Should I Move to Alaska?

December 20, 2013

After posting about Things I Wish I Had Known Before Moving to Alaska nearly a year ago, I have had a lot people ask me via the comments section or by e-mail: should I move to Alaska?

The good: beautiful scenery


(From this post: Winner Creek + Sugarspoon)

The bad: friends and family are far away


My sister and I

The ugly: snow in May


(From this post.)

I always struggle with a clear-cut answer for those people who ask me about moving to Alaska. I know most people just want to bounce their questions off me and get a better picture of life in the 49th state. I am more than happy to help them discern whether or not Alaska is for them, but I am cautious on how I answer each question.

Of course I cannot give a yes or no answer since every person is so different, but I’ve compiled a (short) list of things you should consider before moving to Alaska because it definitely is not for everyone. I thought I would really enjoy my time here (I love the outdoors, always wanted to live near the mountains, and enjoy the open spaces.), but within a relatively short period of time, I realized there’s a lot more to this state than I originally thought.

Things to consider before moving to Alaska:

1. You must love winter. Period. I can’t put it any other way. Winter is here for a solid six months and the seasons that bored winter aren’t your true fall and spring like other places in this county.


This is so very true!

2. You have to realize you will not see your family and friends very often. Flights out of Alaska start at $600/$700. (Occasionally you might be able to find a deal for $500, but most flights are much more expensive.) Not only are flights expensive, but you must allow for a solid 8-12+ hours of travel to get to your destination.


3. Anchorage is a fairly large city (280,000 people), but it does not offer an endless number of things to do. Of course this is very relative and often depends upon where you came from. If you come from a large city on the East Coast versus a small town in the Midwest, your perspective on this might vary. There are things to do, but I’ve heard people mention that they do get bored easily.

4. The cost of living is much higher: food, housing, gas, household goods, etc. are going to cost more. The pay from most jobs help offset the higher cost of living, but I do miss the novelty of cheap things.

5. The winters are long and dark. In Anchorage the sun typically rises at 10:00 a.m. and sets at 3:00 p.m. in the winter. But even when the sun is up during these five short hours, it is so low in the horizon it doesn’t warm the air or provide that boost of energy you normally get from the sun. If you suffer from SAD where you live now, it will only get worse here!

Sunrise at 9:30 a.m.

6. There are endless opportunities to hunt, fish, trap, and catch big game animals—as well as small game—year round. Caribou and bear are very popular big game animals to hunt and fishing for salmon in the summer is a necessity.

7. Summer temps only get into the 60s—maybe low 70s, so don’t expect to be sporting your bathing suit of taking a dip in any lake. (The summer of 2013 was an exception.) The sun does shine for about 20 hours in the summer, but even those 4 hours in between, the skies are still dusky and not completely dark.

8. Once you are here, it is very hard to move back to The Lower 48. People get stuck here. It is hard because of how much it costs to actually move all of your belongings back—even if you sell off many of them. It isn’t like you are moving across the border to another state. It is 1700 miles just to get from Anchorage to Seattle!

Plus I’ve found it is very difficult to find a job out of state. Who wants to hire someone from Alaska and take the chance that they will actually move from that far away. Nonetheless, there are other well-qualified people much closer, so your application will probably get by-passed.

DSC 0741

(Picture from our trip to Maui.)

9. People either love Alaska or hate it. There isn’t much middle ground. For those who grew up here, it is a huge part of who they are and they will go to every length to defend their state. (Yes, I am speaking from experience.) And here is my theory on whether or not you will like it here:

If you are a female, and you were born and raised in Alaska: 75% of these people love it, 25% hate it.

If you are a female and you moved to Alaska as an adult: 50% love it, 50% hate it.

If you are a male and you were born and raised in Alaska: 100% of these people love living here.

If you are a male and you moved to Alaska as an adult: 75% love it, 25%hate it.

10. While Alaska is very different, Anchorage is still a US city with chain restaurants, shopping malls, fine arts entertainment, and most things you would find in a similar-sized city. We do not ride sled dogs to work, live in igloos, or eat whale blubber.

I’m not sure if these things help or make your decision more difficult but hopefully they at least cause you to take some new things into consideration. Alaska is like no other. Whatever you decide, I hope you follow your heart and live life to the fullest.

    1. Most of us are complaining around here in Texas about having less daylight than normal at this time of year, but we’re getting much more than you are there! I love the mountains, but it would be hard to live without much sunshine. Thanks for the info!

