Millions of tourists and foreign residents visit and settle in two of the most recognizable cities in Europe each year: Berlin and London.
Both cities have a distinctive charm of their own, as well as a unique mix of benefits and drawbacks.
In this article, we will compare London and Berlin in terms of their sizes, cost of living, weather, transportation, and job opportunities.
Size: Which City Is Bigger?
London is one of the most populated cities in Europe and the capital of the United Kingdom.
The Office for National Statistics’ most recent projections indicate that in 2021, there were more than 8 million people living in London and that it ranks among the cities with the densest populations in Europe.
In contrast, the most recent figures from the Federal Statistical Office indicate that Berlin, the capital of Germany, has a population of about 3.6 million.
This means Berlin has a population that is less than half that of London.
- Land Area:
London is one of the world’s largest cities by land area, with a total area of roughly 1,580 square kilometers, while Berlin has a surface size of about 891 square kilometers, which is considerably less than London.
The transportation system of London, which consists of a huge network of highways, railroads, and airports, reflects the city’s physical size.
Six international airports, including Heathrow, one of the busiest in the world, serving the city.
Berlin, in contrast, has two major airports that are both inside the city limits: Tegel and Schönefeld.
The city also features a sophisticated public transportation network that includes buses, trams, and the U-Bahn metro system.
Cost Of Living: Which City Is More Affordable?
The cost of living in London and Berlin can vary depending on various factors such as housing, food, transportation, and entertainment.
London has one of the highest housing costs in Europe. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in London can range from £1,000 to £2,000 per month, depending on the location.
On the contrary, in Berlin, the rent for a similar apartment ranges from €600 to €1,200 per month, depending on the location.
Overall, the cost of housing in Berlin is significantly lower than that of London.
The cost of food in London can also be higher than in Berlin.
In London, the average cost of a meal in a mid-range restaurant is around £15-20, while in Berlin, it is around €10-15. Similarly, the cost of groceries in London can be higher than in Berlin.
However, both cities offer a wide variety of options for dining out and groceries, so the overall cost of food can vary based on individual preferences.
Public transportation in both London and Berlin is well-connected and affordable.
In London, a single bus or train fare can cost around £2.40, while in Berlin, a single fare costs €2.90.
It also offers a variety of transport options, including the iconic black cabs, which can be more expensive than the regular public transport options.
London offers a wide range of entertainment options, from West End shows to museums and galleries.
However, these can be quite expensive. For example, the average cost of a West End theatre ticket can range from £30 to £100.
In Berlin, there are also many cultural attractions, including world-class museums and galleries, but the cost of entry is generally lower than in London.
Weather: Which City Has A Better Climate?
London and Berlin are two major cities in Europe with distinct climates. Both cities have a temperate climate, but their specific weather patterns can vary significantly.
London has a maritime climate, which means that it experiences mild temperatures throughout the year with no extreme heat or cold.
The city has an average temperature of around 11°C (51.8°F) and sees a considerable amount of rainfall, especially in the winter months.
Summers in London are pleasant, with average temperatures ranging between 18-21°C (64-70°F), while winters are cool and damp, with temperatures averaging around 4-7°C (39-45°F).
Berlin, in comparison, has a continental climate, which is characterized by hot summers and cold winters.
The city has an average temperature of around 9°C (48.2°F) and experiences four distinct seasons.
Summers in Berlin are warm, with temperatures ranging between 20-25°C (68-77°F), while winters can be harsh, with temperatures dropping below freezing point and the occasional snowfall.
With an average annual rainfall of 570mm as opposed to London’s 590mm, Berlin experiences less precipitation than London.
Nevertheless, Berlin experiences more bright days annually than London does, with an average of 1650 hours of sunshine as opposed to 1540 hours in London.
Both cities have their advantages and disadvantages when it comes to climate.
For people who want a temperate climate with few temperature extremes, London is the perfect city to live in because of its mild temperatures and moderate rainfall.
However, for some people, especially in the winter, the constant rain can be a downer.
But Berlin’s continental climate, with its hot summers and chilly winters, presents a more obvious seasonal change.
The harsh winters in the city might be offset by the warm days. Berlin’s summer is also more pleasant than London’s since there are more chances for outdoor activities thanks to Berlin’s warmer temperatures.
Which city has a better environment ultimately comes down to individual choices.
The choice of which city’s environment best suits a person depends on their preferences because both cities have distinctive climates and provide diverse experiences.
Transportation: Which City Is More Accessible?
Major European cities Berlin and London both have well-developed transportation networks that give commuters and tourists a variety of options.
However, because of its larger public transit system and dedication to providing accessible options for individuals with disabilities, London has a modest advantage over Berlin in terms of accessibility.
London’s public transportation system includes the famous London Underground, which covers 11 lines and over 250 stations, as well as the bus network, overground trains, and riverboat services.
The underground is particularly efficient for commuters, with trains arriving every few minutes on most lines.
The majority of stations on the underground have step-free access, which makes it easier for people with disabilities, the elderly, or families with strollers to use the system.
London also has a fleet of accessible buses that have low floors, wheelchair ramps, and priority seating.
In addition to its public transit system, London has put in place a number of efforts to improve accessibility.
For instance, the Transport for London (TfL) Dial-a-Ride service offers door-to-door transportation for persons who have trouble utilizing public transportation, and the London Accessibility Map is an online tool that enables people to arrange trips based on accessibility needs.
On the other side, Berlin’s public transportation system, which includes a sizable network of buses, trams, U-Bahn (underground) trains, and S-Bahn (overground) trains, is equally well-developed and dependable.
The system offers a variety of ticket options, is reasonably priced, and serves the entire city.
However, compared to London, Berlin has fewer stations that are accessible, making it more difficult for those who are disabled to use the system.
Because some U-Bahn stations lack escalators or elevators, it can be challenging for those in wheelchairs or who have other mobility challenges to reach the trains.
In terms of accessibility initiatives, Berlin has made some progress but still has room for improvement.
For example, the city has introduced a system of tactile paving on some sidewalks, which helps visually impaired people navigate the city more easily.
Additionally, the Berlin Transport Authority provides a service for people with disabilities, called the “Mobility Service,” which offers assistance and guidance on public transportation.
Jobs: Which City Has Better Job Opportunities?
Major European cities like Berlin and London both provide a variety of career opportunities across numerous industries.
There are, however, some significant distinctions between the two cities that could affect whether the location offers you more career prospects.
In terms of the job market, London is generally considered one of the most competitive and dynamic cities in the world.
The city has a strong financial sector, with many banks, investment firms, and insurance companies headquartered there.
It is also home to a large number of multinational corporations, particularly in the technology, media, and telecommunications industries.
As a result, there are many job opportunities in these fields, as well as in marketing, advertising, and other related industries.
On the other side, Berlin is renowned for having a robust start-up community. Especially in the fields of software development, e-commerce, and finance, the city has emerged as a hotspot for entrepreneurs and innovative firms.
In Berlin, there are several chances in the creative and cultural fields of music, design, and the arts.
Particularly in the financial industry, London often offers larger pay than Berlin.
However, the higher cost of living in London compared to Berlin can partially balance these wage discrepancies.
Because of its lower rents, cheaper transportation, and lower total living expenses, Berlin is typically thought of as being more affordable than London.
Language is a crucial additional consideration. Although English is commonly spoken in both cities, Berlin has a larger German-speaking population, and some jobs may need fluency in German.
Although there is greater linguistic diversity in London, many jobs still call for proficiency in the English language.