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Moving to Cardiff From London

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Written by Reviewed by Dave Sayce

28th Apr 2023 (Last updated on 28th Sep 2023) 7 minute read

London is a great city to live in. There is always something new to see and do. Being an overly popular and busy city, many people looking to settle down are choosing to move away from the capital city.

Cardiff is a great city to consider moving to if you’re looking for a smaller city that’s rich in culture and heritage. Being the Welsh capital, it’s a hub for entertainment, sport and shopping. Living costs are lower than in London and the local economy is consistently increasing.

In this guide, we discuss everything you need to know when moving to Cardiff from London.

  1. Why are People Moving to Cardiff From London?
  2. Property Prices
  3. Travel and Commuting
  4. Work and Salary
  5. Cost of Living
  6. Education
  7. Culture/Art
  8. Nightlife/Social Scene
  9. Is it Worth Moving to Cardiff from London?
  10. Removals from London to Cardiff

Why are People Moving to Cardiff From London?

There are many reasons why people are choosing to move to Cardiff from London. The lower cost of living and the slower pace of life are selling points. The Welsh culture is open and inviting, which is attractive for people wanting to get away from the fast pace of London living.

According to The Mirror 5,180 people moved from London to Cardiff between 2015-2017. These numbers are likely to continue to rise as more people look to move away from “The Big Smoke”.

World Population Review states that only around 488,153 people are living in Cardiff in 2023. This is a stark difference from the estimated 9,648,110 for London. Being a quieter city that’s full of history, Cardiff is a great place to move.

Property Prices

Properties in Cardiff are 40% cheaper than in London. According to the UK House Price Index, the average property in Cardiff costs £266,159. This is fairly reasonable when compared to the average price in London which is £670,468 according to Rightmove.

The best places to live in Cardiff are Roath, Llandaff and Cardiff Bay. More affordable areas include Rumney, St Mellons and Llanrumney. The suburbs tend to be more affordable compared to living in Cardiff city centre.

Properties tend to be more expensive in areas such as Pontcanna, Lisvane and Rhiwbina. Other popular areas of Cardiff to live in include Heath, Cyncoed, and Whitchurch. Cathays is a particularly popular area for students.

Rental costs in London are 3 times more expensive compared to Cardiff prices. The average rental cost in Cardiff is £1,442 according to Home.co.uk. The average London rental costs £4,642.

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Travel and Commuting

Being a fairly compact city, Cardiff is easy to walk around compared to other major cities. In recent years, bike lanes have been created to encourage the use of bicycles across the city. Many areas are easy to access and are pedestrianised.

Due to its size, Cardiff doesn’t have access to a tram or Underground system like London. This isn’t necessary or needed. Instead, Cardiff relies on its bus and train services.

The Cardiff Bus system is reliable and provides links across the whole city, as does the train network. Cardiff Central is the main train station in the city, offering services to places such as Manchester, London, and Holyhead.

Wales is currently creating a Metro system to better connect Cardiff with other areas of Wales, such as Swansea, and the South Wales Valleys. As a result of this, there are disruptions to rail services, which has affected travelling and commuting.

Road links from Cardiff are great, with the M4 connecting Cardiff to places such as London Newport and Swansea. Being fairly close to the English border, it only takes around an hour to reach Bristol.

Cardiff has an international airport that provides flights to places such as Amsterdam, Dublin and Malaga.

Work and Salary

The average salary in Cardiff according to Payscale is £30,000. The city has many job opportunities, with new businesses constantly opening and providing more career paths.

The most common jobs are in healthcare, retail, technology and finance. With ITV Wales and BBC Wales being based in the city, there are many opportunities for those looking for Welsh media jobs too.

Jobs in London are not too dissimilar. Common job sectors include banking, finance and the public sector.

Compared to Cardiff, the salary in London is much higher with an average of £41,000. The cost of living in London is significantly higher.

The London Living Wage increases how much workers in London are paid. This is to help offset the increased cost of living in the capital city, however, this doesn’t always reflect the true expense of living in London.

Cost of Living

Consumer prices in Cardiff are nearly 24% lower compared to London. This makes a significant difference when it comes to the overall cost of living in each city.

