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Ann Arbor vs. Las Vegas, NV – How Do We Compare?

September 7, 2023 Regional Updates

Game 2: Saturday, September 9, 2023 | Michigan vs. UNLV | Michigan Stadium | 3:30pm EST

Ann Arbor SPARK’s popular football blog series is back for Michigan’s 144th season! We use the football season as an opportunity to compare Ann Arbor to cities around the country represented by our U-M football competition. The question is always – how does Ann Arbor compare to other college towns in the U.S.?

Week two is here already and it brings the second meetup in history of the UNLV Rebels and the Michigan Wolverines. Both teams are 1-0 coming into this weekend’s game. 

Las Vegas stands as a globally celebrated prominent destination, known primarily for as a hotspot for  gambling, retail therapy, gourmet dining, entertainment, and vibrant nightlife. As a region, the Las Vegas Valley plays a pivotal role as Nevada’s foremost hub for finance, commerce, and culture. Las Vegas is nearly five and a half times larger than Ann Arbor with a population of more than 656,000. UM-Ann Arbor had more than 50,000 students enrolled in fall of 2021 while UNLV had around 31,000. 

With a larger population, it is no surprise that Las Vegas has a higher unemployment rate than Ann Arbor (6.1 percent and 4.0 percent, respectively). The labor force participation rate in Las Vegas is 63.4 percent compared to 66.8 percent in Ann Arbor. The overall cost of living in Ann Arbor is lower than in Las Vegas (cost of living index of 99.9  vs 109.5). The median household income in Las Vegas is $61,356 (compared to $73,276 in Ann Arbor) which is in stark contrast to the low percentage of individuals over the age of 25 who possess a bachelor’s degree or higher. In Las Vegas, only 25.9 percent of the population fit into this category compared to 77.2 percent here at home. 

Be on the lookout for our blog posts ahead of each game all season long and be sure to tag us when you share these interesting tidbits with your friends via social media! And, if you want more information like this or are curious to learn more about the Ann Arbor region and what makes it such a great place to live, work, and locate your business, please reach out to our Director of Research, Melissa Sheldon.

In case you missed it, here are links to the regional comparisons we’ve posted so far this year: 

Week 1: Ann Arbor vs. Greenville, NC