NYC - Statue of Liberty

7 Things to know and do before moving to NYC

Located in New York State, New York City is known as the city that never sleeps, where possibilities abound, and culture and diversity are valued. There’s an obvious sense of charm in the air, whether you’re strolling through Central Park or indulging in a slice of world-famous thin-crust New York pizza.

This is a place for you if you want to live in an area where history and modernization are equally valued and give opportunity to develop your perspectives because NYC is a worldwide economic powerhouse with numerous career options.

Are you planning to move soon? Read on to learn more about the 7 things to know and do before moving to NYC.

Moving to NYC: Everything to know and do

1. First steps before moving to NYC

Finding a job in NYC

According to the New York Department of Labor, private sector jobs in New York City increased by 158,600 in a year, reaching 4,111,300 in May 2023. New York City has a diverse and dynamic job market with various industries and sectors. 

Some traditionally high-demand jobs in New York City includes: Software developer/engineer, Financial analyst/consultant, and nurses.

Online job postings such as Indeed, SimplyHired, and NYC Government Jobs, job fairs, and recruiting agencies are all resources that job searchers can use to research opportunities for employment in NYC.

Getting there

Flying to NYC is a popular option from quite a distance or another country. Three major airports serve New York City: John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), LaGuardia Airport (LGA), and Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR).

If you prefer an alternative mode of transportation, numerous cities, such as Newark, New Jersey, Stamford, Connecticut, and New Rochelle, New York, have rail connections to NYC. The bus services by companies like Greyhound, Megabus, and BoltBus, can take you to NYC.

Another option is driving your private car to NYC if you prefer the liberty and convenience of driving. Remember to take into consideration things like traffic jams, parking availability, tolls, and plan your trip carefully and get familiar with the city’s parking restrictions.

In need of a trusted moving company to move you to NYC? Discover the 5 best movers in NYC

Must dos before your arrival

Moving to NYC may be exciting and will challenge you in many ways. By knowing these things beforehand, you will be better prepared for your new life in the city.

Learn about NYC’s transportation system, which includes subways, buses, and taxis. To quickly explore upon arrival in the city, download needed applications such as Google Maps or the official MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority app) for your convenience.

Study the local etiquette and practices in NYC to blend in with the city’s diversified community, such as sidewalk etiquette, fast-paced lifestyle, and tipping culture.

You must update your voter registration to reflect your new NYC location so that you may vote in local, state, and national elections. The New York State Board of Elections allows individuals to register to vote online or by mail.

2. Upon your arrival in NYC

Exchanging your driver’s license

If you have a valid driver’s license from another state or country and move to New York City, you may be asked to exchange your out-of-state or international license for a New York State driver’s license. 

For accurate and up-to-date information about applying for a driver’s license in NYC, check out how to notify the DMV of an address change.

Setting up a bank account

While setting up a bank account is not required when moving to NYC, however it does provide advantages because it offers a secure and easy platform for managing your money.

In New York City, there are several banks and financial institutions that provide a variety of services to locals and corporations, such as JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo.

Getting health insurance

Getting health insurance in NYC is an easy process, individuals, and families can search for and purchase health insurance policies on the New York State Department of Health website.

Additionally, there is Child Health Plus, a government-funded health insurance program that covers younger people under the age of 19 who aren’t eligible for Medicaid and do not have access to affordable health insurance offered by their employers.

For those who are qualified but are not eligible for Medicaid or other programs that make health insurance more affordable, there is a low-cost health insurance option called The Essential Plan.

A network of hospitals, clinics, and healthcare facilities is run by the public healthcare system, NYC Health + Hospitals, throughout NYC. Regardless of a person’s financial situation, they provide healthcare services to everyone.

3. Living in NYC

Finding a place to live

Best places to live in NYC

Every neighborhood has its own unique charm and identity, so when deciding on the best place to live in NYC, it’s important to consider individual interests. Here are some best places to live in NYC, in no particular order:

  • If you want to be a part of the Upper West Side, Manhattan is a combination of residential and business neighborhoods with cultural institutions such as the Lincoln Center and accessibility to Central Park.
  • Brooklyn has a deep sense of community, so if you enjoy participating in local projects, neighborhood organizations, and events, this is the place for you. Street festivals, farmers’ markets, and community events are popular in the borough, which promotes a tightly connected and inviting culture.
  • The Bronx is popular for its big park structure, which offers people several opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. It is home to a number of well-known universities, including Fordham University and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. These institutions offer both educational and professional opportunities to students and professionals.