    1. Excellent post – you pretty much nailed it as far as what to expect and (we think) even the percentages of who does and does not find Alaska to be a good fit. One thing you mentioned and that we would underscore is this: Alaska is not a good fit for people who need to be “entertained.” People who thrive up here are generally people who are doers, not watchers. We know plenty of people who thought that the TV would keep them sufficiently “entertained” through Alaska’s long winters only to discover that with this much darkness and cold, TV alone just doesn’t cut it.
      For the past four years, we have spent nine months – from mid-August through mid-May – in the Arctic. We do not suffer from SAD (fortunately), and we NEVER get bored. Our lives are filled with one project after another. We have lots and lots and lots of free time, and we love and utilize every moment of it. We’ve learned to cook just about anything you can think of from scratch – from pop tarts to cheezits to all kinds of breads, pastries and entrees – all of which come out better (way better) than store-bought. We will never go back to old cooking and eating habits.
      The free time has also allowed us to get deep into a passion: photography. Before we came up here, we never had the time this hobby really requires. Now we do. We love to read (a way more sustainable pastime than watching the boob tube) and the perfect way to acquire new skills regarding fishing, sailing, boating, cooking and photography.
      This winter break, we will be taking on yet another new challenge: making a quilt tailored to the bed in our sailboat. (We spend our summers living aboard our sailboat Bandon in the Seward, Alaska harbor.)
      As to Alaska’s summers, there is nothing in the world like them. There’s so much to do: hiking, boating, fishing, animal watching, traveling and more, and the luxury of virtually endless days where the sun barely sets! And, oh, for the record, we do eat whale blubber, aka muktuk. Regularly. Quite tasty.

      1. I appreciate this comment–very thoughtful. You are very right in that people have to find their own entertainment here. I would love to be able to live off the land more–almost pioneer-like. I knew I should have put a caveat in there that some people do eat whale blubber and ride dog sleds. 😉

      1. i am from the carribean i would like to experience living their for a year///

    1. I’ve honestly always wondered what living in Alaska would be like. Thank you for sharing this. I don’t have the freedom to move to Alaska due to military constrictions but have always wondered. I didn’t realize how long it stayed light in the summer-that is really interesting!

    1. I found your blog because I read the post about “things I wish I had known…” when I was looking at info about Anchorage just before we moved here.
      Knowing that we should only be here for three years helps me. I am not entirely opposed to this place and right now it has some novelty to it as we moved from a ski resort town of about 10,000 people. We have been enjoying shopping without having to drive 175 miles to Denver, movies, theater and having our daughter’s grandparents (free babysitting!) a five minute drive away instead of a long plane ride (or two). We have been on dates without having to pay for a babysitter!
      I miss my family and friends (we are near my in-laws) and have just exhausted almost all of our miles to get us “home” and back after the holidays.
      My husband did not grow up here but his dad has been stationed here for the last 6 years. His parents plan to leave in a few years too, they are actually tired of the lack of a real summer.
      Yes, it was expensive to get here. We spent a lot to drive here with a trailer we bought. From Colorado it was about 3500 miles and a good week of driving and sightseeing. Hotels, food and a new tire along the way, and Canada was expensive! (fuel was $1.10 to 1.89 a litre)
      My husband has always wanted to live in Alaska and I chose to go back to school here, partly because of the free grandma babysitting. My husband works on ships on the west coast so his home is location neutral but since things cost more here in AK, it’s like he took a bit of a pay cut. For instance we are paying $400 more a month in rent for a place that is not as nice as our place in Colorado. I’m sure my husband will enjoy his time off work fishing and skiing. I do like skiing (cross country and downhill) and we have lived in an area that gets lots of snow (300″ a year) so that doesn’t bother me. Time will tell what really will get to me but I suspect it will be the lack of real summer too. Every time I visited in summer I never wore shorts, it was too cold for me. I even said “Alaska is for people who hate summer”. And now here I am, living in Alaska!


      1. Thanks for the comment. I agree that one must not like hot summer weather to live here!! I pretty much wear my winter clothes year-round; it is sad. There are definitely perks, but for me they don’t outweigh the cons.

    1. I really want to thank you for writing this post! I’ve been following your blog because I’m a runner who is planning on moving to Anchorage in May, so I figured I could learn a lot from following you! I absolutely hate hot weather and seem to have an aversion to it (I usually get heat exhaustion pretty easily and will pass out about once a week in the summer so to me it’s a season of hiding indoors from the heat and humidity!) so I’m actually looking forward to being able to go outside during the summer in Alaska! Winter is my favorite time of year because I can actually enjoy hiking/running/camping, but I do think that the super low temps in Anchorage may take some getting used to 🙂 The lowest it gets in Philly is in the teens so it will be interesting!

