Life in Galveston, TX: 10 Things to Know BEFORE Moving to Galveston

December 12th, 2023

Life in Galveston, TX: 10 Things to Know BEFORE Moving to Galveston

Living in Galveston, TX

Are you moving to Galveston, TX? Here are ten things to know about life in Galveston before you relocate.

If you are considering moving to Galveston, Texas, you have come to the right place. This unique city is located on the Gulf Coast of Texas on an Island that provides its residents with prime coastal living. Home to a growing population of over 50,000 people, Galveston is an excellent place to live that is only 50 miles away from Houston. Known as a charming beach town that is full of historical architecture, sunny beaches, prime real estate, and highly-rated restaurants, it is no surprise that Galveston is a top choice for those moving to Texas, and we have compiled a list of the best neighborhoods in Galveston to help those who are relocating to the area.

Whether you are moving for a new job, retirement, or simply for a change of scenery, Galveston is the perfect blend of mellow Island life and city living. Before packing up your belongings, you probably wonder if Galveston is the right choice. With the help of this moving guide, learn about the pros and cons of Galveston before even stepping foot in the city.

Read on to learn more about 10 Things to Know BEFORE Moving to Galveston, TX.

The people are friendly.

The residents of Galveston certainly know how to lay on the southern charm. Since this is such a laid-back and relaxing place to live, the city has gained a reputation for having friendly and welcoming locals. I0% of the population was voted tind and friendly. While this may not be a big deal to some, having friendly residents can improve or ruin someone's experience in a new city. If you are new to the area, having welcoming neighbors who try to start a conversation can make all the difference in creating a positive living environment.

Low cost of living.

Often overshadowed by other large cities in Texas, Galveston is an affordable place to live on the Gulf Coast. With a cost of living that is 4% lower than the national average, Galveston is an excellent option for middle-class families. Galveston is also 5% less expensive than Houston and 23% cheaper than Austin. Housing expenses in Galveston are also 10% lower than the national average, which is excellent news for homeowners. Considering the society's size and population, an average annual income of $52,899 is recommended to live comfortably. Extra expenses like housing, utilities, transportation, and groceries are lower than the national average. On the other hand, Texas has no state income tax, meaning more money can be put toward purchasing a new home.

Galveston TX pier on a sunny day with ferris wheel in background

The weather is fantastic.

Considered to have a subtropical climate, Galveston experiences long, hot, and humid summers alongside mild winters. With an average high temperature of 90 degrees Fahrenheit, tugust is the hottest month of the year, with a low of 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, January is the coldest month of the year, with an average high temperature of 61 degrees Fahrenheit and an average low temperature of 49 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures rarely dip below 37 degrees and rarely rise above 93 degrees Fahrenheit. The best time to visit Galveston for desirable weather is between late March, mid-May, mid-October, and mid-November. 

While the city may receive 203 sunny days throughout the year, it also often rains. Experiencing frequent thunderstorms, Galveston gets an average of 50 inches of rain annually, surpassing the national average of 38 inches. Always bring an umbrella or rain jacket when leaving the house. For those moving from a colder climate, feel free to leave any snow gear behind since Galveston receives 0 inches of snow on average. The last time that Galveston received a significant amount of snow was in 1886.

Downtown Galveston TX at night time

Beware of hurricanes.

While the warm weather may be great for beachgoers, its location on the Gulf makes Galveston a frequent target of hurricanes. The hurricane season typically lasts from June to November yearly, with August and September receiving peak tropical storm activity. The other states are in the Gulf; these tropical storms often impact Texas. Over the past few centuries, 56 hurricanes have landed in Galveston, which has racked up millions of dollars in storm damage. Here's a homeowner's guide to storms and how to protect against them. The last major hurricane that hit Galveston was Hurricane Harvey in 2017. While hurricanes may not always hit Galveston straight on, the city and its residents must be prepared in an emergency. 

In case of a hurricane, follow these tips to stay safe:

  • Evacuate if possible 

  • Stay indoors, away from windows and glass doors 

  • Leave mobile homes 

  • Stay updated to local and national alerts 

  • Be prepared to turn off primary sources, including power, water, and gas 

  • Beware of high winds and flooding

There is no shortage of jobs.

Over the past year, Galveston has seen a job increase of 3.1%. This is excellent news for individuals who are seeking employment. The city is predicted to witness a total job increase of 31% Over the next ten years. While this may be lower than the national average prediction of 35%, the job market is still experiencing large amounts of growth. Due to the city's geographic location, multiple industries drive its booming economy. Major economic sectors include tourism, education, healthcare, maritime, and financial services. The Port of Galveston provides more than 13,000 jobs to the city and more than $2.3 billion to the state of Texas. The minimum wage in Galveston is $7.25. Even though there may be many job opportunities available, that does not always mean that there will be a job opening in your particular industry. If you are looking for a job when moving, keep an eye out for available positions and be open to new opportunities. 

Aerial view of the beach and city of Galveston TX

Beaches are everywhere.

Renowned for its 32 miles of beautiful beaches, this Island city provides premier access to the Gulf of Mexico. Attracting both locals and tourists daily, the Galveston beaches are a popular destination for any beachgoer. Not only is the water warm, but it is also calm, which provides perfect conditions for water activities such as swimming and kayaking. While the beaches here may be notorious for not being as clean as the beaches in Florida, Galveston still has many safe and relaxing beaches to enjoy.

