Vancouver Island Demographics


Population growth continues to be an important factor in the growth of Vancouver Island’s economy. Between 2014 and 2015, the population grew by approximately one percent, a rate comparable to the province as a whole and almost twice the average annual growth rate in the preceding four years. The growth continues to be driven by migration from other regions of Canada and to a lesser extent from other regions of BC.

Income & Living Wages

A living wage is the hourly wage rate that is required for a household to meet its basic needs and provide a basic level of economic security. Living wages are calculated based on a family of four in which both parents work full-time, one child is in fulltime daycare and one child is in after school care. Costs used in the calculation include rental housing, transportation, food, clothing, childcare, medical expenses and miscellaneous expenses. The calculation does not include allowances for retirement savings, debt servicing or the costs of caring for an elderly, disabled or seriously ill family member. The living wage on Vancouver Island ranges between $17 (Cowichan Valley, Port Alberni and Qualicum/Parksville) and $19 (Victoria).


There is no data available on wage rates by industry on Vancouver Island but a comparison with average wage rates in BC suggests that workers in most industries on Vancouver Island earn above the living wage in their community. However there is some indication that wages in hospitality sectors are below the living wage. A comparison of the living wage with the Vancouver Island and Coast region wage report indicates the wages paid in many sales and service occupations are below the living wage.

To find more information on wages, consult recent editions of VIEA’s annual State of the Island Economic Report.




  Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic Licenseby  Blake Handley

Current Population Statistics

Find annual population estimates including historical data, by age & sex as well by geography (regional district, development regions, municipalities and unincorporated) at the BC Stats website or consult recent editions of VIEA’s annual State of the Island Economic Report.