Best & Worst Cities For Newlyweds

MyDatingAdviser • 2023

newlyweds best cities

If you’ve recently tied the knot and are looking for a fresh start in a new city, some cities might be better than others for newlyweds. US cities vary in cost of living and quality of life which can make deciding where to settle down extremely challenging.

We have scientifically proven that Lincoln, Nebraska is the best city for newlyweds in the United States, beating out other great cities across the US.

In our groundbreaking new study, the affordability, romance, and quality of life were taken into account from the most populous metro areas in the US.

Table of Contents


Main Findings

[supsystic-tables id=26]

Best City vs Worst City

Most Flower Shops

  1. New York City, New York
  2. Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas
  3. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  4. Washington, DC
  5. Los Angeles, California

Least Flower Shops

  1. Gulfport, Mississippi
  2. Spartanburg, South Carolina
  3. Visalia, California
  4. Killeen, Texas
  5. Ocala, Florida
flower arrangement

Most Chocolate Shops

  1. New York City, New York
  2. Colorado Springs, Colorado
  3. Los Angeles, California
  4. San Francisco, California
  5. Buffalo, New York

Least Chocolate Shops

  1. Gulfport, MIssissippi
  2. Visalia, California
  3. Shreveport, Louisiana
  4. Ocala, Florida
  5. Ann Arbor, Michigan
chocolate shops

Lowest bottle of wine cost

  1. Pensacola, Florida
  2. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  3. McAllen, Texas
  4. Fresno, California
  5. Lincoln, Nebraska

Highest bottle of wine cost

  1. Lafayette, Louisiana
  2. Lancaster, Pennsylvania
  3. Salinas, California
  4. Salem, Oregon
  5. Port St. Lucie, Florida

Lowest meal for two cost

  1. McAllen, Texas
  2. El Paso, Texas
  3. Spartanburg, South Carolina
  4. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  5. Hickory, North Carolina

Highest meal for two cost

  1. Santa Barbara, California
  2. New York City, New York
  3. Peoria, Illinois
  4. Modesto, California
  5. Naples, Florida
dinner date

Best health care

  1. Lancaster, Pennsylvania
  2. Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  3. Grand Rapids, Michigan
  4. Lakeland, Florida
  5. Davenport, Iowa

Worst health care

  1. Montgomery, Alabama
  2. Memphis, Tennessee
  3. Trenton, New Jersey
  4. Corpus Christi, Texas
  5. McAllen,Texas

Shortest commute time

  1. Lexington, Kentucky
  2. Wichita, Kansas
  3. Santa Barbara, California
  4. Providence, Rhode Island
  5. Grand Rapids, Michigan

Longest commute time

  1. New Orleans, Louisiana
  2. Washington, DC
  3. San Francisco, California
  4. Stockton, California
  5. Vallejo, California
commute time

Lowest crime rate

  1. Portland, Maine
  2. Denver, Colorado
  3. Allentown, Pennsylvania
  4. Lakeland, Florida
  5. Hartford, Connecticut

Highest crime rate

  1. Anchorage, Alaska
  2. Melbourne, Florida
  3. Albuquerque, New Mexico
  4. Wichita, Kansas
  5. Stockton, California
peace friendship

Lowest pollution levels

  1. Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  2. Lafayette, Louisiana
  3. South Bend, Indiana
  4. Gulfport, Mississippi
  5. Greenville, South Carolina

Highest pollution levels

  1. Fresno, California
  2. Bakersfield, California
  3. Allentown, Pennsylvania
  4. Stockton, California
  5. Visalia, California
pollution levels

Lowest unemployment rate

  1. Lincoln, Nebraska
  2. Wichita, Kansas
  3. Ann Arbor, Michigan
  4. Greenville, South Carolina
  5. Springfield, Missouri

Highest unemployment rate

  1. Fort Wayne, Indiana
  2. Louisville, Kentucky
  3. Indianapolis, Indiana
  4. Allentown, Pennsylvania
  5. Nashville, Tennessee
business meeting

Lowest basic utilities cost

  1. Hartford, Connecticut
  2. Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  3. Greenville, South Carolina
  4. Naples, Florida
  5. Fayetteville, North Carolina

Highest basic utilities cost

  1. Anchorage, Alaska
  2. Pensacola, Florida
  3. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  4. Youngstown, Ohio
  5. Honolulu, Hawaii

Lowest annual salary

  1. Brownsville, Texas
  2. McAllen, Texas
  3. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
  4. Ocala, Florida
  5. El Paso, Texas

Highest annual salary

  1. San Jose, California
  2. San Francisco, California
  3. Washington, DC
  4. Boston, Massachusetts
  5. Seattle, Washington
salary money

Lowest median home price

  1. Youngstown, Ohio
  2. Scranton, Pennsylvania
  3. Peoria, Illinois
  4. Toledo, Ohio
  5. Rockford, Illinois

Highest median home price

  1. San Jose, California
  2. San Francisco, California
  3. Santa Rosa, California
  4. Salinas, California
  5. Honolulu, Hawaii
house price


In order to determine the best cities for newlyweds, compared 150 of the most populated U.S. cities across three key dimensions: 1) Romance, 2) Quality of LIfe, and 3) Affordability.

We evaluated each of those dimensions using four relevant metrics. These are listed below with their corresponding weights. Each key dimension was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for singles.

We determined each city’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample. In determining our sample, we considered only the city proper in each case, excluding cities in the surrounding metro area.

Romance – Total Points – 33.33

  • Florists per capita: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: This metric measures the number of flower shops per capita. Data based on the number of Google search results for the search query ‘flower shops in ‘city name’’.
  • Chocolate shops per capita: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: This metric measures the number of chocolate shops per capita. Data based on the number of Google search results for the search query ‘flower shops in ‘city name’’.
  • Bottle of wine: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: This metric measures one bottle of mid-range wine.
  • Dining: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: This metric measures a meal for 2 people, mid-range restaurant, three-course

Quality of Life – Total Points – 33.33

  • Commute: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: The U.S. Census’ calculation of average commute time, which factors the time spent traveling door to door, whether by foot, public transit, car, or bicycle.
  • Safety: Full Weight (~8.33Points) Note: This metric measures the number of violent crimes committed per 100,000 people, as determined by the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports.
  • Pollution: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: The pollution index is an estimation of the overall pollution in the city based on surveys from Numbeo. The biggest weight is given to air pollution, than to water pollution/accessibility, two main pollution factors. Small weight is given to other pollution types.
  • Health Care: Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: Using data from the U.S. News Best Hospitals rankings, this is a measure of the availability of quality health care by determining the number of ranked facilities within 50, 100, and 250 miles of each metro area.

Affordability – Total Points: 33.33

  • Utilities (Monthly): Full Weight (~8.33 Points) Note: This metric measures an estimate of monthly utilities per city looking at electricity, heating, cooling, water, and garbage for an 85m2 apartment.
  • Unemployment rate (~8.33Points) Note: This value measures the 12-month moving unemployment rate using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This represents whether the job market is growing, struggling, or remaining stable.
  • Median home price (~8.33 Points)
    Note: To determine the annual cost of a mortgage in each metro area, we consulted the U.S. Census, which collects data on the amount homeowners pay for housing (including mortgage, utilities, and taxes).
  • Average salary (~8.33 Points) Note: The average salary, as calculated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, is the best indicator of earning potential in a metro area.

Sources: Data used to create this ranking were collected from the U.S. Census. American Community Survey, Gallup National Health, and Well-Being Index, Numbeo and U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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