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5 Tips For Living in Texas

By Joshua Wood

Summary: Expats in Texas live in one of the largest states in the United States. Here are some tips for expats on how to successfully move to, and settle into, one of the most iconic American states.

Expats in Texas - 5 Tips For Living in Texas

Expats in Texas live in the second largest state in the United States by both population and land area. In recent years, Texas has attracted a large number of businesses due to its favorable policies that has resulted in the expansion of its economy to over $1.6 trillion per year.

Texas Basics

Texas is located in the south central part of the United States and is home to some of the biggest cities in the United States. The population of Houston is the largest in the state (4th in the U.S.), followed by San Antonio (7th in the U.S.), Dallas (9th in the U.S.), Austin (11th in the U.S.) and Fort Worth (15th in the U.S.).

The weather in Texas is highly variable depending on where in the state one lives. Parts of it are arid, others receive a decent amount of rain. Parts of Texas are very, very hot in the summer.

As with other parts of the United States, expats should avoid political discussions. In recent years, people in the U.S. have become more divided in their political views and a simple comment can offend someone and elicit a response you might not expect. Overall, Texas is a Republican (more conservative) state, but in urban areas they tend to vote Democrat (more liberal), so it is difficult to predict the political views of individuals. Stear clear of politics!

Economy of Texas

The economy of the state of Texas is robust and home to all kinds of thriving industries. The technology in Texas is enormous and continues to grow. Many of the biggest Silicon Valley companies have or will have a big presence in Texas.

The oil and gas industry in Texas has been a major part of the state's economy for more than a century.

The Texas economy is the second biggest in the United States after California. For 2015, there were only 8 countries in the world outside of the United States that have a GDP (nominal) bigger than the Texas economy.

Texas Culture

Texas is a cross-roads of many cultures from all over the world, and Texas culture is steeped in its own history. Before European exploration, Texas was home to many Native American peoples. Texas was once its own republic, and also passed through the hands of Spain, France, Mexico, and the Confederate States of America (during the American Civil War).

The state of Texas - with its cattle industry, BBQ and its contribution to the image of the American Cowboy - is an international icon. Texas Cowboys were shaped by the U.S. cultures that shaped the American South and Southwest.

Texas cuisine is iconic, with much of the country celebrating Texas's contributions to U.S. culinary culture.

Health Insurance in Texas

International health insurance is available to expats living in Texas.

The health care system in Texas, as with other parts of the United States, is expensive. Traditionally, employers have provided their full-time employees with health insurance.

There are a large number of hospitals in Texas.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), popularly known as Obamacare, has significantly changed the health care system in the United States. Following the national elections held in November 2016, the possibility of the ACA being repealed has greatly increased. This has created uncertainty in how health care will be provided and delivered going forward.

Things to Do and Entertainment

There are all kinds of things to do in Texas. Texas has a huge coastline with a vast array of activities available to beach and cost lovers. It has also developed an impressive array of arts and entertainment options throughout the state. Expats in Texas also can enjoy all kinds of outdoor activities.

Expats in Texas also enjoy all kind of culinary options that go far beyond Texas's legendary barbecue.

People in Texas are passionate about athletics, especially football. It's a cultural staple. College football and the NFL are enormously popular, but so are the lower levels also. Expats that live in suburbs are surprised to find high school stadiums that seat between 15,000-20,000 people. That's not a misprint! Don't underestimate the importance of football in Texas.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood joined Expat Exchange in 2000. His areas of responsibility include creative aspects of the community, research, sales and business development. Joshua received his Master's Degree in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University and graduated from Syracuse University with a BA in English Textual Studies.

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Comments about this Article

Jan 23, 2017 11:23

This piece doesn't really give any information other than what you can find on a tourist site. I lived in San Antonio for a year and took part in its social life. I have to say that I don't like Texas, but San Antonio and Austin are the best cities. The hill country with its German flavour is nice. Lubbock - where Buddy Holly came from - is pretty horrible. It was a dry county when I visited. Dallas has no heart and you'll drive 50 miles a day just getting around. Fort Worth has the best cowboy shop in the USA.

First Published: Jan 11, 2017

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