Living in the US

Living in the US: The American “Way of Life”

Ready to chase the American Dream? For many, the US is a land with boundless opportunities. Welcoming expats from rewarding careers to top-notch education, the US is a popular destination. 

Well in these days, the “American Dream” or the “Way of Life” isn’t about dollars and diplomas only. The cultural effet of the US, the cities, natural wonders you want to explore add more to the dream to live in the US. It’s more expected to be welcomed by the local community as a newbie. 

So, are you ready to experience the bits of an American experience? Let’s go!

Why Live in the United States?

Where should we start? Start with the Grand Canyon or the Statue of Liberty if you’re interested in visiting the iconic landmarks of the US. However, we all know that it’s not all. The melting pot of cultures and cuisines have wider options for you to discover. You’ll never bored of new options and try new things if you’re especially a foodie. 

Let’s not forget about the sports fans. You can watch many famous games from football to basketball or baseball to hockey. If you want to join, there’s always a game to catch and it doesn’t matter which region of the US you reside. Besides the fun and games, the US is an important place with all the innovations and technology developed in the country with the world’s most cutting-edge companies and startups influencing the industry and creating new ones.

Are you an entrepreneur or looking for an interesting job opportunity? The US can be your place to be. Plus, it’s the people who are friendly and known for their hospitality. So, we have some answers to why we live in the United States, and we’re now ready to dig in more!

Pros and Cons of Living in the US

Pros and Cons of Living in the US

When we talk about the USA, we mention the dreams and opportunities. However, it’s not like that all the time. Residents of this country find both positive and negative factors.

Here’s a list of pros and cons that show both sides objectively:

Pros of Living in the US

  • Robust economy
    The title of the world’s largest and most diverse economy belongs to the United States, having a strong focus on innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology. You can explore countless job opportunities in various sectors. That’s what makes the US an ideal destination if you’re looking to build a successful or fresh career. You can even have a chance to work for the world’s most prestigious companies in the US and benefit from its economy, offering great prospects for growth and achievements.
  • Access to quality education
    Studying in some of the world’s top universities and colleges in the US takes many people a few steps further. The education system offers a wide range of programs and specializations. You can have a quality education in engineering, business, or in the arts. The facilities provide top-quality research opportunities, so the United States becomes a hub for academic and scientific innovation with good resources.
  • Diverse cultural atmosphere
    The diversity and rich history of immigration and cultural exchange in the US are beneficial for today’s world. The streets of New York City, for instance, talk to the voice of the city with a vibrant music scene in Nashville. The diverse languages you can hear here and there may surprise you, but excited to be a part of this diverse lifestyle.
  • Thriving job market
    What’s new is cooking in the US and the job market is thriving with it, across various sectors. The flexible work culture and tne entrepreneurial spirit make this innovation hub even more interesting.
  • Beautiful natural landscapes
    Have you seen any image of the stunning beaches ot the Yellowstone National Park? Well, the vast size and varied terrain offer endless places to visit. You can try outdoor adventures, hike or camp, or try skiing and surfing somewhere around the US and appreciate the value of the nature.

Cons of Living in the US

  • High healthcare costs
    High healthcare costs Healthcare costs in the United States are high, even the highest in the world. It can be a major financial burden for you, doesn’t matter if you’re singe or with your family. It can be challenging particularly if you don’t have a health insurance. Accordingly, you may have limited access to medical care beause of the high cost of the healthcare. It’s more difficult to get a healthcare service in the US especially for those who have low incomes.
  • High cost of living
    Considering some major cities like New York or San Francisco, the cost of living in the United States can be high. Lower incomes in this kind of costly city can make it challenging to make the end of the month. Housing is also a factor that makes expenses high in many parts of the country.
  • Gun violence and crime
    The United States has a high rate of gun violence and crime compared to many other developed countries. This can lead to feelings of insecurity and fear, particularly in areas with high crime rates. Gun violence and crime can also impact communities negatively. It can eventually limit the opportunities for economic growth and development.
  • Political polarization
    The United States is currently experiencing political polarization. There are significant divisions between political parties and ideologies. This kind of process can lead to distrust and hostility between individuals. It’s possible to find common ground or compromise on substantial issues challenging.
  • Limited paid vacation and parental leave
    The United States has some of the lowest levels of paid vacation and parental leave compared to other developed countries in Europe. It makes it hard to balance work and personal life. The lack of paid time off can increase the stress you have and burnout you experience.

Quality of Life in the US

Americans have access to a wide range of recreational activities and leisure opportunities. From sports and fitness to entertainment and cultural events, you can try many things. There are sometimes street festivals and continuously occurring farmers’ markets in numerous states.

