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City Face-Off Perth vs Launceston

City Face-Off: Perth vs Launceston 

Perth and Launceston may not have the same recognition as places like Melbourne or Sydney, but they have many amazing things that make them great places to live, especially if you’re an immigrant looking for a fresh place to start anew.

But which city is the better one for you?

Perth is the better city if your main concerns are cultural diversity and real estate prices. However, Launceston is the more preferable option if you prioritise safety and the cost of living.

To help you better understand the current living conditions in these two cities, I assessed them based on a couple of factors like cost of living, employment opportunities, and cultural diversity.

Cost of Living in Perth vs Launceston  

Cost of Living in Perth vs Launceston
The cost of living in Perth is 45.9% higher than Launceston’s. In Perth, it’s $2,251 per month, but in Launceston, it’s only $1,411.
The difference is especially noticeable if you look at their rent and grocery costs.

For a more detailed look into the cost difference between Perth and Launceston, here’s a breakdown of common living expenses in both cities.

The data presented here were provided by in October 2023.

ExpensesAverage Cost in PerthAverage Cost in Launceston
Housing (Average Rent per Month)
1-bedroom apartment (downtown)$1,877$875
1-bedroom apartment (low-demand suburbs)$926$509 
3-bedroom apartment (downtown)$1,918$1,182 
3-bedroom apartment (low-demand suburbs)$1,435$981 
Utilities (Average Monthly Bill)
Utility bill (one person per month)$124$125
Utility bill (family of four per month)$216$191
Internet plan (50 mbps per month)$55.2$57.2
1-way ticket (local transport ticket)$3.09$3.41
Monthly pass (local transport ticket)$113$55.1 
Gasoline (1 L)$1.3$1.34 
Milk (1 L or 1 qt)$1.62$1.26 
Bread (0.5 kg or 1.1 lbs)$2.08 $1.47 
Rice (1 kg or 2.2 lbs)$2.06 $1.23  
Eggs (a dozen)$4.42$3.05 
Cheese (1 kg or 2.2 lbs)$11.8 $6.24 
Chicken breast (1 kg)$8.67 $6.71
Potato (1 kg or 2.2 lbs)$2.36$2.26
Eating Out
Fast food meal$10.1$3.67 
Dinner in a mid-range restaurant (for two people)$73.3$60.9

There are many factors involved that affect the pricing of goods and services in these two cities.

For instance, Perth’s pricier groceries are due to the city’s isolated geography. There are no major Australian cities that are close to Perth, with the nearest being Adelaide, which is more than 2,100 kilometres away.

The huge distances make it hard for most businesses operating outside of Perth to transport their goods and services to the city. The transportation costs are passed on to Perth’s residents in the form of higher product prices.

As for why Perth has higher rent prices than Launceston, the main reason is capital cities tend to have a higher demand for their rental units due to the rapid increase in their populations (7 News).

Unlike Perth, Launceston is a non-capital city, which is why the city’s rental prices are far cheaper than the City of Lights.

One puzzling thing about Launceston, however, is the city’s utility prices, which are slightly pricier compared to Perth. The biggest reason why that’s the case is Tasmania, Launceston’s home state, is linked to the National Energy Market.

Because of this, most cities in Tasmania are forced to buy their power at prices similar to those in mainland Australia, despite Tasmania having the ability to produce most of its energy needs on its own (ABC News).

Keep that in mind if you decide to choose Launceston as your home.

Real Estate Prices in Perth vs Launceston  

Perth has slightly lower real estate prices than Launceston.
According to reports published by Michael Yardney’s Property Investment Update and in October 2023, the average price for a single-family home in Perth is 9.2% lower than in Launceston.
An apartment unit is also 4.2% cheaper in Perth than in Launceston.

Here’s a table further comparing real estate prices in Perth and Launceston based on October 2023 data from the aforementioned sources.

