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Moving to Houston

Moving to Houston

Old Dec 26th 2013, 10:10 pm
  #1  
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Smile Moving to Houston

I hope some of you people can help me. We live in the UK and have never lived abroad before, we're trying to figure out if it will be worth the move, so I really appreciate any help.We have 2 children ages 5 and 10. So I guess my questions are as follows:What's Houston like? Do you like living there. I have over 9 year experiencein the oil and gas working with subsea bop's. I I'll be looking for a office job as I have worked offshore for the past 7 year is it easy to find a job in Houston
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Old Dec 26th 2013, 11:28 pm
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Default Re: Moving to the USA - Urgent Help Needed

"we're trying to figure out if it will be worth the move"

Wow that's such an open ended question.
Are you talking about basically permanently moving to the USA?
Are you asking if it is worth a short term period for work experience/advancement?
Some people love the USA and some people become drastically homesick and need to move back to "mother" literally and figuratively.
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Old Dec 26th 2013, 11:36 pm
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Default Re: Moving to the USA - Urgent Help Needed

Originally Posted by tommy.stewart27 View Post
hope some of you people can help me. We live in the UK and have never lived abroad before, we're trying to figure out if it will be worth the move, so I really appreciate any help.We have 2 children ages 5 and 10. So I guess my questions are as follows:What's Houston like? Do you like living there. I have over 9 year experiencein the oil and gas working with subsea bop's. I I'll be looking for a office job as I have worked offshore for the past 7 year is it easy to find a job in Houston
Do you have the correct visa to live and work in the us? If so which one?
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 8:32 am
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

I have no visa yet. just trying to work out if gettinh a job in the oil is easy enough
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 9:33 am
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

I don't know any unemployed oil guys here, but I also don't know any expats who got here without either a company transfer or being headhunted for a specific position.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 9:44 am
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Originally Posted by tommy.stewart27 View Post
I have no visa yet. just trying to work out if gettinh a job in the oil is easy enough
Getting the job is the least of your problems, you will have to find a prospective employer who is willing to pay the $thousands to get you a visa, ans willing to wait for the time needed, you will also have to have specialised qualifications that will allow them to get you a visa.
Please read the following links to see if you can get a visa to work in what is one of the most difficult countries to get a visa for.

http://britishexpats.com/wiki/Pulask...ork_in_the_USA

http://britishexpats.com/wiki/Pulaski_Simplified

When you have read these, and find you could get a visa, then please ask the more specific questions.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 12:56 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston



Hi Tommy and welcome to BE.

As others have suggested, it's the visa you need to think about first. We are oil industry and were transferred to Houston from Aberdeen.

You have already been given links to visa information. There is also a lot of good information about Houston here:

http://britishexpats.com/wiki/Houston,_TX
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 1:18 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

I work for a company that can get me transfer if needes but whats the average wage you would need to live comftorably
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 1:22 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Again, that's very difficult to answer. A very well paid job with poor healthcare would not be as desirable as a lesser paid job with excellent healthcare.

Also, it depends on what your personal opinion of comfort is.

We moved over originally on an expat package,so things like rent, utilities etc were paid for us. We only got a slight increase in wages because of all the extras the offered.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Ok thanks for your help
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 2:46 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Some random thoughts:

My husband and I (and two cats) live in Houston in a decent but aging apartment complex near the Galleria. We both work; he just got a new job in a fairly posh uptown grocery store and is training to become a meat cutter (he is changing careers). He also goes to school part-time in support of this. He makes a retail wage that essentially covers his school fees, and his half of our modest flat rent, electric, phone, and Internet bills. We do not use gas heat, credit cards, cable TV, or a second car, and we use prepaid cell phones. We eat out when we want to, about once or twice a week, and we buy our lunches at work instead of bringing them from home, because we work different shifts and we don't often get to have dinner together. We do cook a lot and don't skimp on ingredients, but we're aware that an excellent chicken is better than a good pork roast is better than a mediocre steak is better than lousy lobster. I work in IT (training and documentation) in the O&G industry; my company does sometimes do transfers, but they are not easy to get (I was actually promised one twice, but they weren't followed through with). You have to be needed as an individual, and have proven yourself, before you will even be considered in the first place. I make slightly less than an entry-level mechanical engineer in this area.

Could we have and raise kids on our pay? Surely we could, if we wanted to. We think we waste a lot of money and could well afford to scale back. We'd get a house instead of a flat, a second car (the first is paid for), and more of a support structure here in the city. But then again we don't live in a fancy area of the city (it's about a mile from everything, including the corporate HQ where I work, but it's not idyllic by any means), even though our flat is large; the size of a two-bedroom bungalow. Schools are perfectly OK in my neighborhood even though they have a wild mix of reasonably-well-off to desperately-poor students. You wouldn't let your kids play near the street (it's a six-lane highway), but the neighborhood parks have been recently remodeled and are nice.

Most O&G people on this site live far west or southwest of the city, in the bedroom-community subdivisions, where families tend to settle. But as a couple without kids I feel lucky to live in a place where the reasonable cost of living puts us close in where there's plenty of ethnic diversity, proximity to nice neighborhoods for walks, lots of shopping (both cheap and posh) and office buildings (jobs!), available buses, and good infrastructure. After Hurricane Ike, we had power back within three days, which was much better than average.

What to do in a hurricane? Buy or rent a solid house not too near the coast and out of the flood plain, get plywood and window clips before the season, make sure your car never dips below half a tank of gas during the season, know where you'll evacuate to in the event of a direct hit of a destructive 'cane, and keep your important docs, backup medication, and extra cash in a waterproof, secure, portable case in a closet near a small store of necessary supplies for three days (batteries, gloves, food, water, sanitary supplies, etc.). I don't say this to shock you; a significant storm doesn't come close every year, but that is an important part of living on the Gulf Coast. I say this to demonstrate to you that it's just a fact of life, and once we have made our preparations we don't get too freaked out about it.

You can have an amazing quality of life here. My husband really enjoys it, but he says I should emphasize that if you plan to stay permanently, you will have to expect the unexpected and change a few cherished dreams to new cherished dreams. People are people everywhere, he says, and home is where you are when you close the door at the end of the day. I wish you lots of luck.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 3:57 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Originally Posted by tommy.stewart27 View Post
I have no visa yet. just trying to work out if gettinh a job in the oil is easy enough

You need the work visa BEFORE moving to the US. The prospective US employer needs to sponsor you - ie. apply for the visa for you. This takes time, effort and money so they are usually only willling to do this for folks with expertise and skills they require.

So, you should be looking in the various industry trade journals, industry web sites to see if your skills are in demand and start applying. It won't be easy to obtain interviews for overseas, but unless you are willing to spend time in the US on the VWP just to research and go to interviews then this is your best shot.

If you already work for company that can transfer you then that is the way to go.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 7:28 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

We are in the oil industry and have lived in many countries and different parts of the US and I must say Houston is not our favorite. My children have experienced so much in their travels but I don't know what Houston has given them. So if you have to come here for work then fine but if you have other options then, in my opinion, somewhere else within reason is better.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 8:28 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Visa first otherwise it's like asking advice on how to spend your lottery winnings before you've bought a ticket. A hypothetical scenario.
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Old Dec 27th 2013, 9:29 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Houston

Originally Posted by hotscot View Post
Visa first otherwise it's like asking advice on how to spend your lottery winnings before you've bought a ticket. A hypothetical scenario.
If you read post #8, there he says he could get a company transfer, which would have been very useful information to give at the start, would save all the links he was given etc.
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