The east coast of the United States of America is full of history, culture, and bustling metropoles. From the vibrant cities of New York and Miami to the charming towns of Asheville and Charleston, this region is a must-visit for any traveling digital nomad.
The east coast is also home to some of the world's leading financial and political centers, including New York and Washington D.C. Surely, this creates a dynamic environment that can be very attractive to work and live in.
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🇺🇸 Entry requirements for the USA
- Valid visa: Passport holders from certain countries may be eligible to travel to the United States for up to 90 days without a visa under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). This program applies to citizens of many European countries, as well as Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and several other countries. However, travelers must apply for authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) before entering the USA.
✈️ How to get to the USA
- Plane: The most common and convenient way to get to the East Coast is by air. Most major airlines operate flights to cities such as New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Orlando, and Miami.
- Train: Amtrak operates several long-distance train routes that run from the West Coast to the East Coast of the United States, such as the California Zephyr, which travels from San Francisco to Chicago with stops in several cities along the way. There are also other routes that connect cities on the West Coast to cities on the East Coast, such as the Southwest Chief and the Empire Builder.
- Car: Driving to the east coast can be a fun and scenic adventure. The most popular routes are the I-95 which runs along the entire coast and the I-81 which runs through the Appalachian Mountains. However, be prepared for heavy traffic in some areas, especially during peak travel seasons.
🏡 How to find a place
- Hotels: Hotels in the USA are expensive. A mid-range hotel chain is Hyatt and you can find Hyatt Houses and Hyatt hotels in every city and mid-sized town.
- Airbnb: If you have no time to search for a good price-value accommodation, and you are okay with spending more money, you can find an extensive list on Airbnb for all pockets.
- Furnished Finder: The website specifically is designed for short-term rentals for traveling healthcare professionals, but it can also be used by digital nomads. The website offers fully furnished apartments, condos, and houses for rent, often with flexible lease terms.
- Trusted Housesitters: Another budget-friendly way to get accommodation in the USA is by joining Trusted Housesitters. You pay for a membership and get access to housesitting gigs throughout the country. Your stay is free of charge but it comes with some duties, for example taking care of pets, or watering the plants.
- Arrival: Boston has two airports, Logan International Airport (BOS) and Manchester-Boston Regional Airport (MHT). Logan is the primary airport and is located just a few miles from downtown Boston. Manchester-Boston is located about 50 miles north of the city. A taxi will probably cost between €25-€35. The Silver Line bus service connects Logan Airport to downtown Boston and costs around €2.50. Furthermore, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) operates a subway and bus system that connects both airports to downtown Boston.
- Neighborhoods: Back Bay, Beacon Hill, and the North End are popular neighborhoods with average weekly prices for housing ranging between 500-800 Euros.
- Public transport: The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) operates buses, subways, and commuter rail lines throughout the Boston metropolitan area. Prices range from €1.50 to €3 per ride, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes. The Charlie Card allows for easy payment and access to all modes of transportation.
- Coworking spaces: Idea Space (€30 per day).
- Coffee shops: Tatte Bakery & Cafe, Thinking Cup, and Barrington Coffee Roasting Company.
- Must-See: Freedom Trail, Boston Common, Fenway Park, Museum of Fine Arts, and New England Aquarium.
Next stop New York
- Train: The best way to get from Boston to New York is by train. Amtrak's Acela Express and Northeast Regional services operate daily between the two cities, with travel times ranging from 3-4 hours.
- Bus: Greyhound and FlixBus are also reasonable options as the journey only takes between 4-5 hours.
🗽New York City
- Arrival: New York City is served by three major airports: John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), LaGuardia Airport (LGA), and Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR). JFK is the largest and busiest of the three and is well connected to the city center with various public transportation options, including the AirTrain and subway lines. The AirTrain takes approximately 30 minutes and costs around €8.
- Neighborhoods: Greenwich Village, Williamsburg, and the Upper East Side are popular neighborhoods with average weekly prices for housing ranging between €600 to 1,000.
- Public transport: New York City has one of the most extensive public transportation systems in the world, including buses, subways, and commuter trains. Prices range from 2-3 Euros per ride, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes. The MetroCard allows for easy payment and access to all modes of transportation.
- Coworking spaces: The Yard (€31 per day), The Malin Soho (€55 per day)
- Coffee Shops: Blue Bottle Coffee, Stumptown Coffee Roasters, and La Colombe Coffee Roasters.
- Must-See: The Statue of Liberty, Central Park, the Empire State Building, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Times Square.
