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Living in Austin, Texas:
Tips for Moving and Visiting

50 local experts

If you've been wondering what it's like to live in or visit Austin, the Crowdsourced Explorer community can help. We asked 50 people living in Austin what someone who is considering moving to or visiting there should know. Here are their pros and cons, tips, and advice:

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50 comments on “Austin”

If you’re moving to Austin you need to know that HEB is the best grocery store, so definitely choose your living situation to be close to a good one. If you’ll be commuting i35 is better than 183 for traffic, and mopac is okay. There’s lots of good barbecue outside of the stereotypical Rudy’s, so make sure you branch out and try different places.

Carolyn, says: 2024

Austin is still weird, despite its recent boom. People here like to go to climbing gyms, free music festivals downtown, and enjoy many of the parks and green belts. Cost of living has gone up.

It’s very hot, very expensive, the power goes out every time it rains, there is traffic at a dead stop pretty much all hours of the day, and it’s for really dumb reasons like the stop lights are out of sync, or the police shut down the freeway for no reason. Rent is unaffordable for average people, $1000 for a 400sf studio, at least $500K – $1M if you want to buy anywhere in the city. All the artists have been driven out, theaters shuttered, decent music venues are rare, unless you want to see a cover band. Most of the good restaurants went out of business during the pandemic. Anything that is worth doing is such an enormous exhausting expensive hassle, it ends up not being worth it.

You better like lots of BBQ and traffic! Friendly people you’ll get to know while waiting in restaurant lines.

Richard, says: 2023

Newbies are known to drop from dehydration. Learn the symptoms for heat stroke.

Do not come here, it is getting progressively more liberal. Homeless people run amuck in abundance. I’d have to say Austin, TX is probably the worst place to move in Texas by far.

There are still budget friendly and different experiences to have in Austin even though the city gets fancier hotels and restaurants every year. Seek out smaller local restaurants, music venues, hikes, swimming, it is still here.

Great climate for people who like warm winters, lots of sunlight. Summer is very hot but everything is air conditioned. Many active people, young people and highly educated. Extraordinary number of concerts, events. Public transit is poor and most own cars. Housing costs are relatively high.

Music capital, hip culture, fun, politics, parks, passionate people and place. If you come to Austin be prepared for a multifaceted culture distinguished from the rest of the state of Texas. Austin has many attractions and is home to the capital of the state. Traditional roots are still here but Austin has its own vibe with the people that live here.

Austin is a modern, free-thinking place where much diversity can be found. The political climate is probably more liberal and modern than most of Texas. There is much beauty and natural settings to discover for those who enjoy being outdoors. The music venues are varied and fabulous. The restaurant possibilities are adventurous, sometimes traditional. Come on!

Austin is changing like crazy. It is growing as a hub for tech companies, and the cost of living is exploding. This is no longer a small, sleepy town; this is a hot place to live. While it’s not as expensive as living in the Bay Area, it’s certainly not cheap, either.

Austin is a city full of colorful people and interesting culture. However, you should still be careful and exercise caution when moving around the city. Remember to lock your car doors, hide your valuables, and stay safe when walking outside at night. Most of the city is not dangerous; however, it’s important to err on the side of caution.

Ibrahim, says: 2020

There are many pockets of greenery and parks along with a plethora of places to eat. Also, the tech industry is booming in Austin and there are many jobs in the field; Major companies such as Samsung and Apple have campuses here. However, traffic often makes a short commute into a long journey.

Cierra, says: 2020

Austin, Texas, has a rather balmy climate. If the heat doesn’t kill you, the humidity will. Most of the townsfolk are progressive, however the republican party of Texas continues to reign supreme. Many roads are ill-prepared for the surge in population, and traffic has suffered severely. However, housing has expanded dramatically in the last 20 years.

When moving to Austin, everyone assumes a country feel. While that might have been the case ten years prior, it no longer holds truth. Austin is a melting pot full of modern taste. The small city now imitates the same hustle and bustle a places such as San Francisco. We are now deemed as the new “Silicon Valley” when it comes to our economy.

Austin is a city for young people. Home to the University of Texas, Austin has a student population of over 50,000. Geographically, Austin is perfectly situated for enjoying water sports along the chain of highland lakes and rivers. And with over 250 sunny days per year, Austin hosts many major outdoor music festivals year-round.

The weather changes on the daily. The air isn’t as humid as in Houston, but Austin can get just as, if not more, hot during summer. I don’t find the food all that great. There are diverse options available, but the quality of the food overall is subpar.

Kassie, says: 2020

Austin needs more improvements in public transportation. They can find good live music in Austin. The food is innovative and has lots of Texas flair. the home prices are ridiculously high and so is renting. Breakfast tacos are popular here. Don’t confuse them with burritos.

