Sydney residents slam nightlife in 2021 performance report

Sydney was once the jewel in Australia’s vibrant crown, but now the Harbour City has been ranked as one of the worst party destinations in a new global report.

The new Benchmarking Sydney’s Performance Report 2021 has revealed how lingering impacts from lockdowns and even the state’s lockout laws still have a significant impact on how residents and visitors view Sydney for experiences, health care, crime rates and liveability.

“Sydney’s reputation for being a fun place to go out at night has taken a dive over the past seven years,” Committee of Sydney chief executive Gabriel Metcalf told The Daily Telegraph.

“The impacts on our nightlife are starting to show up in some of the key global rankings that drive foreign investment in our city.”

Sydney was ranked against other global cities in 12 categories, including healthcare and safety, life science, and student experiences – all of which the harbourside city performed well in.

But for nightlife, housing affordability, and air pollution, voters said the city needed some significant improvements.

According to the research which included stats from the Time Out global City Index Survey for 2021, Sydney was ranked in the bottom three for housing ­affordability, falling behind Toronto, San Francisco, London, and Miami, while the nightlife experience in Australia’s most populous city was ranked second-last worldwide among 37 leading global cities. Taking the last spot was Boston.

Night Life Is Back
Sydney has been rated as the second worst in the world for night-life. Picture: Julian Andrews

In a desperate bid to get more people back into the city and spending on experiences or dining, the NSW Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello last month announced two new $25 vouchers would soon be available to residents to spend up in their city.

“As soon as you get them, they’re ready to go, ready to use,” he said.

Sydney Harbour Bridge and Cityscape Illuminated at Dusk, Australia
Sydney performed well in the healthcare and student experience categories. Picture: iStock

“They will be available to June 30 next year. Dine and Discover have been extremely popular in NSW, with 4.8 million people registering for the initiative.

“That’s 4.8 million people who have used the vouchers to help the economy.”

Despite performing poorly in the nightlife category, Sydney remained a popular place to move to post-Covid, ranking ahead of Singapore and Paris. However, the harbourside city did fall behind Berlin, Madrid, London and even Melbourne.

This article originally appeared on Escape and do not necessarily represent the views of

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Before joining Australia Exploring, I was a writer at Tripadvisor.

I'm looking for the best posts for you about travel adventures in Australia and around the world. This website has the purpose to inspire you to travel… travel more and better. I hope it can help you explore the world a little bit better.

I graduated from the University of Sydney. I live in California with my wife and two children.


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