Moving from New York City to Philadelphia is a common change of scenery for people in NYC. This guide will make that move easier.

They’re both big cities with tough continental climates where all 4 seasons are represented in their entirety. As a New Yorker, you will already be well-adapted to fast-paced city life but Philly has more of that small-town feel to it.

These similarities may help you adjust faster and can really help to accelerate how fast you adapt to your new city.

So if you plan on trading in the Big Apple for the City of Brotherly Love, this guide will explain the whole moving process and share some helpful tips to assist you with your relocation.

The Moving Process From New York City to Philadelphia

How Far is Philadelphia from New York City?

The distance between New York City and Philadelphia is 94 miles. Depending on traffic, the driving time of this journey is approximately 1 hours and 40 minutes by car.

So whether you’re planning on doing a DIY move and driving the journey yourself in a rented moving van or you’re planning to drive your car and hire a professional mover, it’s definitely worth noting that it’s quite a short drive.

What is the Average Cost to Move From New York City to Philadelphia?

The average cost to move from New York City to Philadelphia is between $2000-$2500. That means on average it costs roughly $2350.

There are many variables that determine the exact cost of a move from New York City to Philadelphia such as the number of items being moved, whether you’ll want additional packing and unpacking services, and whether you plan to hire professional moving services or do it yourself.

Should I Move From New York City to Philadelphia?

While this move won’t involve much difference in climate, there are other benefits. The massive rental rate decreases and the fact that residents get to experience living in the birthplace of American freedom are two of the biggest benefits. If this sounds good to you, then you should move from New York City to Philadelphia.

How New York City Compares to Philadelphia

Living Costs Compared

The first thing a New Yorker will notice when they arrive in Philadelphia is how affordable it is comparatively.

It’s no secret that New York City is one of the most expensive places to live in the US, let alone the world, so the rental and real estate prices in Philadelphia will be a pleasant surprise.

Rent prices in Philly are around 53% cheaper than in New York City. The median rent in New York City is around $2,850, while it’s only $1,646 in Philadelphia.

If you’re planning to buy a house in Philadelphia you will be happy to hear that buying an apartment in Philly is 77% cheaper than in NYC. The median sale price of a house in NYC is $705,407, whilst in Philadelphia, the median sale price is only $153,400.

Aside from real estate costs, the cost of living in Philly is around 45.9% cheaper than in NYC. So you can expect cheaper utilities, groceries, and healthcare costs.

Public Transportation

The SEPTA is Philly’s equivalent of the subway system, and it stands for Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority, which also runs busses, trolleys, and commuter rail.

Philly’s public transit system is in the Top 10 as one of the nation’s best, especially when it comes to accessibility and convenience.

Anyone who has lived in New York City will have experienced walking to work, but you will certainly find that Philadelphia is a great city for walking too.

Philadelphia has also become one of the most bike-friendly big cities in the country with dedicated bike lanes on city streets. You can rent bikes with the city-wide bike sharing service that’s available.

An unlimited subway card costs $127 per month and $2.75 per ride in NYC. In Philadelphia, a monthy pass costs $105 and one ride costs $2.50.


As we mentioned previously, both NYC and Philadelphia have tough continental climates where all 4 seasons are represented in their entirety.

They both have hot, humid summers but winters can differ slightly. You’ll be pleased to know that it gets a little less snowy in Philly.

On average, Philadelphia gets about a foot less snow each winter than New York. While the coldest average monthly temperature in New York bottoms out at 27℉, Philly’s average lows in winter months are 26℉.

Moving From New York City to Philadelphia DMV

When moving from New York City to Philadelphia, it must be noted that you will have to get a new driver’s license.

If you have a driver’s license from another state, you must obtain a PA Driver’s License within 60 days of establishing residency in Pennsylvania. Unfortunately, it can’t be done online or over the phone, so you will need to visit one of the Driver License Centers in person.

For more information about what documents are required and how to start the process click here.

Buying a home in Philadelphia

As we mentioned earlier, buying a home in Philadelphia is significantly cheaper than buying a home in NYC. These are the neighborhoods to consider if looking to buy a home.

Chestnut Hill

Chestnut Hill is a chic neighborhood with a small-town charm. Mansions with beautiful lawns share zip codes with stylish condos and quaint townhouses. The area is also known as the Garden District of the City, so you can expect to find great parks, lush gardens, and plenty of greenery scattered around.

Chestnut Hill is most famous for its iconic walkable Main Street called Germantown Avenue. This street is brimming with great eateries, shopping, and historic sites. So if you are a family looking for a place to cultivate community among a neighborhood filled with quaint architecture, Chesnut Hill is a great choice.


Back in the day, Brewerytown was home to over 20 breweries. Over the past 5-7 years, a surge of new multi-dwelling apartments has risen here, they have popped up among the original residential housing stock of single-family homes.

If location matters to you, you’re in luck as Brewerytown is very close to downtown Philly. In addition to this, it has great access to public transportation. So if you’re looking for an eclectic, up-and-coming neighborhood that’s good for families and professionals alike Brewerytown might be for you.