On the other hand, the downsides are hard to ignore. The cost of living can be quite high. Additionally, traffic and commuting can be a major source of stress and frustration.

Cost of Living in the US

Living in the US can be a dream come true. There’s a but, though. Let’s face it: the cost of living can sometimes be a nightmare. Taken from Numbeo based on the data as of 2023, with the following table, we’ll take a closer look at some of the costs of living in the US: 

Living Expenses

National Average Cost Per Month

Housing (1 bedroom) in City Centre

$1,500 – $3,500


$150 – $300


$300 – $800


$200 – $500


$100 – $300

Remember that there are ways to save money and stretch your budget. You can shop at discount stores, use public transportation, and try preparing meals at home. This way, you can reduce your everyday life expenses.

In most places, including grocery shops, the taxes and the tip are added to the bill automatically. Since it’s socially accepted that a 20% in the restaurants is a must, you should consider it a part of your bill if it’s not included. 

Check out our article on the average cost of living by state in the US.


One of the first decisions to make when considering housing in the US is whether to rent or buy. Renting can be a good option if you’re not ready to commit to a long-term mortgage. Or you can prefer the flexibility of easily and randomly moving by renting an apartment. However, renting can also be more expensive in the long run. Plus, you’ll not build equity by owning a property.

If you decide to buy a home in the US, you can select single-family homes, townhouses, or condos. The cost of a home varies. It depends widely on the location and size of the property. The prices range from under $100,000 to several million dollars in some areas.

Another factor to consider is the US rental market. In some of America’s cities, like New York and San Francisco, rental prices can be extremely high. However, it’s important to keep in mind that in some other areas, rental prices may be more affordable.

Food and Drinks

Usually, the most popular type of food is fast food. It includes all these options, such as hamburgers, hot dogs, and apple pie. However, there are also many international cuisines to choose from, including Mexican, Italian, Chinese, and Japanese.

In addition to restaurants, the US also has a thriving food truck scene, with vendors serving up everything from tacos to gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. Food festivals and farmers’ markets are also popular in many cities. They offer a chance to try local and seasonal foods.

When it comes to drinks, the US is known for its craft beer scene, and wine and spirits are also popular.

Lifestyle and Culture

The lifestyle and culture in the USA are as diverse and varied as the country’s colors.

One of the most notable aspects of American culture is its emphasis on individualism and personal freedom. Americans value their independence and often prioritize their own needs. This can manifest in many ways, from the popularity of solo travel to the prevalence of self-help and personal development books.

Another hallmark of American culture is its love of sports. Sports play a central role in American society, with millions of people tuning in to watch games and attend live events.

The USA is also known for its entertainment industry. Many of us all know that Hollywood produces many of the world’s most popular films and television shows. Music is another recognized aspect of American culture.  Genres like hip-hop, country, jazz, and rock originate in the USA.

Transportation in the US: Golden Gate Bridge


Healthcare in the USA is a complex system. There is a poor reputation, and it can be difficult for newcomers to understand. While the USA boasts some of the world’s most advanced medical facilities and technologies, the high costs associated with healthcare can be a barrier for many.

Healthcare in the USA is largely provided by private companies rather than the government. This means that access to healthcare is generally expensive. Many Americans rely on private medical insurance to cover the costs of healthcare.

However, not all Americans have access to health insurance, and the costs without proper insurance can be prohibitively expensive. For this reason, many Americans delay seeking medical treatment until their conditions become more serious.

In recent years, there have been efforts to reform the healthcare system in the USA, including the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare). This legislation has expanded access to health insurance for many Americans and provided protections for those with pre-existing conditions. 

Healthcare in the US

Healthcare in the USA is a complex system with a poor reputation, and it can be difficult for newcomers to understand. While the USA boasts some of the world’s most advanced medical facilities and technologies, the high costs associated with healthcare can be a barrier for many.

Unlike in many other countries, healthcare in the USA is largely provided by private companies rather than the government. This means that access to healthcare is generally expensive, with many Americans relying on private medical insurance to cover the costs of healthcare.

However, not all Americans have access to health insurance, and the costs without proper insurance can be prohibitively expensive. For this reason, many Americans delay seeking medical treatment until their conditions become more serious.

In recent years, there have been efforts to reform the healthcare system in the USA, including the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare). This legislation has expanded access to health insurance for many Americans and provided protections for those with pre-existing conditions. 


If you’re an expat with kids, you’ll be pleased to know that the American education system focuses on early and primary education. From preschool to fifth grade, American students are encouraged to explore their creativity and develop critical thinking skills, especially in STEM fields.