Austin is a great place. There are many attractions to explore. I love to visit Zilker Park where there is trail that leads to a bridge overlooking the lake. It has a great view of the city. The Capitol is also a nice attraction that I visited a few times as a kid, and the Bob Bullock Museum.

Any person moving to Austin must be aware of its hot and humid climate. It somehow feels humid even when it rains. Instead of spring, summer, autumn, then winter, you get spring, summer, summer, and a lukewarm winter. If the scorching weather isn’t enough to deter hopeful residents, they ought to also be aware of how rapidly housing costs are increasing all throughout the city.

When moving to Austin, one should consider the morning commute when driving to work. Due to the cities limited road infrastructure, the two main roadways, Mopac Expressway and I-35, are often congested in the morning and evening after work. It is best to find a place of residence close to work so that you deal with as little traffic as possible.

Stephen, says: 2020

While Austin is known for its live music, it also has some amazing food options. The BBQ is especially delicious. The culture here is quite fun and inclusive, and locals try to go out of their way to make visitors feel at home. It’s hard to be bored in Austin, as there is always something going on or something to do.

Carolyn, says: 2020

Austin is well-known for its music scene and quirky people, however cost of living is expensive. The rate of homelessness continues to rise as gentrification and displacement become an ever increasing problem. Austin continues to reconcile its competing needs of welcoming development, drawing new people to the city, and maintaining affordability for Austinites.

In the south of Texas, Austin is the capital of the Lone Star State. Austin is home to over a thousand people. There are many coffee shops in Austin. The city is great for dog owners. Austin is also great for college students because it hosts one of the best schools in the country.

Clayton, says: 2020

Austin is a vibrant and creative city. The weather can be sweltering, but there are a multitude of ways to stay cool outside. The city is packed full of excitement, and the suburbs are relaxing without being boring. All residents are welcoming and kind, Southern hospitality shines in Austin.

Claire, says: 2020

Austin, Texas, is an incredible city, full of diverse cultures and fun activities for people of every age and background. Families, students, and young professionals move to Austin from all across the country to benefit from the opportunities the city presents in ways of education, jobs, and culture. The city host many events each year that draw international crowds, such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival, the Austin Film Festival, and SXSW.

Austin is the live music capital of the world and the capital of Texas. It has great barbecue food and a really fun nightlife. The restaurants and bars in downtown are amazing. People here are really friendly. The weather can go up to a 110°F in summer but then there are fun outdoor activities like tubing on the river!

Cassidi, says: 2020

Someone moving to Austin should be excited by the downtown night-life, beautiful hiking trails and friendly communities here! I love living in Austin because of how eclectic and liberal it is; I don’t think I’d want to live anywhere less weird than Austin! We have a saying that goes “Keep Austin weird.” I think that sums us up pretty well!

Someone moving to Austin should know traffic here is often extreme. Conditions on Interstate 35 are particularly bad due to construction. It was difficult for city planners to predict that the city’s population would explode so rapidly due to the University of Texas and an influx of citizens from California.

Cecelia, says: 2020

Someone moving to Austin should know the temperature is fairly high most days, but there are many ways to be around water. Music concerts, state parks, and food trucks are among the most popular attractions. It is also very dog friendly. Austin, Texas, is a beautiful place.

Austin is a very outdoor friendly city. If you enjoy spending time outside, prefer a less humid environment, then you would acclimate well. Politically, it leans much more to the left. If you are a staunch conservative, then perhaps a location in the suburbs would be more ideal. The suburbs surrounding Austin are quite family oriented.

Gregory, says: 2020

Austin is a lovely city, known for live music, excellent food, and abundant outdoor activities. Diversity of culture and celebration of art of all kinds sets this place apart from the rest of Texas. The University of Texas draws the youth, and the authenticity of the people here invite graduates to lay down roots. The river gives this inland town a watery vibe, and the Hill Country nearby offers a scenic escape with only a short drive.

Austin, my home town, is subject to the most contradictory weather patterns that I have ever encountered. In summer, the streets are hot enough to fry raw eggs and the ground itself seems to smoke. However, the first week of September usually brings a soft breeze. Winter begins in mid-October, always pouncing upon the half-roasted Texan with unexpected relish.

If moving to Austin, be advised that summer can be very hot. Temperatures stay mostly in the nineties in the day, and a plan to stay cool is essential. Obviously, it is best to stay indoors. But when that is not possible, cold water kept nearby, perhaps in a small cooler, will make the heat easier to tolerate.

Madeline, says: 2020

When moving to Austin, Texas, one must be prepared for beauty, music, and scorpions. I was surprised at the scorpions part as well. Austin is known for its music scene and its hippies, but no one seems to talk about the creatures hiding in this beautiful part of Texas. I love living here for all the possibilities Austin has to offer, but I just need to watch my step for snakes, scorpions, and tarantulas!

