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Moving to America from the UK

Your How-To Guide!

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If you are moving from the UK to the USA, then look no further! Find yourself enjoying the high life Stateside with help from Sirelo. We have information on the cost of removals to the USA, a great checklist, and free removal quotes to make your move to America as simple as possible! Sirelo will have you moving with a smile. 😊

How Much Does It Cost to Move to America from the UK?

If you’re planning to start a life across the pond, the cost of removals to the USA is definitely something you’ve pondered. We’d be surprised if you hadn’t! The price can be a little difficult to pin down as America isn’t a small country. The cost of container shipping to America plays a big role in determining the price and is heavily affected by distance and volume.

However, we’ve found that for an international removal to the USA you can expect to pay between £5,500-£7,500, on average, for a 3-bedroom house -presuming you’re not a hoarder. If you’re curious about calculating the volume of your move, then check out our handy furniture volume calculator, it’s pretty nifty.

Of course, a general average might not be scratching the removals to the USA cost itch as you were hoping. So, we took the time to calculate estimates for removals to select cities in the USA from London, just look below:

City1-bed house3-bed house (20ft container)4-bed house (40ft container)
New York£2,000 – £3,000£4,800 – £6,500£6,100 – £8,000
Los Angeles£2,800 – £4,000£6,100 – £8,200£6,700 – £9,200
Miami£2,200 – £3,100£5,000 – £6,800£6,400 – £8,200
Houston£2,500 – £3,600£5,500 – £7,200£6,800 – £8,400
Chicago£2,900 – £4,000£6,100 – £8,300£6,900 – £9,400

Of course, along with your removal costs, other factors contribute to your overall moving budget. If you’re curious to understand the factors that will affect the price read our page on international moving costs.

Sirelo tip: Not sure how much stuff you have? Use our handy furniture volume calculator to do the hard work for you. 😉

International Removals UK to USA

Looking for removal to America? Finding the right company with a proven track record of successful moves is key. Check out the 3 best international movers from the UK to the USA:

1. PSS International Removals

2. Mercia Movers & Storers

3. Doree Bonner International

Save Time When Finding a Removal Company

Removals to the USA are not just costly to your bank balance, but also your time. If you want to reduce the stress of your move, then a removal company is imperative. However, finding one takes a lot of research, especially if you want the best price.

But don’t worry, there’s no need to spend endless hours scouring the internet and making calls! Let us do the hard work for you by finding up to 5 removal companies you can compare for your removal to the USA. That way, you can save money and don’t need to spend time searching. Isn’t it great? 😉

Removals to the USA? Find a Removal Company Today!
Select the size of your household to receive free removal quotes, today!

Moving from the UK to the USA Checklist

With international removals from the UK to the USA, there are some important things to organize before you arrive in the Land of the Free, which will otherwise give you quite the headache. To help you on your way, we have curated this moving to America checklist.

We’ve covered the most important points for any move from the UK to the USA, but we recommend that you also check out our detailed moving abroad checklist. It has even more essential points you should cover to ensure your removal to the USA goes smoothly!

Before You Move from the UK to the USA:

✔️ Important documents

Starting with the most crucial things for any move, it’s of course your documents. So, before you start your move from the UK to the USA, check that you have these documents, ensure that they’re valid, keep them safe, and even make duplicates:

  • Visa and Work Permits
  • Passport
  • Birth Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Medical Documentation (including dental and immunizations)
  • University Degree(s)
  • Police Background Check
  • An inventory of your belongings for customs declaration

✔️ Pack

As your removal to the USA approaches, your mind will likely drift to thoughts of packing. While not a complicated task, it is time-consuming.

As a rule of thumb, we recommend that you start filling boxes at least 1 month before your move to America. In that case, we’ve got you covered with our expert packing guide to help, it’ll be a godsend!

