What you need to know when moving from the UK to the USA

The fact that the USA is the second most popular destination for UK emigration should not come as such a surprise. The two countries share a common history, culture and language. Every year thousands of Britons are moving from the UK to the USA, so you are definitely not alone. Even though there are numerous changes that such a move will bring in your life, the decision to take this step might prove to be beneficial for you in the long run. Whether you are planning to pursue your American Dream in Chicago, Miami, Los Angeles or some other US city, there are some common steps you should take in order to make your move as successful as possible.

Moving from the UK to the USA by plane
Moving from the UK to the USA is exciting

Get the correct visa before your moving from the UK to the USA

The first thing you need to do if you are moving from the UK to the USA is to acquire the correct visa. Keep in mind that getting a visa is a very long process, so you should probably get the ball rolling as soon as possible. Following are the most common types of visas you can get:

   1. Working Visa: You can get this type of visa even if you don`t already have a job waiting for you in the USA. However, in order to do this you will have to fit within a very strict criteria. Candidates with a masters or a PhD degree have the best chances, as well as those who have been working in their respective fields for over five years. Also, if your profession fits under the list of skill shortages you are good to go.

 2. Family: This is a very common type of visa. Even though they take a long time to be approved, they are a very stable way of getting a permanent stay in the USA. Being a child of a US citizen quickens the process – so does marrying one.

3. Sponsored Employment: In case a US-based company applies for you to work for them, you may as well start packing your bags, because you are very likely to be approved for a visa. This way, you will already have a steady source of income even before you physically move. This may be the best type of visa you can get if you are moving from the UK to the USA.

Besides these, there are many other types of visas you can apply for when considering your move to the USA. Be sure to explore and get familiar with all of your options.


Move your belongings from the UK to the USA

It cannot be denied that moving is usually a very exciting adventure, after all who does not like meeting new people and exploring new places? However, before you get to the fun stuff, you will have your work cut out for you. An intercontinental move, such as a move from the UK to the USA, requires a lot of planning. Following are the things you need to do in order to successfully move your belongings from the UK to the USA:

   1. Storage space: Even if you don`t have too much stuff, it is highly unlikely that you will be able to move all of your possession that you have been collecting for your entire life all at once. The best option is to rent a storage unit in your place of living in the UK so that you can gradually transfer more belongings with you to your new home.
2. Moving a pet: If you are a pet owner, this is an important one. Bringing a pet with you to the USA can be a very complicated process. Putting a little effort in the process will make a significant difference. The important thing is to start on time and vaccinate your pet, get a pet passport and arrange the appropriate transport. Get familiar with all of the procedures and you will have no problems moving your pet with you.

moving a pet from the UK to the USA
Start on time when moving a pet from the UK to the USA

3. Banking: A very important, if not the most important thing you need to transfer from the UK to the USA is your money and bank account, because let`s face it, without it you can`t have any sort of life. Since your British account and card will create additional fees when used overseas, you need to open a US bank account as soon as possible.

Moving is definitely a very complicated process, but there are certain things that you can do that will make your move that much easier.


Learn about the cost of living in the USA

Learn the value of a dollar if you moving from the UK to the USA
Learn the value of a dollar

Depending on the country in the US you are moving to, you will need to get familiar with the price differences between the UK and the USA.  Not all cities in America are equally expensive. For example, some of the most expensive cities in the US are New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Rental prices across the US are usually higher than in an average UK city. On the other hand transportation prices and expenses are cheaper. Researching the prices and the standard of living in your future city of choice will help you immensely. By comparing them to your current lifestyle you can avoid any unpleasant surprises when you get there.

One thing that is comparable in both the UK and the US are the schooling costs. Everybody knows about the importance of education, so no matter where you decide to move in the end, you will need to choose the right school for you or your children. 

For some people, the sense of community is extremely important, maybe even crucial. If you are one of them, don`t worry. Here are some of the US cities which attract more UK people and which you can take into consideration:

  • Denver, Colorado
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Portland, Oregon
  • Burlington, Vermont
  • Sarasota, Florida
  • New York City, New York
  • San Francisco, California
  • Austin, Texas

So there you have it, the things that will help you survive your intercontinental move. Moving from the UK to the USA can be enjoyable or tedious – it is what you make of it. Preparedness is the key to success, so start planning on time, sit back and enjoy the ride.

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