Urbansome Study: What is the main reason people live in their city for? - Urbansome.com
commuters in the city

Urbansome Study: What is the main reason people live in their city for?

Cities have always fascinated me because of their history, culture, people, the unique concrete jungle vibe that they have and much more. But I have always wondered, what makes other people choose life in a city? What would happen if people were asked to choose only one reason?

I decided to find out.

We are delighted to present you the study by Urbansome.com which has looked into what people like about their cities the most.

The Study

Over the last few months I have been actively contacting people around the globe via social networks to ask one question:

  • If you had to choose one thing only, what would you say is the main reason you live in your city for? 

I have then given the respondents these 8 options:

  1. Transport links
  2. Culture (museums, theatres, galleries, etc)
  3. People
  4. Nights out (bars, restaurants, clubs, etc)
  5. Job opportunities 
  6. Education
  7. Health care
  8. Other (specify)

Almost every person I got in touch with was very happy to participate and was very enthusiastic. The results are very interesting indeed.


People in the age group of 21-55 in these cities around the globe were targeted:

study data summary

For years people from rural areas have been moving to cities purely for employment opportunities and based on our findings this is still the most common reason:

study results

88 respondents (19.56%) have indicated that job opportunities is the main factor they live in their city for. According to many studies (for example: UK Rural vs Urban comparison study) job densities in urban areas and cities are higher than rural areas, hence the popularity of this answer is not surprising.

The second most popular choice (80 respondents, 17.78%) was “Nights out (bars, restaurants, clubs, etc)”. Indeed, even though the rural areas do offer some great entertainment, cities are well know for their vast selection of bars, cuisines, night clubs and other great places and ways to spend nights out.

In addition to that, 16.67% of participants love their cities for the cultural aspects. Museums, theatres and galleries are only a few types of cultural self-fulfilment that big cities are able to offer.

As you can see in the graphs, top 3 choices are then followed by:

  1. Education – 60 respondents (13.33%)
  2. People – 59 (13.11%)
  3. Health care – 33 (7.33%)
  4. Transport links – 31 (6.89%)

The least selected option (apart from “Other”) was “Transport links”. Even though public transport in selected cities carry millions of passengers every day and makes every day commute much easier, as you do not have to spend hours in traffic, most of the respondents do not prioritise this aspect of city life.

Have a look at these individual results from every chosen city:

individual city data

Other answers

Now let’s move to “Other” (24 respondents, 5.33%). As mentioned above, I have asked the respondents to specify the reason if they choose this option and some of the answers were really interesting.

Here are some of the answers I’ve received:

  • History – New York (3 people) + Berlin (1 person);
  • Beautiful girls & fashion – London (1 each);
  • Beer – Berlin (1 person);
  • Romance – Paris (3 people);
  • Beach – Barcelona (2 people) + Rio de Janeiro (2 people);
  • Summer time all year long! – Sydney (1 person);

But the most unusual reason I received was the one from Tokyo – one respondent specified it as “Sexual reasons”. Unfortunately, the person did not include any additional comments, so I cannot provide any further information either.

Have you ever wondered how many calories you can burn only by walking up the stairs? Have a look at our article – How many calories does walking up the stairs burn? .

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