Despite the bad press Donald Trump may be receiving globally, the USA remains one of the top expat destinations – especially for entrepreneurs who are looking to make their way and find fame in the ‘home of the brave and the land of the free’. If you are considering immigrating to the USA, here are 5 tips to help you on your way:
5 Tips to keep in mind when immigrating to the USA
1. Make sure you apply for the right visa
The USA distinguishes between two groups of people when it comes to visas – immigrants and non-immigrants who are only coming to the USA for a limited period of time and have no plans to settle permanently in the country.
If you are a non-immigrant, there are a variety of visas you can apply for:
- Speciality Occupation (H-1B) This visa is only for people who wish to work in a speciality occupation, are involved in the Department of Defence research or development projects or are fashion models of international prominence. The period of stay for this visa is limited to three years.
- Intercompany Transfers (L-1A) To apply for this visa you need to have worked for your employer for at least one year in the three years prior to your transfer. If you are arriving to work in an established office, you will be granted a three-year visa.
- Expats with special abilities or achievements (O-1) This applies to expats who have achieved international/national acclaim and recognition and are temporarily coming to the USA to work in their field of talent. This visa is also valid initially for three years.
- Treaty Traders (and Employees) (E-1) These visas are granted to nationals of a country that maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation with the USA. This visa is very popular with companies and independent businesses and family members of the applicant can also apply for the E-1 visa.
For those people wishing to immigrate, there is the renowned ‘Green Card’ visa, which is officially known as the Diversity Visa Program. To find out more about the Green Card visit the Bureau of Consular Affairs.
2. Find the right healthcare
Everyone in the USA is required to have health insurance. As an expat, you might be covered by your employer’s group health insurance. If you are not, it’s important you find a good insurance provider. The general rule of thumb is that the higher your monthly contributions – the less you have to pay for your private medical care. It’s important to bear in mind that certain pre-existing conditions could lead to your exclusion from some providers or a very high monthly premium.
3. Don’t just settle on the weather
The USA is vast and the weather varies as you move across the country. If you are not restricted to moving to a particular city, try and find one that has your ideal weather. The eastern coast of the USA suffers from hurricanes and monsoons between August and October, although the weather is pleasant for the rest of the year. If you like humidity and high temperatures head to the south, but if you prefer a more temperate climate with distinct seasons then the northern states are for you.
4. Plan on buying or renting a car
With the exception of New York City and Washing D.C. which have the most extensive public transport networks, most people in the USA rely on cars to get around. If you are living in Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and San Francisco, you might still be able to get by using just the services available, but in many of the smaller cities, the only alternative to driving yourself is taking a bus or a taxi.
5. Get ready for some straight business talk
Americans are renowned for not beating around the bush and getting straight to the point when it comes to business. So don’t be taken aback by the assertive style of communication especially in the executive business level.
If you thinking of financially emigrating to the USA and need any advice about your financial emigration, contact us today and we’ll help you on the path to financial freedom in your new home.
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