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Moving to Bristol: The Ultimate Guide

Written by Reviewed by Marc Benger

25th Jan 2017 (Last updated on 21st Feb 2020) 6 minute read

We have created a comprehensive guide to moving to Bristol for all you Bristol house movers are thinking of moving there by yourself or with your family. The city has a lot to offer, but is it for you?

Bristol has a rich history as one of Britain’s largest ports and is a hub for architectural, creative, historical and cultural activities. Once just a centre for heavy industry, over the last few decades it has reinvented itself as a powerhouse for culture and creativity.

Bristol’s economy contains aeronautical industry, a varied financial sector, ports and service industries. Alongside this corporate identity, Bristol has a hugely diverse cultural identity, with independent music venues and theatres hosting events and festivals across the year.

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This article will cover the following:
  1. Cost of Living in Bristol
  2. Will Moving to Bristol Improve your Quality of Life?
  3. Working in Bristol
  4. Travel in Bristol
  5. What Is There to Do if you Move to Bristol?
  6. Where Should You Live in Bristol?
  7. Schools and Education in the Bristol Area
  8. Compare My Move in Bristol

Cost of Living in Bristol

The cost of living in Bristol at a glance including average house price, rent, and living costs.

  • Average house price: £329,164
  • Average flat price: £247,846
  • Average rent: £1,232 per month
  • Average price of meal: £14 (inexpensive restaurant)
  • Average price of pint: £3.90

Average house price for Bristol from Zoopla January 2018, Meal and drink average price from Numbeo January 2018

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Will Moving to Bristol Improve your Quality of Life?

If you plan on moving to Bristol, you’ll want to enjoy your time there and feel part of the community, so knowing about the quality of life is useful. A Quality of Life Survey in 2014 highlighted that people living in Bristol are taking the steps to continuously improve their lives, health and communities.

The survey showed that people are smoking less, cycling instead of commuting and becoming more aware of social issues such as domestic abuse.

Bristol was voted the Best Place to Live in Britain in the Sunday Times Telegraph 2014, and the European Green Capital in 2015.

Working in Bristol

You may be moving to Bristol for a job, or looking for one once you move there. You’ll be in a prosperous environment whatever your situation, as Bristol is renowned for a diverse economy.

The city has strong financial and ethical banking sectors, with established engineering, service and creative industries. Notable engineering and aerospace employers include Airbus and Fusion Processing.

Bristol has a skilled workforce and is well connected to other major UK cities. It's fast becoming a thriving hub for creatives, with companies such as Bottle Yard Studios offering dedicated film and television production.

The latest information from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that Bristol has a large skilled workforce, with more than a fifth of jobs classed as a professional occupation. Well-connected with other major UK cities, Bristol has an ever expanding employment sector.

The latest official figures put the median weekly wage for fulltime Bristol worker at £539.90, which works out at a salary of £27,980 a year.

Find below the top 5 employment industries in Bristol according to the latest ONS data:

  • Retail and vehicle repair (15% of jobs)
  • Health and Social Work (14% of jobs)
  • Education (10% of jobs)
  • Science and technology (7.8% of jobs)
  • Construction (7.3% of jobs)
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Travel in Bristol

Transportation in Bristol is fantastic – regular buses run everyday, with monthly tickets costing around £55. Bristol also has a booming cycling community with cycle paths linking the city. Plus, with Bristol Airport and range of train stations easily accessible from all around the city, it's easier than ever to take a break from the city.

What Is There to Do if you Move to Bristol?

There is a huge range of options for socialising in Bristol. Going out is relatively cheap, with beer costing on average £3.90 a pint, with even cheaper options in central locations.

For meals, Bristol is diverse: meals from £5 in St Nicholas’ market to more high-end experiences from £40 a head.

There are several hotspots for a night out in Bristol, with numerous bars and restaurants available. Local art and culture are popular in areas like Old Market and St Pauls.

Along with several festivals on throughout the year, these are just some activities for you to get to know Bristol:

  • Bristol zoo – perfect for a day out with the kids
  • Bristol city museum and art gallery – a great way to learn about archaeology, geology and art.
  • Clifton Suspension Bridge. This spectacular bridge is a symbol for Bristol, and has been for 150 years, attracting visitors from around the world. It opened to the public on 8 December 1864, and is looked after 24 hours a day, every day throughout the year.
  • Watershed arthouse cinema and bar – if you’re a cinephile, this multi-arts venue is the place for you! It showcases arthouse cinema and has a café/bar for your to enjoy, too.
  • At-Bristol – An engaging science centre with a planetarium to teach you everything you want to know about the environment, astronomy and the planets.
Oliver Flowers, 6th June 2018
"Speedy service, great team and a completely seemless move"

Where Should You Live in Bristol?

The city is a vibrant and pleasant place to live, with a variety of activities to take part in as well as a lot of interesting architecture to appreciate.

Depending on your reasons for moving to Bristol or if you are moving with a family or not, certain neighbourhoods will appeal to you more than others.

If you’re moving to Bristol with your family, Redland located near Clifton is a great option. An affluent area with all the amenities you could need, this is a prime area to live long-term and raise your children.

For young professionals and students, Horfield offers a mixture of students and families. Many students stay in the area following university, making it a diverse area to live. For more affordable areas of Bristol to live, Fishponds is an area to look at.

For socialites of all ages, Stokes Croft is famous for its restaurants, bars and clubs, making it a happening place to live.

For the upmarket crowd, Clifton is famous as a beautiful place to live, with green open spaces and incredible Georgian architecture, and a strong independent ethos.

See a full list of areas to live in our article - The 10 Best Areas of Bristol To Live

Rent and House Prices in Bristol

**Current Average House Price for January 2018 Zoopla Zed-Index
*Current average monthly asking rent january 2018 Zoopla
AreaRent Per Month (3 Bedrooms)*Price to Buy**
Stokes Croft£1,634£219,981

Schools and Education in the Bristol Area

Bristol’s education is system is very highly rated, and consists of three universities, 30 secondary schools, 50 primary schools, and five colleges.

A number of Bristol primary schools are among the top in the UK, and are consistently top the SAT league tables. If you’re looking for a primary school for your children, remember to do your research as school ranking varies from area to area.

Secondary schools are also highly regarded, with the best in the city including:

  • St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School
  • Bristol Cathedral Choir School
  • Cotham School
  • Colston’s Girls’ School
  • Redland Green School

You might be moving to Bristol for university, and starting your student life. Bristol University is one of the top 20 universities in the UK, and the University of the West of England ranks highly for student satisfaction. Bristol is also famous for being student friendly and a fantastic place to study.

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Overall, Bristol is a thriving city with plenty of cafes, restaurants, beautiful views and cultural activities to keep you occupied. If you are moving with your family, there is plenty of space to raise your children as well as several museums, planetariums and attractions to visit on a day out.

Schools and universities in Bristol are also highly regarded, so your children will get a good education. If you’re moving for university, student life is also considered fantastic in Bristol.

Whatever your reasons for moving to Bristol, Compare My Move can help you find the best in professional local removal companies. We'll connect you with up to 6 removal companies to save you up to 70% on your removal costs. All of our removal company partners are fully verified by us and reviewed by you. So take the stress out of moving with Compare My Move.

Zenyx Griffiths

Before Compare My Move, Zenyx once wrote lifestyle and entertainment articles for the online magazine, Society19 as well as news articles for Ffotogallery.

Marc Benger

Reviewed by Marc Benger

Co-Founder and Director, Compare My Move

Co-founder and director of Compare My Move, Marc Benger has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.