Property TypePerthLaunceston
Single-family home (inside the metropolitan area)$634,169$695,000
Apartment unit$431,474$450,000
Single-family home (outside the metropolitan area)$437,201

Diversity and Demographics in Perth vs Launceston 

While Perth and Launceston have diverse populations, more people in Perth were born outside Australia.
According to statistics that Informed Decisions and Population U released in October 2023, only 25.4% of the residents living in Launceston were born outside of Australia, which is lower than Perth’s 36%.

We must also acknowledge that Perth has a larger land area and population size. It also has a higher population density, meaning more people are living per square kilometre in Perth than in Launceston.

Let’s discuss the demographic differences between these two cities with a table that shows a couple of their demographic factors, like geographic location and median age. 

The data listed here was provided by Population Australia and the Australian Bureau of Statistics in October 2023.

Geographic LocationWestern AustraliaTasmania
Size (Area)6,417.9 km2 435.4 km2
Population 2,224,47590,953
Female Population 50.6%51.5%
Male Population 49.4%48.5%
Median Age 32 years old39 years old
Life Expectancy at Birth 83.8 years old83.6 years old

There’s a clear difference between these two when it comes to their population sizes; Perth’s population is 184.29% larger than Launceston’s!

Moving on, let’s also discuss how racially diverse Perth and Launceston are. We’ll use the ancestry records provided by Informed Decisions and the Australian Bureau of Statistics for this part.

Take note that the data presented here was gathered in October 2023.

Nominated AncestriesPerthNominated AncestriesLaunceston
South African1.4%Filipino0.7%
New Zealander1.1%
New Zealander0.4%

As mentioned earlier, both Perth and Launceston have diverse populations, but Perth has a larger portion of its population born overseas, which makes it more culturally diverse than Launceston.

There are many good reasons why Perth is one of Australia’s most preferred destinations for immigrants.

The City of Lights was already a popular city among immigrants at the end of the Second World War when Perth became a key gateway city for most immigrants arriving from Europe via ships.

It’s why a large chunk of the city’s population identifies themselves as having European ancestry, like German and English.

Even today, Perth remains a very popular city among immigrants thanks to the economic boom the state of Western Australia continues to enjoy during the past few years despite an ongoing worldwide recession (ABC News). 

The City of Lights also enjoys the lowest inflation rate among Australia’s capital cities (The Australian Financial Review).

Furthermore, Perth has also experienced a surge of immigrants arriving from many Asian countries like China, Vietnam, and the Philippines. 

Nowadays, languages like Mandarin and Vietnamese are among the most used non-English languages in the city.

Unfortunately, while Perth continues to attract more and more immigrants every day, the same couldn’t be said about Launceston. 

Unlike Perth, Launceston is experiencing population growth stagnation as its local government fails to market the city as an attractive location for immigrants (ABC News). 

In fact, Hobart, Tasmania’s capital, is experiencing twice the growth rate of Launceston.

If not remedied immediately, experts say that Launceston’s working-age population might shrink by more than 5,000 after 2031.

Career Opportunities in Perth vs Launceston  

According to data provided by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in October 2023, Perth is more favourable for job seekers than Launceston.
The state of Western Australia (including Perth) has an unemployment rate of 3.6%, while Tasmania (including Launceston) has an unemployment rate of 4.4%.

However, I should let you know that those living in Launceston have a higher net income compared to those in Perth.

According to, those living in Perth earn $3,379 per month on average after taxes, while Launceston’s residents earn $4,151 per month.

As for what possible jobs you can get in these two cities, we can get a rough idea based on what industries are the biggest in Perth and Launceston.

In Perth, mining is the biggest industry sector as of October 2023. It is then followed by the industries of oil extraction, construction, scientific services, and healthcare (Informed Decisions).

Meanwhile, the healthcare industry is the most prominent one in Launceston. Other major industries in the city are retail, education, manufacturing, construction, and food services (Informed Decisions).

Crime and Safety in Perth vs Launceston  

Perth had more crimes than Launceston from May 10, 2022, to May 10, 2023, according to data from the Western Australian Police Force and Tasmania Police.
Perth had 195,510 crimes recorded, while Launceston had 7,510.
Unfortunately, both Perth and Launceston have experienced an upward trend in their crime reports over the past few years.

