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Moving from Europe to New York: Culture shock


Making the decision to move from Europe to the USA isn’t easy. There is much to consider, especially changing the cultural environment. However, if you have decided to make this transition, New York might just be the perfect place to start. As one of the most popular new homes for expats from all over the world, it won’t be too difficult to find international moving companies in NYC, such as U. Santini Moving & Storage. With the right assistance, moving from Europe to New York doesn’t have to be hard at all. Instead, it can be a stress-free experience that prepares you best for the culture shock that will surely follow.

Why should you hire professionals when moving from Europe to New York?

Moving from Europe to New York requires a lot of preparation. You need to have all of your documents in order and organize the shipping of your items. Transportation is not as easy when moving within the country, so you should also expect higher prices. Don’t be surprised by the moving costs NYC has, as the service is always in high demand.

thunder over nyc
The initial shock will strike you the hardest after moving from Europe to New York, but soon it will all pass.

If you don’t hire professional movers, many things can go wrong. From damaging your items to delaying the move, it’s best when you don’t have to deal with such kinds of problems. This can create extra costs that are not strictly related to the moving service, such as damaging valuable belongings. That’s why you shouldn’t plan your move on your own, especially when moving overseas.

Space is tighter in NYC

We’ve already established that New York is a popular destination for expats, right? Well, due to this kind of migration it’s only natural for there not to be too much space. Prepare to downsize before settling into your NYC place. Most flats are small here and quite expensive if you’re hunting for a good location. If you’re going to be searching for an apartment on your own, be careful. Finding an apartment in New York can be a challenge, especially if you’re looking for a good deal.

Another thing to consider in regards to tighter space is the need for storing items. It may come as a surprise, but clearing your closet can create much-needed extra space in your NYC apartment. Consider hiring some of the storage companies NYC offers to deal with tighter space at home.

Don’t hesitate to show your sense of humor and be open-minded when moving from Europe to New York

If you’re embarking on this journey with a grim outlook on things, we can promise that it will be difficult. You are leaving your country and will have a chance to experience a wonderful new culture. The best way to approach this kind of change is with an open mind. Yes, there will be plenty of things different from what you’re used to. Instead of rejecting them, embrace them with a curious point of view.

women dancing and drinking
The best way to make friends in NYC is to be open-minded and show your sense of humor.

New Yorkers love a good sense of humor, so don’t hesitate to tell a joke or make a funny point. You shouldn’t be rude, but everyone loves a good laugh. It can also be your best ally while adapting to the new environment and trying to make initial contact.

Prepare for a fast-paced life when moving from Europe to New York

New Yorkers are the kind of people who is always in a hurry. It doesn’t matter if they’re going to work or simply heading for the park. Their pace is going to be rather brisk and you’ll start bumping into people if you’re not keeping up. Don’t worry though, as this is normal.

Even for people moving from within the USA, this change can seem overwhelming. With time, the fast-paced schedule and the crowd will slowly start to seem normal. This doesn’t mean you should hurry whenever going somewhere, but be prepared for fast-moving crowds.

Expect a crowded subway when moving from Europe to New York

While you may be familiar with the relaxed atmosphere in European public transport, that doesn’t stand in New York. With the scale of the city and everyone in a constant hurry, it’s easy to imagine what it may look like. Even with that in mind, the crowds might surprise you and it may take you some time to adapt.

The traffic in NYC is always jammed, so many people turn to the subway instead. At the same time, it’s also the cheapest means of getting around the city, which makes it extremely popular. It’s saving time and money and almost everyone in the city depends on it, so expect heavy crowds, especially during rush hours.

Don’t forget the tips

Tipping in New York is a culture. In some countries in Europe, such as Italy, it is a similar thing. However, an Italian may forgive you for being a foreigner who doesn’t tip. In New York, you will most definitely get a nasty look from your waiter. If you’re moving from Europe to NYC prepare to tip 15–20% of the price. This tip applies to restaurants, cafés, taxis, and other services. The best way to calculate this tip is by doubling the tax amount at the bottom of the receipt. The taxes are 10% of the total.

woman waiting at the subway station
You should get used to using the subway, but the crowds might be overwhelming at the start.

If you’re going out with friends and plan on paying separately, prepare to be able to use an app for this. Splitting a check after moving from Europe to New York won’t be as common initially.

Get used to different measurements

Measurements in the USA are different from what you’re used to. They don’t use a metric system which is sometimes hard to adjust to. Unless you’re coming from the UK, it will take quite some time.

The same applies to temperature. For example, a forecast of 80 degrees outside means that it’s going to be a nice spring day instead of blazing heat. The system is built around the subjective feel, unlike the freezing and boiling points of water which are central to the system used in Europe. It’s expressed in Fahrenheit degrees instead of Celsius.

Clothing sizes as well as some other measurements might differ, so don’t expect to adjust instantly. It’s normal to feel a bit alien when moving from Europe to New York, but in time you’ll surely feel at home.

These guys are TRUE PROFESSIONALS! We've now moved with them twice (once in 2017 and then again this week) and we really can't say enough good things about them. Simi is incredibly easy to work with for scheduling and quotes, and the crews - John, Super Mario, and everyone - are just awesome. They're quick, incredibly careful and conscientious, and super friendly. If we ever move again (and god I hope we don't have to) we're absolutely calling them.

Allison "Elnoods" N.

From Brooklyn, NY

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CALL: 718-768-6778

Frequently Asked Questions

At U.Santini Moving & Storage Brooklyn, we've earned our reputation through honesty and transparency. We're here to address all your questions and provide peace of mind as you choose our moving services in Brooklyn.

What are your working hours?

We are open from Monday to Friday, 7:30 AM–5 PM, but feel free to contact us through our contact form anytime. We'll get back to you ASAP.

Does U.Santini Moving & Storage offer insurance?

Absolutely! We offer various types of insurance to protect your belongings, including a full replacement option. The cost depends on how much your things are worth and the deductible you choose.

How soon should I schedule my move?

It's a good idea to book your moving company at least 8 weeks before your move. If you're moving during the holidays or in the summer, it's best to schedule it 12 weeks ahead. But if your move is between September and May, you can often book movers with just 2 weeks' notice. The key is to secure your moving crew as soon as you have all the details about your move.

Do you provide packing supplies?

Yes, we do. Along with the necessary boxes and packing materials for your move, we offer various 'Saver' packages tailored to the size of your home. If you don't use all the boxes you purchased, you can return them to our team after the move, and we'll refund the unused portion.

What type of storage do you offer?

At U. Santini Moving & Storage Brooklyn, we offer complete storage solutions in climate-controlled units. Our units are monitored 24/7 to keep your belongings safe, whether you need short-term or long-term storage. We even provide storage options for very short durations, including as little as 24 hours.

Areas We Serve

We bring our professionalism and expertise to every corner of New York City. If you are looking for a tailored moving experience, our responsive team of Brooklyn movers and packers is waiting for your call. Get your quote today!