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Moving from Washington DC to NYC: Pros and Cons

Are you considering moving from Washington DC to NYC? Many professionals, students, and families grapple with the decision to move from the political hub of DC to the bustling metropolis that is New York City. Whether you’re drawn by the allure of NYC’s diverse culture and endless opportunities or hesitant about leaving the relative calm and charm of DC, this article will help guide your decision-making process with the pros and cons of making the move. 

Pros of Moving to NYC from DC

When it comes to the NYC vs DC debate, it’s undeniable that New York offers one-of-a-kind experiences unmatched by any other city.


times square at night

It’s no secret that NYC is one of the most diverse places in the world. Queens, NY, one borough of the city, is the most ethnically diverse urban area in the world. Moving from DC to NYC will open you up to new cultures and ways of life, which can only ever be a good thing.

Life and Career Beyond Politics

workers dressed in business casual in conversation at an office

Politics play an important role in the progress of our country, and New York City is certainly not immune to politics. However, the city is way better for people trying to grow their finance, entertainment, fashion, advertising, marketing, and PR careers. New York City is home to the most Fortune 500 companies in the country (tied with California). A lack of career opportunities just isn’t in the cards in NYC.

Entertainment and Dining

nyc entertainment

Though Washington DC has some remarkable monuments, historical sights, and museums, New York City is the capital for entertainment and dining. You can truly eat and drink your way around the world in the city. The city hosts more Michelin-starred restaurants than any other in the United States. The dining options are vast and varied to serve the diverse needs and tastes of the city’s residents. New York City also offers a wide range of activities for any taste. Classic things to do in NYC include getting that infamous slice of NYC pizza, walking across the Brooklyn Bridge, visiting Central Park, and more. But New York City also offers a host of eccentric activities, from immersive art exhibits to indoor skiing. If you can’t find it in NYC, it likely doesn’t exist yet.

Better Public Education

nyc education

Public schools in Washington DC do not reflect the exceptionalism that we are all supposed to strive for, especially when it comes to raising our kids. Moving from DC to NYC is a wise strategic move for young professionals or young families who want to set their kids up for success. There are some seriously excellent public high schools in NYC. They reflect the values of parents who want to raise well-rounded, book-smart, and life-smart kids. Washington DC has not achieved this with their public education.


Cost of Living

money burning

According to BestPlaces’ 2023 Cost of Living Calculator, NYC is 12% more expensive than Washington DC, with housing and utilities being the most costly factor (42% more). However, the extra cost might be worth it if you’re chasing career opportunities or want to raise a family. The good news is that there are still plenty of cheap neighborhoods in NYC. If aspiring New Yorkers do their homework and make smart decisions with housing, they can make this cost of living gap much less and enjoy all that NYC has to offer.


central park in a snowstorm

NYC is much farther north along the Atlantic Ocean than Washington DC. This means the winters are much more mild, and the weather is generally better. Also, Washington DC gets less rain than NYC. With that being said, New York is an excellent urban home base for winter sports enthusiasts, with a wide variety of resorts and ski areas within driving distance of NYC. The city truly experiences the best of all four seasons.

Washington DC to NYC Movers

metropolis moving truck

So, Is It Better to Live in NYC or DC?

The choice between living in New York City or Washington DC largely depends on personal preferences and lifestyle. New York City, known as “the city that never sleeps,” offers a fast-paced lifestyle, unparalleled diversity, and endless opportunities in fields like finance, fashion, and entertainment. It’s a city with an energetic nightlife, a thriving arts scene, and world-class dining. However, living costs are high, and life can be hectic. 

On the other hand, Washington DC, the nation’s capital, offers a mix of politics and culture. It has a slower pace than NYC, abundant green spaces, and is rich in history and culture. The job market in DC is robust, particularly in government and related fields. While DC is also expensive, it’s generally less so than New York. Ultimately, the decision comes down to your lifestyle preferences, career goals, and financial considerations. Both cities have pros that outweigh their cons, making them excellent places to call home.

Ready to Move from Washington DC to NYC?

If you’re dreaming of leaving DC to live in NYC, Metropolis Moving can help. We have gained a reputation for being one of NYC’s most courteous, careful, and qualified moving companies. Get a moving quote today, and you’ll be on your way to enjoying the electric energy and abundant opportunities beautiful New York City has to offer.

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