Next stop Philadelphia
- Plane: There are several airlines that offer direct flights between New York City's airports (JFK, LaGuardia, and Newark) and Philadelphia International Airport. The flight is approximately 45-60 minutes.
- Train: Amtrak offers several daily trains that travel between New York City's Penn Station and Philadelphia's 30th Street Station. The travel time is usually around 1.5-2 hours.
- Bus: Journey by bus with operators like Greyhound or FlixBus will take 2-3 hours.
- Arrival: The main airport is Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) and it is well connected to the city center with various public transportation options, including the SEPTA Regional Rail and bus routes. The SEPTA Regional Rail takes approximately 25 minutes and costs around 8 Euros.
- Neighborhoods: Old City, Society Hill, and Fairmount. Weekly prices for housing range between €400-600.
- Public transport: In Philadelphia, you will find buses, subways, and trolleys. Fares range from €2-3 per ride, with daily, weekly, and monthly passes available for purchase. The SEPTA Key card allows for easy payment and access to all modes of transportation.
- Coworking spaces: Pipeline Philly (€35 per day), Bond Collective (€40 per day), and The Yard (€31 per day).
- Coffee shops: La Colombe Coffee Roasters, ReAnimator Coffee, and Elixr Coffee Roasters.
- Must-See: Independence Hall, Liberty Bell, Reading Terminal Market, and Philadelphia are some of the must-see attractions in the city.
Next stop Washington D.C.
- Train: Amtrak offers several daily trains that travel between Philadelphia's 30th Street Station and Washington D.C.'s Union Station, with a travel time of approximately 2-3 hours.
- Bus: FlixBus and Greyhound also offer daily bus services between the two cities, with a travel time of approximately 3-4 hours.
- Plane: Alternatively, a flight between the two cities is also available and takes approximately 1 hour.
🏛️ Washington D.C.
- Arrival: Washington D.C. is served by three major airports, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), and Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI). DCA is the closest to the city center and is well connected to downtown with public transportation options such as the Metrorail and Metrobus. The Metrorail takes approximately 20 minutes and costs around 2.5 Euros.
- Neighborhoods: Popular neighborhoods in D.C. include Georgetown, Dupont Circle, and Capitol Hill. Weekly rental can range between €1,000-3,000.
- Public transport: The public transportation system includes the Metrorail, Metrobus, and Circulator bus. Prices range from €2 to €3 per ride, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes. The SmarTrip card allows for easy payment and access to all modes of transportation.
- Coworking spaces: The Mark (€28 per day) CoworkCafe Three Whistles (€19 per day)
- Coffee shops: The Coffee Bar, Slipstream, and Peregrine Espresso.
- Must-See: The National Mall, the White House, the Smithsonian Museums, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Washington Monument.
Next Stop Richmond
- Car: The drive from D.C. to Richmond takes approximately 2 hours.
- Train: Amtrak offers several daily trains that travel between D.C.'s Union Station and Richmond's Main Street Station. The travel time is usually around 2 hours.
- Bus: Journey by bus with operators like Greyhound or FlixBus will take around 2.5 hours.
- Arrival: The Richmond International Airport (RIC) is the main airport serving the city and from there the easiest way would be to take a taxi to the city center for about 30 Euros. Ride-healing apps such as Uber also exist and might be cheaper. You can also take the bus, Route 7 to and from the airport. The fare is $1.50 per ride, and buses operate every 30 minutes on weekdays and every hour on weekends.
- Neighborhoods: The Fan District, Church Hill, and Shockoe Bottom are popular neighborhoods with average weekly prices for housing ranging between €400 and €600.
- Public transport: You will most likely use buses and a light rail system. Prices range from €1.5 to €2.5 per ride, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes.
- Coworking spaces: Gather (€25 per day)
- Coffee shops: Lamplighter Coffee Roasters, Black Hand Coffee Company, and Sugar & Twine.
- Must-See: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Maymont, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, and the Virginia State Capitol.
Next stop Asheville
- Bus: The bus journey with Greyhound or FlixBus takes around 8-10 hours and includes several stops along the way.
- Train: Amtrak offers daily train service from Richmond's Main Street Station to Asheville's downtown station. The journey takes approximately 10-12 hours, but it offers a scenic route through the Appalachian Mountains.
- Plane: For those who prefer to fly, Richmond International Airport offers several daily flights to Asheville Regional Airport. The flight takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes.
- Private Car: The most direct way to get from Richmond to Asheville is by car. The distance is approximately 500 kilometers, and the drive takes around 5-6 hours.
