Quick Guide to Starting Over in a New City

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Making new friends, finding all your new hot spots, and moving without DIYing it--super great tips for starting over in a new city!

Starting over in a new city requires making a lot of changes in rapid succession. Even if the reason for your move is something that thrills you–like being closer to family, getting a new job, or enrolling in an undergraduate or graduate degree program—it’s still stressful getting organized to move.

And, of course, if you’re moving to a new location that you’d prefer not to go to because of reasons like a job transfer or for the sake of your spouse, you’ll probably add to the stress by procrastinating.

With that in mind, how do you make the transition as easy as possible?

Here are some ideas to help you to get organized as you uproot your life for the new city where you’ll start over:

Packing and Moving

If you’re a busy person—perhaps still working at your regular job while preparing to move—then a do-it-yourself move is going to be overwhelming. It’s going to be a lot easier to hire a professional moving company to help out. In fact, a company like Allied Van Lines does far more than helping you with loading, transportation, and unloading. They also offer full packing services if you just don’t have the time or energy after work to organize and pack your stuff.

However, it would save you money and expedite things if you spent some time decluttering. There is no point in taking stuff you no longer want, and it would be smart to sell, donate, or trash many of the things you’ve acquired over the years that you just don’t like or need anymore.

Settling In

Once you’ve moved into your new place,  it’s time to settle in. This will include things like setting up your utility services; locating professionals you need, like doctors, pharmacists, lawyers, accountants, and so on; and updating your address. If you have school-age children, you may have to register them for school, and–if your move isn’t based on a job transfer– you may have to find employment.

Exploring Your New Environment

After you’ve got yourself situated and made yourself at home, the next and final stage is to get to know more about the city. At this point, you may want to find out about the essential stores and services, as well as discover fun places to go. You’ll probably also want to connect with new people.

Let’s take a closer look at how to go about finding essential stores and services, finding fun places to hang out, and finding new friends.

Finding Essential Stores and Services

The sooner you find essential stores and services, the quicker you’ll feel comfortable in your new environment. While, of course, these vary for everyone, essential stores usually include grocery stores and favorite retailers. As for services, you might want to locate the post office, the library, a house of worship, or any other places that you like to go.

Besides Googling for location, you can also use Google Maps or your GPS phone app to find them. And, of course, you can always ask your neighbors, colleagues at work, and other people you’ve met who are now part of your new life how to get around.

Finding Fun Places to Hang Out

You’ll also want to become familiar with places that offer recreational opportunities—restaurants, movie houses, gyms, clubs, hiking trails, etc. One way to do this is to pretend you’re a tourist and use TripAdvisor to figure out where to go and what to do when you want to do something fun.

On top of researching places online, you can also ask people on social media and talk to people you meet locally about their recommendations for some good places to hang out.

Finding New Friends

This one is a little harder if you’re not an extrovert. Usually the best route to making new friends is to join groups that revolve around the things that you love to do. If you love to garden, then find gardening clubs; if you love to hike, or run, or workout, then find fitness centers.

Usually the best place to meet people who share a common interest is a meet-up group. Making friends with like-minded and like-hearted people will make your move much more fun.

Think of your move as a great adventure. This will make planning and taking action so much easier.


This post is brought to you and contributed by Abby Locker.

1 thought on “Quick Guide to Starting Over in a New City

  1. Mrs. Adventure Rich

    When we moved last year, I researched groups and meet-ups in advance to help ease the transition and the “we know nobody!” feeling when we first arrived in our new home. One such club ended up becoming a huge part of our life and I found several close friends through it (it is a running club 🙂 ). Definitely worth the research in advance!


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