las vegas

The Complete Guide to Moving From San Diego to Las Vegas

Thinking of moving from San Diego to Las Vegas? What would it be like to wake up in a city that never sleeps?

When most people think of Las Vegas, their mind races to the sprawling strip, lively casinos, and exciting nightlife. Many people choose to move to this notorious Nevada destination for the reputation it has. But it also gives residents a chance to experience desert living, outdoor recreational activities, and a unique community lifestyle.

Are you considering a move from San Diego to Las Vegas? The friendly team at Best Fit Movers will help you ensure the trip is a sure success and not something you have to gamble on – and the guide ahead will ensure you know what’s ahead before you roll the dice and place your bet on Viva Las Vegas as your future home.

An Overview of Las Vegas, Nevada

Sure, almost everyone has heard of this historic city – but how much do you know about the details? The more you learn about the area, the better prepared you are to enter and enjoy the Entertainment Capital of the World.

Las Vegas is the largest city in Nevada, and home to over 600,000 residents. It is the biggest economic center in Nevada and is home to McCarran International Airport, the seventh busiest airport in the U.S.

Sometimes called the City Without Clocks, Las Vegas is famous for its casinos and world-class entertainment. The Las Vegas Strip is home to around 30 casinos, with dozens more scattered across the city. The Strip also has many attractions, such as M&M’s World, the Hollywood Cars Museum, and Vegas Indoor Skydiving.

Beyond the bright lights on the Strip lies an easy-going desert community with the same amenities as any other town. Many Las Vegas residents never visit the Strip and prefer the restaurants and entertainment in Summerlin, Downtown Vegas, and Town Square.

Why Move To Las Vegas From San Diego?

There are many different reasons to move from San Diego to Las Vegas. Many people move for a lifestyle change, job relocation, and retirement. Contrary to belief, Las Vegas is a haven for retirees due to its lower cost of living and outdoor activities. The exciting atmosphere attracts plenty of young people, and the economy is a prime spot for professionals seeking new opportunities.

Sure, San Diego has its own high points – but when you put these two cities side by side, you may see some major perks to leaving California and putting down roots in the Arizona desert.

Job Opportunities

Both cities have prosperous economies, with most of the major industries represented well. But where Las Vegas pulls ahead is in the fields that give the city its iconic image and reputation.

The tourism, gaming, hospitality, and entertainment sectors primarily support the Las Vegas economy. Employees in these industries earn respectable salaries, more than most of the country. The average salary for a hotel worker is around $40,000, while a hospitality manager can score approximately $85,386 per year.

Unsurprisingly, some of the major employers in Las Vegas are hotel-casinos, including Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel & Casino and MGM Grand. Other large employers in Las Vegas are:

  • Johnson Electric
  • Wynn Resorts
  • Boyd Gaming
  • Clark County School District
  • Scientific Games
  • Diamond Resorts International
  • Boomtown
  • International Game Technology
  • Golden Entertainment

Las Vegas also has strong job performance in fields like health and medicine, information technology, aerospace and defense, mining, and construction. Many businesses choose to relocate to Las Vegas because of the lack of a state income tax, low startup costs, and the opportunity to expand their network – consider this in contrast to California, where taxes are high and starting a business is more challenging.

Outdoor Activities

Las Vegas

The activities in Las Vegas don’t stop at the Strip. Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy hiking, kayaking, biking, rock climbing, and cliff jumping. So if you were worried about losing out on those outdoorsy vibes from San Diego, you’ll feel right at home in Vegas – especially when you’re outside. Here are a few places residents go to take a break from city life:

  • Hiking in Mt. Charleston
  • Boating at Lake Mead
  • Kayaking in the Colorado River
  • Biking through Red Rock National Preserve
  • Cliff jumping at Nelson’s Landing

If you like going for a nice drive to take in the atmosphere with privacy and the comfort of your AC, there are plenty of longer scenic routes in the area. The Valley of Fire is easily accessible with your car and is less than an hour’s drive from Las Vegas. Red Rock Canyon is 16 miles west of Las Vegas and offers some incredible sights.

Affordable Cost of Living

Unlike most major cities, living in Las Vegas is surprisingly affordable. The cost of housing, food, and other necessities is much lower than San Diego.

For reference, the average Las Vegas income is 25% lower than the average San Diego income – yet Vegas housing costs are less than half of what you’ll find out in California! As for commuting, San Diego’s public transit system is hard to beat. However, you’ll save on gas in Vegas if you prefer to drive your own car.

Utility costs in Las Vegas total around $180 for energy and $200 for telecommunications, which are lower and roughly equal with San Diego averages respectively. Food costs for both groceries and restaurants are much more affordable than Las Vegas,

Restaurant Scene

las vegas restaurants

Speaking of food, the table is set for you in Las Vegas. If you love going out and trying different cuisines, you’ll love this city. It’s filled with thousands of dining establishments, from bourgeois fine dining to cheap, delicious eats.

While the Strip features some of the most iconic eateries, there are plenty of other places to eat off the Strip. Summerlin boasts some of the greatest restaurants in the city. From French bistros to pub fare food, Summerlin has food for every tastebud.

