One of the questions I get all the time is, what’s the biggest difference between living on the East Coast and living on the West Coast?

I grew up on the East Coast. I moved out to California when I was twenty-two and have lived here ever since. So, I have a little bit of experience living in both areas. In today’s video, I break down the differences I’ve noticed about life on both coasts.

First one, I would say is that the jobs are pretty different out here on the West Coast. On the East Coast, I feel like everyone’s like a lawyer, doctor, accountant, or a nurse, those types of jobs. On the West Coast, people tend to have multiple jobs, they consult, or have more creative jobs. I feel like that’s kind of the biggest difference. Also I noticed people tend to not care as much about what job you have. If you go to a party out here on the West Coast, people don’t really ask you, “Oh what do you do for a living?” I mean they do, but not quite to the extent they do on the East Coast. 

Another big thing is that I find the West Coast to be a little bit more entrepreneurial. Forbes Magazine came out with a list of all the top states for entrepreneurship and California was Number Five. Then they had the worst places for entrepreneurship and six out of the top ten were on the East Coast. Places like New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maine, and Connecticut.

Another one of the big differences between the West Coast and East Coast is the food. Both places have good food, but they’re different. Anything bread related I find to be way better on the East Coast. Like pizza, bagels, sandwiches, even just the rolls they have there. I’m from Philadelphia. You have some great Philly pretzels there in Philadelphia, and we just can’t get anything similar to that out on the West Coast. But if you’re on the West coast, Mexican food is a lot better, sushi, seafood, that sort of thing. So again, both places have great food; they just have different things that are better in my opinion.

Another obvious one is the weather. The East Coast you have more seasons. So you’ll have spring, fall, summer, and winter. On the West Coast, you’re not really going to have that big of a difference between the seasons. One thing I do miss about the East coast is the thunderstorms and just like an occasional rainy day. Out in California, we just don’t have that many rainy days and we rarely have a thunderstorm. Do I need them every day? No, but I wouldn’t mind the occasional one. It might sound crazy, but I miss a good thunderstorm.

Here’s another thing that’s different about the two coasts: I think there’s a quote that says: “Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in California once, but leave before it makes you soft.” That’s from Mary Schmich’s book, Wear Sunscreen: A Primer for Real Life. So people tend to think that those on West Coast are a little bit softer and people in New York, or just the East Coast in general, it makes you a little hard. I kind of agree. I have gotten soft when it comes to weather at least! 

One of the big differences between the coasts that I really enjoy is that the dress code out in California is much more casual. On the East Coast, people are more into shirts, suits, and ties. Although my East Coast friends have told me that it’s started to ease up a little bit in the last five to ten years or so. California is definitely way more casual than it is on the East Coast. I’m more of a t-shirt or polo shirt and jeans type of guy. On the East Coast, you don’t get away with that as easy. For example, Mark Zuckerberg, the owner of Facebook, I think he wore a hoodie to his IPO. So I think if it was someone on the East Coast, like a big bank went to their IPO, I don’t think they’d be wearing a hoodie.

So another big thing I noticed is that I think people tend to be friendlier out here on the West Coast, but on the East Coast people are more direct. So on the East Coast if they like you, they’re going to let you know they like you. Or if they hate you, they’re going to let you know they hate you. On the West Coast they’re going to be friendly to you, even if they like you or don’t like you most of the time. So they might be a little bit behind your back, but at least they will appear to be friendly. On the East Coast, they’re going to tell you what it is and how they feel. So take that for what it’s worth. 

Another difference between the coasts is that the infrastructure and transportation seems to be much better on the East Coast. They have better public transportation like subways, trains, and buses, which is funny because the East Coast is much older than the West Coast. So you would think the West Coast would have been more on top of their transportation, but some of the car companies bought up some of the train tracks so people would have to buy cars. Over time, I’m hoping the West Coast can pick up with their public transportation. I like riding the subways, occasionally at least, but on the West Coast, it’s very hard to do. LA and San Francisco are a little bit better, but overall public transportation, infrastructure, and even the history I find to be a little bit more exciting on the East Coast. Just like how the United States started, the Declaration of Independence, and the Liberty Bell. You can take tours of all these different cities that have a lot of history like that on East Coast.

If you’re ever looking to move to San Diego, I’d love to help you find your next home. Whether you’re moving locally or coming from the East Coast, I can help. Let’s connect!

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