      1. You definitely can’t enjoy hot summers to like living here, so it sounds like it would be perfect for you! It does get colder than the teens, but you will probably be okay–good gear can help.

    1. Early in my parent’s retirement they went to Alaska twice. They travelled the country with a big trailer and drove up twice. They loved it and my mother would prefer to live there than Florida where they are now. My father hates the cold – they were from New England and had their fill of the cold.
      My niece lives there and loves it. She loves hunting and fishing, has a great job, met her fiancé and is having a great time there.
      It sounds great, but you do point out a lot of the drawbacks.

    1. I was researching moving to Alaska and found this post along with the Things I should know before moving. It is very informative and even though I will be moving from the Caribbean where our only season is summer, I’m hoping that I adjust to the 6 months of winter. Can’t wait to go fishing, hiking and the experiences of a new place.

    1. I was raised in Alaska and I’m moving back , this summer, with my husband and daughter. I’m so excited! I was happy to read your statistics on the men that love Alasaka. Haha I was already checking things off of the the list but that made me laugh. My daughter is going to love it and the schools are so much better than where we are right now.
      I enjoyed reading your page. Thank you. Karen – from Alaska

    1. Thank you for the post, I enjoyed reading as much about AK and Anc as possible. Like a few of the others who have commented, I have plans to move to AK. I have only visited a few times, so I am a bit unsure. I am from ND and hate hot weather so that will be a plus if I follow through with the move.
      Do you have any advice on which months are the best in finding vacancies? Which areas of the city to look for rentals and which areas to avoid?

      1. Are you wondering about vacancies for housing? If so, people move primarily in the summer (May – August/September) because who, frankly, wants to move in the winter. So I would assume there would be more openings during the winter?? Housing is competitive in Anchorage, in general. West and South Anchorage are generally the safer areas of town. East side has pockets of okay neighborhoods. Avoid: Fairview, Mountain View, and Muldoon.

        1. Thanks! Just trying to prepare as much as I can before we get there.

    1. Was in Anchor Point last summer and fell in love with the State. Didn’t like the hot weather though. I am from southern California and want to get away from the heat and fast paced living. I live on the coast south of Los Angeles and when the winds blow offshore, it can get really hot and sometime really humid. Because I am from California, the prices of groceries and gas were about the same, which is a plus because I would be used to that. When people talk about the long winters, are they longer than they are in Chicago or other States? Is Anchorage area winters more extreme than other States? Does the snow stay on the ground all winter long and only melt when spring hits? Is it better to rent or buy if you can afford it? I have noticed houses on the market for over a year. I am 64 years old and have never wanted to move away from California until I went to Alaska!

      1. Yes, winters are 1-2 months longer here. The fall and spring seasons are very short and sometimes feel non-existent. I grew up in MN and definitely notice the winters being longer here. Anchorage’s winters lack windchills, so it can be warmer than places with strong windchills (i.e. MN). Many people would argue the winters are more tolerable here. Once the snow starts to fall, it really doesn’t melt until the springtime–unlike CO where the snow comes and goes. I always think it is better to buy versus rent no matter where you live if you know you are going to be staying for a few years.

    1. I just received word that I was selected for a contracting job at Elmendorf AFB. I would love to get more information from you on where I should look to live and such. It will just be me and the boyfriend so we will not require a huge home.

      1. A lot of military families either live on the east side of Anchorage or in Eagle River.

    1. thank you for all the info i am by myself an 57 year old female i was wondering how hard it is to meet a nice guy in alaska i would like to move there sick of the heat in Florida thamks for any help Dorothy

    1. Nice blog and nice to have an inside view of Alaska. Have been watching a lot of “Moving to Alaska” and of course, it being a television show, doesn’t provide all of the info one can get from a person living the life. I am originally from Washington State but have been living on the east coast for the past 25 years. Am looking for something a little more “back to American Frontier” but because of getting up in years, realize I may not be up to as rustic as I’d like to think I am! 🙂 Being a single (older) female, my main concern is potential loneliness and ability to hack the elements. I’ve always loved camping, hiking and being out of doors, so that part is good. Also wonder about job opportunities — I need to work!

      I’m thinking Sitka, or some other areas I’ve seen on the more rustic parts of Alaska and am not sure what perspective you can provide, but thank you for what you’ve posted and will appreciate any further insight!

