IN BRIEF: This post is dedicated to those who move into a new city, either for studies or seeking work or any other reason. We discuss the main pain points and offer tips to deal with each of them.
Moving to a new city is always exciting. However, with the excitement comes difficulties. Sometimes, essentials such as food, transportation, water, accommodation etc. need more focus and planning.
Get The Perfect House
Finding houses in a new city can be difficult if the accommodation has not already been arranged by your company. First of all you have to choose between- Agents or owners? Some say you should always reach out to house owners, while others say “When you don’t know anything why not ask the experts?”. Thankfully in recent days you can conduct your house search online before moving to a new city. That way all you have to do is go verify the house condition, which brings with it it’s own tedium.
What To Do: There are so many web portals today who offer house hunting services. Here are some of them: Housing.com, commonfloor.com, Magicbricks.com. You can also join forums on Facebook who deal with Brokerage Free Flats/Houses.
Dealing With House Owners
Renting a house is challenging as you have to strike a decent relationship with hopefully a ‘sane’ house owner. There are many such house owners, but somehow you have to be lucky to find one. Into some days or weeks of staying, the owner might give a friendly visit, which is in most part to invigilate the status of house and to judge how good or bad you are at keeping their house tidy. Some house owners live in constant fear of their house being treated and kept in ruins. Dealing with such owners and getting their trust can be tricky.
What To Do: It doesn’t matter if you are an introvert, you have to talk and observe the house owner. Be open and communicative, ask them how they want their house to be maintained. Also, convey your routine and the way you want to take care of the house. Remember, it is their property, which probably costs Lakhs of Rupees.
Finding means of transportation in a new city is a tiresome task. Since it is a new city you clearly don’t know the roads-That’s what certain auto drivers count their advantage on. Sometimes such opportunity seekers charge you twice as extra than normal, which is difficult for us to figure out when we are taken to the cleaners.
You can always opt for buses- but who knows how far the bus stop from your destination is? All you can really rely on in such situations is your smartphone for maps, but for that to work you should get a high speed internet connection, after all you’ll be on roaming.
What To Do: Worry not, here are some tips and tricks for you. For MAPS, you can download the highly efficient NOKIA HERE MAPS, available for all mobile platforms. You can download the map and use it offline, NO INTERNET REQUIRED. And by the way, there are offline maps available on GOOGLE OFFLINE MAPS too. Dealing with other modes of transportation, there are mobile apps to hire Cabs and even Rickshaws. Here are some, OLA, MERU, UBER etc.
Initially, food can be your major worry. It might cost you a fortune if you eat outside almost everyday but cooking at home when you are still unpacking can be equally nerve wracking. Also adjusting to a new city’s local cuisine can take a while.
What To Do: Though it is good to eat what you cook. Initially you can find restaurants who cook the cuisine of your choice, all while sitting on your couch. Here are sites which are really helpful: Swiggy, Zomato, Foodpanda. If you are in Bangalore and want some nutritious food and snacks, you can try out these FreshMenu, DropKaffe, NutriTown, NutsOverSalads.
When you are shifting, your major focus is to put everything in boxes. It is at that time when you realize the demarcation between important and unimportant stuff. You cannot carry everything so you have to do decide between what is necessary and what isn’t. Unpacking is a mess too. Where do you start arranging things from? Unpacking boxes and arranging things can take up few days and can be really exhausting.
What To Do: The only tip to be offered is to ask you, not to unpack everything in one go. Arrange the boxes with stuff you need for everyday usage, accessible. The rest, take 30 minutes or an hour per day to unpack methodically. Do not rush, relax, even if you are a clean freak with OCD.
Hunt For Domestic Help
Although there are many jokes on how important the role of a Bai is – They are EXTREMELY IMPORTANT. Finding someone responsible is equally exhausting as finding a needle in a haystack.
What To Do: The first attempt you can embark upon is by asking your owner and/or your immediate neighbors for maid suggestions. It is remarkably easy for the maid who tidies your neighbor’s house, to just pop in and tidy yours. Else, fortunately, here are some websites where you can find and book maids at the comfort of your couch: HouseMaidForYou, House Maids.
Adjusting to local environment
If you have shifted to a city in the south, you might face a language barrier. Elsewhere too, each Indian city has it’s own spark in terms of tradition, culture and belief. It might take a while to understand and fit in, and also to adjust to the new city weather.
What To Do: There are no shortcuts here. You have to give yourself time to settle down at a new city, physically and emotionally. After which, you can develop a curiosity to learn about the local culture. Your college mates or colleagues can be good resources to learn about the city. Take it easy, and it is good personally to learn new cultures. After all, India is a diversified effing country, isn’t it.
Dealing With Network Providers
If you have to set up WiFi from scratch then you will have to do your homework of finding out which company’s internet is the fastest. Changing your roaming SIM card into local without changing your number has become a breeze, thanks to number portability.
What To Do: Check with your neighbors about fast internet connections and mobile service providers. Or you can check out ACT Broadband, Hathway, etc, they have a list of areas they serve. If you find your locality in there, then request for a DEMO. Most service providers offer DEMOS, test the speed and then decide to invest.
Sometimes, even when everything is great in the new city, you just miss your previous city way too much. It can be for food, friends and places but it definitely makes you nostalgic.
What To Do: Well, there isn’t much to do besides taking in your emotions. We learn a lot and grow as a person when we dearly miss people and atmosphere who are far away from us. This way we learn to deal with separation, a little.
Changing your address such as for your bank and bills records are difficult tasks too.
What To Do: The only suggestion is to try and get most of it done online and over the phone. It is a tedious task nonetheless.