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From United to United- Moving to The United Kingdom from the States

Monday, October 3, 2022
Three people playing musical instruments in front of London Bridge in the UK

Many American citizens often moved to the United Kingdom from the United States, and it is not a surprise why. The United Kingdom has a lot going for it from the culture, entertainment, and even the food if that is your particular taste. Also, the idea of moving to a classy area in the UK is a very appealing one. You could move for a job, to find a job, for family, friends, a lover, or even for education. Whatever the reasoning, make sure your tea-making skills are top-notch while we tell you how to move from the United States to the United Kingdom and save money.

First Thing First- UK Visas, and Paperwork

Two people sitting by a table and talking about the paperwork they have to do for a move to UK

When it comes to making an international move, the name of the game is obtaining the right visa. As well as getting all your paperwork in order. This means making sure your passport is valid, your documents are updated, etc. Speak to a professional to find out all that you need in applying for a UK Visa before moving to the UK. Plus, you can even ask which type of UK visa to apply for. While we are on the topic…

There are several types of UK visas you can apply for to live in the UK. The most common ones are the UK work visas as well as the family-oriented ones. However, if you are not able to apply for these types of visas then it will be slightly more difficult to move to the UK. Not impossible, just a bit more of a challenge. Furthermore, the UK government actually has a test that is quick to determine which type of visa you might need. 

This is specific to work-related visas. Your best course of action would be to get hired by a UK-based company. This can help your visa application when it comes to the Tier 2 visa. This is for skilled workers who have a sponsor in the form of the company that hired them. They would have to prove it by providing a valid certificate of sponsorship.

Furthermore, there are a few other requirements when it comes to this type of visa. Such as:

  • Showing that you will be paid the appropriate amount of salary
  • Proving your knowledge of the English language
  • Showing that you have the funds to support yourself while living in the UK. This can be in terms of a bank statement, or even a building society one
  • Your passport, obviously, has to be valid, and you also have to display your travel history for the previous five years.
  • You may also have to show that you have certain vaccinations that allow you to move into the country. It would be best to research this topic or speak to a doctor about it.

Another important aspect that is mostly related to working with vulnerable people is that you do not have a criminal record. This is a standard for a lot of countries and more so if you plan on becoming a citizen.

If You Did Not Get a Job in UK Yet

 Two women standing next to each other as each of them is looking at a tablet at moving quotes to UK

While getting a work visa is one of the best options, there are a few others that you can try if you have not yet gotten an offer for your UK dream job. There is the partner visa. This means that if you have a civil partnership or a marriage to a UK citizen then you can apply for this type of visa as a long-term partner visa. 

It is valid for a year and a half at a time with the possibility to renew until you can apply for permanent residency which is often the aim of moving to a new country. Furthermore, there is also the family-oriented one where you have close relatives who are UK citizens.

A family with small children sitting outdoor for a picnic and playing with bubbles

Speaking of family, if you can prove that one or your ancestors, or grandparents were born in the Isle of Man, or the Channel Islands, or the UK then you can apply for a UK Ancestry Visa. If you are more of a businessperson, then you may want to look into applying for the Investor Visa. This one can be applied for if you have at least 2 million Pounds to invest in the UK. 

However, if you would rather start a business in the UK then you can opt to apply for an Innovator Visa. This is if you have a brilliant idea that will work in the UK.

Another option when it comes to visa application is to apply for a student one. You can aim to apply for a short-term study or a Tier 4 student visa. This is the general visa. The former is for those students that wish to do a short-term, as the name suggested, course. Or ones that wish to do research in the UK for a short time. The latter is for full-time study at level six.

Smooth Long Distance Move with Shyft

UK Healthcare

A young doctor with scrubs wearing reading glasses

One of the greatest aspects of living in the UK is its world-class healthcare. When you are living in the UK on any type of visa then you will have access to the NHS (National Health Service). It is the socialized healthcare system. This means that you can visit a doctor and pay little to no cost for the appointment. Plus, you will not be required to have personal insurance to use the NHS, you just have to register with them.

