General Question

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

What are the pro's and con's of moving to the United States (Texas)?

Asked by nailpolishfanatic (6592 points ) January 11th, 2013

I’ve got an aunt living in Texas and the past weeks I’ve been thinking to myself that after I’m done with college (I’ve got like 1½ years remaining of school) then I would really like to move there and live with her just to get the hang of the country, I’ve only been once to the United States and that was in Washington D.C.

I’m majoring in Business and with emphasis on Economics and Mathematics. In the future I plan on owning either my own online store, be a freelance make up artist/photographer or even working with something involving the fashion industry and also I currently run a fashion blog and hopefully in the near future it will be successful and my job can be combined with it.

I have always wanted to live in other countries and I think me moving to the States would do good things for me, including bettering my English.

So my fellow Flutheries I know I’m only 18 and only have a part time job so of course it will most definitely be a little hard to begin with but otherwise what advice would you give, what to expect from the very beginning of moving out and the coming months?

Thank you in advance.

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25 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

You need a visa that allows you to work. Otherwise if you try to get a job, you are not lawfully in this country. Check with the American Embassy or consulate to see about getting the right visa.

Texas is a huge state: where does your aunt live? If she is not in one of the larger cities (Dallas, Austin, Houston) it will not be easy to adjust. Even San Antonio is not that great unless you are in the military and assigned to one of the myriad bases.

Moving to the US is a lot like moving anywhere else. It will be easier since you have an aunt here you can stay with. But when you get here, you need to get a job, save up some money to get your own place to live, and make friends. A lot of that will come from where you work: that’s where you will meet people and where you will find out the right neighborhood to consider for living.

And of course you may need to buy a car. Public transportation in Texas is iffy depending on where you are.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@zenvelo She lives in Dallas. Thank you and yeah I’m thinking of staying there permanently… just maybe a few years to begin with just so I can taste the water.

elbanditoroso's avatar

If I had a choice, it would be Austin, not Dallas. Austin is a college town, and it is the most “european” of the cities in Texas. Dallas is a huge megalopolis with no soul and no heart.

Be aware that Texas is one of the most conservative and unwelcoming states in the US. Next to Arizona (which is awful) – but Texas is a close second.

By all means come to the US, but you can do better than Texas.

wundayatta's avatar

You could not pay me enough money to move to Texas. The culture of the state is about as backward, politically, as you can imagine—except, perhaps, for Austin.

It’s an oil state. People are all infected with that oil mentality, and if it isn’t the oil mentality, it is the rancher mentality. They say everything in Texas is bigger than anywhere else. That’s the mentality that I think totally sucks. Their egos.

Then there’s the weather. You have to live indoors all summer in the air conditioning. It’s hot and humid in the big city areas. Houston is the worst. And they get all these hurricanes that hit Galveston and Houston.

Their attitude towards Mexicans could use an adjustment.

They have football teams that are totally full of themselves. The Dallas Cowboys are the most hated team in the universe. They have the nerve to call themselves “America’s” team. Like I said—the egos are totally huge. Bigger than the Niagara Falls.

The girls act like fools. Cheerleading and beauty pageants are a huge thing for them.

Country music is big in Texas.

They killed President Kennedy, too.

Of course, they did give us Molly Ivens.
The Guadalupe Mountains are gorgeous!
There is Austin.

I suppose if it is the only place you can go, then you should go. But just remember, that is not what the US is all about. They are an aberration. If they wanted to succeed from the nation, I would be happy to let them go.

These are generalizations, and not everyone in Texas is like that. In fact all 12 Texans who are not like that will probably object to my post, because they are all on fluther. But if there are more than 12 out of 100 who aren’t like that, I’ll visit the state to apologize to each and every one.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic What’s your home country? If you were born and raised in a European country, you’ll find that life is very, very different in the U.S. If you could tell me where you’re from, I might be able to toss out a few “before and after” examples.

