UCLA building

Moving from Florida to California for college

Simply saying that moving away to college is thrilling doesn’t even begin to describe the whole experience. The entire process from being accepted to the move itself is brim-full of emotions and is bound to change you. Moving for college is an initiation of a sort: leaving behind your safety net and support structure and embracing your decision-making, problem-solving, creative self. Even if this time of life isn’t so packed with emotions you’d still need to carefully plan your move. Moving from Florida to California for college, or for any other reason, is a huge step in its own right. You should begin your preparations by exploring their differences.

Florida vs. California

The first thing that comes to mind when you compare Florida and California is that they’re both coastal countries. That is about where their similarities end. Certainly, moving to California has its pros and cons just like moving to Florida. They mostly differ in:

  • Weather conditions. California has many more sunny days and its humidity is much more comfortable. While California has issues with wildfires, Florida is plagued by both wildfires and hurricanes, the latter causing many evacuations every year.
  • Size. California is also significantly larger than Florida. Also, the distance between these two states is responsible for the difference in time zones. California is two or three hours behind Florida.
  • Living costs. According to CNBC’s study, California ranks as the second most expensive state to live in. On the other hand, Florida holds the 30th place. You can find detailed methodology and grades for all 50 states in their 2019 America’s Top States for Business analysis.

Tuition fees in California

However, the most important expense will be your tuition. Some states from the same area have joined forces in an effort to reduce tuition for students from neighboring countries. Specifically, California is a part of the Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) while Florida takes part in the Academic Common Market (ACM). Unfortunately, you won’t be eligible for the tuition discount these programs offer since you’re moving from Florida to California for college. If countries don’t participate in the same tuition exchange program, they consider you as an out-of-state student.

 Student moving from Florida to California for college

If you’re moving from Florida to California for college, you won’t be eligible for the tuition discount programs.

Firstly, you should check how much it costs to attend college in CA. For example, in-state undergraduate tuition for the most popular UCLA for the 2017/2018 academic year was $11,502. At the same time, out-of-state tuition was $39,516. With room and board cost of $15,441 and other fees and expenses, the total budget for non-residents skyrockets to $61,915. If you’re moving from Florida to California for college, you might consider an alternative. It may be a good option to enroll at community college first and after a year or two simply move to a public college.

How to prepare for moving from Florida to California for college

Moving to college, in general, is stressful, but it doesn’t have to be tedious. There are several things you should think of and arrange for well in advance.

Take care of the paperwork

College is the first big step toward adulthood and adulthood is mostly – paperwork of various sort. Make sure you take care of all forms, get your documents ready and keep them in one place. It will spare you a huge headache when the time for the move comes.

Pack what you need for college

Packing for college will essentially teach you how to pack. If you’ll live in a dorm room, there’s no need to move furniture. For the few important things that you’ll bring, hiring affordable movers in FL for your cross country move won’t even cost that much. Instead of focusing on clothing, sheets, and toiletries, make sure that you bring school supplies. They’ll likely be more expensive at the campus bookstore.

A girl browsing library books

Bringing school supplies will help your plight when moving for college.

Get in touch with your future roommate

Your college will likely inform you who your roommate will be, and provide you with their email. Getting in touch is beneficial for many reasons, so don’t be shy. Knowing someone prior to arriving will introduce you to the social life of the campus. It will help you plan what to take with you and avoid bringing duplicates. Your roomie will likely become your first friend at college.

Find a place to live

According to CollegeCalc, living off-dorm in LA costs around 15 thousand USD. That’s approximately the price of room and board in some of the popular LA colleges and universities. If you plan to live off-dorm, contracting a reliable partner such as Orange Movers Miami | Miami Movers | Miami Moving Company, experienced in long-distance relocations, is a must. Moving from Florida to California for college doesn’t have to be nerve-racking. You just need to start preparing ahead of time.

Visit the campus / explore your new neighborhood

If you can manage, take a trip to the campus or to your new apartment. Exploring your new neighborhood will help you orient yourself once you actually move. Later, you should definitely explore LA between classes if you chose to live and study in this city. Making new friends along the way will help you cope with your homesickness a little. Californians are friendly and easy to have conversations with.

View from dormitory room

Whether you plan to live in a dorm or on your own, get involved in college social life and explore your surroundings.

Quick tips for packing for college

You shouldn’t take packing for college lightly, especially if it’s packing for coast to coast relocation at the same time. While there are detailed instructions to be found, these quick instructions will summarize the most important information:

  • Check how big your dorm room is and which appliances are available;
  • Don’t pack everything you have and don’t bring bulky furniture;
  • Find out if your bathroom is private or communal, it’ll influence what to pack;
  • Bring less clothing but more school supplies, some things you can share;
  • Invest in mattress topper and earplugs, you’ll appreciate a good night’s sleep.

Stay in touch with friends and family

Living in the digital age sure has its benefits! Open channels of communication, post vlogs, say hi to your family and old friends. There’s nothing wrong with relying on them for emotional support in the time of such a big change.

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