Public schools are free and open to all students in the district. Private schools, on the other hand, charge tuition and often have a more selective admissions process. Public schools are typically larger and offer a wider range of extracurricular activities, while private schools often have smaller class sizes and more personalized attention from teachers.

And then there’s homeschooling, which has become increasingly popular in recent years. With homeschooling, parents take on the role of the teacher and create a customized curriculum for their child. This option allows for a lot of flexibility and can be a great choice for families who want more control over their child’s education.

For higher education, the US has numerous colleges, universities, and vocational schools to choose from. You can select from a variety of majors and programs. Of course, it’s important to note that education in the USA can be costly. However, there are many scholarships and financial aid options available for those who qualify.


If you’re planning a trip to the USA, you’ll need to make sure you have the proper documentation in order. This may include a valid passport, visa, and other necessary travel documents. Once you’re cleared to enter the country, you can choose from numerous transportation options to explore the country.

If you’re looking to explore beyond the borders of the USA, you can take a flight from one of the major airports. Popular destinations for American travelers include Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean, but the possibilities are endless.

Driving in the US

If you plan on driving as an expat, you’ll need to obtain a valid driver’s license. Depending on your home country and the state you’re living in, you may be able to transfer your license, or you may need to take a driving test. The driving rules include driving on the right side of the road, obeying speed limits and traffic signals, and following specific state laws such as seatbelt and cell phone usage. These rules may differ from those in your home country. Moreover, the sheer size of the country can be overwhelming. 

Expat Life in the US

Being an expat in the USA also means adjusting to a new culture. This way of life can be challenging at times. You might miss your family and friends back home, or struggle to understand American customs and slang. Although the country is a melting pot of flavors and cultures. It allows you to have a bite from your home country, but the challenges remain.

Still, don’t worry, you’re not alone! There’s an expat community in the USA and it’s a bit crowded! There are plenty of resources available to help you navigate this new chapter in your life.

So embrace the adventure and make the most of your expat life in the USA. Who knows – you just might fall in love with this incredible country and decide to make it your permanent home!

Founding Fathers Statues Activities in the US

Activities to Do in the US

If you’re looking for activities to partake in during your weekend or free time in the US. Let us be clear: the possibilities are endless. They include outdoor activities, from hiking in the mountains or national parks to surfing on the West Coast, as cultural and amusement events like theme parks, museums, and art events.

You’re a sports fan; but more of a watcher than a player? Seeing an American football game might just be the activity to suit your mood. Some of the best places to see an American football game include iconic stadiums such as Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin, home of the Green Bay Packers, AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, home of the Dallas Cowboys, and Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, home of the Kansas City Chiefs.

If you’re a foodie, you’re in luck – American cuisine is diverse, delicious, and ever evolving. Try classic dishes like burgers and BBQ, or sample regional specialties like deep-dish pizza or seafood chowder.

If you’re into partying, there’s a sea of nightlife and entertainment activities. Hit up a trendy club or check out a live music venue to dance the night away.

Holidays in the US

From Independence Day on July 4th to Thanksgiving in November and Christmas in December, there are plenty of holidays to mark throughout the year. Many businesses and schools close for major holidays, allowing people to enjoy time with their families and participate in community events.

Federal holidays in the United States are days recognized by the federal government as official holidays. There are 10 federal holidays observed annually, including New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day. Federal employees are typically given these days off work, while many private employers also choose to observe them. These holidays often serve as a time for celebration and reflection on important national and cultural events, whereas some holidays, like Halloween and Valentine’s Day, are more lighthearted and focused on fun and entertainment.


palm trees in San Diego, California, US

Best Places to Live in the United States

Looking for the best places to live in the USA? Here are some top contenders to consider:

  • New York City, New York – Famous for being lively and always having something going on, and is a concrete Jungle as Alicia Keys refers. If you’re a city person, New York City is a suitable choice with its busyness. 
  • Austin, Texas – Known for its music scene, outdoor activities, and delicious food. If you like the hip vibe, this place is just for you.
  • Denver, Colorado – Offers easy access to skiing, hiking, and stunning mountain views. Amazing choice for sports lovers who enjoy spending time outdoors.
  • Seattle, Washington – A city with plenty of cultures, great coffee, and gorgeous waterfront views. If you’re looking for a calm and sophisticated environment, this place offers you a home. 
  • San Diego, California – Known for its warm weather, beautiful beaches, and plenty of outdoor activities.
  • Portland, Oregon – A bike-friendly city with a thriving food and arts scene, surrounded by stunning natural beauty. Perfect choice for arts and crafts enthusiasts, and foodies. 
  • Irvine, California – With a low crime rate, excellent schools, and plenty of green spaces, Irvine consistently ranks as one of the safest and most livable US cities. This is one of the best options for families. 
  • Franklin, Tennessee – This charming small town just outside of Nashville offers a tight-knit community, great schools, and a low cost of living. Franklin is the place for you if you like to have neighbors that are also friends, and for families. 

