There are plenty of reasons to move to a new city or town—starting a new job, moving closer to friends and family, or seeking a change of pace. While change itself can be refreshing and welcome, relocating can also be a source of stress and frustration for many people. Where are you going to live? How are you going to meet new people? How will you get around?
That’s why we’ve created a handy guide to help you successfully settle into your new home. Here are 6 steps to relocating to a new city.
1. Accommodation: Find a neighborhood guide
The first step after deciding to relocate to a new city or town is to determine where you want to live. Larger cities will often have extensive relocation guides that offer a map of all the city’s neighborhoods. Relocation guides also provide details on the local economy, thriving industries, job market, education, housing, and more. Whether you’re an urban citizen seeking a home in the heart of a city or a family looking for safe neighborhoods with excellent schools, these guides will help you make an informed, well-rounded decision.
– PDX: Here’s the Portland Relocation Guide.
– SEA: Comb through the Greater Seattle Info Guide.
2. Transportation: Find out how to get around
If you’re moving to a new city because of a job, you’ll want to make sure that you’ll be able to easily get to your new office or around town. Do some research on transportation. Perhaps you’ll want to own a car. Or, maybe it will be more convenient and cost effective to use public transportation, walk, bike, or leverage a car sharing service. Do people in your new city typically take buses or trains? Is your city bike-friendly? How is traffic in your area? Will parking be easy, or will there be a cost associated with parking your vehicle?
– PDX: TriMet has got you covered in the whole Portland Metro Area, but consider bringing your bike! Not only is Portland one of the most bike-friendly cities in the US, it also has a new and expansive city bike-sharing system, BikeTown.
– SEA: Get moving with your ORCA card! It even covers ferries, so you can ride through Puget Sound daily.
3. Community: Join a volunteer group
Making friends and growing your social network will be an important step once you arrive to your new city. Get to know people in your city by getting involved in the community! Find a local volunteering event calendar and sign up for something that interests you, whether it’s going to the local food bank or helping to clean up a neighborhood. When you volunteer through the same organization on a regular basis, you’ll start to see some familiar faces.
– PDX: Bring your whole family to volunteer with Hands on Portland.
– SEA: Stay connected with your community through Seattle Works.
4. Network: Find a brand new networking group
Are you already part of a networking group? Many groups are local chapters of larger, national organizations. In that case, you can easily locate other local chapters by going to the national organization’s website.
Another awesome place to look up stellar professional and personal networking events is on Meetup.com. You can find tons of local meetups that match your interests, from career and business events to book clubs and photography groups. Are you a virtual reality enthusiast? There’s likely meetup for that. Passionate about coding? Join the local meetup.
– PDX: Some of our go-to networking joints are the Portland Tech Calendar, events with the Portland Business Journal, our very own VanderHouwen Engineering Networking Group (VENG), and Portland After Work.
5. Attractions: Find out where the tourists go
Learn about your new city by assuming the role of a vacation-goer. Not only will this give you an instant checklist of fun activities to do upon your move, it’ll give you a sense of the culture and quirks of your new city. Start by hopping into TripAdvisor’s Things to Do and entering in the name of your new city. You’ll be introduced to tons of outdoor attractions, museums, historic landmarks, and more.
After that, take some time to find more local sources for travel guides. These guides provide a more holistic look at your new city—food culture, nightlife, leisure activities, local history and more. You’ll learn that there’s no sales tax in Portland, or that Seattle has a prolific LGBTQ community.
– PDX: Check out Travel Portland for your local guides.
– SEA: Head over to Visit Seattle for things to do.
6. Events: Find out what the locals do
Now that you’ve been introduced to your city, it’s time to think like a local. Dive into your city’s most famous local publications to get a better understanding of the tone of your city and what’s new in the area. You’ll find a lot of passion behind local restaurant reviews and in-depth analyses of new breweries or wine bars. Join some online communities, like Reddit, to hear from real people. Many Reddit communities also host regular meetups to help you get to know those in your area. Reading and hearing from locals will give you a much deeper sense of the ethos of a city.
We understand that moving to a new location and changing your routine can be nerve racking. Remember that planning ahead and preparing for the transition will help reduce pre-move jitters. Try to relax—within a few weeks of arriving to a new location, you’ll begin to settle in. Enjoy the excitement of finding a place to live, starting a new job, and meeting friends. Soon your new city will feel like home.
Ready to get moving? Reach out to one of our recruiters!