Vonage Blog

Moving to London or Anywhere in England from the US?

If you’re moving to the UK from the USA, you’ve got a lot to consider.

Maybe you’re moving to Scotland for work or maybe you’re moving to London for family — you’ll need to plan out your move carefully.

Top Concern

How much room did your old place have versus your new home? An efficiency flat in a cramped part of London is a very different scenario than moving to a house in the countryside. Find out early where you’ll be moving to because that will serve as the basis for many of your decisions about what can go with you and what can’t.

Find That Home

If moving for work, your employer may assist you financially to fund your move. Your company’s foreign office may be able to offer assistance to secure a house or apartment as well. Few of us have the time to track down enough solid apartments to look at when moving into a new place just a few towns away, let alone when moving to another country across an ocean! But before you discuss a new home with your company, consider taking some time to look online.

Car

If you have a car, chances are you’re not going to be able to take it, and even if you could, you probably shouldn’t. The streets of cities like London or Glasgow are much narrower than the average American city street, let alone our typically wide suburban streets. And American cars have only recently put a premium on fuel/size economy, meaning your SUV or 4-door sedan might have some issues getting through some areas.

What Stays

Likely you’ll be leaving behind a lot of your larger items since your belongings will be transported either by ship or by plane, both expensive and size-restricted forms of moving.

    Couches
    Big chairs
    Non-collapsable bookshelves
    Beds and bed frames
    Tables
    Large appliances – fridge, dryer, etc.

What Goes With You to the UK

Well if you’re a Vonage customer, one valuable thing that can make the pond hop with you is your local phone number. That’s right. Even when moving to England from America, you can take your original number to Ireland, England, Wales, or Scotland, so your friends and family back home can still call you as if it were a local call. Just take your Vonage Box™ with you wherever you go and make sure you have a high speed web connection… and you’ll always have access to your home phone number.

You can also add a second number that will be local to your new area, so your fellow Londonians can also call you at Vonage’s low, local rates.

Movers

Making sure your most cared about possessions get to their new home across an ocean is no small job, so whatever company you choose, be certain they are trustworthy. Check Yelp reviews, check with the Better Business Bureau and generally just “ask around.” Regardless, you may want to keep a separate inventory from the movers because no matter how meticulous and honest they may be, there is always the chance of something getting lost or misplaced. Once you’ve arrived in the UK, you won’t be able to nip back to your old home to pick it up. Once it’s gone…it’s gone.

Other Things to Consider:

  • Make sure your passport is up to date. Enforcement of passport law is strict.
  • Decide what to recycle, throw away or donate what can’t go with you.
  • Fill out a change of address form early.
  • Shut off your utilities and other services.

If you plan on driving in your new town or city, you’ll have to take a driver’s test just like you would here. You’ll be doing it on the other side of the road though. Register for UK tags and insurance after passing the test — which can only be taken once you’ve arrived. But you can still download UK driving regulations and review their rules as early as you like.
Locate nearby hospitals and police stations.

Special Tips:

  • Take personal items that will remind you of home. This will ease the transition more than you would expect.
  • Bring a waterproof coat to deal with the UK’s famous grey days and rain.
  • Bring US-to-UK adapters for plugs.

Click here for our full moving checklist – download, print and share!

Learn more about moving with Vonage and how you can keep your number when you switch phone service to Vonage.