Vienna waltzes to the top of the quality of life rankings

Vienna

The city that has given us Christophe Waltz, Schubert and the wiener (no sniggering at the back), though not, curiously, the Viennese whirl – as this came from Britain –¬† now finds itself at the top of the quality of life rankings.

Vienna has displaced Melbourne as the world’s most liveable city, ending seven consecutive years at the top of the EIU’s Global Liveability Index. Osaka and Tokyo are meanwhile in the top 10 for the first time, and Hong Kong has overtaken its regional rival Singapore:

  1. Vienna
  2. Melbourne
  3. Osaka
  4. Calgary
  5. Sydney
  6. Vancouver
  7. Toronto
  8. Tokyo
  9. Copenhagen
  10. Adelaide

Before even downloading the report, it had occurred to me that high risers Vienna and Melbourne have something in common: their love of the coffee house. Vienna’s coffee house culture is laden with history and is now UNESCO intangible cultural heritage. Melbourne is now arguably the global capital of coffee. Third-placed Osaka also has good coffee – as I recall from visiting Kuromon Market – but it might have some catching up to do.

But coffee or not, it’s hard not to shake off the feeling that this index is for the elite. At the end of the day, these are very expensive cities indeed. Good liveability comes at a high price.

The EIU Global Liveability Index 2018 can be seen here (registration required).

Manama is the best city for expats, reveals InterNations survey

The National Theatre of Bahrain in Manama

Hollywood has had a curious love affair with the city for years. Tourists are drawn to its je ne sais quois. It’s even home to the world’s most expensive footballer.

Chapeau.

But it’s very much a non, merci from expats, who have rated Paris the worst city worldwide for getting settled. The French capital is surprisingly third from bottom in InterNation’s Expat City Ranking 2017.

According to InterNations, more than double the global average of respondents believe it very hard to live in the City of Light without speaking the local language.

(Last time I checked the local language was the very widely spoken French, learned from an early age in many schools worldwide; some people, eh.)

Top spot this year has gone to Manama which, as the capital of Bahrain rather than the isthmus linking the two Americas, isn’t a typo.

Manama, according to the survey, is the easiest city for getting settled (92% of respondents say its easy to live there without speaking Arabic). It furthermore does well for urban work life and Bahrainis are also said to be very friendly.

The top 10 is as follows:

  1. Manama
  2. Prague
  3. Madrid
  4. Kuala Lumpur
  5. Amsterdam
  6. Barcelona
  7. Johannesburg
  8. Bangkok
  9. Basel
  10. Frankfurt

As for the opposite end of the table, Lagos came bottom, with expats reportedly being unhappy with their personal safety and the local political instability.¬†Nigeria’s biggest city was also ranked the third most stressful city worldwide in a separate survey conducted recently by Zipjet.