Are you considering moving to Texas but aren't sure whether to choose Dallas or San Antonio?

In this honest comparison, we'll explore the similarities and contrasts between these two amazing cities, and by the end, you'll know which one is more appropriate for you.

Both cities have their distinctive appeal and it can be difficult to make a choice, but which city offers the best lifestyle?

The final decision is yours to make and we hope this guide will give you some useful information to help in your decision-making.

Whether you’re seeking a change of scenery or new job opportunities, contact us and we’ll assist you to find a great place in Dallas or San Antonio that is suitable for any budget.

Cost of Living

Dallas (63.63) has a higher cost of living than San Antonio (60.07), but the difference is not significant. Nonetheless, San Antonio is cheaper than Dallas in terms of housing costs.

According to recent data, the median home value in Dallas is $265,700, while in San Antonio it's $211,600. Thus buyers looking for a similar property in Dallas should expect to pay more.

In the same way, Dallas has higher rent prices. For example, a one-bedroom apartment will on average cost $1,200 a month in Dallas, while in San Antonio the same goes for $1,000. However, it's worth noting that the higher wages in certain industries may somewhat help offset the housing costs in Dallas.

Category Dallas San Antonio
Median Home Value $266,000 $211,600
Average Rent (1 bedroom apartment)  $1,200 $1,000
Monthly Public Transport $80 $38
Eat Out (Average restaurant) $15 $12
Cost of Living Index 63.63 60.07
Rent Index 52.99 39.95

Note: The figures in this table are based on recent data and are subject to change over time

Winner: San Antonio

Booming Economy

Both cities have high employment rates, with Dallas marginally outpacing San Antonio in this regard. Compared to the national average of 4.2%, the unemployment rate in Dallas hovers around 3.7%, while San Antonio's is slightly higher at 4.1%. According to the US Census Bureau, San Antonio's median household income is $52,455 whereas Dallas's is $72,919, making Dallas the wealthier city. That said, a diverse range of industries contributes to both cities' economies.

Major industries in Dallas

  • Finance - Wells Fargo, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  • Technology - AT&T, Texas Instruments, and Dell. • Healthcare - Texas Health Resources and Baylor Scott & White Health. Major industries in San Antonio
  • Military - Randolph Air force Base, Lackland Air Force Base, and Fort Sam Houston.
  • Healthcare - University Health System, Methodist Healthcare, and Baptist Health System.
  • Tourism - The River Walk and the Alamo.

Winner: Dallas

Crime Rate

Recent data suggests that San Antonio has a lower overall crime rate than Dallas, as well as lower rates of violent and property crimes. According to, Dallas has a crime rate of 46 per 1,000 residents. Meanwhile, San Antonio has a crime rate of 44 per 1,000 residents. Though the difference in crime is not significant, elements such as socioeconomic conditions and population density contribute to the overall crime in each city.

Winner: Tie

Things to Do

For residents looking to spend the day outside, both cities provide plenty of recreation and things to do. Whereas San Antonio is renowned for its culture, history, and natural beauty, Dallas is famed for its contemporary architecture, arts, and shopping.

Popular things to do in Dallas:

  • Visit the Sixth Floor Museum
  • Explore the Dallas Arts District
  • Shop and dine at Bishop Arts District
  • Watch a Dallas Cowboys game

Popular things to do in San Antonio:

  • Visit the Alamo
  • Stroll along the River Walk
  • Explore the San Antonio Missions
  • Visit the Natural Bridge Caverns

Winner: Tie

Traffic Congestion

With a population of over 7 million, Dallas is the fourth-largest metropolitan area in the country. San Antonio is the seventh-largest with just under 2.5 million residents. Given the stark demographic disparity, it stands to reason that traffic in both cities is also different.

Though both cities experience significant rush hour traffic, the congestion in Dallas is much higher. Dallas is ranked the 19th most congested city in the US by the transportation analytics firm INRIX, while San Antonio is ranked as the 28th most congested city.

For daily commuters, the public transportation system in Dallas has a more comprehensive network of streetcars, buses, and light rail. San Antonio only has a downtown streetcar and a bus system. Drive along the major thoroughfares, and you’ll notice the drivers in San Antonio are better behaved than in Dallas where they're more aggressive.

Winner: San Antonio


There are a few significant variations to consider when comparing the weather in Dallas and San Antonio:

  • Temperatures - Throughout the year, San Antonio's typical temperature is a few degrees higher on average than in Dallas.
  • Rainfall - Dallas receives six more inches of rainfall per year than San Antonio including more hail and hailstorms.
  • Tornadoes - Dallas is known for experiencing tornadoes and the risk is much higher than in San Antonio.

Overall, both cities experience the same climate with hot summers and mild winters

Winner: San Antonio

Pro Sports

Both Dallas and San Antonio have thriving sports scenes, but they each have their unique strengths and weaknesses.

The following are the major professional teams in both cities.


  • Dallas Cowboys (NFL)
  • Dallas Mavericks (NBA)
  • Dallas Stars (NHL)
  • FC Dallas (MLS)

San Antonio:

  • San Antonio Spurs (NBA)
  • San Antonio FC (USL Championship)

An analysis by the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation established that the city's sports teams contribute an estimated $465 million a year. In comparison, research by the Dallas Area Chamber found that sports teams in the Big D boost the local economy by over $ 4 billion per year.

Winner: Tie

Airports and Flights

Dallas has two main airports, the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Dallas Love Field (DAL). Meanwhile, San Antonio International Airport (SAT) is the city's only major airport. Although the airports in both cities are only a short drive from their downtown districts, SAT is much closer to San Antonio's downtown than DFW is to Dallas'.

Moreover, SAT serves approximately 10 million people each year, while DFW Airport serves over 73 million passengers making it the fourth busiest airport in the US. Overall, DFW offers more flights and destinations than SAT, making it a better option for frequent travelers.

Winner: Dallas

The Vibe

Dallas exudes a vibrant, international vibe. Since it's the social, economic, and cultural center of North Texas, the city has become a melting pot of cultures and lifestyles. There is also a strong sense of ambition and drive, as locals strive to accomplish their objectives.

With a more laid-back and relaxed vibe, San Antonio takes pride in its history and cultural heritage. Along with a strong sense of community and tradition, the people of San Antonio are more friendly and welcoming. Visitors speak fondly of the warmth and hospitality that permeates the city.

Winner: Tie

Final Thoughts

So, which city is better? The answer will depend on the lifestyle you prefer. San Antonio might be a better choice if you're looking for affordable housing and a more temperate climate. On the other hand, Dallas is a better choice if you prioritize a higher household income, an easy commute, and more job opportunities. Regardless of which city you choose, our agents can help you find a great spot to call home. Call us today and we’ll make your next real estate transaction happen.

Posted by NJeffu Mwaura on
Email Send a link to post via Email

Leave A Comment

Please note that your email address is kept private upon posting.