San Diego vs Mayport — The Bump
Military Families

San Diego vs Mayport

My husband will be going active duty Navy in August as a JAG. We have the choice of going to San Diego or Mayport. We are both from Ohio and will have a 2 mo old. I'm also a physical therapist and would like to resume working part time in January. Any helpful suggestions?

Re: San Diego vs Mayport

  • San Diego is amazing!! We are stationed about 5 hours north of SD and I would give anything to move down there. Housing in SD is expensive, so that may be the first thing you want to compare. I think you would be able to continue working in both places. California is nice because there is so much to do. You can drive to the mountains in just a few hours and there are so many great places to see along the coast. My husband and I are both from the Midwest and we were in FL for flight school before moving to CA. I think you would be happy with both.

    Most people don't get a choice, so you are lucky you have time to do some research before you decide!

    Good luck!
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  • We're stationed about 2 hours from SD. We go down there a good bit since we have a lot of friends in that area. There is a ton of stuff to do and the area is pretty. Housing is pretty costly. That's not really what would bother us, though. It's the expense of traveling to visit home. Plane tickets to PA, where we are from, are quite costly. I'm not sure how they would compare if you lived in FL or if that is even a concern of yours but, it's been weighing on our minds lately.
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  • Mayport. Never lived in sd but Jacksonville is great. Low cost of living, great weather, not very much traffic, people were friendly, a lot going on, you can get city, country or suburb life within 20 minutes. Love Jacksonville. Which is funny cause i grew up in fl and always thought it was the worst city in Florida but now that i have lived in other parts of the country i would give anything to move back. I really enjoyed my time there

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  • I LOVE San Diego.  We were stationed an hour north until January and will return in either October or January.  I frequently took the train into SD to go to many different activities(old town, maritime museum, USS Midway, etc) and drove in and around there many a time as well(La Jolla to see the seals and sea lions, SD zoo, sea world, Coronado, etc).  There's lots to do in the area and it is beautiful most of the year.  The housing is costly, however BAH is generous.  I wouldn't think twice about choosing San Diego :)
  • San Diego. I'm in the Navy and I've been to both places, there's just so much to do in SD and the humidity isn't as bad.
  • Both cities have a lot to offer, so you are really lucky those are your choices.  Between the two, I would pick SD and recommend living in Coronado.  Houses can be difficult to come by, but it's worth it to live in such a wonderful city.
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  • JoBenJoBen member

    Having spent a little time in both places, I personally prefer San Diego. The only downside I see for you there is that you'll be a lot further away from your families. As I'm sure you're figuring out, that's a much bigger deal when you have a baby!

  • It depends.  Both cities have a lot to offer but they are pretty different.

    Personally, I would choose San Diego in a heartbeat.  The weather, landscape, things to do, and the fact that most of my friends are there helps :).  We are currently expecting orders in about 6 weeks and have our fingers an toes crossed for SoCal. 

    I have spent a fair amount of time in Jax and while it is fine, I just don't really love Florida in general.  Hot and muggy and just not for me.  The PPs are right though, of COL is important to you then Jax is A LOT cheaper than SD. 

    If working is a #1 priority to you then I would research those areas and see what kind of jobs are available.  I don't know how physical therapy works, but do you need a state specific license?  If so, research Florida and California and see if you can transfer easily to both.  I am a counselor so that is something I often have to look at. 

    Good luck!  Both areas are nice and I think you will enjoy either.

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  • My husband is active duty with the Navy and we are in San Diego. 

    I suggest looking at what the BAH differences are and compare them to where you want to live.  Military housing out here is expensive. So, we opted for buying a house (which is much more affordable than paying rent for a townhouse). The townhomes that I know a lot of military families live in cost around $2200 a month. 

    There is a lot to do here and you are close to so many things. 


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  • Thanks for all the suggestions. They were very helpful. We decided on San Diego and should arrive mid October.
  • I currently live in Jax and have been to Mayport and the actual base stinks.. Ive also been to the SD base and its a lot better plus you have all of the great moderate weather minus the thunderstorms. My vote goed to SD! But im also from WA so i think i automatically side with the west coast : good luck!
  • Plus SD is in the mid 70s all day long and only drops to the 60s at night like 9 months out of the year. You dont have to worry about humidity you always will have a sea breeze. You wont have to worry about any natural disasters except maybe a minor earthquake here or there but thats it! SD is beautiful just not as beautiful as the Seattle area ;
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