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Guide for Moving from New York City to Atlanta

August 7th, 2017 - 2:05 PM

Relocating to Atlanta from New York

Moving from New York City to Atlanta? Your life is about to change! People often call Atlanta the “New York of the South” because it’s the cultural and business hub of the region. But while the nickname may make you think the areas are the same, there are many differences. Learn what you’ll find after moving, including a lower cost of living and plenty of exciting things to check out.

Moving from New York to Atlanta offers new opportunities

What to expect when moving from NYC to the ATL

Whether you’re moving to work for iconic Atlanta employers like Delta or Coca-Cola or just to get out of the Big Apple, Atlanta is a great place to call home. Perhaps the biggest perk is a more affordable cost of living. While life in Atlanta is at (or just above) the national average for most items, New York is much higher. In fact, Sperling’s Best Places says Atlanta is 43.4% less expensive overall. The Big Apple scores a 180 on the cost of living index (100 is the national average), and Atlanta comes in at a 102. Housing, health care, utilities and groceries are all more affordable. You’ll also find:

One of the major differences will be how you get around. New York is incredibly walkable, and public transit options abound. However, most people in Atlanta drive their own car. There is the MARTA — Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority — a combined bus and rail service, but it’s not as widely used or accessible as the MTA. Atlanta is a driver’s city with over 80% of people driving to work with an average 30 minute commute, according to Numbeo.

If you loved the walkability of New York, there are neighborhoods with similar walkability. While the majority of Atlanta isn’t walkable, pockets of it will have easy accessibility to parks, restaurants and shops. Midtown has the Atlanta Botanical Garden, the Alliance Theater and tons of great restaurants within walking distance. Or for more family-friendly walkable fun, check out Centennial Hill — close to the Georgia Aquarium and Centennial Olympic Park.

Match your favorite NYC spot to something similar in Atlanta

You’ll never find a replacement for your favorite places, but you can find similar spots. What did you love about New York?

  • For the outdoor recreation like Central Park, try Piedmont Park or the Beltline. Both offer great views, public art and lots of green space.
  • Ponce City Market is a community hub with a food hall, shopping and special events like fitness classes or concerts. It will remind you of areas like Chelsea Market.
  • If you loved New York’s live theater scene, the Alliance Theater has won a Tony Award for being a top regional theater and offers amazing local productions. The Fox Theater features touring Broadway productions so you can still enjoy these shows once they hit the road.
  • For the same historic feel of the Flatiron District, check out the Candler Park area. While some of it is more residential, the Candler Building looks like it could belong on Fifth Avenue. And the Candler Park Fall Fest is two full days of music, art and food trucks!
  • If you enjoyed the bustling restaurant and bar scene, Peachtree Center has more than 200 restaurants, bars and coffee shops so you can still enjoy strolling to find a place to eat. 

And just like every borough has its own personality and flavor, so does every suburb and neighborhood. Don’t be afraid to explore — you may find a new favorite space in a neighboring area.

Places to explore

These are places that every Atlanta local has been to. To join the club, so to speak, make sure to stop by and check out all of these iconic places after moving:

  • World of Coca-Cola. Sample 70 different Coke products and explore their museum to learn all about this local treasure.
  • Mary Mac’s Tea Room. It’s so much more than tea — it’s the staple for Southern cooking. Try fried green tomatoes, pimento cheese, pot likker (the leftover juice from cooking greens— complimentary on your first visit) and their famous fried chicken. They also stay old-school traditional with the ordering — you fill out your order at the table using pencils provided.
  • Zoo Atlanta. There are over 1,000 animals include giant pandas to see, along with a petting zoo, playground and train.
  • Stone Mountain. This local park is 3,200 acres with attractions like the Summit Skyride and mini golf. The highlight is the laser show which projects an amazing showcase onto the actual mountain side at dark.
  • The Varsity. “What’ll ya have?” is the greeting you’ll get at this Atlanta institution. Serving hot dogs and burgers with their own lingo (learn it before you go), it’s a must-try.
  • CNN Studio. Check out behind the scenes at this 24-hours network and find out how to be a part of live audiences in the future.
  • The Colonnade. Generous portions and Southern hospital abound at this restaurant which was founded back in 1927. Classics like fried chicken, pot roast and salmon croquettes are still local favorites. 

More unique local spots

If you want to get away from the typical spots, these are some more unique places to explore:

  • Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room and Ping Pong Emporium. Yes, it’s a crazy name. It’s an ever crazier place. The eclectic décor is matched by the unique entertainment including tarot readings and “church organ community karaoke”. There is also always ping pong happening all the time.
  • BRASH Coffee. This is a coffee shop inside a shipping container. It’s small, but the minimalist communal space also has an outdoor seating area so you can hang out when the weather is nice.
  • Children’s Museum of Atlanta. If you have kids under 8, this is a must-visit. Everything on the museum floor is interactive. It’s a great place for a play date or a birthday party.
  • Joystick Gamebar. Combine classic arcade games with friends, food and drinks. They serve gourmet hot dogs (think covered in pimento cheese, or another topped with kimchi and pork belly) and feature classic games from the 70s, 80s and 90s like Galaga and Mortal Kombat.
  • The Krog Street Tunnel. Filled with amazing street art, you can take it all in for free. It’s a popular spot to take pictures and make marriage proposals. Every local concert and festival will also have a flyer hanging here, so you can keep up with local events by strolling through.
  • The Tabernacle. This concert venue plays host to both local bands and bigger names like Foster the People and NEEDTOBREATHE. It’s been a church, medical center and nursing school, and then lay vacant until being turned into a concert venue.

How to move from New York City to Atlanta

Now that you know what to expect, you can start planning for the move. There are a few issues to work around, starting with the parking in New York. Since street parking can be difficult, a rental truck may not be ideal. U-Pack is a self-moving options where you pack and load (or hire a moving crew) and we handle transportation. In New York, we offer live loads, where the driver stays with the truck and you get a window of time for loading (eliminating the need for overnight parking).

After loading, your belongings are transported to Atlanta, so you don’t have to deal with driving a truck through traffic. We deliver your belongings right to your door (or you can unload at our Atlanta service center). Prices depend on where you’re moving, how much you’re moving and the move date. Give us the details, and get a free moving quote to check prices.

Questions about moving from New York to Atlanta?

If you have questions about moving from New York to Georgia, call us at 800-413-4799 or leave a comment below.