      Peace ~

      1. You can definitely ‘get away from it all’ here in Alaska. I’ve never been to Sitka, so I wouldn’t be able to provide any insight to that area. As far as finding work, in Anchorage if you really want a job, you’ll be able to find one most likely. And if you have a Bachelor’s degree, that will also help quite a bit. I’m not sure what Sitka’s economy is like though–I’m guessing a lot of tourism and fishing. As far as being lonely, you will have to be conscious about getting out and getting involved. There are a lot of options in Anchorage if you put yourself out there, but once again, I’m not sure about Sitka since it is a lot smaller.

        1. Thank you, Michelle. I will keep doing homework on this and am very happy to know of your blog. I hear some good things about Talkeetna as well. Best of both worlds, and hopefully will remain somewhat affordable. I will perhaps look at starting off in the bigger “metropolitan” areas, such as Anchorage, as you mention the opportunities may be better, and then take it from there.

          I hope you have a very nice day!

    1. I am considering the possibility of taking on a medical job in the Copper River area…any idea or know of anyone that can give me a rundown on living realities there,… ie rent/internet access/etc? Great blog btw….you are definitely helping me in formulating a decision.

    1. My Wife is an RN & I’m retired military, is Alaska out of our price range or could we afford to live in a small town anywhere in AK? We don’t require much more than a small home, a near by Church and small town life style.

      Thank you


      1. Without knowing much more about your financial situation, I would think the two of you could afford to live here on those salaries. Homes in ‘The Valley’ (Palmer/Wasilla area) are usually cheaper than Anchorage. The cost of living is the same between those two areas.

    1. Thank you for writing this article/blog, I am very intrested in relocating to Alaska and now i believe my mind is made up. The cost of living is only slightly higher than what i figured before doing research and i absolutely hate hot summers! Lol i have lived in louisiana most of my life but did live in Maine for a short while and i have always missed the climate….can’t wait to start packing now i just need to find a job….

      1. First off, thank you for this blog, Michelle. @ John and whomever it may apply to, my husband and I want to relocate to Alaska, as well. Lived in Ohio our whole life (27 years-ish) until we moved to Houston, TX last year for his job offer. Our impression of Texas so far = Yuck. Hate the summers, flat, just not for us. Sorry, Texas fans:( We definitely fit the criteria for Alaskans; NO doubt in our minds. We can’t get there fast enough. So back to what I was getting at….John, any updates on you getting there? Just curious since you’re in the neighboring state..We feel confident my husband can find work as a welder with his oil/gas experience and I work for my company virtually, but how on earth are we going to get everything there in a reasonable amount of time? Just trying to network/get some ideas. Due to the estimated cost of renting a moving truck, we’re thinking about buying a trailer from somewhere in the lower 48, then selling it when we get to AK. Has anyone else on here done this? Any advise is appreciated! And for Hayden Jones, how did your GF get hooked up with the Wildlife Trooper gig? That’d be my dream job! I’ve got a bachelor’s in Criminal Justice but never used it….would love to start in AK! Thanks, everybody!

      1. I really want to move to Alaska. I’m a single black women I was wondering would I have any. problems with rascim.

        1. I think Anchorage is better than other places, (It is a very diverse city.) but I don’t doubt there’s racism here.

        1. Hi Catina. Ran across your comment and wanted to reply to help you out a bit. I’m a black woman, born in Anchorage, raised in Fort Worth Texas. Moving back to Anchorage with my fiance next year. My family has been in Anchorage since the 70s!
          You will see blacks in Anchorage, but not like in the South. I wouldn’t worry about that, though!
          Spread your wings, and make that move to Alaska. It’s a beautiful state, unlike any other state in the U.S.
          As far as being a black woman in Alaska, you won’t be the only one, promise!
          Hope you’ve made your decision by now, and if you decide to move, that you enjoy and love it as much as I do!
          God bless.

          1. Thanks for this comment! I really do think Anchorage has a diverse population, and I hope people of any race or ethnicity feel welcome here.

    1. Just wanted to thank you for this well-written and informative post! I am an RN who is considering moving to Anchorage for a position. We currently live in the San Francisco Bay Area. We’re very outdoorsy and big skiers. But you raise some very good points about the lack of sunshine and expensive travel back to the Continental US. Thank you again!

