By Nkem Ndem . . .
Moving to a new city can either be exciting or hard, depending on the circumstances surrounding the decision to move. First comes the optimism that stems from the excitement of starting a new chapter in your life, then follows the likely stress of literally uprooting your life and starting another one.
Generally, moving to a new city can be a great experience as you are presented with opportunities of seeing new things, meeting new people, and living a new life style. However, it can become a sour endeavor if you fail to consider certain variables. The invisible factors are what determine how successful your move eventually becomes or how much of a nightmare it may degenerate to.
It is no secret that a majority of Nigerians are currently moving in droves to new cities as part of the urban migration experienced around the world. And so, to help prospective migrants prepare for their move and minimize the chances of it all becoming a nightmare here are five factors to consider when moving to a brand new city.
1) Moving Expenses
This is the first thing you should consider. Ask yourself: How much will my moving cost me? Hiring movers, shipping belongings, or renting a truck can cost more than you imagine. You really do not want to spend the bulk of your money moving and you are left with little or nothing for sustenance.
If you are moving for work and your organization is paying for your move, be smart and take advantage of it. If however you are moving for personal reasons, ensure you can afford to move before you do, otherwise, draw a plan and wait until you are actually financially capable and ready.
Safety should be a major concern for any migrant. You cannot start a life in a location where you do not feel safe in, neither will you be able to enjoy it and be as productive as you normally would. Before you select a destination, do proper research. Consider the crime statistics for the area and the surrounding areas; go online and read testimonials from people who have visited or lived in the areas and check the news for any extra bit of information.
The truth is that no place is completely crime-free, but it is important you select a place with a crime level you can tolerate and there are active steps being taken to curb crime.
3) Cost of living
As you are moving, it is important that you cut your coat according to your material. Keep in mind that Cost of living varies from state to state, and so, you need to ensure you are moving to an area you can afford and you would not have to live above your means. What is the value of the currency there? Can you save while living there? Research and ask to know the cost of transportation, insurance, groceries, taxes, rent, and all other aspects of life basically. The best way to get authentic information is to ask locals in the area. You can even go and spend a few days or a week there first, so you can have a first-hand feel of the place. The better idea you can get before arriving, the more prepared you can be.
4) Weather and climate
Different cities experience different weather conditions, even if they are in the same country. Find out what the climate is like, and how it suits your preference for warm or cold temperatures. Some cities actually have extreme weather conditions which may be too harsh for someone who is used to a fairly temperate climate. Research and find out if there have been catastrophes related to weather in the area like flood, tornadoes or earthquakes. That way you will know if you need to ensure your new accommodation. If the weather history is really bad, you may also want to move to another location instead.
5) Cultural differences
This may seem inconsequential, but it actually is not. You need to be sure the culture prevalent in the new city is one that you can cope with or abide by. What are the city’s lingo, social customs, and even driving style? What entertainment options are available? If you are a “foodie,” are the local cuisines appealing, and if not, are there options for other kinds of food? And will you have opportunities to practice your religion safely?
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