Aster's avatar

Dallas is a great city. They have every kind of delicious food imaginable, The University of Texas at Dallas, and yes everyone in Texas loves the Cowboys. People are happy in Texas and even gracious due to it’s great economy and low taxes. We even have our own power grid. If Dallas is too big you could move to Tyler. Such a friendly town! It has a small town feel to it and people who grew up in Tyler still love it. It would take you an hour to drive to Dallas. The climate in the summer is hot and humid, true. But the winters are fantastic. It rarely snows and today in Dallas it’ll be 71 degrees! Many people in Dallas drive down to the gulf to Galveston to play in the ocean or go fishing. Padre Island is on the gulf also and a little more upscale than Galveston.
You will be amazed at how friendly Texans are! We are so proud of our state that we have a hard time not bragging about it. Welcome to Texas!

Linda_Owl's avatar

I agree with @elbanditoroso , Texas is one of the most conservative & unwelcoming states imaginable. About the best that can be said is that Texas is not as bad as Arizona. Texas abounds with minimum wage jobs, unless you manage to land a job with one of the oil companies. I know where-of I speak, I was born & raised in Dallas. I have lived in Texas all of my life except for short periods of time when I lived in various other states. Needless to say, most Texans have a very high opinion of both their state & of themselves.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@Linda_Owl “Texans have a very high opinion of both their state & of themselves.”

You can get a good fix on a person by what he/she tells you when you when you first meet. Those early conversations tell how a person defines himself. Some people launch right into the subject of job and career, as if work is paramount in life. Other people will describe their neighborhoods, families, hobbies, and interests; sure, they have jobs, but they also have a more balanced view of self-identity.

Whenever I meet a Texan, that bit of information comes out within the first few minutes of saying “hello.” Texans just seem to define themselves as such, and they do seem to be incredibly tied to and proud of their state. The Texas identity is very deeply ingrained and, at least in some Texans’ minds, worthy of immediate declaration.

I’ve observed this countless times and always found it interesting.

gailcalled's avatar

If I remember correctly, you were born in Zambia and now live in Iceland? Dallas seems like a long way from life in Iceland. Do your research carefully.

JLeslie's avatar

Just know Texas does not represent the whole US. Our country is huge, with very different mixes of people and attitudes from one region to another. I think since your aunt is in Texas that might be a good place to start. Like you said, get up to speed on English, feel safe in a new country without worry right away about affording shelter and other expenses she can help you with. Just know as far as language, even that is a little different from Texas to other states. I was in Florida a few days ago and somene called me Miss, and it was noticeable to me I was not addressed as Ma’am, which is what they would say to me where I live in Tennessee. No one thinks twice in NY about people speaking foreign languages or looking like they are from some other part of the world, but they will notice where I live.

Nw that you are over 18 how will you come here? Graduate school? Will you have a degree that a business here will sign for a visa for you? If you were under 18 yur aunt could have become your guardian maybe and brought you into the coutry, but as an adult you need to find a way in legally. Probably you can come in as a tourist, but then you can’t work on a tourist visa.

jerv's avatar

I wish to amplify what others have said here, mostly @JLeslie‘s assertion that Texas doe not represent our whole country.

Imagine, if you will, a place where religious and political views are quite Conservative, that dissenting viewpoints (such as believing in the Theory of Evolution, or that Obama was not born in Kenya) are met with hostility, and that feels that ignorance is a virtue. Also note that Texans don’t exactly speak English, at least not in any form that might be completely recognized by those of us who grew up in teh Northern US.

However, I think that that right there illustrates a very important point about the US; we are diverse. Figure, we are thousands of miles/kilometers wide, and with the additions of Alaska and Hawaii, go from the Arctic circle to practically the Equator. We have tundra, forest, jungle, desert, and mountains of all types. We have prosperity, poverty, intellect, ignorance, tolerance, and Texas.

When you ask about the US, you generally have to be a bit more specific. We are officially one nation, but we are many cultures and environments.

@Aster Texans are not that friendly to those of us with obvious New England accents, especially not those of us who don’t get all happy talking about Jesus, or who tend to have more European ideas about politics. If I want nice, I try the Carolinas, or even Georgia.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@jerv, as a resident of the state of Georgia, I thank you.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@jerv “We are officially one nation, but we are many cultures and environments.”

Actually, the U.S. is a country but not a nation. If you have any interest, I can explain; if not, I won’t act like a nit-picking, lecturing bore and say anything further.

I have a WICKED New England accent (“Green Mawn-sta”), but I can turn it on and off at will. So, I might be able to slip in to Texas, but I’d soon get outted for my European politics and utter lack of Jesus.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

I’ve been to Texas just twice; once to Austin, and once to Dallas. I need to fair here and say that I found the people to be warm, friendly, and welcoming.

