NY vs Istanbul in December

Now that the holiday season is in full swing and December around the corner, I wanted to satisfy my curiosity and have some fun on a Friday evening. Whether you should take it seriously is up to you. I am neither a climatologist, nor a meteorologist but wanted to do some number crunching for a comparison of New York City and Istanbul. The reason is that both cities are almost on the same latitude. Determining the location of a (large) city is a bit tricky; therefore, I focused on the JFK Airport (KJFK) and Atatürk International Airport (LTBA). Both airports are close to the sea and both cities are harbor cities. JFK’s coordinates are 40 38 23 N, 73 46 44 W and Atatürk’s 40 58 34 N, 28 48 51 E. The orthodromic distance between the two airports is 8072 km.

What I did here was, using Weather Underground data, to compare the minimum, maximum and average temperatures of the two cities in December 2014-16. The choice of years is arbitrary, and with no scientific criterion. However, it should be interesting to see how similar or dissimilar the weather conditions are in two cities that are on the same latitude.

The boxes without a label indicate the Istanbul temperatures.


The average temperature in NY during December in the stated years was 6.7 degrees Centigrade, whereas in Istanbul that was 7.8 degrees. The low, high and average temperatures in Istanbul seem to be consistently higher than they are in NY. The difference is miniscule but those in NY seem to have a bit more variation. A t-test of the average temperatures indicates borderline statistical significance (p < 0.04521) but in real life this is probably inconsequential.