Here are some examples of the differences in the cost of living:

Cost of Living ExamplesLondonCardiff

Public transport pass (monthly)

£160.00

£53.00

Basic utilities (monthly)

£305.12

£224.35

Fitness club membership (monthly)

£45.98

£28.22

Chicken fillets

£6.77

£5.78

Bottle of wine

£9.00

£8.00

Taxi starting price

£4.00

£2.75

Preschool

£1,587.07

£1,116.67

Restaurant meal for 2 people

£72.50

£60.00

Cinema ticket (one ticket)

£12.00

£6.99

*Data taken from Numbeo statistics

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Education

The education systems in England and Wales are similar. Both Cardiff and London have good education systems and a handful of high-performing schools. The best schools in Cardiff include Cardiff High School, Howell’s School Llandaff, and Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Glantaf which is a Welsh-language school.

Considering Cardiff is a fairly small city, it still has 4 universities. Cardiff University is the main institution in the city. It fairs well in university league tables and is a Russell Group University. The other universities in Cardiff are:

  • Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • University of South Wales
  • Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Compared to Cardiff, London does have a higher number of universities, with 18 in total. Some of the best universities in the main city include University College London and King’s College London.

Read more about the 10 Best Primary and Secondary Schools in Cardiff

Culture/Art

Cardiff is a thriving city when it comes to culture and art. Being a Welsh city, Welsh heritage is significant, and while English is the most spoken language, there is still strong a focus on the Welsh language.

People in Wales are proud of their roots and this is prevalent in the capital. Like London, Cardiff is ethnically diverse, with people living in the city from all walks of life.

There are many historical places in Cardiff, including Cardiff Castle which is located in the centre of the city. Other historical locations include St. Fagans, and the city is full of medieval architecture.

Art is prevalent in the city. There are a few museums and art galleries to visit. This includes the National Museum Cardiff, Chapter Arts Centre, and the Norwegian Church Arts Centre.

Music and theatre are popular in the city and the Wales Millenium Centre and the New Theatre Cardiff hold regular performances. St David’s Hall, the Principality Stadium and Cardiff International Arena hold live music events. The Glee Club in Cardiff hosts comedy evenings.

Cardiff is full of green spaces and parks, including Victoria Park, Roath Park and Bute Park which offer great walks. The Brecon Beacons are within driving distance of Cardiff as is Penarth Marina.

Nightlife/Social Scene

For those interested in nightlife and the social scene, Cardiff is one of the best locations in Cardiff. There are many clubs and restaurants spread across the city, along with themed cocktail bars and local pubs.

Popular bars and clubs include Coyote Ugly, PRYZM, and Walkabout. There are bars to suit every taste, from gaming bars such as NQ64 to Fuel Rock Club that host live rock music events.

You can find a lot of local pubs, restaurants and local coffee shops around the city centre. There are always events and social meetings and clubs to attend whether you’re interested in books or sports.

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Is it Worth Moving to Cardiff from London?

If you’re looking to live in a capital city that’s reasonably priced, easy to navigate and full of culture, it can be worth moving to Cardiff.

Here are some pros and cons to consider if you want to move to Cardiff:

Pros:

  • More affordable house prices
  • Rental costs are far lower compared to London
  • The majority of locations in Cardiff are walkable
  • Full of history and culture
  • A lot of green space
  • Good education systems
  • Cardiffians are generally friendly and welcoming

Cons:

  • Transport links to areas across Cardiff and Wales are currently being updated. This is causing cancellations and significant delays
  • The weather and climate in Cardiff are more unpredictable

Removals from London to Cardiff

Cardiff is around 150 miles away from London. You can expect moving companies to charge more when moving from England to Wales compared to if you were moving locally.

£918 is the average cost of moving to Cardiff from London. This is based on the figures inputted into our cost of moving house calculator. We used the average house prices for each location in addition to the distance travelled.

If you need to use extra services, such as packing, you will be charged additionally for this. The average costs for additional services are:

  • Packing - £250
  • Dismantling and reassembling - £125

When moving to Cardiff from London, you will want to ensure you are using a removals company that’s trusted and verified. Compare My Move can connect you with up to 6 of our removal partners, helping you to save up to 70% on your removal costs.

All costs listed in this article are correct at the time of writing. Costs may vary slightly and this is just an estimated number.

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Dave Sayce

Reviewed by Dave Sayce

Owner & Managing Director, Compare My Move

Dave Sayce is the owner and managing director of Compare My Move and has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.

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