For foreigners living in Beijing, and perhaps even locals, the question 'Why the f*** do you live in Beijing?' can be a common one. Naysayers cite pollution
, extreme weather and general shabbiness as reasons why Shanghai is better, Hong Kong even more so and the rest of the world... well, we're not here to talk about the rest of the world.
But we love this darned city and we reckon you do too, so we asked over 15,000 Time Out readers around the world to take part in the Time Out City Life Index, telling us how they really feel about their local culture, neighbourhoods and overall happiness. The results didn't rate Beijing too highly, sadly, with us Jingers ranking our city as 22nd best out of a total 32 that took part (Chicago took the top spot from Porto, NYC, Melbourne and London).
But all is not lost! There are plenty of results to be proud of, namely that Beijingers seem to get out and about more than most. 65 percent of us went to the cinema in the past week
, 68 percent went to a bar
and a whopping 10 percent of revellers have stayed out until sunrise in the past seven long, cold nights
. Sirs, madams and anyone in between: we salute you.
When it comes to personal connections, let's just say that Beijingers can be pretty caj, befitting of our rough 'n' ready pride. While 75 percent of us don't know our closest neighbour's name, 63 percent still reckon that it's easy to make new friends here. Just under half of you have had a one night stand, and 15 percent have sent a nude picture to someone they haven't met. That may seem saucy, but it's actually 3 percent lower than the global average, it turns out.
We may have ranked in the lowest tercile overall, but 76 percent of us say we enjoy living here, which is pretty good for a city that gets so much flack from the uninitiated. Perhaps that figure would be higher if we all earned over 40,000RMB a month – that's how much the average Beijinger thinks is necessary to live comfortably. Seems like most of us have got a way to go, though, as the average salary is more like 23,000RMB a month.
We'll be slicing the figures in more detail in the coming days, including a blow-by-blow comparison with our rivals in Shanghai
. Until then, get an early night – especially the 36 percent of you who are going to bed between midnight and 2am
. That said, maybe you're just making the most of the safe streets, as 89 percent said they felt safe walking around alone at night