The rudest cities & states in America - as ranked by Americans

If you’re reading this travel blog, I’ll assume that you’ve done some traveling in your life. The extent of it may vary from person to person but I’d hazard a guess that you’ve been to at least a couple of states in the United States. And I bet you’ve made your opinion of, of the states you’ve been to, which states had people who were the nicest and which had ones who were not. Or maybe you’ve not been to some certain states but have heard stories or stereotypes about them that least you to believe how nice or not nice they are.

Well, they did a survey of people just like you :-)…

A year and change ago, Business Insider and SurveyMonkey teamed up to conduct a survey of more than 2,000 American adults, asking them to choose the five rudest cities in the U.S. from a list of the 50 biggest cities.

The polls were from a national sample balanced by census data of age and gender and respondents were incentivized to complete the surveys through charitable contributions. The two polls for the survey had a total of 2,092 respondents: 1,075 respondents were collected 10/25/19 – 10/26/19, and 1,017 respondents were collected 11/22/19 – 11/23/19. They were conducted on the internet and there was a margin error of 2%.

New York City was the winner (loser?), after it was voted by 34.3% of respondents as the city with the rudest citizens. Los Angeles came in second place, with 19.7% of respondents saying they were the worst. Washington D.C. was ranked #3, and Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Buffalo, Baltimore, Philadelphia and San Francisco rounded out the top ten of the rudest of the rude.

When the results were released late last year, New Yorkers interviewed by the New York Post did not take the news well, with responses such as, “Screw those people. Half the people probably haven’t been here!” (which may be true; it didn’t sound like ever visiting a city had anything to do with voting on rudeness).

“We’re kind of gruff,” added a 21-year-old Long Island resident, “but we’re kind-hearted when you get to know us.” (Note from Sharon: I lived in NYC for 35 years. This is absolutely true)

Here’s the full list:

1. New York, N.Y.

2. Los Angeles, Calif.

3. Washington D.C.

4. Chicago, Ill.

5. Boston, Mass.

6. Detroit, Mich.

7. Buffalo, N.Y.

8. Baltimore, Md.

9. Philadelphia, Pa.

10. San Francisco, Calif.

11. Birmingham, Ala.

12. Atlanta, Ga.

13. Las Vegas, Nev.

14. Dallas, Texas

15. Miami, Fla.

16. Austin, Texas

17. Jacksonville, Fla.

18. Houston, Texas

19. Cleveland, Ohio

20. Tampa, Fla.

21. Sacramento, Calif.

22. San Diego, Calif.

23. Pittsburgh, Pa.

24. Cincinnati, Ohio

25. Charlotte, N.C.

26. Hartford, Conn.

27. Indianapolis, Ind.

28. Seattle, Wash.

29. San Jose, Calif.

30. St. Louis, Mo.

31. Columbus, Ohio

32. Kansas City, Mo.

33. Nashville, Tenn.

34. Portland, Ore.

35. New Orleans, La.

36. Memphis, Tenn.

37. Louisville, Ky.

38. San Antonio, Texas

39. Oklahoma City, Okla.

40. Orlando, Fla.

41. Riverside, Calif.

42. Virginia Beach, Va.

43. Phoenix, Ariz.

44. Denver, Colo.

45. Richmond, Va.

46. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.

47. Salt Lake City, Utah

48. Providence, R.I.

49. Milwaukee, Wis.

50. Raleigh, N.C.

But wait! There’s more!

Business Insider doesn’t appear to have updated their list for 2020, but another publication, BestLife, apparently did their own research of the rudest states in 2020, using (take a deep breath):

  • Business Insider’s data (as seen above) from 2019 (as well as each state’s population so they could figure out the percent of each state that were considered rude)
  • Insurify’s “percentage of rude drivers”
  • Big 7 Travel’s poll of 2.5 million social media followers of “how unfriendly each state is”
  • LivePerson’s analyzations of conversations with customer service agents across 500 brands to see which residents cursed the most

to find out what states had the rudest citizens in the U.S. And THEIR Top 10 rudest states turned out to be:

10. Idaho

9. California

8. Rhode Island

7. Massachusetts

6. Utah

5. Alaska

4. Iowa

3. Washington (state)

2. Virginia

1. New York

You can click here for the rest of their list, as well as specifics (i.e. rudest city in each state, percentage of rude drivers, etc.) for each of their rankings.

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