have taken it over during the last 25 years : gangsters, criminals, drug addicts/dealers, snotty morons with more money than brains, etc. It seems Kelowna gained a dark rep after the Regatta riots of 1986-87 that it never was able to recover from. After that the Coquihalla Highway was completed, which brought us the big city evils of Vancouver only 3 1/2 hours away, and then the H.A’s setting up shop and flooding the valley with their “product”. I miss the days of Flintstones Bedrock City, Wild Waters and Wild ‘n Wet, Adventureland, and Regatta. Oh, well, at least we still have Scandia. What a tragedy.


“I moved to Kelowna to go to UBC and get my PhD.Now that I’m finished I can’t get a job. Of course! Silly me…this is a tourist town that thrives on summer employment in the service industry and high unemployment in the off-season. Employers have told me straight out that I am over educated, or asked why I would even want to apply for their posting. Duh! I want to work…I need to earn a pay cheque so I can afford to live here…there isn’t any work for educated people in this town…seriously, pick one. The irony is that I can’t work in the service/restaurant industry either because they want experienced people. Stats show that most of the high income earners residing in Kelowna, earn their money elsewhere, eg Alberta. Maybe I should follow suit and move out of province.


“I’ve been here for 5 months now and I will be leaving in 2 more days to go back to Toronto. All I can say is THANK GOD. When I first got here in late July it was fun for a couple of months..change if scenery etc… After labor day weekend this town is dead. No jobs to be found except ones that pay 12-13 dollars an hour with less than full time hours…..absolutely nothing to do. I actually felt like the last couple of months was like living in a prison. Very VERY hard to meet people and make friends here. I have never experienced so much drama in my lifetime. Horrible transit system and you pretty much need a car to survive. The only thing Kelowna has is the nice weather and the nice scenery. That is not enough to keep me here. Please people do your research and read thenegativity about this place and keep that in mind before you come here. Terrible, terrible place to live for so many reasons….


“I’m not form Canada & have lived in here for 8 years, 3 in Toronto & 5 in Kelowna, I’m now 31 years old and I’m moving back east so this summary of Kelowna is just my own personal experience

Nice summers but can get a little hot at times, great soccer set up with outdoor & indoor leagues. Beautiful scenery, great for outdoors sports, I love kayaking, good wineries & golf.

The winter can be dull and gray & I find it’s hard to travel anywhere in the winter & you are very closed off. I find the locals not welcoming and tend to keep to themselves; most of my friends here are not from Kelowna & the other half not from Canada originally.

What I really hate about Kelowna is the young people (not all but the majority & I still consider myself young at 31)  

Talk about a bunch of self-conscious & insecure people which is mostly overcome by image, I mean its ridiculous (big truck, boat, muscles, attitude, douchebag look) which results in a narcissistic & self-entitlement behavior when it just a need for acceptance.

They don’t seem ambitious, things like education, careers, travelling don’t seem important for most, for some reason they think that K-Town is be-all and end-all, please wake up people, no it is NOT, there is a big world out there, when I lived in Toronto & I told people I was moving to Kelowna their response was “WHERE IS THAT” people in Canada don’t even know you exist, get over yourself.  

Also why do you always have to be so loud, you constantly have to let people know who you are and what you’re doing, are we supposed to think you are awesome, no we don’t think that, we think you’re a complete clown who doesn’t know any better because your just buying in to the Kelowna game because you don’t know how to be any other way.


 “I grew up in the Okanagan and that freakshow of a place ruined my life and my future chances at life. The people all there are retarded FREAKS!

I hope a fire burns up Osoyooss to Penticton one day and smothers all you sissy f**ks who had mom and dad helping you out all your lives. Your people are sacks of crap who brownnose your private info because they lack a proper life. High paying careers don’t seem to stop these losers from making your day miserable. I hate this place, its truly the worst place to EVER grow up in.

Your all GANG Stalking Pussies! Karmas a b*tch!

Glad I left…go choke and die you old smelly bastards!


“There is no sense of community. The people here are flaky and unmotivated. No one smiles or says “hi” to strangers. People don’t return phone calls (this may sound like I’m just talking about my experiences, but EVERYONE I’ve talked to who wasn’t born in the area says the same thing). People don’t say “please” or “thank you”. Basically, the attitude here is “eh, someone else’ll do it.” The service is terrible in a lot of places, many restaurants are poor quality even if they are so called high end. Very insulated, dull, suburban culture. 

There is widespread poverty right next to ostentatious luxury; the difference is stark, and yet many people just ignore it.

Bottom line is, come for the nature, flee from the people. If you plan not to have contact with many people, then you may enjoy it here. Otherwise, reconsider.


“I would avoid moving to Kelowna myself, although if you’re making $100,000+, you could probably buy a nice place out in Upper Mission (major snobs), or out in outer Glenmore, and tolerate living here. But, you’ll probably grow to hate it, anyway. Living in Kelowna, I make $80,000 annually, and find that that is just enough to own my own very modest house in Rutland, drive a nice car, and go somewhere nice a couple of times a year. But, you still have to deal with the horrible people, high crime, homelessness everywhere, and asshole/idiot drivers, which is a major problem here. Not to mention drug addicts, rude, snotty kids, and drunks everywhere you go, especially downtown (I avoid going downtown for any reason). It’s just a really bad mix of people in this town, with a few decent ones thrown in, and it’s getting worse, I’m afraid. I find that whenever I go on a trip, no matter where it is, the first thing I notice is how much nicer and more civilized people are there. Rude, crass, snotty behavior is the fashion in Kelowna. If you don’t look and act like you just got out of prison, then you’re just not a hip Kelownian. Check out Vancouver Island – much nicer there, except for the weather.



I see nothing has changed from when I lived there a decade ago, if anything it’s grown worse. I had some piece of shit tell me when I moved “you’ll be back within the year”. I never looked back and I’m SO GLAD I got out of that shit hole!

The scary thing is that this is considered one of the “best places” in B.C., and even Canada! Pathetic! Only someone who has traveled and lived all over Canada like I have, can hate it with the passion I do.

Kelowna makes me puke !!!