This Month I’m Obsessing Over:

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ELF Halo Glow Setting Powder
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Rare Beauty Bronzer Stick
ELF Halo Glow Setting Powder
IT Cosmetics Concealer
Saie “Rosy” Dew Blush
Nars Light Reflecting Foundation
Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector
Rare Beauty Bronzer Stick
ELF Halo Glow Setting Powder
IT Cosmetics Concealer
Saie “Rosy” Dew Blush
Nars Light Reflecting Foundation
Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector

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Moving from Ireland to New York: Questions Answered

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Well, that’s it… we live in New York now! 🙂  I get a lot of questions about moving from Ireland to New York, so I thought it’d be best to do a blog post answering the most frequently asked ones. So, without further ado…

Moving from Ireland to New York. Why?

Anyone who’s been following me for a while knows that New York is my favourite place on the planet. Actually, “Live Lavishly in New York City” was the first blog post I ever published haha! I was, and still am, infatuated with it!

We’ve been to New York so many times but it was never enough, an itch that we just could not scratch! It’s the only place that we kept going back to. Usually, once we’ve been somewhere that’s it, we’ll never go again but, we just couldn’t get enough of New York.

So anyway, when we were here in November 2018, the seed was planted. I was watching locals go about their lives and really wished it was us! So I asked Darren would he move there, because “I could move us here…” and guess what he said? HE SAID YES haha!

Previous New York Trips

How did you make it happen?

I don’t want to down play the move, it’s not easy but as the saying goes…. nothing worthwhile is!  

Depending on your circumstances, different visas may apply to you. Check out this list here for all the different visa types. If you’re not sure you qualify for any of those visa types, defintely vosit an immigration lawyer for support. 

One option is to go to the US on a J1 and/or a Graduate Visa and hope that by the end of it, the employer will sponsor your stay. This is what Erika Fox from Retro Frame did so if you’re interested in knowing more, she has written a full blog post on that here

Since my college days are long gone :p, that wasn’t an option, so I found an internal opportunity with my current employer and transferred from our Dublin office to our New York one. This is why I didn’t have the whole job/sponsor step and how I started work so quickly.

We moved over on a Saturday and I started work on the Monday. I didn’t want to take time off until we were moving into our own apartment and I also wanted to save my days for travelling.

Does your company have offices in New York or anywhere else outside of Ireland? If yes, keep your eye on the careers website and speak to your management about any opportunities that you’re interested in. Most international companies have, and encourage, internal moves so if you’re interested in moving, you should definitely look into it more. 

What visas do you both have?

I’m on an L1-A Visa which is for an “Intracompany Transferee Executive or Manager“. As my spouse, DB qualified for an L2 Visa. Generally, he has all of the same privileges as me except he couldn’t work straightaway. He needed to apply for an Employment Authorisation Document (EAD) which generally takes approximately 3 to 6 months to be processed (it took 4 months for Darren). 

How much does it cost?

It’s expensive, even with a company/sponsor supporting you. Lawyers need to be paid, there are visa processing fees, shipping stuff over can be thousands (we didn’t ship anything, we just brought a few suitcases!), all on top of flights and temporary accommodation. Oh and the rent (see below)! 

Is the cost of living expensive?


First of all, just to move in somewhere, you’ll usually need:

  • one month’s rent,
  • an additional month’s rent as a security deposit and;
  • if you don’t have a credit rating in the US (which you won’t if you’re just moving there!) or somebody to go guarantor* for you, you may have to pay the cost of another month’s rent, to another company, just to secure your lease.

New York, MOVING TO New York, New York skyline,Ellis Island

That’s up to 3 month’s rent, just to move in! So in short, it ain’t cheap and you should save as much as you possibly can. 

*To go guarantor, the person/company would have to earn more then 40 times the annual rent. Some of the apartments we seen wanted someone who earned 80 times the annual rent! 

Brooklyn Bridge Photo

Then just the day to day purchases, like coffee and food and that, is much more expensive here than at home. The transport and the utilities are actually very reasonable so at least that’s something. 

Moving from Ireland to New York. Did it happen as quick as it looked?

