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Old 06-16-2011, 12:45 PM
 
1 posts, read 649 times
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I currently live in a large town near London, England but am I am going to be working at Lowry's Tampa Park Zoo for 4 months (approx Oct-Jan) so will be relocating to the area for the period. My boyfriend is coming with me so we will be sharing rent costs etc. I have been looking at apartments in the Tampa Bay area and have seen $900 type prices for all included, which seems like a good deal to me. Our budget is about $1000 a month all in, depending on location.

I'm after some advice from current or recent residents, as I've read some bad things about Tampa from around 2006-7 time, although I hear it has come on in leaps and bounds since then.

Such as, are there any particularly good apartment builds etc, any particular places or general areas to avoid?

How accessible are restaurants, bars, shops etc? Can you walk around the downtown strip or is it all commercial buildings etc? My partner and I are in our mid 20s so won't want to be out clubbing all the time, but the occasional night out wouldn't go amiss. I have had a look at maps of Tampa and it looks like we will need to rent a car to get around. What are current gas prices in FL?

I understand it's much cheaper to eat over in the US than it is over here in the UK, would anyone be able to estimate a rough weekly grocery bill for a couple in their mid 20s who are competent cooks?

We will earn the money before we come, but what is employment like etc? Is it easy to get a restaurant or bar job like a lot of tourist spots, or is it really bad at the moment?

Sorry for the long post, I just obviously have a lot I need to know before packing up and crossing the Atlantic! Thanks so much to anyone who can help.
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Old 06-17-2011, 06:35 AM
 
Location: Beautiful Pinellas County
1,452 posts, read 2,681,109 times
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If you are living in the area of Lowry Park Zoo, I am sure there are a number of members who can advise on accommodation for you. However most leases will be min six months unless you find a private renter and you have to pay state/local taxes for rent under six months. Like London there are areas you would not go, but this is not general of Tampa itself, it's not a no go zone, millions of people live in this area in perfect safety. You cant walk to anywhere really, you have to rent a car. Gas is about $3.75 a lot less t han you are used to. Your grocery bill should be less than $150. You cannot work here without a visa, in fact you can't come for more than 3 months on your visitor visa, which you have toget before you leave. I misread this at first, and got the impression you have a job at Lowry Park zoo, but if you have a special visa for that, you will NOT be able to use it to work anywhere else. If you are USCs then that's not a problem, or if you have legal permanent residency (green card).
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