If you don’t like the idea of filling boxes, you can always find a removal company that offers a packing service so you can have a more relaxed move. A great place to start your search is with our list of the top international removal companies in the UK. Having someone else do the hard work give you more time to enjoy your move!

✔️ Taking a car?

We know how precious your four wheels can be. For it to join the 273 million vehicles in the US it must meet the following criteria before moving to America:

  • Must meet the fuel emission requirements.
  • Complete an EPA form 3520-1.
  • Complete a DOT form HS-7.

✔️ Driving license

The good news is that you can use your UK driving license in the US for up to three months. However, if you’ll be living in America for longer than that, then you are required to apply for an International Driving Permit or state-issued driving license.

✔️ What about your pets?

An important member of the family shouldn’t be forgotten! Moving to America with a dog or other pets isn’t a hassle, just ask your mover for help. However, for your furry friends to join the American Dream, the following must apply:

  • Be vaccinated against rabies.
  • Have a valid pet passport.
  • Must not show any evidence of an infectious disease that can be transmitted to humans.

For more information, you can check the CDC website.

Moving to America

Fun fact! We know moving from the UK to the USA can feel overwhelming, so we thought we would lighten the mood: 33% of pet owners have a photo of their animal displayed in their homes. Maybe something worth popping in the suitcase?

After You’ve Moved to America:

✔️ Social security number (SSN)

This is imperative for anyone living in the USA. An SSN essentially is proof of residency, and you’ll need one when working in America. Unfortunately, you can’t apply before you arrive in the States. However, you should prepare and find the local Social Security Administration office so you can take care of this as soon as possible.

Did you know? 💡 On average, Americans eat 100 acres of pizza per day. So, make sure you budget for that!

✔️ Health insurance

Perhaps one of the hardest things about moving from the UK to the USA will be waving goodbye to our trusted NHS. Instead, unless you are lucky enough that your employer is covering the costs, you will need to organise private health insurance otherwise you run the risk of being confronted with quite staggering bills.

✔️ Bank account

Without a local bank account, you will lose a small fortune in currency exchange when paying with your British bank in America. The American banking scene can be overwhelming, so start by exploring some of the following options:

Furthermore, when you move from the UK to the USA and open an account stateside, you’ll then have to transfer your money. Money transfer can be a difficult field to navigate, but you can make a great start by reading our page on transferring money abroad.

Living in America

It’s safe to say that moving from the UK to the USA is more than a hop and a skip to success. Therefore, along with understanding the ins and outs of the moving process, it’s also important to paint a picture of what life in the melting pot looks like. Luckily, as always, Sirelo’s got you covered 😎.

Costs of Living in America

It is important to understand how much things cost upon moving from the UK to the USA. That is why we have put together the following table, comparing the common cost of living metrics between the UK and the US.

MetricUK AverageAmerican Average
Rent for 1-bedroom apartment in the city centre£758£1,014
Price per square meter to buy in the city centre£4,187£2,523
1L of milk£0.91£0.63
0.5L of draught beer£3.63£3.72

Culture in America

America is well known for its diverse cultures. There is a dominant Anglo-Saxon influence, but there are also African, Latin, Eastern European and Eastern influences. The culture in each state can differ tremendously so it’s important you know about them if living in America. Clothing styles vary by social status and regions, different brands are associated with certain stereotypes and status’.

Americas in nature are enthusiastic people and very friendly and welcoming. The well known culture of America as a whole is the freedom aspect as the citizens have come from all over to America. The US is commonly know for its fast food lovers. There isn’t a corner where you can’t find a MacDonald’s, Burger King or Pizza Hut. If you love indulging in big American pizzas, burger and hot dogs then USA is the place to go. The traditional American diners are a must go when going to America.

The climate in the US can be very extreme. The country covers a huge surface area and climates vary from subtropical to tundra climates and everything in between. Certain parts are also prone to blizzards and tornadoes.

