These Are the Happiest Cities in the U.S. (Video)

If you’re happy and you know it, you probably live in one of these cities.

There are lots of factors that go into choosing the perfect place to live: housing prices, job market, schools, nightlife, and basically any other element that makes a place ideal for your lifestyle.

But what about happiness? Certainly the emotional and physical wellbeing of the residents of a certain city should also be important when you’re going somewhere new.

If you’re thinking globally, you might have to pack your bags for Finland if you want to live in the happiest place on earth (sorry, Disney). The country was named the happiest country in the world in 2018.

But if you’re staying in the U.S., according to Wallethub, some cities are definitely happier than others. The company’s annual study of the Happiest Cities in America analyzed 182 of the largest cities in the U.S. to determine the best cities to move to if you want to turn your frown upside down.

Plano, Texas
Shops at Legacy Plano, Texas. Gary Fink/Getty Images

Wallethub evaluated 31 metrics fitting into three key categories to determine the happiest cities: emotional and physical well being, income and employment, and community and environment.

Metrics measured include weighing physical health, reported rates of depression cases, food insecurity, income-growth rate, commute time, strength of social ties, ideal weather days, average leisure time spent per day, and more.

At the very top of the list, with the best overall score was Plano, Texas, followed by Irvine, California and Madison, Wisconsin. However, Wallethub also ranks each city per category as well. If you’re looking for the best in the Emotional and Physical Health and Wellbeing category, pack your bags for San Jose, California. Want steady employment and wealth? Move to Seattle, Washington. Or, if you’re looking for a strong sense of community, consider going to Fremont, California.

Plano, Texas
Fans look on as Third Eye Blind performs during Suburbia Music Festival on May 3, 2014 in Plano, Texas.

According to a Gallup poll in 2018, Vermont and South Dakota were named the happiest states in the U.S., which makes Wallethub’s research surprising, since the first city from either state to first appear on the list is Sioux Falls, South Dakota, at 15.

Out of the biggest cities in the U.S., San Francisco barely squeezes in into the top 10 in terms of happiness. Austin, Texas ranks at 14, while San Diego (18), Washington D.C. (51), Dallas (68), Atlanta (79), Los Angeles (82), and New York (90) come in further down.

To see where your city measures up, see the full list on the Wallethub website.

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