Moving to Chile from the US: What You Need to Know

Chile is a beautiful country located on the western coast of South America. The country shares a land border with the countries of Peru, Bolivia, and Argentina, and has a coastline that stretches 4,000 miles along the Pacific Ocean. The most developed and economically stable Latin American country, Chile boasts the highest standard of living and lowest rate of corruption among these as well.

It is also perhaps best known for its Easter Island, a small island off the western coast which is home to almost 1,000 moai, or monolithic carvings of humans. These famous “Easter Island heads” have drawn interest from tourists worldwide, 100,000 of which visit the island each year; however, mainland Chile has just as many draws as the enigmatic Easter Island, with 5-7 million tourists filtering in each year to take in the impressive mountain ranges, active volcanoes, deserts, and beautiful beach landscapes that this gorgeous country has to offer. If you’re looking for a change of pace and want to experience life in a country with rich history and stunning landscapes, then check out Atlas® International’s Chile Moving Guide.

A crystalline lake sits in front of snowcapped mountains in Torres del Paine National Park, Chile.

Torres del Paine National Park, Chile

Moving from the US to Chile

Why are Americans moving to Chile? Some might move for a change in culture, as Chile’s way of living is slower and more relaxed than that of the United States. The culture of Chile is heavily influenced by Spanish settlers and the cultures of the indigenous people who lived there before, making it a colorful mélange of music, art, and customs. Others might move for work, though the Chilean way of working might come as a culture shock even to some Americans.

Culture & Education

With a mandated 45-hour work week, many Chileans put in even more hours than that and have long commutes. This might take some getting used to, but could be well worth the wait! For students, the University of Chile (Universidad de Chile, in Spanish), is the oldest and most prestigious higher education institution in the country. The university has a Student Mobility Program that welcomes international students for a semester to a year, so they can experience Chilean life in their studies. The experience is well worth the move, too.


Fans of the outdoors will be at home in Chile: the country boasts the highest number of endemic species in the world, contributing to the country’s rich biodiversity, and has many natural sights to delight the eyes. The Marble Caves in Patagonia are well-known for their gorgeous blue swirls and can be accessed from the water by kayak. Osorno and Villarrica are two active volcanoes that visitors are welcome to hike on, feasting their eyes on the snowy mountaintops and lush valleys below. For those who love waterfalls, Queulat National Park features cascading waterfalls and a hanging glacier, and Laja Falls is an impressive, enormous waterfall with many native plant species in the area. No matter your interests, there’s sure to be a place for you in Chile!


Due to its status as the longest country in the world, Chile experiences many different climate types. The southernmost part of Chile is quite cold due to its proximity to Antarctica. Moving north, the climate goes from a cool to a temperate oceanic climate, then to a dry continental climate, from a warm to a temperate Mediterranean climate, and finally ends in a mild desert climate at the northern tip. No matter what climate you desire, Chile seems to have them all!

Where to Live in Chile

Thinking of relocating to Chile? Here are some popular locations for ex-pats:

  • Santiago
  • Valparaíso
  • Viña del Mar
  • La Serena
  • Antofagasta

Moving to Santiago, Chile

Santiago is the capital of Chile and its most populous city. It is also one of the largest cities in the Americas, with a population of over 6 million people. Santiago is known for its vibrance and unique flair. Even from within the city, the surrounding mountains are visible, a natural backdrop for the bustling life inside the city limits. Enjoy the local cuisine in some of Santiago’s best restaurants of 2022, or stroll downtown to take in some of the historic Chilean buildings and sights. If you are moving to Santiago from the United States, you will likely run into the need for overseas shipping and specialized movers who are familiar with customs and import regulations.

A moving truck is ready for unloading in Chile.

Atlas® International helps people move to Chile every year.

Resources for Moving to Chile

Thinking of moving from the US to Chile? Check out our detailed customs guide for international relocation tips including household goods importing, restricted and prohibited items, moving pets, importing vehicles, and the documentation you will need.

Chile Customs and Import Guide

Plan Your Chile Move with Atlas® International

Atlas® International has over fifty years of experience helping people relocate internationally. Our team provides quality, door-to-door service, and stress-free planning to help get you settled faster and easier in your new home. If you’re in need of help with common moving questions like import regulations and applying for a visa, we can also help with that! Whether you are just getting started with planning your move to Chile or you already have all your personal affairs in order, Atlas® International is here to help.

Ready to get started? Get in touch with an Atlas® International moving expert and begin planning your move today. Give us a call at 206-526-1137 or contact us to receive personalized advice on beginning your move to Chile.