Moving to America Guide
There is plenty to consider when moving to America. Take a look at our guide to the different aspects you might need to think about.
With America containing 50 individual states, culture is hard to pin down. Each state is different with California known for being laid back and carefree, whereas most people know New York as the city that never sleeps.
America celebrates Christmas and Easter like the UK but also have Independence Day and Thanksgiving as major holidays. American football, baseball and basketball are the more popular sports, with English football – better known as soccer – gaining a better following in recent years.
The language barrier between the UK and the US shouldn’t be too hard. While there are some words we use differently, most British people will have come across these in general American culture.
South America is a different matter, with Spanish and Portuguese spoken more commonly.
Find out if your bank operates in America as this will make it easier to switch your account before moving. Checking accounts are used in America to carry out everything from paying bills to withdrawing money, this is what you would replace your current account with when moving to America.
Unless you’re staying confined to a city well served by public transport, you’ll probably need a car to cover distances. Each state has their own motor vehicle department, with some requiring an International Driving Permit from you, as well as your own license.
Finding accommodation is another tricky issue to navigate, again depending on which state you intend to live in. This is something you’ll likely want to sort out before making your move out to America, speaking to real estate companies in the area you’re planning to move to. You will also be subject to a credit check regardless of whether you want to buy or rent.
When relocating to America, most people will have employment already lined up, but if you don’t it’s worth considering your options in advance. Having a skill set will give you a much better chance of settling in.
The working week is, on average, 40 hours, with less holiday than most EU countries offer. However, employers in America offer other bonuses such as medical and dental insurance.
Should you be moving with your family, education will be a priority. Children in America begin education a little later and work through elementary, middle and high school before going to college.
There is no state funded healthcare in America, with medical treatment being so expensive that it has a medical insurance industry. Some employers offer healthcare packages in your contract, but if they do not, you will need to arrange your own.