What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Name three things that you wish you had brought and three you wish you had left at home.
First of all, coming from California and moving to the Arctic we figured we needed to dress for extremely cold weather. I would of left all the California Arctic gear at home and waited til I got to Tromso to buy. Bring normal going out clothes, not the mountain gear you would think to wear, people dress nice here. I wish I would of brought US measuring cups/spoons in order to cook american recipes. Cold medicines are just not as strong off the shelf here.
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What advice would you give someone preparing to move to your area about the actual move, choosing a neighborhood and finding a home?
My advice would be to start looking as soon as possible or have someone help you find a place. If you live on the Island it's easy to get around by bus. If you live in Kvolya or Krokken you may need a car, but homes are cheaper to rent. Norwegians speak English so it's easy to get around and communicate. You can buy jackets, shoes, clothes, etc so no need to bring your whole wardrobe or the Arctic clothing you "think" you might need. Tromso is very beautiful and accommodating to expats (except for the Visa and Norwegian # process)
What type of housing do you live in? Is this typical for most expats in your area?
We live in a one bedroom apartment that we were able to sublease fully furnished. Typically people live in houses if available.
How did you choose your neighborhood and find your home or apartment?
We found our place to live off the internet site here in Norway Finn.no. We weren't concerned about neighborhood as much as we were concerned about finding a place to live. Its a University island so places go fast and there's not a lot available.
Are your housing costs higher or lower than they were in your home country? What is the average cost of housing there?
The housing and food costs is the most expensive you will ever find in all of the world. Our small 1bdrm is $1300 and food costs are about $1200/mth for 2 people. Beers are $12/pint if that gives you any indication of food prices.