While crime statistics are useful in determining how safe a city is, they’re not the only way to determine which of Perth and Launceston is safer. That’s because Perth has a larger population size and land area compared to Launceston.

That’s why we must also compare them based on their crime rates.

Between May 10, 2022, and May 10, 2023, the crime rate in Perth was 87.9 for every 1,000 residents. 

Meanwhile, Launceston’s crime rate during the same time was 82.6 for every 1,000 residents.

Based on this data, we can now conclude that Perth experiences slightly more crimes than Launceston.

Lifestyle in Perth vs Launceston  

    Perth is the better choice if you highly value a city’s healthcare system and if you love warm weather. However, Launceston is better if you prioritise short commute times and prefer living in a cooler climate.

    Still not convinced? Don’t worry, as I’ll discuss in detail how I compared these two cities according to factors like healthcare, weather, and public transportation.

    Weather in Perth vs Launceston  

    Perth is better for those who enjoy long periods of sunshine and warm weather. Meanwhile, Launceston is great for people who prefer living in cooler temperatures.

    Perth has a Mediterranean climate, while Launceston has a temperate climate.

    Perth’s Mediterranean climate lets its residents experience mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers. The city has an average annual maximum temperature of 24.6°C (76.3°F), and it has an average annual rainfall of 733 mm.

    Aside from the winter season, most days in Perth have little to no chance of rainfall. That’s why the city is famously known as “The Sunniest City of Australia.”

    Thus, if you love doing outdoor activities, then you’ll definitely love living in Perth!

    The only downside to Perth’s climate is that the city tends to be really dry and hot during the summer when the city sometimes encounters intense heat waves and drought.

    Not so fun fact: on February 23, 1991, the city experienced its hottest day ever, as the highest temperature recorded in the city during that day was 46.2°C!

    As for Launceston, its temperate climate allows the city to experience far lower temperatures than Perth. In fact, the average annual maximum temperature in Launceston is only 18.6°C (65.5°F).

    It also experiences lesser amounts of rainfall compared to most cities in Australia, with an average annual rainfall of only 665 mm.

    The lack of rainfall in Launceston means it also enjoys a lot of sunny days, like Perth. However, the city’s cooler weather means that Launceston experiences a lot of foggy mornings, especially during the winter.

    Launceston also sometimes experiences negative-degree weather during its coldest months. In fact, the coldest temperature recorded in Launceston was on July 21, 1991, when its residents woke up to chilling -5.2°C (22.6°F) weather.

    Healthcare in Perth vs Launceston  

    In a survey by Numbeo, Perth has a higher healthcare system index compared to Launceston. 

    Perth has a healthcare system index of 67.70%, which is higher than Launceston’s 59.44%. 

    However, please take note that these indices were based on Numbeo’s visitor input.

    To help you see how these two cities’ healthcare systems were compared, here’s a table showing the following aspects that were used to evaluate the healthcare systems of Perth and Launceston.

    The data presented here was gathered in October 2023.

    Skill and competency of medical staff74.52%75%
    Speed in completing examinations and reports67.83%45%
    Equipment for modern diagnosis and treatment81.49%80%
    Accuracy and completeness in filling out reports70.48%70%
    Friendliness and courtesy of the staff71.52%60%
    Responsiveness (waitings) in medical institutions52.24%40%
    Satisfaction with cost57.95%50%
    Convenience of location75.32%65%

    Aside from the perceived efficiency of these two cities’ healthcare systems, we can also discuss the initiatives their local and state governments have launched to improve the health of their constituents.

    In Launceston, the state government of Tasmania has decided to allocate a portion of its budget to improve the city’s healthcare system. 

    An example of this is the provision of a new diagnostic mammography unit in Launceston to improve the city’s ability to diagnose and treat breast cancer among its female population (Department of Health and Aged Care).

    Tasmania had also built a new adult health mental centre in Launceston, which cost over $10.5 million. Here, residents can receive counselling and other psychological services seven days a week without the need for prior appointments.

