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Interview: How to move to California


It is impossible to fully prepare for the move — you never know what awaits you. You need to take it and do it. This is what Karina did, having first moved from Ukraine to China, where she lived for 5 years, and now lives in the USA in the state of California. Karina shared her experience of living in California, told why she loves this place and gave advice on moving to another country for permanent residence.


– Tell us about yourself.

– hello. My name is Karina, I was born in the south of Ukraine, in the city of Kherson, and grew up there. Now I live in America in the state of California. In the past, I am a model, now a yoga teacher and additionally studying to become a personal trainer.

— Why California?

— My family and I moved to California in June 2017. We chose this state because of the climate and unreal nature.

— You lived in China. Why did you leave this country?

– That’s right, I lived in China for 5 years. Shenzhen is my second home. I love this city because it is full of life, it is very young, accordingly everything is very new. There are a lot of foreigners there and everyone is very friendly. I didn’t stay in China because I had a desire to discover new horizons.

— Why do Russians move to live in California?

— It seems to me that Russians choose California solely because of the weather)

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— How to move to the USA for permanent residence?

– Personally, I moved to America with my family, and my daughter and husband are Americans. In my case, I can get a green card 8 months after submitting the documents, because my husband is an American citizen.

In general, there are several ways to move to the United States for permanent residence: on a working American visa, win a Green Card lottery, by family ties, become an American bride or groom, be an investor or by business immigration to the United States.

– Is it expensive to live in California?

— I live in Silicon Valley, and this is one of the most expensive places to live in the USA. The valley cannot be compared with other cities in the state or even with the capital of California — Sacramento, which is much cheaper than San Francisco and the entire Bay Area.

  • In San Jose, the average price for renting a 2-room apartment (1 hall and 2 bedrooms) is $ 3000. In San Francisco – from $ 4000.
  • Buying a house (1 hall and 2 bedrooms) will cost $ 1 million.
  • The average price of a dinner in a restaurant for two is $ 60-80 without drinks and $ 100+ with drinks.
  • Food prices in California: frozen salmon (1.5 kg) – $ 19.9; shrimp (15 kg) — $16; fresh beef (4 pieces) – $25; cheese (0.7 kg) – $8-9; nuts (1.2 kg) – $ 9; frozen fruit (2 kg) – $ 10-13; bananas (1 kg) – $ 2; strawberries (1 kg) – $ 10; oranges (1 kg) – $2; eggs (12 pieces) – $6.5; oatmeal ( 1 kg) – $ 6; white loaf – $ 1.5.

— How are things going with jobs in California for foreigners?

— Everything here depends on education, work permit and language level. If everything is there, then you can get any job. If you do not know English and have a work permit— you can get a job in a Russian store or kindergarten, if you agree.

— Why do you love California?

– For the climate and diversity of natural landscapes. An hour driving and you’re on the ocean, 2 hours skiing in the mountains, 3 hours in the desert among cacti and Joshua trees. For example, now I am answering your questions while in one of the most beautiful national parks in America — Yosemite Park. My family and I came here for the weekend. Isn’t it wonderful to be able to come for a weekend to some of the most beautiful places on our Earth!?

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— What do you get from traveling?

— I am of the opinion that traveling breaks unnecessary stereotypes in our head, expands our horizons and makes us wiser.

– Your advice and wishes for those wishing to move to another country for permanent residence.

– Start learning the language. Life abroad becomes twice as easy when you know the language. In general, if you want to, you need to take it and do it. It is impossible to fully prepare for the move. You never know what awaits you. You can not decide to move all your life, because you don’t know the language, but you can move, “suffer” :)) for six months and learn the language.

From the practical I can add – it would be good to decide what you want to do in the country you are going to move to. If you have savings, you can start getting an education in a new place. If they are not there, it is worth completing some courses and gaining skills. Get ready for the fact that at first it will be very interesting, then it will be difficult, and after that everything will become stable.
Good luck to you!


Instagram: @karina_voinikova

Olga Avrakh was talking

Photo of Karina

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The story of a Russian girl about how to move to California for permanent residence

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