Moving to Los Angeles
Are you moving to Los Angeles?
Let us help you plan your relocation and discover everything Los Angeles has to offer. Crown are an international relocations company, specialising in international removals, storage, overseas moving, movers insurance, relocation services and lots more. We will even relocate your vehicle and pets!
Read our latest blog: Moving to L.A. 101
Los Angeles is a sprawling Southern California city internationally recognised as the centre of the USA’s film and television industry perhaps best symbolised, by the iconic Hollywood sign up on the Hollywood Hills in Santa Monica Colloquially known as either Tinseltown or the City of Angels, the city is home to the studios of Paramount Pictures, Universal and Warner Brothers, all of which offer behind-the-scenes tours, and of course, the Los Angeles is home to the Oscars.
LA is the second largest city and metropolitan area (after New York City) in the United States, occupying a broad coastal plain between the Santa Monica mountains and the Pacific Ocean, it is the heart of southern California and an important centre of commerce, agriculture, tourism, and industry for the region, and the country. Due to immigration over the years, Los Angeles is a place of extraordinary ethnic and racial diversity.
The city’s sights are many: Venice Beach is famous for its bodybuilders and roller-skaters, the high-end shops on Rodeo Drive, Minnie and Micky Mouse live at Disneyland, take a cruise along Mulholland Drive, and then there are all the movie studios mentioned earlier. There really is something for everyone. For more details check out, the official tourist website at www.discoverlosangeles.com.
Visas / Permits
New Zealanders need an Immigrant Visa to be able to live in the USA and details of how to obtain one can be found at the United States Diplomatic Mission to New Zealand’s website.
The official currency of the United States of America is the US Dollar, shops and service providers will only accept the US Dollar. Coins come in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 cents, and notes in $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 bills.
Many migrants who have relocated to Los Angeles have found it helpful to set up a US bank account before moving to the country. This makes it easy for converted money to be transferred straight in to your account, as well as minimising the need to carry cash while travelling. There are many banks in Los Angeles who offer an on-line sign-up service.
The best way to convert large sums of money is through online transfer companies, who provide a much cheaper rate. Crown has entered into a partnership with OFX to provide an easy, reliable and cost effective solution for clients who are moving their funds internationally. The deals offered by OFX are at super competitive exchange rates and in most cases there’s no fee. The cost structure is so good that the saving you make may even pay for the entire cost of your relocation. To register and for more information visit OFX
Los Angeles has an excellent public transport system, incorporating buses and trains, details can found at www.metro.net.
If you do choose to drive in Los Angeles, and most residents do as it is a very large city, think of the famous Los Angeles freeways. You’ll need to really keep your wits about you as traffic congestion is heavy and of course in the US, they drive on the opposite side of the road to drivers in New Zealand. For those planning to live in Los Angeles, then a car will be essential, but when it comes to commuting, the public transport system is also worth considering.
You can drive in the US on a NZ drivers licence, but only for a short period, and the US Embassy in New Zealand recommends that you apply for an International Driver Permit, and if staying in the US, you should apply for a US driving licence.
Houston’s main airport is the George Bush Intercontinental Airport, and there are two other airports -, the William P Hobby Airport and Ellington Airport. Between the three of them, services are available not only to most cities across the USA, but around the world.
There are three public universities in the city, and over twenty private colleges and universities. Most expatriates choose to enrol their children in private or independent schools, this is because state schools are generally based on ‘catchment areas’.
The school year begins in September and ends in June, typical school-days run Monday-Friday from 8.30am to 3pm, although this can depend upon the age of the children. Students generally travel to school by car with their parents, or in some cases, take the school bus (the bright yellow ones you see in the movies), others will cycle or walk.
Crown can arrange an appointment with a Specialist Education consultant who can provide an in-depth explanation of local education systems, the curricula available and arranging interviews, as well as assist with enrolment requirements. Please contact us for information and rates.
America has a public health-care system, called Medicare, but most people take out private insurance as well. If the insurance company you were with in New Zealand is a member of the International Federation of Health Funds, you may be able to transfer your policy to the USA without penalty – at a similar level of cover. Check with your insurance provider for details, or visit www.ifhp.com.
Upon relocating to Los Angeles a key process is finding somewhere to live in this huge city, the deciding factor for expats is normally how close you need to be to your work or your children’s school. The cost of accommodation and commuting to work are also significant considerations.
Rather than purchasing a home, most expatriates choose to rent, at least at first. This is because house (and apartment) prices in Los Angeles are expensive. Looking for a home in Los Angeles can quite often be a daunting task, Crown can advise on rental accommodation or purchasing properties, and we can also arrange for temporary accommodation.
Los Angeles’ position as an internationally-recognised entertainment centre means that you are bound to meet people from all walks of life and many different cultures around the world. Expatriates commonly assimilate into the community through sports hobbies and participating in the nightlife. The environment that Los Angeles is famous for provides numerous opportunities to meet new people. Social media is also a great way to get to know like-minded people
Crown Relocations has 50 years of international moving experience relocating individuals and families to Los Angeles and throughout the USA. To arrange a quotation call our office for an obligation FREE quote on: 0508 227 696 or you can use our online quote forms: Instant Quote, Quick Quote, Home Visit Request
For more information read our blog: Why you should choose Crown for your move to the United States.
To convert your money to US dollars the cheapest and most reliable way, check out our guide for Moving Your Money.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.