Setting up the Internet

Setting up the Internet in NYC is the same as it is in other places. It is important to choose the internet service plans, speed, pricing, and availability in your specific location that will best meet your needs. Spectrum, Verizon Fios, Optimum, and RCN are some of the most popular ISPs in NYC.

Should you rent or buy in NYC?

As stated by the U.S. News House Market Index, rising mortgage rates drove many purchasers away from the market in the middle of 2022, causing NYC house prices to start falling. Consequently, sellers lowered their asking prices in order to attract potential buyers

Since 2022 began, there have been fewer rental vacancies in NYC, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. With only 3.1% of all units empty as of December, they remained constant at a five-year low. That is much lower than the country’s 5.8% vacancy rate and around 1% lower than the previous year.

The decision to rent or buy a property in NYC depends on some factors, including personal choices and financial stability. Try these trusted websites, such as PropertyClub,, Houzeo, and Trulia, which are often used to find available apartment listings and properties in NYC, or engage with a real estate agent for assistance.

4. Cost of living in NYC

It is no secret that moving to NYC is pricey, and it is important to research the cost of living in New York City before moving, so you can calculate your budget and have an effective financial strategy in place. The data below is from Numbeo’s cost of living for NYC for an individual:


Average cost in NYC

Buying a property

Per square meter outside city center


1-bedroom outside city center



Numbeo’s costs of groceries multiplied by 4



Electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage or 915 sq ft Apartment




Public transport 

Monthly pass


Meal at mid-range restaurant


Movie ticket



2 items


Monthly gym membership 





5. The weather in NYC

According to Climate-Data.Org, the weather in NYC has a mild and temperate climate with cold winters. Its coastal location, proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, and urban heat island have effects that result from the city’s structures and infrastructure.

The average annual temperature in New York, where New York City is located, is 11.9 °C (53.4 °F). The average annual rainfall here is around 1,139 mm (44.8 inches). The month of July is the hottest, with an average temperature of 24.5 °C (76.0 °F), while the average temperature in January is the coldest month of the year, with a temperature of -1.0 °C (30.3 °F).

6. What to do as a local in NYC

people in central park in nyc

There are several activities available to New York City locals, and they make the most of them during their free time. Below are the lists of what to do as a local in NYC:

NYC offers a nonstop, fast-paced lifestyle with a lot of entertainment options. Most locals enjoy nightlife venues and shopping malls like Manhattan Mall and NYC’s Fifth Avenue.

Locals may choose from an endless number of artistic experiences because of New York City’s lively artistic environment. It is where Broadway is situated and where you can see top-notch theater displays.

Considering the city center, New York City has plenty of green spaces and outdoor activities. Locals frequently spend their free time in parks such as Central Park, Prospect Park, or the High Line and just enjoy the fresh air.

7. Fun facts about NYC

  • Alfred Mosher Butts, a jobless architect residing in Jackson Heights, Queens, invented the famous word game Scrabble which was once known as “Lexiko” before then.
  • When you stand in one of the corners of the low ceramic arches outside the Oyster Bar & Restaurant in Grand Central Terminal’s Whispering Gallery and make a sound, it allows you to have a conversation with someone on the opposite side.
  • The Brooklyn Bridge has a hidden apartment that is no longer visible to the public today, but is an interesting item of NYC history because it was established inside its structure. It was built at the beginning of the 20th century and used by an engineer named Washington Roebling and his family.
  • Central Park measures 843 acres (341 hectares) and it is larger than the territory of Monaco and even big cities like Vatican City and San Marino.


While New York City has many appealing features, some people may find it challenging to deal with factors such as high living costs, an overwhelming setting, and a fast-paced lifestyle. However, moving to NYC is certainly the perfect place for those who want to enjoy a vibrant city. Before considering moving to NYC, it is important to think about your personal preferences, moving options, lifestyle, and work goals.

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