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Will I need to drive my own vehicle to conduct my everyday life (work/school/shopping) at my destination?
Where you live will be a determining factor in whether you operate your own vehicle or not. If you live in the Charlotte city center, there are several options open to you. The most flexible would be either mass transit such as the bus system or the light rail system which can be used to reach most areas. Also, there are taxis readily available if needed.
If you choose to live outside of the Charlotte city area, you will definitely need a car. Remember however, rush hour in Charlotte can be very crowded, so patience and extra time will need to be allotted in order for you to have a safe commute.
Expatriates should get an international driver's license (IDL) before leaving their country of origin. With this, an expatriate may drive in the U.S. for up to six (6) months. After this, he/she must obtain a North Carolina driver's license (however, it is strongly advised that you obtain your North Carolina drivers licence as soon as possible after your arrival into Charlotte.)
A North Carolina driver's license can be obtained at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). To do so, you must first obtain a social security number prior to visiting the DMV office. There you will be required to produce three forms of identification (i.e. picture ID, birth certificate, proof of residence) and take a written test. If you are from a country or U.S. state where your licence is recognized, you will not have to take a road test. However, if not, you will need to complete a road test with a DMV instructor.
Be sure to schedule a lot of time for this, because the DMV offices are known for long lines and waiting times.
In the United States, you will drive on the right hand side of the road.
Buses and the Lynx light rail system are the main forms of public transportation in Charlotte. Taxis are also readily available and can either be waived down on the street or called up by phone in advance.
Though taxis are more expensive than buses or the Lynx light rail, they offer much more flexibility.
Both buses and the Lynx have stations that lead out into the suburbs. But, the further you go away from central Charlotte, the fewer stops are made.
Could an expat also use public transportation to get out of the city—to surrounding towns, recreation areas or suburbs? If so, list options.
Yes, expatriates can use either the bus or light rail system which has stops leading to the suburbs. Do note however, these stops are only for a limited distance from the city.
The public transportation system throughout Charlotte is considered very safe. However, you do want to use common sense: always know your route, don't show money and keep an eye on your belongings at all times.
You can purchase tickets for public transportation at any of the Lynx light rail stations by going to the ticket booth or by using one of the vending machines. Additionally, tickets can be purchased on local buses.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.