Cost of living -

7 Things to know and do before moving to Louisiana

Louisiana is a state in the Deep South and South-Central regions of the United States. People call it the “the Festival Capital of America” because of the countless festivals that happen year-round. Louisiana is known for its distinct and rich culture, delicious food and natural beauty. 

The job market in Louisiana is also getting better. In addition to this, the cost of living in Louisiana is low, education is affordable, and it has a calm and slow-paced lifestyle.

So, if you are considering moving to Louisiana, there are several things you need to know and prepare. Here are 7 things you need to know before moving to Louisiana.

Moving to Louisiana: Everything to know and do

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1. First steps before moving to Louisiana

For your move to Louisiana, you will need to hire a reliable moving company or take on the move yourself. To find the best moving company in Louisiana, look for good reviews, a professional-looking website, and years of experience.

Planning a move to Louisiana? Take a look at our selection of:

The 5 best moving companies in Baton Rouge.

The 5 best moving companies in New Orleans.

Finding a job 

According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Louisiana had 157000 job openings in May 2023, compared to 148000 openings in April 2023 which provides more job opportunities. 

Jobs that are often in high demand are director of advanced manufacturing, remote sales associate, remote sales representative, and national account manager.

Finding a job in Louisiana is easier if you search online for job openings. Popular websites for this include Louisiana Jobs, Indeed, and LinkedIn.

Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2023)

Getting there 

Below are some travel options to get to Louisiana City from different parts of the country include:

Flying: Flying is the most convenient way to move to Louisiana and you can check Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport for schedules. 

Train: You can also take the train with Amtrak as an alternative. 

Bus: If you want another way to travel, many Louisiana cities have bus services like Greyhound, and FlixBus, that can get you there.

If you are flying and require assistance with moving your belongings, you can explore options provided by reputable moving companies.

Must dos before your arrival 

Moving to Louisiana 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.

  • When moving to Louisiana permanently and expecting significant mail (excluding packages), consider enrolling in USPS’s mail forwarding service or at your local Post Office. This service redirects your mail to your new address for a specified duration. The initial fee for regular mail forwarding is slightly over a dollar for six months, and you can extend it for an additional six months for around $20. Begin the process by signing up on USPS’s website or at your local Post Office.
  • When moving to Louisiana, sell or donate what you won’t need to simplify your move. Sell or donate household items and personal belongings that won’t be useful. Decide if you want to sell them on sites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace, or donate to a non-profit organization

2. Upon your arrival in Louisiana

Must dos right upon your arrival

  • Get familiar with your neighborhood, and make sure to take note of the important emergency numbers.
  • If you roam around the city for work or just simply checking on it, it would be great to purchase a daily pass to save money.
  • Locate the essential facilities like the nearest hospital, police station, and fire department for your safety and in case of emergency.

You can easily get around in Louisiana. There are several options available. 

Burton Transit – Provides various transport services in New Orleans such as airport shuttle, black car service, corporate, hourly/charter service and medical transportation.

CATS – Operates 25 bus lines and provides transport service to residents and visitors of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Exchanging your driver’s license

Once you move to Louisiana and establish residency, you must transfer your out-of-state driver’s license with the LA Office of Motor Vehicles (OMV) within 30 days. In order to transfer your out-of-state driver’s license, you’ll need to visit your OMV office in person with a completed Application for License or Identification Card (Form DPSMV 2003), proof of identity, proof of social security number and some other documents

You’ll also have to surrender your out-of-state driver’s license. If your out-of-state driving license is valid, your driving exam, pre-licensing course, or any test except the vision test will be waived.

Register your vehicle

If you have just moved to Louisiana, you’ll have to register your out-of-state vehicle with LA OMV within 30 days of establishing residency. Failure to do so might result in penalties and additional charges. You will also have to pass an inspection. To get your car registered in Louisiana, you will need to submit:

  • The Vehicle Application (Form DPSMV 1799), current title and registration.
  • Driver’s license, payment for fees and some other documents. You can submit these documents either by mail to the address on the form, or in person at a local Louisiana OMV office.

Change your address

Along with mail forwarding, you will also have to update your new address with the concerned authorities in Louisiana like the DMV. To exercise your right to vote in Louisiana, you can register to vote online, by mail and in person. 

  • To register by mail, you need to mail a completed Louisiana Voter Registration Application (Form LA-VRA) to the applicable address listed on the form. 
  • To register in person, you need to submit a completed Louisiana Voter Registration Application (Form LA-VRA) to The Registrar of Voters office. 

You should also change your address with your employer, bank, doctor, insurer, and service providers so that you can avoid any complications further down the road.

Setting up a bank account 

Obtaining a bank account in Louisiana is a straightforward process. You only need to present a copy of your valid state or government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license, military ID, or passport. For convenient branch access in Louisiana, consider banking with Chase, which has 140 branches across the state.

Getting health insurance

Getting health insurance is an excellent way to get peace of mind when it comes to your health. With health insurance, you will not have to worry about spending a ton of money in case of a health-related emergency. The state of Louisiana proposes a website to help you with your health insurance search. Simply choose Louisiana as your state and create an account.

Type of healthcare

Cost

Employer-sponsored health insurance

$149.00

Non-employer-sponsored health insurance

$479.33

Gym

$61.43

Numbeo (Oct 2023), Value Penguin (Oct 2023) & EHealthInsurance (Oct 2023)

3. Best places to live in Louisiana

Louisiana

If you are a couple, you might want to consider living in Baton Rouge. It is the fastest-growing capital city in Louisiana, with a lot of opportunities in terms of jobs and education. In addition to this, it has a comfortable & friendly neighborhood with a lot of restaurants, shopping areas and parks.

