10 Cities You Would Never Move to Even If You Could Live There for Free

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Have you ever daydreamed about living in a different city, perhaps one with no rent or mortgage to worry about? Sounds tempting, right? But what if we told you there are cities that some folks wouldn’t move to even if they were handed a free ticket? We stumbled upon a social media thread where users shared their insights on cities they’d gladly pass on. Let’s take a tour of these no-go zones, and you might just find yourself nodding in agreement with the reasons behind their decisions.

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#1 Pyongyang

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North Korea’s capital city, Pyongyang, is an intriguing but highly controlled place. Some users pointed out that the lack of personal freedom, strict government control, and isolation from the outside world make it a city that doesn’t exactly scream “dream destination.” Your internet access is severely limited, and you can’t casually browse the web or express your opinions on social media. Additionally, the city’s political climate and human rights issues have made headlines worldwide. Many people find these constraints too stifling to consider living there, even if the price is right.

#2 Port Au Prince

Wenchuan earthquake site, Xuankou middle school earthquake site, Sichuan Province, China
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The city of Port-au-Prince in Haiti has experienced its fair share of adversity, from devastating earthquakes to political turmoil. This has led to serious concerns about the safety and stability of the city. The infrastructure has also been a point of contention, as it struggles to support a growing population. These issues, coupled with a high poverty rate, have some users thinking twice about the idea of living there, even if it comes at no cost.

#3 Gary, Indiana

Indiana USA State Welcome to Highway Road Sign
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Gary, Indiana, once a thriving industrial hub, has faced economic hardships and a subsequent rise in crime rates. The declining job opportunities and a struggling economy have made some residents feel trapped in a cycle of hardship. The allure of free housing can only do so much to offset the challenges posed by a high crime rate, decaying infrastructure, and limited opportunities.

#4 Eagleton

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“Eagleton: bunch of f**** snobs even if their city does smell like fresh baked cookies.”

Eagleton, a fictional rich city from the TV series “Parks and Recreation,” was humorously mentioned. Eagleton may be a product of fiction, but it serves as a humorous reminder of the importance of community and personal connections when considering where to live. It’s a playful jab at the idea that even a city that smells like fresh-baked cookies can’t make up for a population perceived as insufferably snobbish. Sometimes, it’s the people you share a city with that can make or break your living experience.

#5 East St. Louis, Illinois

City of Chicago. Aerial view of Chicago downtown at twilight from high above.
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“East St. Louis, Illinois. Right up there with Gary, Indiana.”

East St. Louis, located across the river from St. Louis, Missouri, has long been associated with high crime rates and urban decay. In some areas, the crime situation is so dire that even law enforcement officers are cautious. The potential risks involved in living there, even with free housing, can be daunting for many. Safety is a top priority for anyone considering a new place to call home.

#6 Chelyabinsk, Russia

Highway, interchange, car, forest. Saint Petersburg, Russia
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“Chelyabinsk, Russia. Not for anything in my life. I would prefer to breathe air rather than a mixture of gases and dust.”

Chelyabinsk, a city in Russia, is known for its heavy industrial activity, which can lead to significant air and environmental pollution. Breathing in a cocktail of gases and dust isn’t exactly the ideal recipe for a healthy life. . One user humorously remarked that they’d rather breathe clean air than the city’s mixture of gases and dust, which underscores the importance of clean air and a healthy environment when choosing a place to live. After all, breathing fresh air is a basic human need!

#7 Miami

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“After living in Miami for 10 years, Miami. The moment you leave Miami you can feel the tension just dissolve from your shoulders. Even driving on 95 you can tell the moment you’ve entered Miami. Vacation there, don’t live there.”

The palpable tension mentioned by users who lived in Miami suggests that the city’s vibrant lifestyle comes at a cost. The contrast felt upon leaving the city indicates that the fast-paced environment might not be conducive to a relaxed, stress-free life. It’s a reminder that the excitement of vacationing in a place doesn’t always translate to a comfortable daily life.

#8 Nouakchott, Mauritania

The Aerial view to Grand Mosque in Nouakchott in Mauritania
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“Nouakchott, Mauritania. A sweltering hellhole in the middle of a dictatorship where the entire environment wants to kill you.”

Describing Nouakchott as a “sweltering hellhole” emphasizes the extreme weather conditions. The comment also alludes to the challenging political environment in Mauritania, providing a glimpse into the complex factors that can influence one’s decision to avoid a city, even if housing is offered for free.

#9 Pueblo, CO

Pueblo. Colorado. USA on a map
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Pueblo, CO. My family is from there and the people that didn’t leave all look ten years older than their age. I think it’s from chronic boredom and no opportunity. Crime’s also pretty bad.”

Chronic boredom and limited opportunities can indeed take a toll on a community. The comment about people looking older than their age suggests that the lack of dynamism in Pueblo might contribute to a sense of stagnation. It’s a testament to the importance of a vibrant community for overall well-being.

#10 Memphis

Memphis, USA - November 25th, 2008 Neon signs of world famous blues clubs on historical Beale street Beale street is a major tourist attraction and a place for blues festivals and concerts
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“I lived in Memphis for 3 years. never again.”

The succinct “never again” implies a strong negative sentiment toward living in Memphis. While the city has a rich cultural heritage, the comment hints that other factors, perhaps related to infrastructure, safety, or personal experiences, outweigh the positives. It serves as a concise but impactful statement on the user’s perspective.

Source: Reddit.

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Hasanthi Kodituwakku