Housing in America

Americas are known for their large houses. The Living in Americaarchitectures are unique and most of them are detached. They are usually made out of wood with a nice porch in the front, this is very different in comparison to the UK.

Similarly to the UK, house prices vary depending on location. So houses in popular districts and larger cities will be more expensive to those in rural villages. Houses in areas such as Pennsylvania are much cheaper in comparison to those in the UK; however houses in New York can be equivalent to or more expensive than London

Working in the USA

Apart from the generic ways of applying for vacancies, such as online or at an employment agency, you may find that unsolicited applications to companies are a good way to find employment if you are moving to America. American employers normally recognize UK qualifications. However, it may be worthwhile to find out whether your UK degree will be accepted before applying for a job.

Applying online is also a popular way to search for a job, the most popular job portals in the USA are:

Here are some other things to keep in mind if you are planning to work in America:

  • A workweek is generally 40 hours, but working overtime is quite common and often expected.
  • Holidays are shorter and you may need to negotiate how many days you are entitled to with your employer. Be aware that you can expect as few as nine paid holidays a year.
  • Consider joining a Union or reading the official employee handbook to find out more about your rights and duties.
  • Another thing you may have to negotiate is your benefits package, for example, health insurance and your pension plan.
  • It may come as a surprise that American companies do not always draw up a contract of employment. Moreover, even if they do, it may not protect you from dismissal from work without a valid reason. Likewise, you may hand in your resignation without a valid reason.

Fun fact! Statistically, the deadliest job in America is president; so maybe veer away from that career path…

Education in America

The schooling system differs from what we are used to in the United Kingdom. Education in America on average is longer, the length of time a student will study in university is also a lot longer in comparison to the UK. Compulsory education in America start with Kindergarten at ages 3 until 6. Once your child is 18 they should have completed all compulsory education and has the option to progress to university.

There are private and state schools in America. The decision whether to send your child to a private or governmental institution depends on the financial situation of the family. Private schools have a reputation of being very expensive and not many can afford to send their children here. However, studying here combines prestige and an excellent education and is highly reputable. A more criticised type of education is Homeschooling. Similarly to the UK this type of education is frowned upon with one reason being due to the child not being able to interact with other children their age.

The levels of education are as follows:

Education in America

Primary School

Most children in America start at ages 6 and attend this level of school for 5 year depending on the state. Students at this level learn how to read, write, do mathematics, history, English and other core subjects. A lot of school also offer a foreign language. Class sizes also vary but on average there are around 20 children in a class. School usually lasts approximately 6 hours including a lunch and break

Middle and High School

Middle school starts from ages 11 to 14. This stage of education is when pupils can choose their own
subjects they wish to study. After this age children will attend high school at the age of 15. Students are placed in different classes with different difficulties depending on their level. Education in America is compulsory until the age of 16 or 18. After high school is completed students have these option to attend college or university which is known as higher education.

The grading system and GPA in the U.S. can be confusing, especially for international students. The interpretation of grades has a lot of variation. For example 2 students from different schools could receive the same grade. The student who was from a more prestigious school will be higher valued as expectations at their school will also be higher. Similarly to the UK the school calendar usually begins in August or September and continues through May or June.

Studying in America

Higher education similarly to the UK is not mandatory in the US. Many universities in America have amazing reputations and are with some of the top in the World. This factor encourages many students to continue with higher education to have the opportunity to be accepted into prestigious universities such as: Harvard, Yale, Preston or MIT. The main issue with higher education is however the immense study fees. On average a standard university costs more than $35,000 annually. Many students are must borrow loans and takes years to pay off their debts.

Removals to the USA: A Breeze with the Help of Sirelo!

Uncle Sam is calling! 📞 By now, you’re ready to take on the challenge that is an international removal to the USA. However, before you kick back with a well-deserved cup of tea, although you might want to switch for a cup of joe to prepare yourself for American coffee culture, why not check out the pages linked below for more information about moving. In the meantime, we wish you every success with your move!