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Pros and Cons of Living in Glasgow, Scotland | Expat Exchange
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Glasgow, Scotland

Pros and Cons of Living in Glasgow

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on May 03, 2023

Summary: The pros of living in Glasgow, Scotland include its vibrant culture, with a wide variety of music, art, and theatre, as well as its diverse population. Glasgow is also known for its excellent shopping, with a variety of high-end stores and independent boutiques. Additionally, Glasgow is a great city for outdoor activities, with plenty of parks and green spaces to explore. The cons of living in Glasgow include its high cost of living, with rent and other living expenses being quite expensive. Additionally, the city can be quite rainy and grey, with the weather often being unpredictable. Finally, Glasgow has a reputation for being a bit rough around the edges, with a higher crime rate than other cities in the UK.

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What are the pros and cons of living in Glasgow?

Expats, digital nomads and retirees living in Glasgow responded:

"Some of our fondest memories are from the time we lived in Glasgow. Flights from the east coast of the States are plentiful with nonstop more expensive but cheaper flights to Edinburgh(then a 45 min train) or to Manchester or Liverpool with a short in-country flight to Glasgow. It was easy to travel to mainland Europe with two Glasgow airports. The city is grittier than Edinburgh but also more interesting in my opinion. The Kelvingrove Museum is a mash up of natural history and art and outdoor sculpture. The nearby park has trails that will lead you up for a wonderful view of the city, through to the University of Glasgow campus, or the Great Western Rd with shops, restaurants and the Botanical Gardens. I love the park near the River Clyde with the People's Palace and Winter Gardens.The enormous greenhouse-like Winter Gardens are a great place to spend time with a book and tea in the colder months. Americans will feel at ease in Glasgow with familiar shops like Gap, Urban Outfitters, and of course, Starbucks. And, find a tea room for breakfast lunch, or snack and get scones with clotted cream and jam. Please. The ones in Glasgow are casual and welcoming, not the least bit pretentious. A 25-minute drive north of the city and you are at Loch Lomond. From there the country stretches out with immense mystic beauty and history. Please rent a car once a month and drive to a different small town or island. Just driving past crumbling castles and fields of the greenest green, there is so much to experience. And you must get a photo of a highland cow aka "Heeland Coo"," said one expat in living in Glasgow, Scotland.

"Expats and digital nomads living in Glasgow, often like the city's friendly and welcoming atmosphere, as the locals are known for their warmth and humor. They also appreciate the vibrant arts and music scene, with numerous galleries, theaters, and live music venues to explore. The city's rich history and stunning architecture, such as the medieval Glasgow Cathedral and the Victorian-era City Chambers, are also a draw for many. Glasgow offers a relatively low cost of living compared to other major UK cities like London and Edinburgh, making it an attractive option for expats and digital nomads on a budget. The city has a well-connected public transport system, including buses, trains, and a subway, making it easy to get around. Additionally, Glasgow's location provides easy access to the beautiful Scottish countryside, including Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, which are perfect for weekend getaways. However, there are some aspects of living in Glasgow that expats and digital nomads may dislike. The weather can be a significant drawback, as the city is known for its frequent rain and generally cloudy, cool climate. This can make it challenging to enjoy outdoor activities and may affect some people's mood and overall well-being. Another potential downside is the local accent, known as the Glaswegian dialect, which can be difficult for newcomers to understand initially. This may make it challenging for expats and digital nomads to communicate with locals and fully integrate into the community. Lastly, while Glasgow has a relatively low crime rate compared to other UK cities, some areas have higher crime rates and social issues, such as poverty and drug abuse. Expats and digital nomads should research neighborhoods carefully before choosing where to live to ensure they find a safe and comfortable environment," wrote one expat in Glasgow.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Glasgow, Scotland

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Fun, easy and effective language courses designed by language experts. Learn 41 languages from your native language. Anytime, anywhere, on any device.
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Fun, easy and effective language courses designed by language experts. Learn 41 languages from your native language. Anytime, anywhere, on any device.
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