    1. Great article! Stumbled upon your blog because I’m in a weird place right now my girlfriend is moving to Alaska to become a Wildlife Trooper (yes, like the TV show) and I know I see a future with this girl and all the boxes are checked that isn’t the issue. Here are a couple issues tho.. our dreams are different, not to say I can’t compromise because I always intended to do so, but I’ve always wanted to live on an island or Hawaii (warm beaches). I hate winter! I live in Charlotte NC and winter here is nothing and I hate it. Also, I’m a city guy for sure I’m more intrigued by NY Fashion week, fitness (becoming a personal trainer), and sports than I am going on a hunt, fishing, or a hike. It sounds like you don’t love it, but have done it for a significant other.. She tells me it’s temporary and it will just be a 3-5 year experience then she’ll move and be somewhere that’s not Alaska, this is just better for her career but doesn’t look at it like life. She’s extended the offer for me to join her in 4 months when she finishes up the academy but I can’t decide if I can do Alaska. Have you found its worth doing for a person? Also it’s worth noting I didn’t go to college so maybe I could make this my college experience maybe even take classes and go there so I’m bettering myself as well as experience life outside my comfort zone. I know you’re not preaching on relationship advice but I just wanted to see from your experience really, even if Alaska isn’t great.. Is it worth it if it’s for the person that is your future?

      1. Well, truly the things that challenge us the most make us stronger. It sounds like you would struggle living here, but if your relationship with this girl is more important than your desires, then you should go for it. I think a good compromise would be to live here for a while, but let her know that once those 3-5 years are up, you will be moving. As long as you both agree to this, it definitely could work.

    1. If I were to move to Alaska, I, too, would be doing it for a loved one. My fiancé and I are getting married in May. Although he has always talked about how it would be cool to move to Alaska, he didn’t start seriously considering it until recently. We live in Alabama. I’m not a big fan of the cold here but I’ve handled it a lot better this winter than normal. Also I’ve noticed that I can’t really handle the summer heat here like I used to. My two main concerns about moving to Alaska are the cold winters and being so far from family. I’ve always thought a visit there would be nice because from what I can tell it is very beautiful.
      He is a carpenter. Do you think finding a job in that field would be easy for him?
      Also do you know what it’s like for kids being raised in Alaska? In the winter, what sort of entertainment is available for kids when it’s dark all the time? Do you know anything about Anchor Point in particular?

      1. I ,Too ,am a Midwest guy of years gone by (Mn). So winters are nothing new to me. I was 22 when I made my irrational decision to head to the “last frontier”. That was 40 years ago! Yikes! Anyway Anchorage was a city of 50000 then and to put it mildly , it was a great state to hang out in (13 years worth) I had a friend once tell me that you should change , jobs, locations, friends, every seven years. As bizarre as that may sound I kind’ve like that motto. At 22 , I was footloose, and not a care in the world. What Alaska gave me was a true sense of inner adventure that I knew I never had. It opened up the world to me for further adventures too. True, travel from there can be costly and family is not just a stones throw away, but I made it work and if I had the chance, I would do it all over again. The inner travel bug really grows on you there as when they say Ak has wilderness, they mean it. My work (construction) allowed me to work many remote sites there from Adak to Nome to the N Slope. Since then I have been privileged to live, travel, work in Europe, Australia, Mexico, the Carib, Hawaii, Florida, Texas, and now Colorado. There is no utopia, just the endless thrill of a new adventure. Ironically enough, my newest, best ever, so far, wife, has a opportunity for a job placement in Ak (medical field), so could be “round two!”
        For those thinking, ” should I move there?” By all means, do it! Adventure overshadows contemplation any day. Happy Travels my friend, I’ll meet you at “Coots “for a cold one!

    1. I am interested in moving to Alaska.My question is directed to ethnic diversity.. Is there much beside Alaskan’s and Caucasian ? Sorry to be so blunt.

      1. I am sorry for how totally presummuous my first question to was. I am 64 and would like to be confronted with as little conflict as possible. Your blog is informative and interesting. I was looking into Anchorage.. Change is scary and at my age and alone, I want to be around a community I can relate with and get help from Thanks.

      1. Yes, the Anchorage School District is known as being one of the most diverse in the country. There is a lot of diversity here!

    1. Hi,
      I may be moving to Alaska and working at the Elmendorf AFB. I read that you said most people working there live on the east side of Anchorage or in Eagle River. Do you recommend any apartments in that area? Just looking for a decent 1 bedroom. And do you have an idea on the cost range of an apartment?
      I appreciate your help!

      1. I’m unsure of specific apartments. Gosh, it has been a while since I’ve looked at the price of renting, but I would guess a one bedroom would cost $800-$1000/month for something decent.

