As the millennial generation ages, they are beginning to start families, which can lead them to make the same parenting decisions as prior generations. Globally, millennials ranked their most important considerations when selecting their current residence in the following order:

  • Proximity to work
  • Proximity to family and / or friends
  • Proximity to cultural attractions and / or opportunities
  • Proximity to where you grew up
  • Proximity to better schools

Millennials Choose Residence Locations Based Largely on Proximity to Work and Family
Factors Driving Millennial Car Ownership

There were a couple of differences in the global results regionally: Proximity to work was the most popular consideration in all regions except Europe, where proximity to family was more popular. Overall, the top three results were fairly predictable, but we were somewhat surprised that proximity to better schools was not higher. This finding could be explained by the current age range of millennials, with some already having started families and some who have not. Interestingly, proximity to better schools was higher in China (other than Hong Kong) than in all other countries.

Certain other cultural differences by country were evident as well. For example, in Hong Kong, proximity to public transportation was more important than origin (where you grew up), which makes sense given Hong Kong’s well-known traffic issues.21 Somewhat surprisingly, affordability did not rank highly other than in Singapore, which could indicate that millennials elsewhere feel more financially secure, despite some indications about short-term economic concerns.

The overall results were generally expected and do not suggest any likely concern for the auto industry. While there have been some recent trends in companies moving back to cities, at least in the U.S., since our survey data shows that more city dwellers expect to purchase a car than the group as a whole, this may suggest a slightly positive impact for car sales.


21 “Hong Kong’s perennial traffic jams can and should be cleared,” South China Morning Post, accessed September 25, 2019,

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