- Arrival: Asheville Regional Airport (AVL) is the main airport serving the city. From there, you can take a taxi to the city center for around €25 or use ride-hailing apps like Uber or Lyft for a potentially cheaper fare. Alternatively, take the Route 6 bus to and from the airport for a fare of $1.50 per ride, with buses operating every 30-60 minutes depending on the day.
- Neighborhoods: West Asheville, Biltmore Village, and Montford are popular neighborhoods with average weekly prices for housing ranging between €500 and €800.
- Public transport: Asheville has a limited public transportation system, including buses and trolleys. Prices range from $1-2 per ride, with options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes.
- Coworking spaces: Mojo Coworking (€28 per day), Hatch AVL (€28 per day)
- Coffee shops: High Five Coffee, BattleCat Coffee Bar, and Odd's Cafe.
- Must-See: Biltmore Estate, Blue Ridge Parkway, The North Carolina Arboretum, and Downtown Asheville.
Next Stop Charleston
- Car: The most direct way to travel from Asheville to Charleston is by car. The distance between the two cities is about 350 kilometers, and the drive takes around 4 hours. There are several car rental agencies available in Asheville, and the route can be taken via I-26 East.
- Bus: Greyhound and Southeastern Stages offer daily bus services from Asheville to Charleston. The journey takes around 5-6 hours, and tickets cost between $30 and $50.
- Train: Amtrak's Crescent train service runs daily between Asheville and Charleston, with a stop in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The journey takes around 8 hours, and tickets cost between $40 and $80.
- Plane: Asheville Regional Airport offers several daily flights to Charleston International Airport. The flight takes around 1 hour.
- Arrival: The Charleston International Airport (CHS) is the main airport serving the city, and the easiest way to get to the city center from there would be to take a taxi for around $20-25. Ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Lyft are also available and may be cheaper. Alternatively, you can take the bus, CARTA Route 4, to and from the airport. The fare is $3.50 per ride, and buses operate every 30 minutes on weekdays and every hour on weekends.
- Neighborhoods: The Historic District, French Quarter, and South of Broad are popular neighborhoods with average weekly prices for housing ranging between €800 and €1,200.
- Public transport: The city's public transportation system includes buses and trolleys, with fares ranging from $2.25 to $3.50 per ride. Daily, weekly, and monthly passes are also available.
- Coworking spaces: Local works (€41 per day).
- Coffee shops: The Daily, and The Rise Coffee Bar.
- Must-See: The Battery, Waterfront Park, Fort Sumter National Monument, and the Charleston City Market.
Next stop Miami
- Bus: Greyhound, FlixBus and Southeastern Stages offer several daily bus services from Charleston to Miami, with travel times ranging from 14-16 hours.
- Train: Amtrak offers daily train service from Charleston station to Miami's downtown station. The journey takes approximately 21-24 hours, but it offers a scenic route through the southeastern United States.
- Plane: For those who prefer to fly, Charleston International Airport offers several daily flights to Miami International Airport. The flight takes around 2 hours and 30 minutes.
- Arrival: Miami International Airport (MIA) is the primary airport serving the city. The easiest way to get to the city center is by taking a taxi, which costs approximately €25. Ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft are also available and might be cheaper. You can also take public transportation, such as the Metrobus or Metrorail, which operate from the airport and connect to various parts of the city.
- Neighborhoods: Miami has many popular neighborhoods, including South Beach, Wynwood, and Little Havana. Weekly housing prices vary depending on the neighborhood, but on average, they range from 800-1200 Euros.
- Public transport: Miami has an extensive public transportation system, including buses, trains, and trolleys. Fares vary depending on the mode of transportation and distance traveled, but a one-way bus fare is around 2 Euros. There are also options for daily, weekly, and monthly passes.
- Coworking spaces: The Lab Miami (requested), Minds Cowork (€38 per day)
- Coffee shops: Panther Coffee, Vice City Bean.
- Must-See: The beautiful beaches of South Beach, the art galleries of Wynwood, the historic district of Little Havana, and the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, The Perez Art Museum Miami, the Miami Design District, and the Everglades National Park.
🚊 How to travel around
- Bus: There are several bus companies that operate intercity services on the East Coast, including Greyhound or FlixBus. They offer frequent intercity services with a variety of routes between cities, making it easy to travel from one city to another. Fares may vary based on the route and travel time but are relatively affordable.
- Train: Amtrak operates several long-distance train routes, including the Coast Starlight, that travel along the East Coast with stops in several cities along the way. They also operate regional train services like the Amtrak Cascades service between Eugene, Oregon, and Vancouver, British Columbia. While trains are generally more expensive than buses, they offer a more comfortable and scenic travel experience.
