Seattle is the Northernmost major city on the West Coast of the United States. The major economic, cultural and educational centre in the region, Seattle is the centre of the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metropolitan area, the 15th largest in the United States, and the largest in the north-western United States. The United States of America (USA) is in North America, bordering both the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Pacific Ocean, between Canada and Mexico. Mostly temperate, but tropical in Hawaii and Florida, arctic in Alaska, semiarid in the great plains west of the Mississippi River, and arid in the Great Basin of the southwest; low winter temperatures in the northwest are ameliorated occasionally in January and February by warm chinook winds from the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains. Vast central plain, mountains in west, hills and low mountains in east; rugged mountains and broad river valleys in Alaska; rugged, volcanic topography in Hawaii. The official language is English. It is predominant in business circles throughout the US. The US has highly cosmopolitan immigrant communities, particularly in cities who speak many other languages. Spanish is widely spoken in districts of most cities, as well as areas near the Mexican border. The main religion is Christianity. The economy of the United States is a capitalist mixed economy, fuelled by abundant natural resources, a well-developed infrastructure, and high productivity. The U.S. economy is the largest national economy in the world, with an estimated gross domestic product (GDP) equal to a quarter of nominal global GDP and a fifth of global GDP at purchasing power parity. The security risk for expatriates in the United States is low overall, but medium in low-income, inner-city areas. Risks include terrorism, opportunistic street crime (such as pickpocketing, bag-snatching, mugging and vehicle theft), and violent crime in low-income, inner-city areas. Other risks include hurricanes, forest fires, and snowstorms. The population in Seattle WA is 3.4 Mil (2014 est.), while the inflation rate is 2.1% (2014 est.).
Cost Of Living
The cost of living for expatriates in Seattle WA as at 1 July 2015 is high in comparison to other places in the world. In Seattle WA, the cost of each basket, based on local prices, compared to the international average in USD, is categorized follows: 1) Alcohol (where available) & Tobacco: Average 2) Clothing: Low 3) Communication: Average 4) Education: Very High 5) Furniture & Appliances: Low 6) Groceries: High 7) Healthcare: Very High 8) Household Accommodation: Average 9) Miscellaneous: Low 10) Personal Care: High 11) Recreation & Culture: Average 12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: High 13) Transport: Very High Seattle WA is for example 11.1% more expensive than Montevideo for groceries, -11.1% cheaper for household costs than Durban, and 33.8% more expensive for transport costs than Athens. Seattle WA is ranked as a minimal hardship location. Hardship (also know as quality of living) refers to the degree of hardship an expatriate and their family are likely to experience in the host location. Hardship pay is compensation to encourage people to move, in particular to less desirable locations. In determining the amount of hardship premium payable, factors such as economic, political, religious, infrastructure, environment/climate, personal safety, health, education, and transportation factors are considered. The hardship premium for Seattle WA for an expat from Zurich is for example 0%, i.e. host location (Seattle WA) premium of 10% minus home (Zurich) location premium of 10%. Xpatulator.com has been created to assist subscribers calculate expatriate pay using the online calculators and extensive database of cost of living and hardship indexes, for 780 international locations. Want to know more about cost of living, hardship or expat pay in Seattle WA? Register subscribe to your home location and Seattle WA and run your personalised reports.