Moving to America from the UK
Your How-To Guide!

If you are moving to America from the UK, then look no further! This page details the costs, tips and checklists you need to make moving to America simple. If you are already searching for a removal company, visit our list of top international movers to get you over to the Land of the Stars and Stripes in no time 😉.

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Can you finish reading this article in the time it takes to listen to the American national anthem? Only one way to find out.

Listen to our Spotify playlist
and get ready to move!

Listen to our Spotify playlist
and get ready to move!

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

If you’re planning a move to the USA from the UK, it’s smart of you to be inquisitive about how much a move to the USA from the UK would cost, so let’s talk pricing.

So, let’s consider the task you’ve decide to undertake, moving to the US from the UK. You’ll probably have guessed that it won’t be as easy as loading your belongings into a truck and off they go. No, they’ll have to go to America via sea, and it’s worth knowing the cost of container shipping, so you know what to expect!

To get the ball rolling, we have put together the following tables which indicate the estimated cost of moving to America from London to either an East Coast city or West Coast city, and depending on the size of your property:

Cost of Moving to an East Coast City 

Property SizeTimeCost
1-bedroom house6 – 9 weeks£2,200 – £3,100
2-bedroom house3 – 5 weeks£2,900 – £4,000
3- bedroom house3 – 5 weeks£5,000 – £6,800
4-bedroom house3 – 5 weeks£5,400 – £7,400

Cost of Moving to a West Coast City

Property SizeTimeCost
1-bedroom house7 – 10 weeks£2,600 – £3,600
2-bedroom house5 – 7 weeks£3,500 – £4,800
3-bedroom house5 – 7 weeks£6,100 – £8,300
4-bedroom house5 – 7 weeks£6,600 – £8,900

Disclaimer. The above figures are merely estimates. The final cost of moving to America will depend on the exact distance travelled and the volume of your possessions. Therefore, the only sure way to get accurate numbers is to request free quotes from us and chose the right moving company for your move to America!

The best way to get accurate estimates is to request quotes from moving companies that move to America. Fill out the form below and be in the know!

Moving to America?
Select the size of your household to receive free quotes for your move!

Of course, along with your removal costs, there are other factors that contribute to your overall moving budget. To find out a little more about what these entail, visit our international moving costs page.

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

Visas for Moving to the USA

If you’re wondering how to move America from the UK permanently, just know that you won’t be able to without a visa. So, be smart and start your application now! You don’t want to get deported and banned from returning, do you?

If you want to know more, you can visit our page on visas in America.

Did you know? The Liberty Bell in fact came from London. So, if you feel homesick upon moving to America from the UK, you know where to get a taste of good old Blighty.

Moving to the USA from UK Checklist

Once you have your visa sorted, it’s time to talk about how to move to America from the UK. To help you on your way, we have curated this moving to America checklist. Work your way through this bad-boy and you’ll be able to taste God’s Country around the corner!

Sirelo tip: If you fancy a more general but more comprehensive overview, then our moving abroad checklist is the place for you.

Before You Move to America:

✔️ Important documents

Once you have gone through the trials and tribulations of organising a visa, make sure to store this, along with other important documents into a safe accessible place. Sounds obvious, but it’s easy to get in a twangle!

  • Birth Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Medical Documentation (including dental and immunizations)
  • University Degree(s)
  • Police Background Check
  • Visa and Work Permits

✔️ Finding a Moving Company

It is a universally acknowledged truth that a person with possessions to move must be in want of a mover, and the adage could not be more true. So, if you don’t want to fly back and forth with your belongings, consider availing of free moving quotes and finding yourself a handsome mover!

✔️ Pack

With fear of stating the obvious, get this right! How? Start early and read our expert packing guide to help you along the way.

✔️ 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.

✔️ 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.

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

After You’ve Moved to America:

✔️Social security number (SSN)

This is imperative for anyone who wants to move to America from the UK. It essentially is proof of residency and you will not be able to get a job without one. Visit the Social Security Administration website to find out how to get cracking.

✔️ Health insurance

Perhaps one of the hardest things about relocating to America 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. The American banking scene can be overwhelming, so start by exploring some of the following options:

✔️ Driving licence

The good news is that you can use your UK driving licence in the US for up to three months. However, if you are moving to America from the UK for longer than that, then you are required to apply for an IDP or state-issued driving licence.

Moving to America

Life in America as a British Expat

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

The Cost of Living in America

We promise we will stop banging on about money soon, but before we let you off the hook, it is important to understand how much things cost upon moving to America. That is why we have put together the following table, comparing 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

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

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 recognise 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 work-week 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…

Moving to USA - San Francisco

Ready for Your Move to America?

Uncle Sam is calling! You are now an expert on how to move to America from the UK. Before you kick back with a well-deserved glass of bubbly, we strongly suggest checking out some other parts of the Sirelo website which may be of use to you, such as the pages we have linked for you below. For the meantime, we wish you every success with your move! 🙂

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