Some of our favorites off the Strip restaurants are:

  • Herbs & Rye (Off-Strip)
  • 7th & Carson (Downtown)
  • Bottiglia (Green Valley)
  • Hobak Koren BBQ (Chinatown)
  • Other Mama (Spring Valley)
  • Maché Bacchus (Summerlin)

The best way to describe the cuisine in Las Vegas is an energetic melting pot bursting with unique flavors with a pinch of razzle-dazzle. Think of it as a buffet spread of signature dishes with special seasoning that’s fresh and a little different each time.


Unsurprisingly, the Entertainment Capital of the World has – you guessed it – some of the best entertainment in the world. Las Vegas has plenty of entertainment options both on and off the Strip.

From casinos to bars to Broadway musicals and performances from Cirque du Soleil and world-class magicians, the Strip has enough to do to keep you entertained for many years to come.

But as we know, residents rarely visit the Strip unless they have friends in town. The good news is there are plenty of fun things to do off the Strip, too. Our favorite activities include:

  • Explore the Fremont Street Experience
  • Visit the Neon Museum
  • Feast on high-end Japanese cuisine in Chinatown
  • Go ATVing at Adrenaline Mountain
  • Have a drink or two at the Commonwealth Cocktail Club

Las Vegas also has a top-tier festival scene, including the iHeartRadio Music Festival at T-Mobile Arena and Las Rageous, a headbanging, mosh-pit dream for hardcore metal fans.

Best Neighborhoods in Las Vegas

las vegas housing

There are plenty of great neighborhoods in Las Vegas. Even the options in close proximity to the Strip are surprisingly affordable.

Some neighborhoods are better suited for single people, including Downtown, Summerlin, and Henderson. At the same time, others are great for families, including Green Valley, Centennial Hills, and Southern Highlands.

To help you make your decision, here are a few popular neighborhoods in the area that you might decide to call home.

Green Valley

Green Valley was previously rated the best place to live in Nevada and the second-best place to raise a family. It is a master-planned community with smaller neighborhoods within. You can choose to live in a guard-gated, gated, or non-gated area.

Many trails and maintained common areas are found inside Green Valley. There are also dog parks, community pools, and cul-de-sacs. Think of Green Valley as a typical American suburb dropped into the Mojave desert.


Summerlin is another master-planned community in Las Vegas nestled against the Red Rock National Conservation Area. It is considered a great place to live as it is safe and well-maintained.

Like Green Valley, Summerlin has a wealth of parks and outdoor recreation. The area is divided into 22 district communities called “Villages.” Each village is unique, but they all offer world-class shopping, dining, and indoor and outdoor recreational venues.

However, Summerlin is considered a more expensive area to live in, which is helpful to keep in mind before purchasing a property there.


Westgate is a great neighborhood for people looking to live a relaxed, low-key lifestyle. It is a safe area with a tight-knit community feel.

There are many coffee shops, retail shops, and nightlife entertainment venues to keep its residents entertained. Many Westgate residents mention how quiet and dog-friendly the area is, too.

The Lakes

The Lakes gets its name from – you guessed it – the many manufactured lakes surrounding the area. Created in 1985, The Lakes area of Las Vegas offers an upscale quality of life with everything you need right at your fingertips.

As you may have already guessed, The Lakes is one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in Vegas. If you want to move here, you will want to earn around $75,000 per year to live comfortably.

Tule Springs

Tule Springs is located in North Las Vegas, close to highways, schools, and natural regional parks. With a population of just shy of 20,000 people, Tule Springs is a safe and reasonably affordable area.

The Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs is one of the most incredible parts of Las Vegas. Not a slot machine in sight! This 680-acre park is an oasis with wildlife, vegetation, lakes, and breathtaking views of the Sheep and Spring Mountain Ranges.

The park was named after Nevada state Senator Floyd Lamb and has plenty of amenities, including walking paths, fishing ponds, horse trails, and places to grill.

Lone Mountain

Lone Mountain is home to 50,000 people and has a neighborly feel, with 70% of homes owner-occupied. Like most neighborhoods in Las Vegas, Lone Mountain has plenty of shopping, dining, and coffee shops for its residents to enjoy.

Lone Mountain Discovery Park is a great green space with a hockey rink, basketball court, and picnic area. You will feel safe in Lone Mountain, too. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Academy is located adjacent to the Police Memorial Park.

Lone Mountain is an excellent neighborhood to consider if you’re moving with children or retiring to Las Vegas.

Mt. Charleston

Mt. Charleston is an excellent neighborhood for families and outdoor enthusiasts moving to Las Vegas. The area is home to a mountainous landscape with skiing, hiking, and rock climbing opportunities.

Mt. Charleston offers a secluded style of living approximately 40 miles from Downtown Las Vegas. The area is ideal for those looking for an outdoor lifestyle yet close enough to amenities and big city life.

