Moving to a big city is exciting! However, no matter how prepared you think you are for the dramatic change, you will be faced with a lot of surprises.
There are just some things you cannot anticipate until you actually experience them firsthand.
Tips for Moving to a Big City
Below are things most people who have already experienced moving to a big city wish someone would have told them.
1. Expect Delays
You need to get in the habit of leaving extra early for work, school, or that expensive spinning class. Expect delays. Traffic can be brutal and public transportation is not always on time. Not to mention, you could miss the bus, if it actually shows up early for once. There will be days you are extra early, but this just gives you the chance to sit on a bench and actually enjoy your coffee.
2. Learn the Fastest Route
Just because you have a car does not mean you should use it. Jumping on the subway could cut your commute time in half, if it means you avoid traffic. Sometimes walking or bicycling is the way to go, too.
3. Know the Parking Laws
You will quickly learn that parking laws vary from one street to the next. Know when you can and cannot park somewhere, and what the time limits are. If you are moving downtown, it’s typically best to hire professional movers because they know whether or not you need permits or reservations to park by your door and unload the truck.
4. Understand the Meaning of ‘Cozy’
You will likely see most apartments listed as “cozy.” This means you can reach your refrigerator from your bed, and you should not expect much closet space. Find out the measurements of rooms, doors, staircases, and elevators before attempting to move furniture that might not fit.
5. Pay Attention to Surroundings
First, it is easy to find yourself walking in circles. Had you made a mental note of certain landmarks, you may not have circled the block three times before you realized you were not getting anywhere. You also need to be aware of anyone who may be following you.
6. Be Unattractive to Criminals
If you look lost, you instantly become a target. Do not carry your wallet in the back pocket of your pants or the side of your coat, and never leave your purse unzipped. Avoid wearing headphones at dawn and dusk, or if you are in a secluded area.
7. Use Smartphone Applications
There are many applications you can use on your phone to help you find your way around. Some will provide public transportation schedules, lists of restaurants and services, etc. Your phone may become your best friend.
8. Do Not Eat Out Every Day
Going grocery shopping soon after the movers leave is a must. If you eat out every day, you will likely find yourself struggling to pay bills. Although, learning where to go for happy hour is a must!
9. Carry Cash
Always have a little cash on you. Many food vendors do not take credit cards. Plus, you never know when your car will breakdown or you lose your bus card and have to pay for transportation. It is a good idea to have small bills for tips, too.
10. Carry Hand Sanitizer
There is nothing clean about a major city. Sure, it may “look” clean, and streets can be spotless, but touching railings, door handles, money, etc., exposes you to a ton of germs.
11. Get Familiar with Dog Restrictions
You may have four dogs in the country and no one cares, but chances are good you will be exceeding the limit in a city. If you have a bully breed, make sure the city or apartment does not have any restrictions against them. A city may not be affected by breed specific legislation, but restrictions could be enforced by an apartment building.
Photo Credit: Adam Sturm