Check out these local favorite beaches in Galveston, TX! 

  • Babe's Beach: Considered a top beach in Galveston, this is a go-to spot for couples and families. Featuring a historic seawall, this beach is filled with new restaurants and bars and is the perfect place to lay out in the sand. 

  • Stewart Beach: Great for the whole family, this is the perfect spot to let loose and enjoy the sea breeze. Build a sandcastle or play a game of beach volleyball. 

  • Crystal Beach: Stretching for seven miles, this beach always has attractive and picturesque views. This beach dog-friendly bandcars are also allowed on the sand. 

  • East Beach: Known to bring in a large crowd, this beach is where the party scene is. This is also the only beach in town that allows alcohol. 

  • Seawolf Park: Though this beach may have a rocky shore, it is an excellent spot for fishing. There is also a picnic, playground, and military museum on site.

Education is a priority.

Galveston is the location of the Galveston Independent School District, which oversees all of the top-rated schools in the area. With a fifteen-student to one-teacher ratio, the Galveston Independent School District does its best to provide individual attention to every student. Spending thousands of dollars on its public schools yearly, the city emphasizes quality education. For those moving with school-aged children, determining which neighborhoods feed into the schools you want your children to attend might be a good idea before buying a home.

Galveston has no shortage of those if you are looking for higher education opportunities; Galveston College is a top two-year public community college in the area that was ranked as the number four best community college in Texas as of 2021. The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston is also a top institution in the city that offers both undergraduate and graduate programs in the healthcare field. One of the best parts about moving to Galveston is the in-state tuition status. If you do not mind commuting or traveling far from home for college, there are over 170 colleges and universities in Texas. 

Galveston TX street signs and visitor welcoming sign

Learn to love seafood.

As a coastal city, it is unsurprising that seafood restaurants are abundant. With more than 100 species of fish regularly caught around the Island, Galveston locals love to find new ways to add fish to every meal. From pasta and salads to soups and tacos, seafood is an everyday staple in most households. Gulf Grouper is a favorite when seasoned to perfection and added to well-known dishes. 

Check out these local favorite seafood restaurants in Galveston, TX! 

  • Gaido's Seafood Restaurant: Opened first in 1911, this elegant restaurant provides the best views of the Gulf and even better food. Make sure to order the Gulf shrimp, salmon, and crab cakes. 

  • Fisherman's Wharf - Galveston: This casual spot serves freshly caught seafood, craft cocktails, and ocean views. 

  • Shrimp N Stuff: Get your shrimp and fried seafood fix in this cozy atmosphere. Make sure to order the gumbo and coconut shrimp. 

  • Fish Tales: A go-to spot for tropical drinks and delicious seafood. We provide excellent service and dishes at an affordable price. 

  • Seafood House: Located on the waterfront, this restaurant is unique and an excellent spot for dining on homemade seafood dishes. Making a reservation to ensure a table for your party might be a good idea. 

Galveston TX on a map with a pin showcasing it's exact location along the Texas coastline

Watch out for crime.

While Galveston is home to many safe and beautiful areas, the city also has one of the highest crime rates in the country compared to other cities of the same size. With a crime rate of 39 incidents per 1,000 residents, the chance of being a victim of a crime is relatively high. The possibility of being a victim of a violent crime is one in 25. While these may be scary odds regarding crime, there are ways to prevent it. As long as residents make intelligent decisions, staying safe is possible. TLocals consider the southwest part of the city to be the safest. 

There is always something to do.

Providing its residents with some of the best attractions in Texas, Galveston certainly knows how to have fun. Whether you are looking for a new date idea, a place to bring the family, or an excellent place to hang out with friends, there is always something to do and explore in the city.

Instead of heading to the beach, check out these local favorite things to do in Galveston, TX! 

Pros and Cons: Moving to Galveston, TX


  • Friendly community
  • Low cost of living
  • Booming economy
  • Good public schools
  • Plenty of activities


  • High crime rate
  • Summers can get extremely hot

FAQ: Moving to Galveston, TX

Is Galveston, Texas, an excellent place to live?

This coastal town is one of the best places to live in Texas for its endless sunshine, delicious seafood, history, parks, and more.

How often does Galveston get hit by hurricanes?

It is hard to say when precisely a hurricane will hit, but typically, the Texas Coast experiences storms every 15 years. 

Is it better to live in Galveston or Corpus Christi?

Both are beautiful places to live, but Galveston is known to be much nicer and more likely, as Corpus Christi is much quieter.

Moving to Galveston, TX - The Bottom Line

Whether or not you are moving to Galveston, it is undoubtedly worth the visit. From its pretty beaches to mouthwatering seafood restaurants, Galveston is a great place to live, full of job opportunities and prime real estate.

If you decide to move to this thriving city officially, contact one of our knowledgeable and experienced real estate specialists to guide you through the home-buying process. or introduce you to another great place to live in Texas, like San Antonio. Contact us today to find your dream home in Galveston, TX!

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Ryan Fitzgerald

Ryan Fitzgerald

Hi there! My name is Ryan Fitzgerald, and I am a REALTOR®. My goal is to help you learn more about real estate through our Real Estate Blog! Hopefully, you enjoyed the above blog post and it found a way to provide help or value to you. When you're ready to buy or sell a home of your own let us know here. Please feel free to join the conversation by dropping us a comment below.

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