Whether you’re moving to the US for employment reasons or personal ones, the immigration process can be both exciting and terrifying. There are so many different tasks that need to be completed before moving that keeping track of all of them can be an issue (even for the most organized people).
You’ll need to deal with the visa application process, housing arrangements, employment-related matters, etc. all before getting on the plane to the US. Living in the United States is something that countless people all over the world dream about. By using our tips posted below, you’ll be able to make the transition much easier on yourself.
Visas, Immigration, and Applications
The single most important aspect of moving to the US is the actual legal immigration process. Most people move here with some type of visa (for educational or employment purposes). There are many different types of visas that you can apply for. The most common type of visas are work-related (or school-related), but family visas and marriage visas are also common.
It’s essential that you deal with everything related to your visa before you actually come to the US. The very last thing that you want to deal with is getting turned away at customs because you forgot to do something visa-related. Don’t wait until before you plan on coming here to start the visa process. Ideally, this is something that should be done in advance.
Consider the COL
The “Cost of Living” (i.e. COL) in the USA is higher than in a lot of other countries. Depending on where you’re moving from, you’re going to need to take his higher cost into account prior to immigrating. Many people move here without realizing how expensive it can be (especially in cities). Don’t be one of these people. Proper financial planning is very important.
Health Insurance is Important
Don’t underestimate the importance of health insurance. The USA is unique in that they don’t offer public health insurance (i.e. you’re going to need to pay for it). With that being said, many employers offer insurance plans (either with discounted rates or for free).
Many states have special offices dedicated to helping people obtain health insurance. If you need help with purchasing a plan and/or enrolling with a provider, contact your state’s local insurance office. Remember that health insurance is absolutely essential to life in the US and that you should never be caught without it.
Employment and Finding Work
Many people who immigrate to the US do so with the help of an employer. However, if you aren’t in the position to have an employer help you with the visa process, you’re going to need to find a job on your own.
Luckily, there are many different options available when it comes to finding work in the US. With the advent of the internet, most people use job boards and search engines to find employment opportunities. Websites such as LinkedIn or Indeed can be an excellent resource for networking (and finding new job openings).
Dealing With Housing
There are generally a few different housing options available in the US: living with family, renting, or buying a home. Most people who choose to move to cities opt for rental arrangements (e.g. renting a room or apartment). You can also rent homes and other properties.
If you’re in the financial position to purchase your own home, it’s recommended to use a reputable realtor. Realty companies specialize in the legal and financial aspects of purchasing a home. If you plan on buying a home, there are many financing options available (via traditional banks, credit unions, etc.).
What to Do With Your Belongings
Many people aren’t sure what they should bring with them to the US. Larger items will obviously need to be shipped here. However, this brings up the question of whether or not it’s worth it to even have them shipped in the first place.
We recommend making a basic list of items that you want to bring, and then items that you plan on purchasing once you’re in the United States. Electronics should generally be purchased once in the US. American power outlets have different voltage settings than other countries, which is something to keep in mind during the packing process.
If you plan on shipping anything to the US, it’s recommended to hire a company with a solid reputation. There are many options when it comes to international shipping, but it’s still important to do your due diligence prior to signing any papers or making any payments.