Puerto Rico vs. US States: An In-Depth Comparison (2024)

In this comprehensive article, we delve into the intriguing comparison between Puerto Rico and various US states. We'll explore the geographical size, population, population density, and political rights to provide a thorough understanding of Puerto Rico's unique status within the United States.

Geographical Size of Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico, an island nestled in the Caribbean, boasts a geographical size of approximately 3,515 square miles (9,104 km²). This places it larger than the states of Delaware and Rhode Island combined and roughly equivalent in size to Connecticut. However, when compared to the vast land area of the United States, Puerto Rico represents only a fraction, with the US being over 107,913% larger. Despite its smaller footprint, Puerto Rico's diverse landscape includes mountains, waterfalls, and stunning beaches.

Comparison of Puerto Rico’s Size to Various US States

To provide a more accurate perspective, let's compare Puerto Rico's size with both smaller and larger US states. Rhode Island, the smallest US state, covers around 1,034 square miles, while Delaware, slightly larger, spans about 2,489 square miles. However, combined, these states still fall short of Puerto Rico's expanse.

When we consider larger states like Texas or California, the difference becomes striking. Texas is nearly 266 times bigger than Puerto Rico, emphasizing the substantial contrast in size. It's important to note that simply looking at raw numbers doesn't paint the full picture; population density also plays a crucial role.

Comparing Alaska, the largest US state, with Puerto Rico exemplifies this. Despite Alaska's immense land area, its population is significantly smaller, highlighting Puerto Rico's higher population density.

Population of Puerto Rico Compared To US States

Puerto Rico's population is estimated to be around 3.4 million people, surpassing the populations of many smaller US states like Nevada and Kansas. To illustrate further, consider Wyoming, the least populated US state, with just over half a million residents, despite its larger landmass. In contrast, Puerto Rico's population surpasses that of 21 US states.

This population comparison adds depth to the understanding of Puerto Rico's unique position.

Analyzing the Population Density in Puerto Rico

Population density is a critical factor to consider. Puerto Rico's compact size, coupled with its large population, results in a population density of nearly one thousand individuals per square mile. This is in stark contrast to some spacious mainland regions with less than ten persons per square mile. In essence, Puerto Rico's smaller land area hosts a much denser population, making it stand out in this aspect.

Political Rights and Limitations for Puerto Rico as a US Territory

Understanding the political rights and limitations faced by Puerto Rico as a US territory is crucial. While Puerto Ricans are US citizens, they encounter certain disparities in political representation compared to residents of official US states. For example, they cannot vote in presidential elections unless they reside in the mainland US. Moreover, they lack the power to influence Congress decisions, given their territorial status.

These political differences underscore the ongoing debate about Puerto Rico's political status within the United States framework.

In conclusion, when examining how big Puerto Rico is compared to US states, it's essential to consider not only geographical size but also population, population density, and political rights. While Puerto Rico may be smaller in size, its unique characteristics make it a fascinating and distinctive part of the United States. Understanding these differences is vital in comprehending Puerto Rico's position within the greater United States.

Puerto Rico vs. US States: An In-Depth Comparison (2024)


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