Manchester named the 11th best UK city to live in your 20’s

Manchester has narrowly missed out on a top 10 spot on a list of the UK’s best cities for young adults.

The city was ranked joint-11th with Bolton in a study which considered job prospects, nightlife, rent and other aspects of city life.

Nottingham topped the survey, which was conducted by Comparethemarket to rank the 40 most populated UK cities. 

Manchester sat below Birmingham, Sheffield and Middlesbrough, despite having more pubs and bars, and being more densely populated with 18-30-year-olds. 

Anna McEntee, from Comparethemarket’s life insurance team, said: “It’s great to see there are many cities in the UK that offer good living options for young adults, from affordable public transport, to plentiful job opportunities.

“Choosing where to live as a young adult can be an important decision – and there are a lot of different aspects to consider. 

“Being happy with your living situation, as well as being able to form strong friendships and social ties, and maintain a healthful diet is key to establishing a good overall level of personal well-being.”

Data points such as the cost of living, job opportunities, the proportion of the population aged 18-30, nightlife offerings, and the happiness score of residents, were given weighted ranking to determine the top locations.

Nottingham was crowned the UK’s top city for young adults due to its two universities, affordable public transport, cheap rent and over a quarter of its population aged 18-30 – the highest demographic of all 40 cities. 

Southampton was second, Coventry third, while Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Bradford completed the top five.

With 240 pubs and bars and 3,433 jobs listed in the city, Manchester had more nightlife options and greater job opportunities than any top 10 city.  

But the study’s findings indicate the cost of living in Manchester lowered its ranking. The city had the second highest rent (£918) in the top 20 for a 1-bedroom city centre flat after London (£2,004). 

An affordable restaurant meal costs just £9 on average in Peterborough but £15 in both Manchester and London, which is more expensive than anywhere else in the country.

The study’s top 10 best UK cities for young adults to live are:

  • 1 – Nottingham
  • 2 – Southampton
  • 3 – Coventry
  • 4 – Newcastle-upon-Tyne
  • 5 – Bradford
  • =6 – Plymouth
  • =6 – Luton
  • 7 – Kingston-upon-Hull
  • 8 – Birmingham
  • 9 – Sheffield
  • 10 – Middlesbrough

You can view the full study here

Image: Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

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