Miami, Florida

Magic City

The BUZZ

What's it like to live in Miami

What is it like to live in Miami?

As someone born and raised in Miami, I have much to say based on my own experience on this topic. I'll try to cover the things helpful to someone comparing things to any other city; the entertainment culture, weather, public transportation and also culture in terms of people.

So many people refer to Miami as culturally diverse, though it’s far less “a little bit of everything” and more so very diverse in Latin/Hispanic Spanish-speaking culture; Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Colombians, Venezuelans, Chileans, etc. This high concentration definitely makes it unique. There is an established Jewish community in South Florida - and also pockets with Haitian residents, though I didn’t have much exposure to either in the area where I grew up.

People think of Miami as a nice and warm place to live, but I'm not sure if they realize it's very humid and often sweltering hot to the point of discomfort. If you don't mind frequent heat, moist air and no change of seasons, it could be your dream. :)

To no surprise, it is hands-down, the best place in the country to find authentic Cuban food. If you’re not familiar, look up things like Ropa Vieja, Mariquitas, Congri and Platanos Maduros to name a few. My mouth waters just thinking about it. :) Hialeah is a part of Greater Miami area in Dade County and you will find plenty of really legit and affordable Cuban food there in particular.

In terms of general vibe, people are unfortunately known for being less friendly and sometimes outright rude. It's much less common for people to hold a door open for you, for example. In some cities, people might greet you in an elevator or even make polite conversation while waiting in a line; much much less common in Miami. (There are, of course, exceptions to the rule and some more friendly and polite people here and there. And of course, no city exists without some rude people, but it’s just more common there.)

What is it like to live in Miami?

GOOD

Wonderful weather for one third of the year (November through February) It is usually the only reliably mild weather location in the continental USA in the depths of winter. When I first arrived decades ago, even October and March to mid-April were usually tolerable at night without the need for a/c at nighttime; however, summery, humid weather has increased and now the Fall and Spring months can have days that are uncomfortably humid.
Lots of outdoor activities and beach areas.
Many open-air, popular culture activities and festivals.
For cities of comparable size, cost of living is reasonable, partly as labor costs are lowered by arrival of immigrants from less developed nations.
Very socially tolerant, live and let live attitude, largely born of the waves of recent immigration from various countries, as well as many overseas visitors.
Excellent logistics by sea and by air. South Florida airports have non-stop flights to many destinations, stretching from the Dubai to Argentina.
Good schools for children.
No State income tax
BAD

Nearly 2/3 of the year (from April to October) is now mostly a steam house, humid and hot. Even at night, it may remain above 80 F., still and humid in the doldrums of summer. So, your life becomes moving from one air conditioned space to another; people get irritable and you feel cramped by the constant feeling of enclosure.
It’s not just a “preference” for warm temperatures but a matter of public health. More people die of heat stroke than from hypothermia per year, and Miami is the large US city that has the most number of days with a heat index above 105 F.

Do you like living in Miami

I grew up here, but I'll try to be as unbiased as possible…

Miami has a lot to offer. If you're interested in nature, there's plenty.

Aside from the breathtaking Everglades, you can find an insane amount of nature in everyone's backyard. Many people have avocado or mango trees and some even have wild peacocks or iguanas roaming around.

If you're looking for shopping, nightlife, and a generally luxurious lifestyle, well, that's an obvious "check". Unfortunately, with that comes some negative cultural aspects, like materialism, vanity, more focus on money than education, etc. But that does not represent everyone.

There's plenty of cultural diversity, but it's pretty limited to this hemisphere. Being of Cuban descent, I dig the fact that I can get Cuban coffee and pastelitos at every corner (ventanitas) and that everyone speaks Spanish.

I just wish we had a more forward and open thinking approach to our future. That goes for traffic, cuisine, environment, music, etc. The traffic is terrible, the food is not as diverse as say NYC's or SF's, people litter and sea-level rise doesn't get as much attention as necessary, everything is reggaeton…

But ultimately, it's my city. I feel out of place anywhere else, even within the US. The reality is there's no place like Miami.

Do you like living in Miami

This is to help the next human settling in. I live 3 blocks behind the ocean and work from home. Something I plan to keep doing. COVID as a silver lining opened up a door for me.

Miami is one of the best cities I’ve ever lived in, keep in mind this is a naive perspective.

it’s open minded

it’s multicultural in fact one of the most diverse group of people in the world. Egyptian, Spanish, I’m American, European, Italian. Etc. which comes with a very special underlining you can find your tribe here if you wait long enough. Also, the food here is great.

I’m middle income, coming from the north east this is a huge plus. Taxes, cost of living while living in a higher standard of living city.

don’t get wrapped up in the scene. I mean dabble and have fun, but really people that have money don’t need to show it off really. There is a poverty of mind here that really shows so avoid that non sense. .

people are fitness focused and image concious. I left yoga in pants and walked to ask for a lighter a couple wouldn’t even say hi to me at all because I asked for a lighter. However, lol I a person that doesn’t care and kept asking then proceeded to have a conversation about their stay and then told me to have a good night. Basically, you just gotta break em down here a little more.

Give it a year which is what I’m thinking I’ll do. I assure you there are a million places to not live. This is probably one of the few you don’t want to miss in the United States.

Do get a remote job, post COVID it’s easy so LOOK then move. As Miami is service heavy without much industry outside of Brickell (finance / downtown) there isn’t much out there. The income here is changing however post COVID rentals have sky rocketed then again inflation is a big issue now in the US. When people are not killing each other for no other reason but that is another topic. . .

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