Bella Vista

If you’re a foodie, Bella Vista might be an excellent choice for you. This neighborhood is filled with an abundance of fantastic restaurants and brunch spots. It hosts the perfect mix of young professionals, wandering tourists, and South Philly Italians. In addition to this, it’s a short walk away from the core of Center City.

Bella Vista was the first home to Italian immigrants in Philly and the neighborhood houses the famous “Italian Market”. This market is the nation’s oldest outdoor market and it’s home to 200+ businesses including meat stores, coffee houses, and produce stalls. If this market sounds like the sort of thing you would love your neighborhood to have, Bella Vista is the place for you.

Selling Your Property in New York City

The first step when planning to sell your property in New York City is finding the right realtor. You also have to consider when to sell your home.

Housing prices can fluctuate by thousands of dollars depending on what time of year you sell your home. June is the best month to sell in New York for speed, and July is the best month to sell for a better price in New York. Selling in either of these months is a great idea.

Figuring out what your house is worth is a vital task to ensure a financially favorable and speedy sale. Gauging your home’s value compared to the area’s market value is the best way to confidently price your home. An experienced real estate agent can provide a market analysis.

A good, reliable realtor will guide you through the whole process and can really help you alleviate the stresses that come with selling your home.

Finding a Job in Philadelphia Before You Move There

Before you move to Philadelphia, it’s advised to try and find a job so that your move can have one less stressor added to it. Some ideas of where to start the job search would be

City of Philadelphia: OHR

This is a great resource to find City of Philadelphia jobs, this informative page is committed to assisting residents in their pursuit of finding a job. The page contains information on where residents can find job opportunities in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors.


Indeed is always a great place to find job listings no matter where you are based. You can use the tools to filter your search to certain areas in Philly and there are always new job listings posted daily.

Right now there are more than 60,000 jobs available on Indeed.

To see the jobs currently available in Philadelphia, check them out here.

Word of Mouth

Do you know anyone living in the area? Ask them if they know anyone looking to hire! It’s such a simple concept but yet we forget to use it.

Moving From New York City to Philadelphia Checklist

The following checklist will allow you to assess what needs to be done before trading the Big Apple for Philly.

At Least 4 to 6 Weeks Before the Move

– Organize a professional moving company.

– Let your health care physician, dentist, and other service providers know that you are moving.

– Order moving supplies or ask your moving company to provide them as an additional service

– It is a great idea to sell or donate your unwanted items. You can sell on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Or you can donate them to the Salvation Army and they will pick items up at no charge.

– Begin packing; clearly mark boxes with a marker indicating which room they will be going into at delivery.

– You will need to make your change of address known to several different places, such as wherever you bank, the DMV, your workplace, any other financial institutions (such as credit card providers), the post office, your utility provider, and, saving the most important for last, your friends and family.

– Sort plane tickets if you’re planning to fly.

2 Weeks Prior to the Move

– It is imperative to clean and/or make needed repairs on your old home before moving out, since leaving your place an absolute mess may leave your security deposit in jeopardy.

– Because of the abundance of fragile items in your kitchen, you’ll want to pack these items away long in advance, with protective bubble wrap to ensure nothing gets broken in transit.

– You will also want to begin packing your things from bedrooms and bathrooms, except for your essential items that you will be using until you move.

– If necessary, you will want to arrange a babysitter for your kids and/or pets for parts of the move that you need to be able to focus and get things done.

A Couple of Days Before Your Move

– Clean up your home completely, double checking any cracks and crevices that may have your stuff hidden away.

– Unless your movers will do it for you, dissassemble your furniture to make your move a smoother process, and ensure to keep any screws, brackets, or other small items that are needed for reassembly. Pro tip: tape these smaller items in a bag to the bottom of the furniture.

– Print out the floor plan of your new home and have enough for the movers as well.

– You may want to hit the ATM before moving day, as you’ll need to have enough cash to tip your movers. Generally speaking, you’ll want to tip $20-$30 per mover.

– Make sure that you confirm with your movers the details of your move. The last thing that you want is to have moving day come around, and you and your movers aren’t on the same page.

– Get in touch with the landlord or current homeowner of your new place, and ensure that you’ll be able to get the keys to your new place when you arrive.

– Document the condition of your old place through pictures and videos, to ensure that you have proof of its state. This will come in handy if your landlord tries to keep your deposit, based on incorrect facts.

Moving Day

– Hand over your old home’s keys to the necessary people, such as landlord or building management.

– Do a quick run-through of your home to ensure that nothing gets left behind, whether it’s just a smaller item, or an entire box of stuff.

– Ensure that everything you packed up is in your new home before unpacking everything.

– If the moving company you are working with is going to assemble your furniture, make sure that they reassemble it in the correct room to avoid unnecessary work.

– Be sure to thank everyone helping you move, and leave them a tip!

You did it! Congrats and enjoy your new home!


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