Downtown Las Vegas

Not to be confused with the Strip, Downtown Las Vegas is a popular destination for young professionals and singles to call home. Housing is typically made up of high-rise buildings to cater to those who prefer less maintenance and more time enjoying the Vegas lifestyle.

There is no shortage of amenities in Downtown Las Vegas, with a wide range of restaurants, bars, cafes, museums, and the famous Fremont Street. Unlike the Strip, Downtown has a more welcoming feel and fewer tourists.

In conclusion, Vegas has a ton of great living spots that make it every bit as diverse and welcoming as San Diego. No matter your walk of life or your reason for making a move, you can find the perfect spot to build a future.

Weather in Las Vegas

There’s no doubt you have heard horror stories about the weather in Las Vegas. Did you know it’s also one of the fasting-warming cities in the U.S?

During summer, Las Vegas cooks. You can expect highs of almost 120°F. It can even rival the San Diego heat, so stay hydrated, use sunscreen, and keep your AC serviced regularly.

The good news is there is very low humidity in Las Vegas because it is in the desert. Dry heat allows the body to cool more quickly and won’t feel nearly as hot as humid heat.

Many people move to Las Vegas for the weather, specifically for the mild winters. While winter still exists, you will typically experience daily highs in the 50s to 60s, rarely falling below 48°F. For people moving from San Diego, you should expect similar winter conditions.

Housing in Las Vegas, Nevada

No moving guide is complete without telling you how much your new home will cost. The good news is there are plenty of different options for anyone wanting to move to Las Vegas (and no, you don’t have to live on the Strip!). Let’s look at what to expect when buying or renting a place in the city.

Renting in Las Vegas

Renting in Las Vegas is surprisingly affordable compared to other major cities in the country, including San Diego. In many neighborhoods, there are apartments and homes to rent, no matter what your budget is.

Overall, the average rent for a Las Vegas apartment is between $880 and $1,524. East Village is the most expensive neighborhood to rent in, while Downtown is one of the cheapest.

Houses, condos, and townhouses are among the main housing options when renting in Las Vegas.

For a single-family detached home, you can expect to pay between $1000-2000 or even more depending on size, location, and features. Nevada residents are more likely to own their own homes rather than rent. This may affect how many rentals are available.

If you don’t mind smaller living spaces, your best bet may be an apartment or condo. In Downtown Las Vegas, you can find a studio apartment that’s cozy and affordable.

Renting may be the right option because it gives you flexibility and no maintenance or repair bills. Another reason people rent is to decide if they like the area before purchasing.

Buying in Las Vegas

Renting isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Some people prefer homeownership for its freedom of customization and control over costs.

For Las Vegas residents, the city also offers some of the lowest HOA fees in the country. On average, HOA fees cost a couple hundred per month, which typically covers the costs of maintaining common areas, landscaping, building utilities, and garbage disposal. More upscale areas may see these fees rise.

If you’re planning on buying a home in Las Vegas, be aware that the market is somewhat competitive. With house prices rising, the median price for a home is now $491,477 with a mortgage rate of 4.58%. While this may seem steep for some, this is a steal if you’re coming from San Diego, where average home prices can hit seven figures.

Moving From San Diego to Las Vegas Checklist

Are you sold on this switch of locations? If you’re ready to make your move from San Diego to Las Vegas, it pays to prepare ahead of time. This checklist will set you on course to have an enjoyable journey worthy of the amazing destination that awaits you.

  • Make a Plan – Create a plan that includes a list of which items you’re bringing, when you want to make your move, and any special concerns you will need to keep track of.
  • Consider Decluttering – When you do make the list of what you’re bringing, you may choose to leave some items behind. Professional storage units can provide the spare space you need until you can sell or donate the items.
  • Pack an Essentials Bag  – Even if you have professionals pack and load your items, keep one bag of essentials with you. This will include snacks, personal items, water, cleaning supplies for the new house, phone chargers, etc.

Speaking of picking a pro to handle your packing and loading needs, there’s no better way to make a major life change like this than by calling on a trusted relocation expert. If you’re headed to Sin City, it would be a sin not to get a trusted moving expert to help you.

Make Moving From San Diego to Las Vegas Easy

San Diego Apartment Movers

Moving from San Diego to Las Vegas is within reach. With our detailed guide, it’s time to make your new life in Vegas a reality. This area brings glitz, glamor, and great vibes for people of all tastes and backgrounds. Whether you want to experience nature, place your bets, or find a new career, this is the place to do it.

Best Fit Movers is the licensed, insured, experienced moving professional you can rely on when you’re making this move. We’ll handle the packing, loading, and transport for you so you get everything from a single service. We even provide packing supplies and storage services if you need them.

Get in touch with the team at Best Fit Movers for a free moving quote today, and we’ll help you make your interstate move as smooth as possible.

Author: Patrick Caramalac

Patrick Caramalac founded Best Fit Movers in 2017 when he saw a need in his community for professional local movers. The company operates from locations in San Diego, Los Angeles and Orange County, and specialize in residential and commercial moves, both local and long distance. With thousands of positive customer reviews, Best Fit Movers is one of the highest rated moving companies in California.





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