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Best Cities for Single Men

Feb. 5, 2014
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Valentine’s Day is about a week away, which still leaves plenty of time for guys everywhere to scramble together some plans for their romantic partners. However, if you’ll be spending February 14th wondering why you haven’t had much luck in the dating scene lately, you should know that where you live might be to blame.

NerdWallet crunched the numbers to find the best cities for single heterosexual men by considering the following:

1. Availability of singles: We looked at the ratio of unmarried women to unmarried men. Cities with higher ratios have relatively more single women available, so your odds of finding a date are higher than in other places.

2. Ease of meeting people: We assessed the date-friendliness of each city by calculating the number of bars and restaurants per 1,000 residents. We also used Walk Scores to evaluate how easy it is to live in each city without a car. A city with many venues you can get to without needing a car makes it easier to meet others.

3. Affordability: To see how affordable dating is in each city, we calculated the cost of a pretty darn cheap date: two movie tickets, a 12-inch Pizza Hut pizza and one 1.5-liter bottle of Livingston Cellars or Gallo Chablis or chenin blanc wine. We also included unemployment rates in this category—if there’s a higher percentage of employed singles available, dates will be more affordable.

For more information, check out our Cost of Living Calculator.

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Best cities for single men

1. New York, New York

New York City is America’s largest metropolitan area and one of the world’s most iconic locales—and it is also the best city in the country for single men.  With 125 unmarried women per 100 unmarried men, the Big Apple boasts the highest such ratio among the 50 largest metro areas in the U.S. It also has by far the highest number of bars and restaurants per 1,000 residents, and is the most walkable city in the country. Whether you want to hit Broadway or try a $39 movie-pizza-wine date, New York City is the place to be.

2. Boston, Massachusetts

Boston doesn’t have as many bars and restaurants as some of the other cities on this list, but all that it does offer is very much accessible to its residents—the city has the third-highest Walk Score in the country. The cost of our cheap date is lower in Boston than in any other city on this list, at just $31. And as one of America’s oldest major cities, Beantown has a rich history and a vibrant culture, with many theaters and museums that are perfect for a date.

3. Baltimore, Maryland

Baltimore’s ratio of unmarried women to unmarried men is the second-highest on this list, just behind New York’s. The city also scores better than average in walkability and affordability. Like seafood? Then you’ll love many of the restaurants in this port city.

4. Washington, D.C.

There’s a jobs crisis in America, but in the nation’s capital the unemployment rate is just 4.9 percent—the lowest on our list. The region does have a high cost of living, but the unmarried women/men ratio strongly favors men. Single guys, particularly those who enjoy the arts, would find D.C. to be a great place to live.

5. Chicago, Illinois

The Windy City has the second-highest number of bars and restaurants per 1,000 people among the 50 largest metro areas, so single men have a variety of places to meet women and/or go on dates. Another reason Chicago is a great place for single guys? It’s one of the few cities in the country with a team in each of the four major pro sports leagues (NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL).

Best cities for single men

Scroll right to see all data categories.

RankCityUnmarried Women per 100 Unmarried MenBars/Restaurants per 1000 ResidentsWalk ScoreCost of a DateNov. 2013 Unemployment RateOverall Score
1New York, NY125.4420.3387.6$38.696.9%85.84
2Boston, MA117.464.4979.5$31.085.8%69.86
3Baltimore, MD124.733.3766.2$36.776.3%67.88
4Washington, DC119.993.5274.1$37.044.9%66.72
5Chicago, IL116.808.7374.8$34.378.1%64.16
6Philadelphia, PA125.136.6676.5$48.737%61.37
7Detroit, MI120.633.0552.2$32.758.3%59.15
8New Orleans, LA116.782.6256.3$34.585.7%58.31
9Kansas City, MO122.251.8732.1$35.145.3%58.09
10Cleveland, OH119.362.4456.8$36.336.7%57.90


The overall score for each city was calculated using the following measures:

  1. Number of unmarried women per 100 unmarried men (ages 15 and up) currently unmarried from the U.S. Census Bureau.
  2. Number of bars and restaurants per 1,000 residents from the Yellow Pages.
  3. Walk Score.
  4. Cost of a date (two average-priced movie tickets, one 12-inch Pizza Hut pizza and one 1.5-liter bottle of Livingston Cellars or Gallo Chablis or Chenin Blanc wine) from the Council for Community and Economic Research’s Cost of Living Index.
  5. Unemployment rate from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Each of the three categories — availability of singles, ease of meeting people and affordability — was weighted equally.

Check out the Best Cities for Single Women and overall Best Cities for Singles as well.

Couple on beach image from Shutterstock.