Florida June 19, 2017
12 Things Longtime Floridians Wish They Could Tell Newcomers
From the outside, you might think the Sunshine State is all beaches and magical theme parks and fun in the sun all the time. It’s not like we don’t appreciate those things, but if you’re planning to relocate here, we’re here to tell you that it’s a little more complicated than that. Here are a few things longtime Floridians wish they could tell anyone new to our state or hoping to move here:
1. First of all, Florida is full.
We're not trying to be mean or anything, but Florida has experienced insane growth lately, and it's now the third most populous state in the country.
2. Many of Florida's cities have higher crime rates than you might be comfortable with.
We don't really have the space to get into why, but many Floridian cities have shockingly high crime rates, so just be aware of that when looking to move here.
3. There's a lot more to Florida than just beaches.
If you take out a map of Florida, there's definitely a lot of coastline. But see all that stuff in the middle? There are lots of landlocked cities and towns with their own beautiful scenery that you might want to consider.
4. Yes, there are alligators here.
It's amazing how often you will get asked this once you live in Florida, like it's some kind of conspiracy we invented to keep people out. Yes, there are alligators here, and you might even find one chilling by (or swiming in) your pool.
5. Hurricane Season is real.
If you want to live in Florida, please try to learn a little about hurricanes and be prepared.
6. Please be very careful on the road.
Florida has some of the most dangerous highways in the country, so it's a good idea to pay attention to the road and use signals, etc., if you're driving in a new place.
7. Don't forget the sunscreen.
Even if you see some perfectly tanned locals walking around with skin that never seems to burn, it does not mean that you can leave the sunscreen at home. We're just trying to save you from a very painful lesson.
8. If you don't like the weather, wait 15 minutes.
If it's raining, don't despair that your whole day is ruined. It will most likely be sunny again soon. It might even be rainy and sunny at the same time.
9. So don't worry about all of that rain gear.
Most Floridians don't even bother with umbrellas unless it's really pouring down (and they can't just wait 15 minutes).
10. No one wants to hear about how you did it up north.
(Or wherever you're from.) Not to be rude, but we like things this way and we'll let you know if we need advice.
11. Florida is the lightning capital of the country.
Lightning is no joke! Florida is so flat, there's a good chance that you're the tallest thing wherever you're standing when you're outside in a lightning storm. We may be casual about rain, but we hightail it indoors when there's lightning.
12. Flip-flops are acceptable at almost any time and place.
If you want to blend in a little better, get several pairs of these. (People might make fun of your ghost-white feet at first, but don't worry, you will soon fit in).
What do you think about this list? What else would you want to tell someone who was moving to Florida?