Moving to the US is so many people’s dreams, and after that, many things need to be done in your first week. Every year, the United States welcomes thousands of immigrants from all around the world. The US has so many opportunities that await you once you entered the country and cultural diversity is everything. Moving and starting a new life in the US could be the most important decision you’ve ever made.
Starting a new life in America could be one of the most important decisions you’ve ever made. The first few weeks in the US can be very stressful and scary; everything and the surroundings are new. Things you expect might not exactly work out as fast as you want them, so patience is needed to succeed. So I am here to guide you.
Below are some things you must do after relocating to the US.
1. Where to live and stay
When Migrating to a new country and city, the first thing to consider is where you will be living. You will need to arrange where you will stay once you arrive. You can try a few options: First, if you have family or friends, contact them, and stay with them while you try to settle down and look for your own apartment.
The other option is to book and hotel or Airbnb for a short-term rental while searching for your own apartment. Many hotels offer discounted prices for longer stays, which will be a good option if you don’t have any friends. Searching for an apartment in the USA is relatively easy, and depending on where you decide to live, rental prices are reasonable.
There are thousands of websites you can search for an apartment, including apartments.com, rent.com, zillow.com, and so on.
The prices of apartments and hotels vary from state to state and city to city. Living in popular and big cities might be greatly expensive when compared to less expensive cities.
There are storage places everywhere in the US; you can consider renting one to store your properties while waiting to get an apartment or a comfortable place to stay.
Remember, the Apartments agency and management would ask about your immigration status, credit history, and work information before renting out an apartment for you. Sometimes they will require someone to sponsor you or stand as a guarantee.
Relocating to the US is a tough decision and can be overwhelming but you will be fine if you get where to stay.
2. Social Security Number (SSN)
Applying for Social Security in the US is very important, and it should be the number one priority once you arrived. You need to apply for a social security card within 7 days of your arrival to enable you to work and do other things. The Social Security Card is a nine-digit number issued to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and temporary residents.
The Social Security Card is your identification and proof that you have been issued a Social Security number. You will not be able to work and or even get paid without a social security card. Check on the social security website to get all the necessary documents and their office closest to you. Social Security Card should arrive around two weeks after applying.
You can use a temporary address when applying; ensure you have access to that address’s mailbox. Some of the documents you will apply for social security cards are Passport, a Lawful Permanent Resident card ( Green card), or a birth certificate. Check out the website for detailed documentation needed. Doing this after moving to the US should be very important.
3. Open a Bank Account
After moving to the US, you should open an account at an American bank as soon as possible. Some bank allows you to open an account while waiting for your social security number while others won’t do it until you have your social security number.
You will get a debit card immediately after opening the account, which will ease you up buying stuff. You can also use the Debit card at the ATM for cash withdrawal and deposit. There are cash machines called Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) almost everywhere in the US. You can find them at different locations like in the mall, grocery store, and other points of interest areas.
Immediately after coming to America, you should go to any bank and open one Checking account. If you already have a job, check with your employer how their preferred bank makes life easier for you when receiving direct deposit.
4. Learn to drive / Apply for Drivers License
After applying for your social security card, I will advise you to learn how to drive and apply for a driver’s license. Having a driver in the US is essential as it can be used as a state ID and a central identification document. In most cities, you will need a car to live a comfortable life; using the bus as a means of transportation is cheap, but it’s time-consuming. Therefore, you will need a car in most US cities to move around easily.
Make sure you visit the state DMV website and get the information on the Learners driving license Permit. To get a driver’s license, you must pass a written theoretical exam and a driving test. Each state has different requirements to have a driver’s license. Check with your state DWV to get all the required documentation and requirement. If you already know how to drive before relocating to the US then you have done well.
If you plan on driving, understand general road rules, and obey them, you don’t want to have a ticket for not obeying traffic rules. In the US, the driver’s seat on the right-hand side is different from other countries, so you have to learn that you are used to left-hand side driving. You can also learn how to drive in your home country before moving to the US.
5. Look for a Job
Job opportunities are one of the major reasons why people relocate to the US. Looking for a job is not that difficult in the US, but it’s not easy too, it will take you some time, but you will definitely get one. Getting a job after moving to the US should be done as soon as possible when you arrive. The cultural and educational differences might be a roadblock to you, but I tell you, just start somewhere. After starting somewhere, you can climb up gradually as time goes on.
There are several job sites you can apply to, which include: indeed.com, CareerBuilder.com. LinkedIn.com, Glassdoor.com, and on. You can also check with job recruiting agencies; they will help you search for a good job.
Moving to the US can be fun and exciting, but ensure you consider the stress involved and do what needs to be done. Use every opportunity that comes your way and be of good behavior at all times. Consider going to school if you haven’t done so, as the US job market is very competitive.
Also, take some certification programs to understand the US system and improve yourself in the job market.
Avoid credit cards if you have enough cash that can last you for the first few months of your arrival. Getting into debt immediately arrival will have a bad effect on you in later years. Everything seems like a gift, but I tell you there is no free stuff in the US. Either you pay today, or you will pay later.
Staying debt-free at the beginning will help you in the future. Apply for credit cards when you are comfortable; with that, you can easily pay off. Once again, welcome to the United States of America.
Once you are in the US get yourself familiar with the laws of the city and state and ensure you obey them.