Vancouver Vs Seattle


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When it comes to comparing city landscapes and lifestyles the debate of Vancouver vs Seattle is a prevalent one.

Both cities nestled in the stunning Pacific Northwest are known for their beautiful cityscapes and natural surroundings but also differ significantly in various aspects like socio-economic conditions job prospects weather and more.

Is Seattle’s vibrant tech sector more attractive or does Vancouver’s rich entertainment industry and prettier setting take the win?

This article will delve into the detailed comparison between these two cities making a thorough examination of the factors that make each city unique.

From the bustling streets of Pike Place Market in Seattle to the serenity of Stanley Park in Vancouver from the giant companies like Amazon and Microsoft that call Seattle home to Vancouver’s burgeoning biotech and filming industries – both cities offer a plethora of opportunities and unique experiences within their cityscapes.

However a question remains: amidst their own allure and charm which city comes on top when pitted against each other Seattle or Vancouver?

Vancouver Vs Seattle

Table of Contents

Seattle Vs Vancouver

Vancouver and Seattle two of the largest cities in the Pacific Northwest showcase contrasting attributes in both city life and natural settings.Vancouver known for its beautiful natural surroundings like Stanley Park and Grouse Mountain has a metro population of 2642825.On the other side Seattle home to tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon houses 4018762 people.

When comparing the two one must consider variables such as job market climates and cost of living amongst others.

Vancouver has a population of 662248 and is famous for its landscapes which mix the city and nature it also has a population density of 14892 people per square mile.

Seattle in contrast is a bustling city with a strong job market and hosts a population of 749256 with a less dense population of 8775 people per square mile.

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The weather varies too. Vancouver gets approximately 46.8 inches of annual rain and 1938 hours of annual sunshine.

Seattle on the other hand although less rainy with around 39.3 inches of annual rain it does get to enjoy more sunshine with about 2170 hours annually on average.


The safety in both cities is quantifiably different. Vancouver enjoys a perfect safety rating of 10/10 while Seattle lags behind with a safety rating of 6.6/10.

This means residents and visitors to Vancouver can expect to feel safer both during the day and at night.

Despite this Seattle’s safety level at night is reasonably good with a rating of 4.33. Correspondingly Vancouver’s night safety is rated higher at 6.02.

Therefore in terms of safety Vancouver takes the lead while Seattle strives to improve.

Job Opportunities

Vancouver and Seattle both offer plenty of job opportunities in various fields. However the nuances differ between the two.

Vancouver’s economy largely relies on its status as a major port the real estate market and the entertainment industry.

Notably Vancouver is a prominent hub for the entertainment industry with a plethora of film production and video game development companies operating in the city.

However when it comes to the overall job market Seattle outshines with its robust job market. Home to large multinational companies such as Microsoft Amazon and Starbucks Seattle offers extensive job prospects in a variety of sectors.

It’s an active hub for software professionals as well as those in biotechnology and retail outlets.

It’s also noteworthy that the median household income in Seattle ($110800) is significantly higher than the median household income in Vancouver ($62000).

Notable Employers

  • In Vancouver: Entertainment industry players real estate and shipping industry
  • In Seattle: Microsoft Amazon Starbucks Boeing Commercial Airlines Costco
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Public Transportation

Vancouver’s public transport system rated at 9.8/10 outperforms Seattle’s rated at 6.8/10.

Not only is the monthly cost of a public transport ticket in Vancouver ($94.54) cheaper than Seattle ($99.00) but Vancouver also has a subway length per 100000 inhabitants of 3.23km which makes getting around the city a breeze.

Despite the fact that the commuting time in the two cities does not differ much (28 minutes in Seattle and 27 minutes in Vancouver) the public transit system in Vancouver seems to be more efficient.

Public Transportation Facts

  • Monthly Cost in Vancouver: $94.54
  • Monthly Cost in Seattle: $99
  • Subway length per 100000 inhabitants in Vancouver: 3.23 km

Food And Drink

The food and drink scene in both Seattle and Vancouver has its own distinct features. Seattle with a food and drink rating of 8.4 out of 10 is known for its vibrant urban setting with live music scenes a variety of restaurants and thriving bookstores.

Vancouver on the other hand scores slightly higher with a score of 9.0 due to its rich diversity in food especially Asian cuisine and craft cocktails.

Seattle’s Culinary Scene

Seattle’s food scene thrives on the city’s abundant seafood available directly from Pike Place Market. The city’s restaurant scene ranges from hip bistros to fine dining establishments offering dishes prepared from locally sourced ingredients.

Vancouver’s Dining Diversity

Vancouver’s dining scene is lauded for its ethnic diversity. From food carts serving a variety of international cuisines to fine dining featuring fresh local seafood and produce Vancouver is a paradise for food lovers.

The city also boasts excellent Asian cuisine which is a testament to its diverse population.


When it comes to the population of the cities there is some difference. The population of Seattle is slightly larger with 0.62 million people and a population density of 2842 people/km².

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Vancouver in contrast has a population of 0.6 million people with a significantly higher population density of 5249 people/km².

Seattle Population

The diverse population of Seattle is enriched by the presence of many large companies such as Microsoft Amazon and Starbucks. This offers a unique mixture of a tech-influenced and multicultural community.

Vancouver Population

Vancouver a vibrant cosmopolitan city has a highly diverse population. Known for its liveliness the city provides a greater variety of things to do making it a popular place to live.

Unemployment Rate

The unemployment rate can be crucial when comparing cities. Seattle’s rate stands at 4.8% while Vancouver’s is a bit higher at 7.6%.

This may suggest Seattle’s job market driven by companies like Microsoft Amazon and Starbucks offers more opportunities. However in some specialized fields such as the entertainment industry Vancouver could have the upper hand.

If your work aligns with Vancouver’s main sectors (like real estate and the entertainment industry) you could potentially find job prospects just as promising as in Seattle. Additionally Vancouver’s status as a major port city could also offer various job opportunities in shipping or trade.

Moreover the prevalence of remote work is affecting how we choose where to live. The impact on job prospects therefore can’t be ignored.

Does either city have employers offering remote work? It’s a relevant point to investigate.

Looking at the bigger economic picture Seattle has a GDP of $378.33 billion and Vancouver’s is $95 billion. Seattle therefore appears to have a stronger overall economy.

Yet Vancouver’s higher population density vibrant downtown scene and a broad mix of city and nature-based activities may offer some appealing lifestyle benefits.

Considering the benefits each city poses decisions should be made with careful examination of personal and professional needs mixed with the unique advantages Vancouver and Seattle respectively offer when it comes to employment opportunities.

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