Moving to Berkeley

Moving country is a pretty daunting task, but when you’re heading from Europe to the Land of the Free, there’s lots to be excited about. California is right on the west coast and is famous for its sunshine, active lifestyle and famous faces.

On the practical side of things, you still need to know how to find housing or what public transport links there are in the city to help you get to university. For those boring (yet important) bits, that’s where we come in. Housing Anywhere is an online platform that connects students with great rental apartments when they go abroad for exchange or to work - but in this guide, we’ll give you so much more.

We’ll help you budget by going over the cost of living and other practical information for living in Berkeley, like registration and visas. After reading this guide, you’ll be ready to get settled into your new American lifestyle, and all your time can be used to have fun and enjoy yourself.

From everyone here at Housing Anywhere, have a great trip!

About Berkeley

Berkeley is a pretty small city in the Bay Area of San Francisco, California. Above all else, the area is known as the home of the oldest campus of the prestigious University of California. The school has over a quarter of a million students and is known around the world as a first-class institute.

Berkeley has a great public transport infrastructure and is making strides to improve the already excellent conditions for cyclists in an effort to keep both people and the environment healthy. There are is also great weather and a plethora of sporting and entertainment opportunities throughout the city. In short, it’s a complete city, and one you would undoubtedly love to live in.


Berkeley is one of those cities where extreme seasons don’t really happen. Unlike in Helsinki for example, where summer and winter are polar opposites in almost every way, the temperature fluctuation between summer and winter here is only 18oC: lows of 5oC in winter and low twenties over summer.

Since it’s never too cold, and the precipitation is about 62 days a year, it’s a superb location for an outdoorsy life. The only downside is that the area is prone to earthquakes.

Facts About Berkeley

  • Berkeley was named after an Irish poet: George Berkeley The city has one of the highest bicycle commute rates in the USA.
  • The Free Speech Movement in America originated in Berkeley.
  • There’s a hill on campus called "4.0 hill" and rolling down it is said to bring you good luck before exams.
  • Berkeley has sister cities in both Russia and South Africa.

Public Holidays

There’s a load of public holidays in Berkeley over the course of the year, each of which means a guaranteed day off from university or work. In one of the sunniest locations on Earth, it would be shame to waste them - put the dates in your calendar so that, when the time comes, you can be outside enjoying a 3-day weekend!

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