In fact, at times the locals were a bit too friendly. I bought something in a hotel shop. By the time the employee had helped me, put my purchase into the cash register, and given me my change, I’d heard the entire story of her ugly divorce and how her ex-husband had abandoned her and their children. (No, I’m not exaggerating.)

Concerning politics, let’s not forget that Texas gave us LBJ and Sam Rayburn. Yes, that was a long time ago, but still…

jerv's avatar

@PaulSadieMartin In all my years, I have not been able to turn off my “Pahk the cah in Hahvahd Yahd”.

JLeslie's avatar

In Dallas I have a friend who owns a restaurant that is delicious! Place is called Salum’s, I recommend it. I think he opened a Mexican restaurant next door since I have been there.

Aster's avatar

My daughter bought a bag of clothes in the local mall (East Texas) two days ago. She had two bags and had been sitting down on a bench, got up and left one bag on the bench. When realizing it was missing she remembered it had the name of a store on it and went into that store. Yes; someone had returned the bag with all its contents.
I left my new purse and its wallet in a parking lot. I was upset about something and just left it in the grocery cart. Soon I got a phone call. A man said he had my purse and I could come and he’d give it to me. This was a fifteen minute drive out the highway. When I arrived he handed it to me. Everything was intact minus thirty dollars in the wallet. It was a part of town I’d call a poor area so I was impressed. I find this sort of thing happens often in Texas. But it would be foolish for me to attempt to make a generalized statement that everybody in Texas is considerate and respectful. That would be untrue as it is quite a large state with all kinds of people.
My late inlaws grew tired of Denver winters . She had been born and raised in West Texas. They decided to leave Colorado and , when they entered the Texas state line a man said to them, “Hi ! How are y’all doin? Have a nice day!” and she said, “boy, did that sound good.” Texans often refer to the manners, ethics and behaviors of the people here as, ‘Christian.” Of course, that’s just being naive. I have never thought of Texans as being a worldly or scholarly group; just sweet. I was born and raised in New Jersey and , trust me, it’s a different world here. I went back to NJ a few times to visit a close friend. When at the buffet an employee told me not to use the same spoon in more than its one particular stainless bin. I was horrified she’d speak to a customer in that manner. I’m just not used to it anymore.
We went to the Smithsonian. I walked up to a museum where stood a woman in her forties. I asked her which building held a particular item (the Spirit of St Louis plane) and she said, “How should I know?” It was like she slapped my face. I was stunned and couldn’t respond. Not used to that rudeness.
And for what it’s worth, all my family here are Republicans. But my inlaws were Democrats.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@PaulSadieMartin I’m Zambian but been living in Iceland for the past 6 years.

bkcunningham's avatar

How long has your aunt lived in Dallas?

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@bkcunningham She’s been living there since last February.

gailcalled's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic: What has your aunt’s experience been? Is she a US citizen? Is she planning to stay in Dallas?

bkcunningham's avatar

@nailpolishfanatic, I wouldn’t ask strangers on the Internet, most of whom have never been to Texas, let alone Dallas. Ask your aunt. I’m an American and only been to Texas three or four times and I wouldn’t begin to tell you what it is like to live there.

jerv's avatar

@bkcunningham Nice caveat, but it’s safe to say that people are often enough like the area they were born /raised in and/or lived for decades that you can form at least a rough idea of what people who still live there are like. Having close friends who actually lived there for a few years also helps form ideas.

Many (including Texans) agree that Austin is totally different from most of the rest of Texas; more liberal, more tolerant, etcetera. Dallas, from what I gathered from someone who has actually lived there, is rather bland compared to Boston or Seattle.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

@jerv Just pretend that you’re learning a second language. Enunciate those non-rhotic R’s, and try to drop the intrusive R’s.

Wrong. “I’m not cold. I have my pahker-on.”

Correct: “I’m not cold. I have my parka on.”

bolwerk's avatar

I won’t say don’t try living in Dallas, but I’d plan on moving around the USA a little bit if you can. The general consensus here that Texas is a bit, uh, uncultured is probably pretty apt. I second @elbanditoroso that Austin probably is a better choice, if you must be in Texas.

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