A concrete jungle perched on the Atlantic Ocean, New York City is the storied destination of American immigration, and its diverse communities and enduring old-world neighbourhoods remain living representations of the city’s worldly appeal.

Those moving to New York City today aren't the wide-eyed 'fresh off the boat' fortune seekers of yesteryear but are rather the jet-setting, business-savvy players of the world's economy.

Living in New York City as an expat

At first, moving to New York can be frustrating; new arrivals must learn to manage the competitive housing market, adjust to a new schooling system and find lucrative employment. The work environment and the Manhattan lifestyle are brisk and energetic, and enjoying the fruits of one's labour is the best part of working in the Big Apple.

NYC is known as the city that never sleeps, and it's true that New Yorkers really do work hard and play harder. New arrivals to New York will be moving to the most populated city in the United States and will find that while space comes at a premium, they will have a host of diverse neighbourhoods to choose from.

The city's well-established public transportation network is another bonus. The subway operates 24/7 and there are also buses, commuter trains and ferries for those travelling to places that are a little further afield. As is the case throughout the US, expats moving to New York will have to ensure they have invested in a fully comprehensive health insurance plan. This will allow them to take advantage of the leading healthcare facilities in the city. 

Cost of living in New York City

While it's true that the cost of living in NYC is high, it's best thought of as the price of admission to living in a city with endless highlights. There’s no better place in the US when it comes to broadening one's horizons, with ample opportunities to explore the dynamic nightlife, eclectic selection of restaurants and thriving theatre scene.

Accommodation will take a significant chunk of new arrivals' salaries, but fortunately, newcomers can mitigate these costs by opting for a houseshare or living further out from the city centre. Entertainment and eating out will largely depend on newcomers' personal preferences as New York offers opportunities for both fine and food truck dining. 

Expat families and children in New York City

The standard of public schools in New York is generally excellent, but many international newcomers send their children to one of the city's outstanding international schools. Fees are high but the facilities and standard of teaching are usually top-notch. Space at the most popular schools is limited, so it is best to begin the application process before relocating.

Those planning on opting for public schooling should note that priority is given to families living in the school's zoning area, a fact best kept in mind when choosing a new home. Similarly, spots at some of the best public schools in the city are also limited, so parents should prepare their plans and applications well in advance. 

Climate in New York City

With a humid subtropical climate, New York City's weather patterns are characterised by warm and humid summers while winter is known for being cold, rainy and snowy. Newcomers to New York should be sure to pack their umbrellas and warm clothing, as well as sunscreen for occasional heatwaves in summer. 

New arrivals moving to New York City will be in for one of the most exhilarating and culturally immersive experiences of their life thanks to the city's diversity, economic prowess and dynamic nature. 

Expat Health Insurance

Cigna Health Insurance

Cigna Global Health Insurance.

Moving your family abroad can be intimidating, but learning about medical options such as family health insurance early on can help you settle successfully.

  • Comprehensive Family coverage, wherever you go
  • Paediatric coverage for well-child visits & immunizations
  • Access to dental and orthodontic care
  • 24/7 multilingual Customer Service

Get a quote from Cigna Global (10% off family health plans in June)

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