NYC Vs. Seattle: Which City is Better in 2023?

NYC Vs Seattle

Settling down in a new city can be daunting, especially if you are not conversant with how major cities run. New York City and Seattle are major cities but differ in many ways. Each has its perks, and there are sacrifices to make regardless of the city you choose. 

The most significant difference is in the population density. New York City is one of the most populated cities in the United States, while Seattle is a smaller, less populated city. The diversity of people differs, with New York which has a lot of people from all over the world.

Population and diversity are not the only difference between these cities. Below you will find how these two compare and their similarities. You will find insights on the cost of living, getting around the cities, entertainment, and more. 

NYC vs. Seattle Population and Diversity

NYC is a populous city with over 8.2 million residents, making it the largest city in the United States by population. On the other hand, Seattle has a population of just over 760,000 residents, which is significantly lower than NYC. When it comes to the distribution of gender, New York has 52.3% females and 47.7% males. 

Seattle has a slightly higher number of males bringing them to 50.2% of the total population, leaving 49.8% for females. These numbers are according to, following a survey to compare NYC and Seattle. 

Which city is more diverse than the other? New York City seems to have a more favorable balance between races, being an attractive city to people from around the world. NYC, an East Coast city, has about 32.1% whites, 22.0% black, 13.9% Asians, and 0.2% Native Americans. 

Seattle, a West coast city in the state of Washington, has 65.3% white, 7.0% Black, 14.4% Asian, and 0.5% Native American. From these numbers, a considerable population of Seattle residents is Whites, significantly higher than the number of whites in NYC. 

New York City is a better option if you are after a melting pot of cultural diversity. But if you can handle the Seattle freeze and are considering a city with predominantly white residents, then Seattle might suit you better than NYC. 

Cost of Living Between NYC and Seattle

Cost of living is probably the main factor to consider before moving to a new city. New York City is generally an expensive city to live in but is Seattle any better. Surprisingly, Seattle presents a higher cost of living than NYC. 

Let’s look at the different parameters totaling your monthly costs. Your current standard of living is bound to change; therefore, it is crucial to how much more or less you will need.  


A 2-bedroom apartment in New York City costs an average of $2,854, whereas a similar apartment in Seattle would cost you monthly rents of $2,724. If you opted to buy a home, a median home in NYC would cost you $839,741, while in Seattle, you would pay $826,200. 

These costs are derived from an assessment of housing costs in the metro area, not just the city limits. But there is not a high rent difference in the price of housing between the two cities. 

Transportation Costs

New York City has a vast network of public transportation systems, contributing to its much friendlier costs compared to Seattle’s public transit systems. But if you would need to use your car, gas per gallon costs $2.70 in NYC, whereas in Seattle, you will part with $3.57 for the same. 

Food Expenses and Entertainment 

A trip to the grocery store would cost you 6% higher in Seattle than what you would need to pay in New York. Bread, milk, eggs, and fast foods significantly differ in costs between the two cities. 

On the same note, if you popped into coffee shops daily, you would spend more in Seattle than in New york. In addition to food availability, the distribution of cafes and restaurants in New York contributes to its affordability in this category. 

Even though it does not seem so, entertainment costs in Seattle are 15% higher than in New York City. New Yorkers spend an average of $13.49 for a movie ticket, while a similar ticket in Seattle would cost you $14.42. 

A beer in NYC would cost you $10.99, but the same would cost $11.49 in Seattle. The entertainment costs are not significantly different if you consider each item. Still, the difference can be substantial if you intend to watch a movie and grab a few beers with a group of friends every weekend. 

If sports are more of your jam, you can visit the RedBull Arena and catch your favorite soccer players such as Talles Magno, Santiago Rodriguez, and Thiago Martins. In Seattle, you can have a similar experience watching Jordan Morris and Albert Rusnak, especially if you are a fan of the Seattle Sounders FC.  

Healthcare Costs

Healthcare costs in Seattle are 19% higher than in New York, which translates into health insurance too. A regular doctor’s visit in Seattle can cost $121.97, slightly cheaper than Seattle’s, which averages $136.67. 

Final Thoughts

Seattle, a city in the Pacific Northwest region of North America, can be more expensive to live in than New York City. Most parameters determining the cost of living, apart from housing, are more costly in Seattle than in New York City. 

So if you want to cut costs and save, New York City is the better one to live in. But it is important to note that it is a major city and among the most expensive cities in the United States, so you can expect to pay more, especially if you are moving from a smaller city.

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