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Old Today, 11:19 AM
 
1 posts
Reputation: 10

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Hello!

My family and I are relocating to the Kenai Peninsula area May 2020 for my husband's veterinary job. He's applying to get into a program to repay his student loans. The area he can work is anywhere on the peninsula, so we are open to anywhere, but mostly focused on Kenai and Soldotna. We are from NE So I have not been able to talk to anyone living there for local input! I really hope someone can answer my questions.

-Kenai or Soldotna? Coming from Nebraska with absolutely no tourism I think Kenai would be a big shock in it being so touristy. I've read Soldotna is a little less? We will have a 1 year old and 2 year old who will be moving as well. We are coming from a 300,000 person town so the smaller size will be a shock. Any advice on which town is best or some pros and cons to each?

-My husband will be in his fourth year in veterinary school and the only time off he has in the year is next September 9/16-9/29. That's the only time we can visit before making the plunge to move so far away. Any tips on traveling in September? Would it be best to fly to Anchorage and rent a car and drive to Kenai, or just get a connecting flight to Kenai? We are planning to rent a house because he will be fresh out of school and I stay home with the kids so we won't have enough money yet for a downpayment on a house.

Thank you so much for reading!
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Old Today, 11:37 AM
 
Location: interior Alaska
4,040 posts, read 3,038,161 times
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I'd choose Kenai or Soldatna based on which one gave your husband the shorter commute. They may both be small compared to your current city but they both have all the normal amenities of modern America.

Fly into Anchorage then drive. The drive is easy and scenic.
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Old Today, 01:45 PM
 
446 posts, read 345,231 times
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Depending on the program you may find the additional cost to live in either location will be more than the amount of loan forgiveness he will receive. Additionally, as a new grad he will not be commanding a big salary and/or it will be very difficult to start a new practice.



Neither location has much to offer if you are really objective but of the two Soldotna is the best IMO. I would avoid any other "remote' location, Anchorage and Fairbanks like the plague. All the glory and hallelujah you see on the Alaska reality TV shows is NOT reflective of what is real. It is much more difficult that what meets the eye and you will be stuck for 3 years.


Think it through carefully but best of luck.
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Old Today, 02:07 PM
 
Location: on the wind
4,784 posts, read 1,821,430 times
Reputation: 16894
Quote:
Originally Posted by meredithcurran2016 View Post
Hello!

My family and I are relocating to the Kenai Peninsula area May 2020 for my husband's veterinary job. He's applying to get into a program to repay his student loans. The area he can work is anywhere on the peninsula, so we are open to anywhere, but mostly focused on Kenai and Soldotna. We are from NE So I have not been able to talk to anyone living there for local input! I really hope someone can answer my questions.

-Kenai or Soldotna? Coming from Nebraska with absolutely no tourism I think Kenai would be a big shock in it being so touristy. I've read Soldotna is a little less? We will have a 1 year old and 2 year old who will be moving as well. We are coming from a 300,000 person town so the smaller size will be a shock. Any advice on which town is best or some pros and cons to each?

-My husband will be in his fourth year in veterinary school and the only time off he has in the year is next September 9/16-9/29. That's the only time we can visit before making the plunge to move so far away. Any tips on traveling in September? Would it be best to fly to Anchorage and rent a car and drive to Kenai, or just get a connecting flight to Kenai? We are planning to rent a house because he will be fresh out of school and I stay home with the kids so we won't have enough money yet for a downpayment on a house.

Thank you so much for reading!
Neither town is swamped with tourists all year long. Both focus on sport fishing in mid to late summer. The Kenai River is a world class salmon fishing destination, but there is also fishing in Cook Inlet. Kenai is on the coast, Soldotna farther inland. My impression is that Soldotna has a little more of a business focus but they are quite close together. Both are service centers with a variety of suburban residential communities, not rural Alaska experiences. If it was me, I'd fly in to Anchorage and drive. The two towns offer many of the same services. COL may not be much different but I don't know if the tax situations differ. As already said, its an easy drive, very scenic, and will give an idea of just how isolated those towns are from "big city" life and services. Driving will also allow a sense of which town might appeal more. They are more alike than they are different in comparison to the other towns on the peninsula.
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