    As for Perth, the city also enjoys a large number of initiatives launched by the Western Australian state government.

    One of Western Australia’s biggest health programs is its free vaccination program for those who are of ages 7-10 (WA Department of Health). Every kid in the state is provided vaccines for a large number of diseases, including tetanus, HPV, and COVID-19.

    Western Australia has also launched the “Do I need the ED?” campaign, which seeks to educate the residents of Perth on what alternative healthcare options they can choose aside from visiting their nearest hospital’s emergency room (WA Department of Health).

    It’s hoped that this program will help decongest the city’s hospitals so they may be able to respond more effectively to more serious cases.

    Transportation Options in Perth vs Launceston  

    While Perth has a more developed public transportation infrastructure than Launceston, Launceston has a clear advantage when it comes to their average commute times.

    A survey on Numbeo reveals that residents of Perth have longer commutes than those in Launceston.

    Those living in Perth on average have to spend 47.17 minutes on their commute, which is almost 34 minutes longer than the 13.33 minutes for those living in Launceston.

    Residents of Perth have three major public transportation options they can use, which are buses, trains, and ferries. Meanwhile, those in Launceston can only rely on buses for getting around the city, aside from private cars and bicycles.

    Sadly, a report from Informed Decisions has revealed that only 1.9% of Launceston’s population uses public transport to go to their workplaces.

    This is nowhere near Perth’s figures, where it was found that 23.1% of the city’s population mostly relies on public transport to go to work (Informed Decisions). Surprisingly, only 36% use private cars, despite Perth’s massive road network.

    Both Perth and Launceston have smartcard ticketing systems that make their public transportation systems easier to use. In Perth, there’s the SmartRider card, while in Launceston, it’s the GreenCard.

    These cards can be used on any public transportation you’ll find within their respective cities. However, Launceston’s GreenCard has the added benefit of being usable in other major cities in Tasmania, like Hobart and Burnie.

    Do these cards offer discounts to their users? Well, yes, they do!

    Those in Perth can enjoy a 10% discount on all cash fares through their SmartRider cards. They can raise it to a 20% discount if they sign up for Autoload, a feature that reloads a SmartRider card automatically if its balance is below $6.

    Meanwhile, users of Launceston’s GreenCard automatically enjoy a 20% discount on regular fares without the need to sign up for a special feature.

    Before we wrap this up, let’s quickly discuss what options the residents of Launceston and Perth have for travelling to other major cities in Australia.

    For those in Launceston, you can easily travel to Tasmania’s capital, Hobart, within three hours via bus. However, due to Tasmania being an island, you’ll need to ride a boat or an aeroplane to travel to cities on mainland Australia.

    As for those in Perth, the city’s isolated geography severely limits their options, as many major cities are at least 2,100 kilometres away from The City of Lights.

    Because travelling by bus or train to cities like Adelaide and Sydney will take you days, Perthites are left with no other option except aeroplanes to visit other places in Australia within a reasonable timeframe.

    Perth vs Launceston: How They Stack Up

    Now that we’ve reached the end, let’s do a quick review with a quick summary of everything we’ve talked about earlier.

    FactorsThe Better CityWhy
    Cost of LivingLauncestonThe cost of living in Launceston is 45.9% cheaper than in Perth.
    Real EstatePerthThe real estate prices in Perth are slightly lower compared to Launceston.
    Diversity and DemographicsPerthBoth cities have diverse populations, but Perth has a higher proportion of residents who come from overseas, resulting in a richer mix of cultures.
    Career OpportunitiesTiePerth has a lower unemployment rate, but Launceston’s residents enjoy a higher monthly average net salary compared to those in Perth.
    Crime IndexLauncestonLaunceston has fewer crimes recorded and a lower crime rate than Perth.
    LifestyleTiePerth has a warm and calm climate that makes the city a better place for outdoor activities, but Launceston has a cooler average temperature.
    Residents of these two cities believe Perth has a more efficient healthcare system than Launceston.
    Residents of Launceston experience shorter commute times and better fare discounts than those in Perth.

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