If you are a family, you might want to consider Lafayette. Lafayette has pleasant year-round weather, some great schools and plenty of outdoor activities such as camping spots, golf courses, fishing, biking trails, parks and much more.

If you are single, you should consider moving to New Orleans. It is the most populous and happening city in Louisiana and offers plenty of amenities and is full of great food options. In addition to this, Louisiana is home to Tulane University and has a college-city charm.

Setting up home services 

Setting up essential home services like electricity, water, and internet in Louisiana is a straightforward process. 

  • The Louisiana Public Service Commission is responsible for regulating electricity, natural gas, water, and telecommunication services in Louisiana. They ensure that consumers are provided with accessible, safe and reliable energy services at reasonable rates. You can visit their website and search for electricity, water, and gas providers and even reach out to them if you have any inquiry. The main purpose of LPSC is to keep the customers well-informed regarding the services they are getting from the utility providers.
  • Louisiana has reliable internet service providers, ranking as the 33rd most connected state in the USA. With 137 broadband providers, 93% of residents have access to 10 Mbps internet service. The state offers a variety of connection types, including cable, DSL, fiber, and satellite, with diverse pricing, speeds, and bundling options. The best Louisiana internet providers provide multiple package choices at affordable rates, ensuring high-speed connectivity.

When setting up these services, ask about setup fees, installation timelines, and contract terms to avoid any unwanted charges. Additionally, look for special offers or bundles that could save you money by combining internet, cable TV, and phone services.

Should you rent or buy?

The average Louisiana home value is $200,146, decreased by 3.7% over 2022. Louisiana’s price per square foot to buy an apartment outside the center is $238.60.

To find an apartment for rent in Louisiana, check out websites like Apartmentguide.com, Apartments.com, and Zillow. For locating a house, use websites such as Zillow, Century21, and Trulia.

Cost of rent in New Orleans, Louisiana

Area/Neighborhood

1-bed apartment

3-bed apartment

New Orleans (Outside of Center)

$1,088.17

$2,166.67

Cost of buying a property in New Orleans, Louisiana

Area/Neighborhood

Average home price 

New Orleans

$200,146

Numbeo (Oct 2023) & Zillow (Oct 2023)

Consider getting home insurance

Getting home insurance is essential, whichever state you are residing in. It is a kind of financial protection that will cover for your expenses if a natural disaster damages your home. Due to its geographical position and climate, Louisiana is frequently visited by severe natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and storms. Therefore, getting home insurance will prove to be valuable.

4. Cost of living in Louisiana

Category

Monthly cost

1 bed apt rent outside city center

$1,088.17

Groceries

Numbeo’s grocery list ($66.94 multiplied by 4)

$267.76

Utilities

Electricity, heating, cooling, water, garbage

$180.08

Internet with 60 Mbps

$72.38

Transit pass

$56.00

Entertainment 

Meal, taxi, movie

$86.50

Gym membership 

$61.43

Total

$1,812.32

Numbeo (Oct 2023)

5. The weather in Louisiana

On average, there are 216 sunny days per year in Louisiana. The highest temperature in summer is 92° and the winter low is 39 degrees. Louisiana averages 0 inches of snow per year and 60 inches of rain. 

Summers in Louisiana are really humid and hot. The weather in Louisiana is very unpredictable. Winter doesn’t start until late January, and there is almost no snowfall.

6. What to do as a local in Louisiana

After you are done settling into your new home in Louisiana, you will probably want to familiarize yourself with the state and all its attractions. Some of the most popular activities and locations in Louisiana include:

Jackson Square – A historic park in New Orleans. It’s one of the most recognizable landmarks and is known for its accessibility, beauty and for being a place where people want to be. 

City Park – City Park is unique and magical, just like the city of New Orleans. You can enjoy several activities such as golf, tennis, train rides, botanical garden and much more.

Chicot State Park – The park covers around 6,400 acres of rolling hills and water in South Central Louisiana. You can take part in different fun-filled activities such as camping, fishing, hiking, boating and much more. 

Sprouts Farmers Market, Albertsons, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, and Costco are popular supermarket chains in Louisiana, while Walmart and Costco are two well-liked large chains of businesses. Try visiting the Oceana Grill and Bernard Cajun Sea-Fry Restaurant, two must-see eateries in Louisiana.

Visit the popular cities in Louisiana: New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lafayette and Monroe.

7. Fun facts about Louisiana

  • Fun Fact #1: Louisiana is one of the states with the most crocodiles in the US.
  • Fun Fact #2: There is still a french-speaking population in Louisiana.
  • Fun Fact #3: Louisiana is one of the wettest states in the U.S.

Conclusion

Moving to Louisiana permanently is a significant life decision that opens up a wide range of lifestyle options. It is important to consider how well your preferences and interests align with the city’s way of life and social setting. 

Need a trusted moving company for the area? Discover the 5 best movers in Louisiana.

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Selina Cifelli

The author

Selina is a motivated marketing intern with a keen interest in developing engaging content related to moving experiences and city life. With a passion for fashion and traveling, she brings a fresh perspective to our readers. Her talent for crafting innovative written material effectively positions MovingWaldo as a trusted resource for hassle-free and efficient moves.

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