Atlanta is the sprawling capital and most populous metro of the southern state of Georgia, and is a culturally, historically and economically significant city in the US. It lies at the southern extremity of the famous Appalachian Mountains, and it therefore became an important gateway for overland traffic from the southern Atlantic Seaboard to the west. Today, it's still an important transport hub and is home to the busiest airport on Earth.
Living in Atlanta as an expat
Atlanta’s economy is made up of a diverse range of industries, including logistics, IT and business services. Media also makes up an influential part of the city’s economy, as Atlanta is home to the headquarters of the CNN and TBS television networks. Those moving to Atlanta with expertise in any of these areas are sure to find plenty of commercial opportunities.
Downtown Atlanta is where most businesses and government organisations are based, and it is likely that new arrivals in the city will end up working in this area. Midtown Atlanta is a large business district where many law firms are based, and expats will also find many cultural attractions and universities there. Buckhead is Atlanta’s uptown area and is also a business hub, but it is surrounded by suburbs and the dense forests Atlanta is famous for.
Cost of living in Atlanta
The cost of living in Atlanta is relatively low compared to other US cities. High-quality accommodation is available for a reasonable price, and living in the suburbs instead of in the city is a good way to make money go further. Another advantage to the suburbs is the space; many houses are large with a garden and a swimming pool.
There is, however, one disadvantage to living in the suburbs of Atlanta, and that is the commute into the city for work. It is a large, sprawling city, notorious for high traffic congestion. Expats should consider living in an area where they have easy access to public transport. The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) provides buses and trains. The railway connects all the main areas of Atlanta and can save commuters a lot of time and frustration. In some areas, there is a 'park and ride' system for commuters who do not live within walking distance of public transport.
Families and children in Atlanta
Families moving to Atlanta with children can rest assured that the city is known for its high standard of education. The city is home to some of the best universities in the US, and there are also many excellent public and private schools in Atlanta. Atlanta, home to the Center for Disease Control, has excellent healthcare standards but higher than average healthcare costs, so newcomers are advised to get private health insurance if they're not yet covered.
Climate in Atlanta
South of the Appalachians, Atlanta's climate is subtropical and humid. It has four distinct seasons, but is best known for its long, humid summers.
Atlanta continues to increase in popularity as a relocation destination, and those moving to the city can look forward to living in an exciting destination with a high quality of life.
►Read Lifestyle in Atlanta for more on the city's entertainment options
►For tips on finding a home in the city, see Accommodation in Atlanta
►For information on the city's various neighbourhoods, see Areas and Suburbs in Atlanta
Are you an expat living in Atlanta?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Atlanta. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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