Ever want to live in Alaska? Even if you are thinking about a summer job or maybe just coming up for a year or two -- you will find this section a great place to get started. Be warned -- many long time Alaskan residents originally came to the state with the idea of just spending a year or two.
There is no shortage of opinions on Alaska's economy, weather, job market, and all other aspects of life in the state. Many of which might be based on the first hand experience of the person telling the story, when they were living or working in Alaska -- ten or even twenty years past. What you might hear or read could be correct for the time of the visit, but some things change. So before you pack the bags and head north for that high paying welding job on the Alaska Pipeline or the abundant teaching jobs in the bush use our site and do a little research before you leap, so when you arrive you'll find what you seek.
Climate: Alaska is in a northern climate -- winters are long but fun -- summers are intense. Temperature varies dramatically across the state depending on the region. In the most general of terms Southeast Alaska (Juneau) experiences moderate winter temperatures with fewer sunny days. Southcentral (Anchorage) enjoys more snow than the Southeast and fewer cloudy days. The interior of the state can experience extreme cold for weeks at a time during the winter but people stay because of the countless clear days and nights throughout the year. Overall temperatures are warmer in the state as a result of climate change.
Cost of Living: Most goods and services cost more in Alaska than in the lower 48, however the disparity in prices is nothing like it was during the 70's. Overall prices are about 15% higher in the large towns. Prices in the bush can be exponentially higher due to shipping and reduced competition. Wages tend to be higher and for the most part offset the higher prices. The State of Alaska complied a great report on the cost of living in Alaska, in July of 2005
Housing: Rental housing for temporary and seasonal employees is often arranged or provided by the employer, especially in remote areas where housing options are extremely limited or non-existent. Some employers in the larger communities will not provide housing but will help to find suitable accommodations, which might vary from a room with a local to a hostel type bunk house. Longer traditional rentals are available throughout the year in most Alaska communities.
Jobs in Alaska: The Alaskan economy continues to expand and add new jobs each and every year. Most job growth is in tourism, which tend to be seasonal. Recently, construction employment has shown sharp gains. With the exception of tourism jobs you will need to have an Alaskan address and phone number before you would be considered for a job. Exceptions to occur for highly desirable job candidates and for hard to fill positions. Read more on Alaska Jobs.
Quilting in Alaska: Quilting in Alaska is more than a pastime for many, many women in this state. Communities of any size have quilting as part of its make up. There are wonderful little quilting shops all over Alaska. These quilt shops offer camaraderie as well as a place to meet and socialize with other quilters. Fabrics of beautiful colors beckon quilters to come in and take home another fat quarter to add to their stash. Unique quilting patterns with themes found only in Alaska—Eskimo children in fur-trimmed parkas, Fireweed, Lupine, and Wild Iris, Salmon, the Northern Lights, and of course Moose, can all be found in these delightful little quilting shops.
Real Estate: Buying real estate in Alaska is no different than in other parts of the United States. Depending on the location of the purchase certain Alaska specific challenges may immerge during the purchase of sale of the property. As with most areas it is strongly advised to use a licensed realtor any any transaction.
Schools in Alaska: Alaska has a wide variety of educational opportunities including 53 public school districts, 3 public universities, 2 private colleges, charter, and private schools. In addition to the traditional learning institutions the state is also home to several outdoor schools and programs ranging from fishing to mountaineering.
Volunteering: Opportunities for volunteers exist across a wide range of activities in addition to diversity in location and season. In addition to traditional volunteer options with social or educational groups, Alaska affords volunteers the chance to live and work in remote wilderness settings. Typically housing is provided as well as a small stipend to cover food and incidental expenses.