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A Quick Guide for New Washington D.C. Residents

Regardless of what brought you to DC -- job, school, a relationship -- here are a few tips to consider once you arrive.

Public Transportation

Many DC residents get around the city without requiring a car.  In fact, the greater DC area boasts one of the most comprehensive and safest public transportation systems in the country with its interconnected network of trains and buses.Today, Metrorail serves 91 stations and has 117 miles of track. Metrobus serves the nation's capital 24 hours a day, seven days a week with 1,500 buses. Metro schedules are available online and at all stations while the color-coded system makes it easy to determine how to get from Point A to Point B.

Making Friends

DC is a transient city with few residents actually hailing originally from the area.  With such an active city, newcomers have a variety of opportunities to make friends -- whether it's at the local coffee shop, via the gym or yoga studio or a work relationship.  Local Meet-up organizations and groups that run regular biking, hiking, art gallery tours and other activity-centered meetings are also great ways to bond.

Visiting the Attractions

With DC's rich history and wealth of attractions, it will take some time to see it all.  Pace yourself by making a list and prioritizing a couple of key "musts" a month.  Also, ensure you tell your visiting friends and family that you haven't seen all the sights yet so they know not to expect a fully informed tour guide.

Become a Local

Becoming a "local" will take time but here are a few key tips:

  • You live in "DC" or "the District" now -- not "Washington" or "Washington, DC"
  • Never, ever stand "left" in the way of Metro commuters
  • Ensure you always know the quadrant and cross-streets

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