Kathleen, says: 2020

Someone moving to Austin, Texas, should consider the city’s climate. If you love cool weather or experiencing all four seasons, then you might want to look elsewhere; Austin rarely dips below a low of 32 degrees Fahrenheit in winter and frequently reaches highs of 110 degrees Fahrenheit in summer. Austin is a lively college town that loves live music performances, creative cuisine, food trucks everywhere, and beautiful parks and green spaces. Several major companies, such as Amazon, Apple, Dell, and IBM, have their headquarters or a large campus around the city. Traffic, like in many cities, is often terrible, probably because the city’s original planners never envisioned the city would become as busy and heavily populated as it is now.

Elizabeth, says: 2020

Austin, Texas, is an incredibly unique piece of Texas. It’s a liberal oasis in a fiercely conservative state, known for its support of progressive movements and activism. The food scene is also highly touted as one of the best and most diverse in Texas. It’s a metropolitan area known for its progressive ideology, wackiness, and support of art of all types. As the state’s capital, the city is also an important political center for the United States.

Austin is home to Blanton Museum of Art. The Blanton museum takes a lot of time and care into their exhibits. It is located right across from the Bob Bullock Museum where you can watch 4D movies. There is a graffiti park called Castle Hill. The music scene in Austin is great. At SXSW (South by Southwest) in the spring, artists from all over the word came to Austin to perform.

Adrienne, says: 2020

Austin is a very progressive city with a lot of diversity in its population. You can find the diversity reflected throughout the various neighborhoods, the multitude of amazing ethnic food trucks, and a variety of interesting art venues. One should also know that the price of housing here is extremely high.

Dominic, says: 2020

Austin is the capital of Texas, and it’s one of the fastest growing cities in America. It is now considered the number one city to move to by US News. This city is filled with awesome people, scenic views, live music, delicious eats and a perfect mix of city and country life. Austin is known as the music capital of the world. Great schools, great colleges and great jobs will make this place an inviting city for anyone looking to move here.

Austin is home to great music and wonderful food. Austin is the live music capital of the world. Most days you can find a concert to attend on the weekend with friends or enjoy an amateur band at a local restaurant downtown. The food scene is quite diverse and flavorful in Austin with a multitude of cuisines at your fingertips.

Lindsey, says: 2020

Austin is unique living experience for the adventurous spirit looking for a different living experience. From the vast hiking trails and public parks to the eclectic curio shops, there’s always plenty to see and do in Austin. Our state capital has a multitude of significant historical places to visit; in addition to the highly popular Austin City Limits music scene.

Nicole, says: 2020

If you’re looking for somewhere with clear rivers to play in, luscious trails to hike and walk your dog on, and a lively night scene, Austin, Texas, is the right city for you. In Austin, you get the Southern hospitality with the big city feel, and it doesn’t get better than that. In this city, you will be met with the compassion of its community unlike any other and will be left star-struck by its beauty on a regular basis. It’s a sought after destination for a reason!

Austin lives up to its slogan “Keep Austin weird”. The vibe of this city is embracing, entertaining, and lively. There are tons to things to see and do in Austin, especially if you are a foodie! Every street corner downtown has food trucks, and some of these chefs are Michelin star rated! In addition to food, there are many water activities – including kayaking, swimming, boating, rafting and much more! Come to Austin and experience the city for yourself!

Rebecca, says: 2020

There are many great places to eat in Austin. On South Congress street, there’s tons of food places, shops, and other small businesses. Austin is growing at an exponential rate. About 10 years ago, over 100 people moved here a day. Traffic is the worst it’s ever been.

When going to Austin, you will see a lot of cities downtown. Austin is known for downtown because it holds many important buildings. When visiting this city, you can visit a lot of shops and enjoy the nightlife. There are many parks and lakes you can visit and it is fun to hang out with friends and family in Austin.

Rodney, says: 2020

Austin is the live music capital of the world. The most popular festivals here are South by Southwest, and Austin City Limits. Austin is also home to amazing barbecue food that you can eat at Franklin’s and Stubbs. The nightlife in Austin is unparalleled! 6th street in downtown Austin has some of the best bars and clubs in town.

In the past ten years, rent in Austin has risen by 93%. The best barbecue restaurants in the world can be found in Downtown Austin. Be aware that there are not any professional sports teams in Austin. Matthew Mcconaughey is a professor at the University of Texas at Austin.

Austin is a great city to move to. It has great live music and a fantastic downtown. It’s got plenty of nature and history in it as well. My favorite part of Austin is the people, most Austinians are so nice and just really good caring people. Just an overall great city for anyone to move to.

People should move to Austin for the glorious weather, the warmth and friendliness of us Austinites, the promising job market, and the culture. No one could ever go wrong planting roots in what is the live music capital of the world. With a population of almost one million, Austin qualifies as a major city.

Kimberly, says: 2020

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