Montréal: A meeting city that ranks at the top

published on February 20, 2024
What's New in Montréal

Every year Montréal breaks records and sets standards worldwide. And not just in our hearts: the accolades are official. Whether it’s by topping the UIA’s annual list for international meetings in the Americas, or classing among the world’s top 10 best cities according to Condé Nast Traveller, or among the top 53 as decreed by Time Out, the world agrees: this is a pretty swell place to meet, whether for work or play. Here are just a few ways Montréal stands out in the events world.


Among Travel + Leisure’s best cities in Canada

Travel + Leisure readers voted for the best cities in Canada, and Montréal took 2nd place — after Quebec City, which has held 1st place for 7 years running — for its combination of small-town hospitality, major urban centre culture and healthy dose of nature.

Lonely Planet’s third best city in the world

Lonely Planet reaffirms Montréal’s global allure, ranking it as the Best City in the World in its Best in Travel 2024 guide. The leading travel guide cited Montréal’s distinctive features, including its culinary wonders, festivals, and cultural attractions, as well as the picturesque green spaces and breathtaking views from Mount Royal and Parc Jean-Drapeau.

One of Travellers’ Choice Top 10 most popular Canadian destinations 

Montréal figures on the annual Best of the Best list by Travellers’ Choice for, among other things, its status as the cultural capital of Canada and its cosmopolitan celebration of Québécois style. 

Among the world’s most affordable big cities

Mercer’s Cost of Living Survey provides current, extensive and reliable data on the relative affordability of cities worldwide, and Montréal has once again made the list. The city sits at No. 125 among the most affordable big cities in the world.

Among Time Out’s top international cities for culture

Time Out rated the world’s top 20 cities for arts and culture, and Montréal came 12th globally, and second in North America. The ranking was based on votes from 21,000 readers and cited Montréal’s festivals, Quartier des Spectacles arts district and endless offerings of entertaining things to do.


Officially a City of the Future

Montréal placed 17th among the cities of its size worldwide in the Cities of the Future Index, a study that ranks metropolises using technology to create a sustainable tomorrow. We ranked fourth worldwide for green energy and second worldwide for green buildings!

One of the world’s best startup ecosystems

Startup Genome ranked the world’s best ecosystems for the fostering of startups, and Montréal took 36th place among the nearly 300 cities considered. It was recognized for its strategic location, highly educated talent, innovative spirit, high level of performance and attractiveness for both entrepreneurs and investors. 

Among the world’s smartest cities

The annual Smart City Index assesses urban settings that apply technology to enhance the benefits and diminish the shortcomings of urbanization for its citizens, and on the 2023 index Montréal ranks 69th among the 141 top smart cities globally for its economic and technological progress, quality of life, environment and inclusiveness.

One of North America’s 20 most open cities

Established to benchmark a city’s transparency and accessibility, the Open Cities Index classed Montréal as fifth most open city in the continent in 2020. The tool is used to track open data initiatives in the public sector.


Among Tripadvisor’s Best of the Best sustainable cities 

Tripadvisor’s prestigious Travelers’ Choice Best of the Best 2024 named Montréal 13th best sustainable city in the world, on a list including such illustrious sustainable destinations as Copenhagen, Helsinki, Singapore and Zurich. This distinction reflects the destination’s ongoing commitment to sustainability and its positive impact on the traveller experience. 

No. 1 on the Sustainable Cities Index

Montréal came first in the annual Sustainable Cities Index put out by Compare the Market, based on the fact that 99.95% of energy used in the city coming from renewable sources. Our Sustainable Montreal Plan 2016-2020 in particular was recognized, a collaborative effort from over 200 local organizations.

Driving progress re: sustainable mobility

Montréal ranked 23rd worldwide on a list of 60 top cities for its capacity to lead sustainable mobility’s next chapter, on the road toward zero emission. The Oliver Wyman Forum, in partnership with the University of California, Berkeley, produced the index based on infrastructure, social impact, market attractiveness, systems efficiency and innovation.


Officially the world’s second safest city

Montréal nabbed second place in the 2024 list of world’s safest cities to visit produced annually by Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection. The ratings are based on information including the most recent safe-cities index from The Economist, city ratings from GeoSure Global and the Current Crime Index from Numbeo. 

North America’s top city for well-being 

Based on a selection of 77 major cities across the globe, each measured against 15 wellbeing metrics (including cost of living, gender equality, city innovation and green spaces), Montréal ranked at No. 1 in North America and No. 11 worldwide — ahead of Toronto, Copenhagen, Florence and Tokyo. 


Among Canada’s best student cities

Hello Safe considered 47 cities in their ranking this year, and Montréal took second place overall based on 18 criteria combining academic excellence, student life, quality of life and attractiveness.  

North America’s 15th best city to score tech talent

Montréal scored No. 15 out of the 50 North American cities considered in the 2022 Scoring Tech Talent ranking, a comprehensive analysis of labour market conditions, cost and quality for highly skilled tech workers.

No. 21 on the world’s 50 top hubs for AI talent 

Digital Planet’s 2021 50 Global Hubs for Top AI Talent review listed Montréal at No. 21, ahead of Vancouver, Mumbai, Tokyo and Mexico City. The review highlights the 50 cities with the largest AI talent pools worldwide and evaluates them using a framework that considers talent pool, investments, diversity of talent and evolution of the country’s digital foundations.

North America’s best city for remote work

Montréal topped the list of all North American cities — and came No. 2 worldwide! — for how easy it is to work remotely here, according to the global index created by WorkMotion. The index uses data to determine attractiveness, employment compliance, cost of living, infrastructure and liveability.


A pedestrian city par excellence

Walk Score classed Montréal near the top of its list of walkable cities for its historic, distinctly European style architecture, its modern downtown, and its tree lined neighbourhoods that are so pleasant to stroll through. 

A public transport system voted among the world’s best

Time Out asked locals to rank their public transport systems, and Montréal ranked among the best in the globe. The top 19 cities, ranging from Mumbai to Tokyo, all have one thing in common: their public transportation is accessible, affordable and dependable. In Montréal, 83 percent of locals said the city is easy to explore via public transit.

A top-rated airport according to experts Skytrax 

Skytrax ranked the Montréal-Trudeau International Airport’s staff as the top in North America, in recognition of the combined quality of staff service (attitude, friendliness, efficiency) delivered across front-line positions at an airport. Skytrax also named Montréal-Trudeau International Airport one of the Top 5 airports in North America (and the Top 50 globally), and among the top 10 cleanest airports in North America for how they maintain the highest standards of hygiene.


Read this next: 16 fun facts about Montréal

Discover more ways that Montréal works for you