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Old 08-26-2010, 06:35 AM
 
Location: Anchorage
90 posts, read 131,315 times
Reputation: 102

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Hello all, ive been reading the forums for sometime now. I guess im not to different from any of the rest of the people who post here and say they want to move to Alaska. My current story is that i live in Virginia, married, no kids. My wife and I both and wanting to make the move before any kids come around. Currently we are thinking about a 2 year plan. Taking two years allows us to try and save plenty of money, allow my wife to finish up her grad school in business, and to fully research and think about the move.

I have a 4 year degree majoring in criminal justice and currently im a police officer. Before moving I will obviously be wanting to secure a job and hopefully my wife as well. Just from research so far im kind of drawn to the kenai peninsula area, but im not sure how well i would find a job with my degree there.

One idea im playing with currently is the possibility of purchasing a box truck for the move and making the drive ourselves and hopefully being able to sell the truck once we get back up there for maybe about the same we bought it for, leaving just the gas bill. Would this idea be possible or am I overlooking anything obvious?

We are going to try and do this "right" by allowing plenty of time to plan and save. I suppose once we do move we will try and rent a place and then buy soon there after.

Thanks for any input.
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Old 08-26-2010, 07:16 AM
 
Location: Dangling from a mooses antlers
6,919 posts, read 11,708,744 times
Reputation: 5602
Good plan.
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:23 AM
 
Location: on top of a mountain
6,992 posts, read 10,390,469 times
Reputation: 3256
good plan....you do need passports, no DUI or criminal record to cross thru Canada, pets need certificates....
have you at least visited Alaska to know somewhat of what your getting into??
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Palmer, AK
167 posts, read 299,343 times
Reputation: 146
The logistics of making the move are easy once you have your job(s) taken care of. If I had to do it again though I would just mail items that I thought I'd really need and then just get in a plane and come on up.
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Anchorage
90 posts, read 131,315 times
Reputation: 102
Yea, ive visited, although it was a glorified version, had decent weather. Ive always wanted to live there, and yes i know, its not easy. Ive trolled the forum for a while now and read plenty of posts from people saying they want to move and then get told by locals "Why?". I really want to take the time to plan everything right with this, this move is obviously a life changing move and has the potential to affect the rest of our lives if we do it wrong.

As far as driving up. We will be downsizing from all the stuff we have from here. Only take some of the things we would really need/want. But still that is to much to take in a car. Im not sure how much gas money it will take to drive a 16' or so box truck from VA to Alaska though. But im hoping to land a decent box truck for 5k here and turn around and sell it once we get back up there for essentially a free truck rental minus the gas. It seems logical to me. We were kind of thinking about staying in some motels and camping on the drive up as well.
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:59 AM
 
4,986 posts, read 8,290,713 times
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Depends on how you define economical. What is your time and labor worth to you? Sometimes the most economical way is to hire a moving company, especially one that is familiar with the logistics of moving stuff up here.
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Old 08-26-2010, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Wasilla
1,081 posts, read 1,995,034 times
Reputation: 669
Quote:
Originally Posted by lv2hoop View Post
If I had to do it again though I would just mail items that I thought I'd really need and then just get in a plane and come on up.
The move definitely makes you look at your "stuff" differently. Less is more.........we brought only furniture for our bedroom and the rest was all household items. We easily got the rest of the furnishings off craigslist for way cheaper than hauling our old stuff up here. (washer/dryer, 2 more beds, etc, etc)

It is less stressful if you come with a nice nest egg, knowing you will blow some of it on getting settled in. Figure the new unforseen expenses : security deposits with elect and gas utilities, car registrations, switching auto insurance if necessary, setting up your kitchen with all the essentials.....

Then there's the totally necessary items : new winter gear, snowshoes, safety essentials for outdoor play, skis/snowmachine/whatever your poison. Then you can get out and play with the rest of us
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Old 08-26-2010, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Anchorage
90 posts, read 131,315 times
Reputation: 102
Well, not to give away to much of our financial information, we are thinking by 2 years of saving along with selling any things we dont need, we are hoping to have about 20k saved. Now, i know our 2009 Hyundai Elantra will not make it up there---i dont think?--- So probably have to sell that and probably end up buying 2 vehicles after we get there. Possibly buy a SUV down here and tow it behind the box truck, but im worried about that because it would add to an already massive gas bill. But then again probably would look like an idiot driving a box truck around town till we found another vehicle. Still alot of questions and scenarios to play out. With 2 years available to plan im just trying to get any and all ideas.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:11 PM
 
Location: on top of a mountain
6,992 posts, read 10,390,469 times
Reputation: 3256
Quote:
Originally Posted by paintballa7786 View Post
Well, not to give away to much of our financial information, we are thinking by 2 years of saving along with selling any things we dont need, we are hoping to have about 20k saved. Now, i know our 2009 Hyundai Elantra will not make it up there---i dont think?--- So probably have to sell that and probably end up buying 2 vehicles after we get there. Possibly buy a SUV down here and tow it behind the box truck, but im worried about that because it would add to an already massive gas bill. But then again probably would look like an idiot driving a box truck around town till we found another vehicle. Still alot of questions and scenarios to play out. With 2 years available to plan im just trying to get any and all ideas.
You can find a decent car fairly quickly after arriving.....I found a nice "beater" car for $1000 off Craigslist in about 2 weeks of looking! Runs great, 5 speed stick shift!
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:37 PM
 
Location: Interior alaska
6,381 posts, read 11,954,033 times
Reputation: 3470
Quote:
Originally Posted by paintballa7786 View Post
Well, not to give away to much of our financial information, we are thinking by 2 years of saving along with selling any things we dont need, we are hoping to have about 20k saved. Now, i know our 2009 Hyundai Elantra will not make it up there---i dont think?--- So probably have to sell that and probably end up buying 2 vehicles after we get there. Possibly buy a SUV down here and tow it behind the box truck, but im worried about that because it would add to an already massive gas bill. But then again probably would look like an idiot driving a box truck around town till we found another vehicle. Still alot of questions and scenarios to play out. With 2 years available to plan im just trying to get any and all ideas.
A 2009 can't make it? I didn't think that Hyundai's were that poorly built.

I have driven the Al Can more times that I can remember and have driven 2 and 4 wheel drive cars in the middle of summer and the darkness of winter. Never had an issue, did put studded snow tires on for the winter for most of the trips, but did many with just all weather treads as well.

The Al Can is like most roads anymore, it is paved for almost the entire trip except where they are doing roadwork. The Al Can of old when I was a kid didn't have a straight stretch to be found, it wound around every little pond and creek there was. The potholes in the dirt road were big enough to lose a car. Gas stations were far and few between, you filled up at everyone you saw. Now there is towns and communities all along it and going fifty to seventy miles without some kind of a gas station is almost impossible, there use to be areas with nothing for hundreds of miles.

Basically, if you can't drive in snow, having a 4WD or 2WD won't make that much differance (4 x 0=0 just like 2x 0=0 is the same). You need to drive slow where you need to and start braking before you would normally. Many of the cars in Alaska are 2WD and they get around just fine all year long. Granted the front wheel drive ones do better than rear wheel drive, but you adapt to how you drive and that helps.

Your car should do just fine. There is some items you will need for winters depending on where you decide to go to, like a block heater and winter tires. And like most do, you carry warm gear incase you break down at subzero temps.

Have a great trip.
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