    1. Ola
      Thanks for the info. You whet my appetite . I am very eager to move to Alaska now

    1. Is it a good place to live with a lot of children

      1. I grew up there and would say yes it’s very family friendly, especially when you get out of the city to other areas such as Wasilla/Palmer/Eagle River

    1. Reading this post, along with the two previous – “Things I wish I knew before moving to Alaska” Part 1 & 11. Getting a good chuckle. I am from the East Coast but lived in Fairbanks 20 years ago as a 19/20 year old. I moved back to the East Coast and got married and now have 5 youngens. My husband just put in for a transfer to Fairbanks. I have warned him he has no idea what he’s getting himself into, as one who is born and lived 40 years at the beach. We are a very outdoors & adventuresome family. However, I am concerned about keeping 5 youngens (age 2-10) occupied inside during the coldest months while Daddy is at work. I go from – “I refuse to leave my home in Virginia” to “what a great opportunity for my family”. Only a few months from now will tell the outcome. Reguardless of that outcome, thanks for a trip down memory lane.

    1. I came across this blog, and found it fascinating. I have spent years dreaming of moving to Alaska, one day. My intention was to move right out of high school, however, I married and had children instead. I have visited, Alaska in 2001, with my children. and stayed with my cousin and her husband, in Anchorage. It was everything I thought it would be.

      So at 53, divorced, and my kids grown, I once again, hope to be able to follow my dream.
      I have an elderly mother, with dementia, when she’s gone, I want to make it happen.

      It has been helpful to read all these other stories, from so many others, that are considering, doing the same.

      My cousin, now lives in Oregon, but she had visited, came back to Maine, packed up and lived in Alaska with her husband, whom she met there, she stayed for 25 years.

      I am also from Maine, and really don’t mind winter . And, in fact, while in Alaska, had to go buy more shorts and summer wear for my kids and myself, the weather was fantastic.

      As I am trying to create the next chapter in my life, after being a caregiver for my Mom, I keep going back to my dream.

      Thanks for the great reading!

    1. I’m a pretty handsome a man. So not worried
      But I have heard the ratio of women to men is very small. Is that a urban legend or noticeable. That wouldn’t be make or breaker, cuase I’m already 46 and those years are behind me not front.

      ..but where ever I go I hear that. To the point I have to ask. Except for the high rents, not much else is scarring me away. Cuase I would go up there single heafty savings enough for 30 months of rent. No bills. No anything really….but

      At 46 I question my ability to handle 4 months of that winter. So, I would prob return to fl for the cold. So a 6 month lease.

      Truthfully, at 8 bucks an hour, plus that dividend. I would be just peechy. With a studio…800 a month. I can grow food, and fish.

    1. I always love the sun being up until 10 p.m. or so in the summer. That didn’t bother me at all. The winter it was a different story. I walked to school in the dark. i walked home from school in the dark. That was depressing. I would live there now if I had enough money to buy plane tickets so I could get up and go if I felt like going somewhere else for awhile.

    1. I don’t know if your even reading this post anymore, but I’m seriously con considering moving to Alaska or Canada. My son wants to get a job on an oil rig and I just want solitude, the ability to jump on a 4 Wheeler or snowmobile and hit the land. I moved from Ohio to florida to Texas and my depression has only gotten worse. I am not a big city person, there’s too many people. My kids never go outside again, because there’s too many people. The love to climb, ride 4 wheelers, be adventurous and we can’t find that anywhere. In a nut shell, we all sit inside.

      Any more details you can provide?? Does our social security numbers carry with us? Does our credit history carry with us? Would we report this move as normal? Is the voting registration the same? Is there many houses to rent as a trial? Do we need to provide a “permission to reside” request (even though it’s not it’s own country some places require this before they will approve the move, it proves to them you have a job or will at least get one and make the place better instead of giving nothing)? So many questions. No matter what happens, over the last 4 years, I find myself saying I’m moving to Alaska or Canada…. So it’s obvious I’m going to but would like to know all I can before I do.