Finding Houses and Homes in the UK

A village road with house on either side in the rural part of the UK

The UK has very different architecture compared to the majority of the United States. For one thing, the houses, and apartments are a lot smaller. This can be a bit tough to get to grips with if you are used to living in a huge space. However, downsizing can have a lot of benefits. Such as the creative use of storage and space. 

As well as less space to clean, meaning less time to clean. You can opt to live in a house, but that would be a bit out of London where houses are expensive and hard to find. Apartments on the other hand are a different story since there is quite a bit to go around.

However, to find a home in the UK will mean that you would have to provide proof that you have the legal right to live in the UK. If you have a short-term visa, such as six months, it can be tough to get a one-year lease agreement. But, if you have a visa for a longer period then you will also need letters of reference from your previous landlords. As well as a copy of your credit report. All this is to show that you are a worthy candidate to be a tenant.

When you become a citizen of the UK then you can think about buying a home all your own.

Meeting People in the UK

A group of men in formal wear sitting next to a bar, in a line, with each of them having a drink in their hands while posing for the camera

Moving from the US to the UK brings with it a major advantage in that you speak the same language as the British. Well, close enough. There is slang that you have to look out for. As well as, they use different words for certain items. Furthermore, spelling and grammar are slightly different between American English and British English. Then again this is common with the different varieties of the English language. And, the sense of humor (or humour to start you getting used to the different spelling) is a bit more on the dry side compared to American.

Plus, because of the limited language barrier, it can be slightly easier to meet new people in the UK. One of the best ways is through work or studies. Another is by joining clubs such as football (soccer), acting, etc. You can also join Facebook groups for expats or foreigners visiting/ moving to the UK. Several sites help with meeting new people such as Meetup. But, the best advice would be to get yourself out there and meet as many people as you can. You never know whom you will find. Remember to stay safe.

Moving from the US to the UK with Shyft

Three people trying on different types of hats in a second-hand store in London

Once you have all your papers in order, and before you even start planning or packing, contact Shyft. Shyft is the world's first tech-driven moving platform that you want to get in touch with. This is because Shyft will do all the organization for your move for you. Yes, that includes helping you find a moving company, creating your inventory list, and more. 

So, before you get to organizing your moving process, just let us do it instead. It will save you nerves, time, and money. Check out the Shyft Moving website for more info as well as to get in touch. Plus, we are super easy to work with, while also being real-life people.

How we work is that when you fill out our short online form, one of our Move Coaches will

contact you. This will be done through the easy-to-use, free-to-download mobile app: Shyft Next. Furthermore, this will be a video call at a time that you say. You decide when we can give you a call. What is more, you get to see who you will be working with.  

It is during this first call that your Move Coach will get to work. They will create your inventory list for you, through the app. All you have to do is to give a virtual tour of your current home.

When this is done, and the video call has ended you will just need to wait about half an hour to see your inventory list.

Two friends having a drink at a table in an UK pub, while looking at their mobiles

The list is 95% accurate. And, it is sent your way so that you can make it 100% correct. This means that you can add items, remove some other stuff, and even make notes on what is important etc. When you are satisfied with your list, send it to your Move Coach. Your Move Coach will take this list to Shyft’s secure move board. As well as the information about your move. Excluding your personal ones. 

It is here at the secure move board that experienced, licensed, and professional moving companies gather. They are there to bid on moving projects which include yours. This is where we gather moving quotes to send your way. Each quote is from a different mover, and we also give you information about them. Who they are, what they offer, etc.

All this is done so that you can make an informed choice of which moving company is the best for you. The moving companies have experience in international moves. Therefore, they can also aid you with paperwork such as dealing with customs.

Furthermore, all the quotes are fixed meaning there are zero hidden costs. What is more, is that the quotes are based on your inventory list. This means that if you add something to the inventory after you pick your moving company, the price will not change. 

You can also compare the companies through the Shyft Next app to make your life that much easier. Once you have decided, let your Move Coach know, so that they can secure the moving company. So, let Shyft help you get from a state to the Kingdom while keeping your stress levels low and not completely thinning out your wallet. 

Two ladies leaning against a fence while outdoors, looking and smiling at each other