And if you’re not afraid to splurge, check out our guide on the most expensive cities to live in the US.

Popular States Among Foreigners

If you’re a foreigner looking to live in the USA, there are some states that are especially popular among expats. Here are a few of the top choices:

California – With its warm climate, stunning beaches, and world-famous cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco, California is a perennial favorite among foreigners.

New York – The Big Apple is a cultural and financial hub, with vibrant nightlife, endless entertainment options, and some of the best food in the world.

Florida – Another warm-weather state, Florida is known for its theme parks, beaches, and retirement communities, making it a popular choice for both families and retirees.

Texas – The Lone Star State boasts a strong economy, a rich history, and a friendly, laid-back culture that many foreigners find appealing.

Illinois – Home to Chicago, one of the most exciting and diverse cities in the USA, Illinois is a great choice for those looking for big-city life and plenty of job opportunities.

Statue of Liberty Living in the US

Things to Know Before You Go

Here are some important things to know before you travel to the United States:

  • Visa Requirements: You may need a visa to enter the US. Make sure to check the visa requirements and apply in advance if necessary.
  • Currency: The US uses the US Dollar, make sure to have enough cash or balance on your debit/credit cards to cover your expenses.
  • Tipping Culture: Tipping is expected in many service industries in the US. It’s customary to tip 15-20% of the total bill.
  • Weather: The US is a large country with a variety of climates. Make sure to check the weather at your destination and pack accordingly.
  • Transportation: Public transportation varies by city, but most big cities have subway or bus systems. Uber and Lyft are also widely available.
  • Healthcare: Healthcare in the US can be expensive, so make sure to have adequate travel insurance or private insurance.
  • Customs and Etiquette: The US has its own customs and etiquette. For example, talking loudly on public transportation or cutting in line is considered impolite.
  • Time Zones: The US spans six time zones. Remember to check the time difference between your home country and your destination.
  • Food and Drink: The US has diverse food and drink options. We suggest you try the local cuisine, such as pizza in New York or BBQ in Texas.
  • Safety: While the US is generally safe, beware of your surroundings and take precautions to avoid theft or other crimes.

Living in the US: The Wrap-Up

Living in the US as an expat can be an exciting and rewarding experience. The US can offer a high quality of life with a diverse and vibrant culture, world-class education and healthcare systems, and numerous employment opportunities. 

However, there are also challenges to consider, such as the high cost of living and complex immigration processes. By following the tips and suggestions mentioned, you can prepare yourself for a successful transition and make the most out of your time in the US.

If I still convince you after this lengthy article, perhaps you may want to research the other end of the spectrum. If that’s the case, check out our article on the best countries for Americans to move to and our guide on moving to Europe from the US.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the challenges of living in America?

Living costs are currently the biggest expense. Healthcare costs can also be a challenge. Another issue is adapting to cultural differences, such as social norms and customs. Navigating the immigration system and obtaining the necessary visas and permits can be a complicated process.

Can you live in America without citizenship?

Yes, it is possible to live in the United States without citizenship. You can obtain a green card through employment, family sponsorship, or asylum/refugee status. Non-citizens with valid visas are also able to live and work in the U.S. temporarily. 

What is the fastest way to immigrate to the USA?

You can apply for the H-1B visa for skilled workers or the EB-5 visa for investors. Another option is the family-based immigration program. It allows US citizens or permanent residents to sponsor their relatives for immigration.

Where is safer to live in the USA?

Smaller cities and suburban areas tend to have lower crime rates compared to larger metropolitan areas. Tehse are some of the safest cities in the US include Irvine, California; Naperville, Illinois; and Cary, North Carolina. 

What are five main reasons why people immigrate to the US?

Employment opportunities, higher education, reuniting with family members, seeking asylum, and pursuing the American dream.

What are the cultural norms in the US?

Americans tend to value independence and self-reliance and often prioritize work and career success. While there is not a singular "correct" way to interact with Americans. So it's better to be aware of cultural differences and adapt to local customs.

How do I obtain a driver's license in the U.S.?

You must typically pass a written exam, a driving test, and a vision screening. The exact requirements and procedures vary by state. Also, many states require proof of identity, residency, and insurance before issuing a driver's license.

How do I find a place to live in the U.S.?

You can find accommodation through online listings, working with a real estate agent, and utilizing rental search services. Be prepared to provide proof of income, rental history, and other requirements when you apply for a rental property.

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