    1. If you are from the lower 48, how would you try to locate with there? Thanks

    1. Hello, thank you for the information. I live in Pennsylvania and I would like to move to a cool/cold peaceful place someday. I am not a fan of summer; it is my least favorite season. I know there are many things to consider, but it would probably be easier for an American to move to another state(Alaska) vs another country like Canada. Thank you! 🙂

    1. I never thought I would seek advice in moving to Alaska but here I am asking. In all the comments about moving to Alaska on your Blog I may ask one that has not been asked. But first a small preamble to why I am moving there. In the lower 48 the PEOPLE have become highly entitled, mean, uncaring and definitely not compassionate. I live in the north part of Denver. I have been here for 10 years after moving from Florida ( hated the people there and humidity and bugs in my clothing ). I am originally from northern Indiana..near South Bend. I am far more interested in what the disposition of the PEOPLE are there than I am the elements. I dont mind the winter…I love the snow. I dont mind the having to make adjustments to the amount of light given by the sun…..I adjust very well and quickly to any environment. I am in my mid 50’s……never married nor had children. I have no attachments to anyone…I have a few friends but mostly acquaintances. My family is gone. So, I am far more interested in the reception by the people there, native or non native, and the morals they possess. What can I expect from the people moving there? My target date is in May of 2017. What can I expect in fitting in and being accepted in moving there?


      1. I don’t think people here in AK are “Minnesota nice” or have the strong morals/ethics of the Midwest, but maybe I’m biased. The Northeast is a more un-churched area and Alaska has more of the “frontier” feel that often gives the impression that each person is out there on their own. Anchorage is a very transient area, so people are always coming and going. Some people do a really good job of accepting the new residents, while others don’t want more people crowding their state.

    1. Hey there,
      My husband just asked me if I would want to move to Alaska for a few years. Here is my situation: We are Canadian and I am a part time working mother of 2 active boys. I would like to have a 3rd child. I was thinking perfect I could this time to just be a mom, but then I thought of all the Dr.’s appointments that come with having a baby. I am used to health care. All I see is $$$ for the care of my sons and maybe future baby. Are there free programs out there for kids? If I would move in Alaska, what would be a town that would be close to a Canadian border that I could get health care, maybe do that way?

      1. There aren’t many/any (big) towns near the Canadian border, unfortunately. It can cost a lot of money to have a baby and pay for kids’ doctor appointments. We did have to pay quite a bit to have a baby, but all of my son’s doctor appointments (regular, well-child checkups) have been covered by insurance. A lot of it depends upon what your insurance company offers and what they will cover. There is a program here in Anchorage that helps lower-income families pay for their children’s health care (Denali Kid Care).

    1. Do you know any British people living in Alaska? I was wondering how difficult it would be to find work out there (I am a registered nurse), all the legalities, paperwork etc? I am a single 43 year old woman, is it likely to be hard to find friends & to make a life there without being to lonely? I am use to living in rural Scotland. I am enticed by & excited by the sense of adventure that Alaska may offer & to be living with the elements! Many thanks 🙂

    1. Oh man, I grew up in Alaska and after living elsewhere (in the lower 48 and now Germany for the past 6 years) we have decided to move back. My husband isn’t from there but I grew up in the valley so I am familiar with a lot of what you’re saying, and I have lived elsewhere so I know Alaska isn’t the end all be all that many make it out to be, hah. Don’t get me wrong, I love it up there, but you are correct in that it is very different living there than many other places. I don’t have some of the same problems you’ve encountered (one of the biggest reasons we’re moving back is for family) but I am curious to see how I will fit in or like living up there after being away for 13 years. Also, living in Europe has given me completely different experiences and shaped/changed my views on a lot of things, which in a way I hope makes me appreciate where I grew up more. That’s funny about your statistics estimate. That sounds about correct. I would say about half of the people I know have moved away from Alaska with about half staying. And then there are many people who moved out of state for college then went back afterward. Many people that left permanently hated the cold and/or dark, didn’t enjoy the outdoors, or wanted a change of pace/scenery. I keep telling my husband that while there are many wonderful things about AK, the feeling of seclusion and feeling ‘stuck’ will happen. He doesn’t believe me, so I’m interested to see if it happens to him (and that’s why you have to travel at least once a year!). I can imagine it would be very difficult to adjust to living in AK without family or friends, and unless you throw yourself into groups or clubs, I would think it’d be hard to meet new people (especially in the winter).

      I’m NOT looking forward to the cost of living. Most things in Germany are considerably cheaper compared to Alaska and even the rest of the states. I’m not sure why cell phone plans have to cost so much in the US. Over here we pay $65 a month for both of us and that’s considered a lot (unlimited, can use phone in other EU countries, etc.). Our internet is incredibly fast (unlimited bandwidth) and costs $30 a month. Groceries are much cheaper. Childcare is a quarter of what you pay in the states ($300 a month for full time care). But coming from Europe, I’m excited for many American amenities I used to take for granted, like stores being open on Sunday. I’m also excited for all the outdoor stuff I get to do again, and to be around natural beauty 24/7. I think it’s a great place for kids to grow up, and I really hope I still feel that way once I’m there again!