Trust me, not at all. The overall process began in March 2019, so all in all it took about 10 months. We knew going in to this that it wasn’t going to happen overnight so we prepared ourselves for a bit of a wait – I was patient, for once in my whole entire life :p Check out the photo below, we kicked off the visa process and the de-cluttering of our house in May.

NYC Checklist

Darren and I only received our US Visas in January 2020, so we couldn’t officially say that we were moving to New York until then. Once we received our visas, there was no going back and that’s when we told you guys 🙂

What do you work as?

I work in Financial Services and Darren works in Marketing. 

How long do you plan on staying in New York?

We have no plan really, we’re just taking each day as it comes, and living in the moment. Although we’re definitely not staying here forever (famous last words :)). While we’re here, we definitely want to travel and see as much of this side of the world as possible. Places that we might not have seen otherwise, like even remote, random places in the middle of nowhere. You know those dirt roads that go for miles and miles and the motels with the flashing “No Vacancy” signs from horror films… I want to experience all of that haha!

What did you do with your house?

We rented out our house in Dublin. I told you we are coming home! :p

Where in New York do you live?

We live in the Financial District, or Fidi as the New Yorkers call it (they love an acronym), which is in Downtown, Manhattan. We are planning on moving in the new year though because our offices have moved since and we’re returning soon. 

FIDI Google Map

For our first month in New York, we lived in the same area, but in temporary accommodation. This was ideal, as it gave us the opportunity to experience living there, before fully committing to a lease!

That was the idea of the temporary accommodation, to give us a month to properly research and find out where we wanted to live. But it worked out even better than that because we almost got a trial run in the neighbourhood 🙂

Apartment View

We’re also only a 10 minute walk from my favourite New York City landmark, the Brooklyn Bridge (and TK Maxx and Marshalls haha!).

For more recommendations on things to do in New York City that are FREE, check out this blog post.

Well, I hope that answers most of the questions you have about our move from Ireland to New York. If any new ones come in, I’ll update this blog post and let you all know.

As always, thanks for reading and if you’ve any more questions we didn’t cover, write them below and I’ll get back to you!


  1. Jade B
    August 19th, 2022 / 13:15

    Hi Carly,

    I enjoyed so much reading your story! And congrats on making it happen!
    Like yourself my heart is in NYC – Im finding it so difficult to get a visa as I am not eligible for most – From my research it looks like I need a sponsor… Is there any information you could pass on? As Im really eager to get back to the city

    Jayde <3

    • November 24th, 2022 / 19:05

      Hey Jade! Apologies for the delayed response. I highly recommend booking in with an immigration attorney. They will be able to tell you which visa you may qualify for and which you may be able to work towards (if you don’t qualify for any now) xx

  2. Ciarán Roche
    January 3rd, 2022 / 13:33

    Hi Carly,

    My name is Ciarán, I really enjoyed reading about your experience of moving to NYC. I am getting ready to move there myself. I lived in Brooklyn Heights before as a student and now I am going back to work in legal services. I noted that you guys stayed in temporary accommodation before moving into your apartment. Where did you find temporary accommodation? I’d so appreciate any tips you may have. Many thanks

    • January 3rd, 2022 / 13:43

      Hey Ciarán! Ah such an exciting time, I hope you’re enjoying the build up? We went through Premier Housing. My company arranged it all though so I’m not sure if they deal with individuals or only corporations. It’s worth a try though. It was a lot more expensive than a month’s accom on the likes of Air B & B though. So definitely price a few different options. I do think it’s a great way to “trial” neighbourhoods but if you’ve lived there before you might already have an idea where you want to live. Best of luck with the move, I hope you enjoy every minute of it (madness and all! ;))

  3. judith ashton
    September 29th, 2021 / 10:51

    Hi Carly,
    Great to read your blog. My lovely nephew Liam and his Danish wife Astrid and two little ones, Theo 17 months and Liv 5 months are relocating to NY from Ethiopia in October. Liam is 36 and just got new post with United Nations in NY…. big feather in his cap and we are all so proud of them.However…. finding a place to live isn’t easy…. they want to be in Brooklyn. Any ideas gratefully received…. his mum and I are trawling the internet for possible leads!!

    • November 23rd, 2021 / 22:31

      Hey Judith! Apologies I’m just seeing this now 🙁 I hope they got sorted? We used an app called StreetEasy to find accom

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