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Wellington Tops List As New Zealand City With Most Community Spirit

Remitly, a leading digital financial services provider for immigrants and their families, conducted a data study that reveals NZ capital city Wellington is the number one city to find a like-minded community group, with the most Meetup groups per person of any other city in Oceania.

With international migration standing at a historical high, one of the most important things for people to be able to settle in a new city is finding a community of people with similar interests.

Taking this into account, Remitly analysed data from the popular social media app Meetup to discover which cities have the highest number of communities per person. This was revealed by counting the amount of available Meetup groups within the city and surrounding area, and accounting for population size.

The top 10 Oceania cities with the most Meetup groups per person:

In first place was Wellington, offering almost five Meetup groups per 10,000 population, with groups ranging from art loving communities to music appreciation groups. Christchurch ranks in second place. The second largest NZ city, being famed for its world-famous street art and art gallery, offers a total of just over 130 Meetup groups, meaning those new to the area have many opportunities to meet new people and try out a new skill or hobby. Australian capital city Canberra (138 groups) followed in third spot, while bucket list travel spot, Sydney (1,491 groups) and natural beauty, Auckland (423 groups) rounded off the top five.

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Two other New Zealand cities rank within the top ten with Dunedin and Nelson ranking in ninth and tenth.

RankCityCountryTotal no. of Meetup groupsAvailable Meetup groups per 10,000 people
1WellingtonNew Zealand1954.6
2ChristchurchNew Zealand1313.2
3CanberraAustralia1382.9
4SydneyAustralia14912.9
5AucklandNew Zealand4232.5
6MelbourneAustralia12622.4
7BrisbaneAustralia5922.4
8Gold CoastAustralia1632.2
9DunedinNew Zealand221.9
10NelsonNew Zealand111.8

The global cities with the most Meetup groups per person:

Globally, Remitly’s study shows that the ‘Seattle Freeze’, the name given to the city for its reputation as being a difficult place to make friends, may be thawing. With 1,774 listed Meetup groups in the city ranging from art and culture, to health and wellbeing, Seattle might just be the best place to forge new and meaningful friendships.

The Swiss city of Zurich topped the European rankings ahead of Dublin and Barcelona, whilst Wellington’s laidback lifestyle proved the best place for community spirit in Oceania. Singapore is the number one place to meet new friends in Asia, Buenos Aires was top for Argentina and the port city of Cape Town ranked ahead of Johannesburg and Pretoria as the top community-minded city in Africa.

CityContinentAvailable Meetup groups per 10,000 people
SeattleNorth America24
ZurichEurope17
WellingtonOceania5
SingaporeAsia1.7
Buenos AiresArgentina0.4
Cape TownAfrica0.3

Jago McKenzie, Business Management Director at Remitly commented: Alongside finding the right place to work and live, establishing a community of friends who share similar interests is one of the most important aspects of moving to a new city. A strong sense of community can increase your sense of belonging and purpose, and prevent any feelings of isolation and loneliness that can be common when moving somewhere new.

“Community groups and meetups are not new but the way we access them has changed drastically in the social media age, using platforms such as Meetup is a brilliant way to find the best groups for you to connect with quickly and easily. Seattle topping our study was a surprise given its ‘Seattle Freeze’ reputation, but it’s a fantastic and popular place to relocate to, with many new and well-established groups across a variety of different interests. Anyone moving to the city will have an abundance of options to meet like-minded individuals who share the same hobbies and passions.”

To view full data from the study and for further regional breakdowns, visit: https://www.remitly.com/gb/en/landing/community-spirit-cities

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