      Oh and with travel, Condor Airlines now has direct flights to Frankfurt from Anchorage, and for about the price it would cost you to go to Minnesota. So if you ever get the travel itch you could always take a quick 10hr flight to Europe!

      1. Thanks for the comment! It definitely brings a new perspective. 🙂 Traveling definitely helps. . .if only it weren’t so expensive. :/ It is hard to choose between seeing family and going on a true vacation when they live so far away.

      1. Thanks for the comment! It definitely brings a new perspective. 🙂 Traveling definitely helps. . .if only it weren’t so expensive. It is hard to choose between seeing family and going on a true vacation when they live so far away.

    1. I want to move to AK! I am so sick and tired of living in the city. I was born in Puerto Rico where one can cut humidity with a knife, and it’s still 70 degrees at night! Midday can be 100 degrees, easy! Work there is horrible, and although my father is a professional, he had an extremely difficult time finding work. So we moved to MA. What a nightmare! City living is just the worst. So my father decided to move us to ME. Much better, and that is where I truly fell in love with Winter. So many people say there is nothing to do in Winter, how boring, blah! I find a million things I can do! And without the sun there trying to melt you out of existence, the possibilities are endless! I am grown now, 24 years, and I have been saving since I started working at 17. I have plenty of money to move and get started, now just need the guts! And maybe a nice Alaskan husband who could tolerate a talkative, adventurous Latina as a wife!

      1. Hahaha love it! I feel you completely. I went to visit there last summer and absolutely fell in love. I haven’t experienced a winter there, but I know Alaska would be a good fit for me. I think of moving there all the time. I have the money to get started as well, just finding the confidence and guts to do so is where I’m stuck.

    1. Michelle, thanks for talking about this. I’ve thought that I wanted to live in Alaska most my life because I’ve never taken well to busy cities, lots of people seem to give me a lot of anxieties. I like Good people and life is too fast here in the south for my taste. My impression of Alaska is that people tend to be more down to Earth, more neighborly perhaps. My son feels the same way. We dream about how beautiful it is there, all the wildlife, being able to hunt and fish, living somewhat off the land, sounds really nice to. We plan to visit Alaska to make sure we don’t mind the cold. My opinion is that it would be hard to tell if you really like living there until you live there, but we are gathering as much info as possible before actually taking the plunge. Couple things was hoping to ask you was, I am a truck driver of 15 years and my son isn’t finished with college yet. So are there truck driving jobs there? Anything you would recommend checking out? You mentioned oil fields and that makes me think truck drivers are needed. My son has been thinking about IT security but still taking mostly Gen Ed classes. Would you be able to comment on degrees that are most useful there? Also, you mentioned in one of your other posts that you thought there was other equally great places to live. What are those places? I would like to test my resolve for Alaska by at least checking out 1 or 2 other areas before moving. Sincerely, thank you for the discussion.

      Oh, one last thing please. I’ve heard there is no taxes in Alaska? Is that true?

    1. Hahaha I’m a bit late to the party huh? I doubt replies but ill say something anyways 🙂 Currently I’m 16, and I live… in Alaska’s polar opposite, Las Vegas. Our summers are 120 degrees and our winters are a freezing 60 (I bet that’s like nothing up there) I developed a great interest in Alaska recently and I would really love to go up there, to visit it and see what it is really like up there 😀 I’m thinking about actually living there because I LOVE the winter, and trips to Utah in the winter were my favorite thing as a kid, until my great grandfather a few years back… Anyways, would a vegas boy like myself survive up there? all we have down here are gambling casinos and and even more gambling casinos.

    1. Thank you for writing this blog about Anchorage and sharing your life to us readers. I came across your blog while researching Anchorage as my husbands job may take us there (we will find out in the next few months). We are born and raised Seattle so we obviously value the outdoors. We also really try to be in control of our lifestyle– meaning we value staying fit (I am a runner, too!) and eating mostly a plant based diet (and some seafood). It is so calming to see another young mom, who seems to value some of the same things as I do, living such a beautiful life in Anchorage. Just really wanted to thank you as it has made me feel better about the possibly of moving there!

    1. Is it hard to find employment in alaska for someone from the lower 49? I am really interested moving alaska but am scared wrong able to support myself when i get there

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