- Private car: Renting a car is a popular and convenient way to travel around the East Coast. There are many rental car companies located in major cities and airports, and the region's extensive highway network makes it easy to get around. However, traffic can be heavy in some areas, so it's important to plan accordingly.
- Domestic flights: For longer distances, domestic flights are a convenient option. The East Coast is home to many major airports, and there are frequent flights between cities such as from Miami to New York City. However, flights can be expensive, so it's important to shop around for the best deals.
💡Good to know
- Internet: The United States of America is known for having some of the fastest and most reliable internet in the world. The average download speed for fixed broadband is 197.84 Mbps, with upload speeds averaging around 23.02 Mbps.
- Sim cards: There are several major telecommunications companies that offer prepaid sim card plans, including AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile. A typical plan may offer 1-2GB of data and unlimited calls and texts for around $30 to $50 per month.
- Currency: The currency of the USA is the US dollar (USD).1 Euro is equivalent to approximately 1,15 USD.
Socket types: Type A and Type B sockets, which are also used in Canada, Mexico, and several other countries in the Americas.
- Digital nomad Community: The digital nomad community on the East Coast of the United States is vibrant and diverse, with many coworking spaces, coffee shops, and networking events. Cities like Miami, Asheville, Charleston, and Philadelphia offer a range of amenities, from affordable housing options to cultural attractions and outdoor activities. The community is welcoming and supportive, with opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals and build professional and personal relationships. Check out coworking spaces and Facebook groups like Digital Nomads in the U.S. for getting in touch with the community.
- Climate: The climate of the East Coast varies depending on the location and season. In general, the coastal regions have a humid subtropical climate with hot, humid summers and mild to cool winters. In the summer, temperatures can range from 25-35°C, while winter temperatures range from -5 to 10°C
- Cost of living: A rough can range from around €2,000 to €3,000 per month, including accommodation, food, transportation, and entertainment expenses. It's important to note that larger cities, such as New York and Miami, can be more expensive, while smaller towns and suburbs may be more affordable.
🚧 What to avoid
- Walking alone at night: Avoid walking alone at night in certain areas, especially if you're not familiar with the neighborhood. Stick to well-lit and busy areas.
- Scams: Be wary of scams, especially in tourist areas. Common scams include people trying to sell fake tickets or overpriced souvenirs.
- Avoid using unlicensed cabs: Also known as "gypsy cabs," those cabs are often unsafe and overpriced.
- Driving: Be careful when driving, as Cities like Boston have a reputation for aggressive and unpredictable drivers.
- Hurricanes: These are powerful tropical storms with high winds and heavy rainfall. To avoid hurricanes, it's best to stay up-to-date with local weather reports and evacuation orders. If a hurricane is forecasted to hit, it's best to follow evacuation orders and move to higher ground or a shelter.
- Tornadoes: These are violent, rotating columns of air that can cause significant damage. To avoid tornadoes, it's best to stay informed of local weather reports and have a plan in place for seeking shelter in a safe location, such as a basement or interior room on the lowest level of a building.
- Nor'easters: These are winter storms that bring heavy snowfall, high winds, and coastal flooding. To avoid nor'easters, it's best to stay informed of local weather reports and prepare for power outages, food and water shortages, and travel delays.
🚴🏻♀️ How to stay healthy
- Hiking: There are plenty of hiking trails in the mountains of North Carolina, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. Check out the Blue Ridge Mountains or The DuPont State Recreational Forest, located about an hour away from Asheville, which has a variety of trails ranging in difficulty level, including the popular Triple Falls Trail.
- Beach activities: Florida and South Carolina have some of the best beaches in the country. Try surfing, paddle boarding, or beach volleyball to stay active.
- Biking: Many cities on the East Coast have bike-share programs or bike-friendly streets, so you can explore the city while getting some exercise.
- Yoga: Yoga is popular in many East Coast cities, with plenty of studios offering classes for all levels.
- Running: There are many running clubs and organized races throughout the East Coast. You can also go for a jog in a park or along the waterfront.
- Water sports: Kayaking, canoeing, and rafting are popular activities in North Carolina, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. Check out some of the local rivers and lakes for some adventure.
- Golf: Golf courses are plentiful on the East Coast, with options for all skill levels.
- Water Quality: Yes, generally you can drink tap water in the United States of America.
- Air Quality: The air quality on the US East Coast is generally good.
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