London takes a beating for expat quality of life

Published:  6 Dec at 6 PM
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London’s low ranking in current expat lifestyle surveys could persuade would-be expat arrivals it’s the worst city in the world for foreign residents.

It’s not just recent surveys which slam London as an expat destination, as the trend has continued for some years now. Given that the British capital is one of the most important cities on the planet, why is it that expats rate it a disaster in the quality of life, safety and cost of living sectors?

The trend continues with the most recent survey taking in 35 world capitals and giving London a depressing overall rating of 27th, typical of its overall poor performance. Although not one of the categories rated it as the official ‘worst city’, the aggregate of poor results in six categories pushed it way down the overall score board.

For quality of life, London ranked 24th out of 35, followed by a score of 26th in the leisure options sector. Personal happiness was a disaster with the capital placed 33rd out of 35, and travel and transport scraped up to 18th. The important safety and security category managed a poor 24th out of 35, as did the health and well-being category.

The survey questioned 14,000 expats living in working in London, a respectable number compared with other, smaller polls, and references from various reports and city comparison websites confirm the capital’s poor reputation with expats. For example, it’s the second most expensive world city as regards property prices, and rental charges are double those in other popular world capitals.

London’s cost of living is little short of scandalous, again one of the highest in the world, and crime is admittedly rife. According to the latest Economist annual report, health security lags far behind many other world cities. In the same report, the capital’s liveability rating is one of the worst amongst European capital cities.
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