Not long after my friend and fellow GT alum Paul moved to San Fran, I found myself in a similar situation but for different reasons, and took a different approach than he did. I’m happy with the end result, even though I miss everyone from the Atlanta area.
As many of you know, I interviewed extensively, and went on four second round interviews; in chronological order, they were Booz Allen, DRT, Lockheed Martin, and Microsoft. As I interviewed, I focused on my background that differentiates me from your average GT (or any) Computer Science major: my six semesters of co-op experience in the defense industry, and my focus on user interface design. My interview experiences with those companies varied widely; I’d rate MS first, Lockheed second, and DRT dead last. Anyway, Lockheed eventually gave me an offer, which I then negotiated and later accepted.
I delayed leaving Atlanta for as long as possible, but I finally requested price quotes from a few container companies, who will deliver a crate to your location, let you load it at your leisure, and ship it to wherever when you’re ready. Door to Door price matched another offer, and I was completely satisfied with them.
Once I had everything shipped away, I drove out a day or two later after saying goodbye to my favorite pets for the last time the drive from ATL to DFW is a straight shot, and can be driven in one go; we chose to stop in Vicksburg, MS at a bed and breakfast, as it was similarly priced to area hotels. We found that particular experience somewhat lacking, as the breakfast was severely lacking, and the AC in our unit was apparently broken (they had us occupy the adjoining unit).
Now I had looked at apartments online, but had never set foot in Texas prior to this trip. We used CLEAR to access the Internet, and pricelined the Sheraton in downtown Fort Worth as we didn’t have any friends in the area to stay with. Compared to the aforementioned bed & breakfast, the Sheraton was an absolute delight to stay at.
After touring a few apartments in the “cultural district,” we went to a realtor who helpfully suggested some apartments we had not originally considered. One of those suggestions was the right fit for me, even though it was well above my initial price range. Lesson: be willing to spend more on your living space if you can afford it.