Living in Fargo as an expatriate

Caffeinate Your Fargo Expat Journey: Find Essential Info and Connect with Expatriates Today

Image of Fargo

Fargo is a sprawling city nestled in the heart of North Dakota's rolling plains. While lively downtown areas, such as the vibrant South University Deaconess neighborhood, offer distinctive cultural experiences, wide-open spaces and picturesque farmlands also abound in the surrounding countryside. Famous for its near-perfect snowfalls during winter and hot, sunny summers ideal for outdoor recreation, Fargo's laid-back, friendly atmosphere invites visitors and new residents alike.

Tips for expats in Fargo

Visa requirements

Expats moving to Fargo should ensure that they have the appropriate visa for staying in the United States. The most common visa for this purpose is the H1B, which allows immigrants to work in the US for a specified duration. Expats should also ensure that they have the correct documentation, including a valid passport, proof of employment or enrollment in an academic program, and other required identification.

Language resources

While English is the primary language spoken in Fargo, some residents may speak Mandarin or other languages. Expats who need help navigating the city, such as finding the right transportation route or seeking out cultural events, may benefit from taking courses in Mandarin or other relevant languages. Fortunately, Fargo has several language learning resources available, both online and in person, to help immigrants adjust to their new community.

Cost of living for expats in Fargo


The cost of housing in Fargo is relatively low compared to other major US cities. Expats can find everything from shared accommodations to multi-bedroom houses at reasonable prices. A room in a shared house can range from $400 to $800 USD per month, while a one-bedroom apartment might cost $800 to $1,200 USD per month. Two-bedroom apartments generally cost around $1,000 to $1,600 USD per month, and three-plus bedroom houses can vary widely depending on the neighborhood and amenities.


Grocery prices in Fargo are generally lower than the national average. Basic grocery items like bread, milk, and fruits can be found for around $25 to $50 USD per week. Expats can expect to spend around $150 to $200 USD per month on groceries.


Transportation costs in Fargo are generally lower than other cities due to the affordable public transportation system. A monthly public transportation pass costs around $35 USD, while gas prices are reasonably low compared to other large cities. Expats can expect to spend around $150 to $200 USD per month on transportation expenses.

Climate in Fargo

Fargo experiences four distinct seasons. Winters are long and cold, with snow often covering the ground for months. Summers are hot and dry, while spring and autumn are milder and shorter. Expats should be aware that the state's prairie winds can pick up unexpectedly, making it challenging to travel during winter months.

Job market in Fargo

Fargo's economy is varied and diverse, with a growing focus on technology and innovation. The city is home to several large companies, including Microsoft's Midwest operations center, computer manufacturing firm Yealink, and the software company IBM. Fargo is also a center for agriculture and healthcare, with several hospitals and health centers in the area. Expats with experience in these fields are particularly likely to find employment opportunities.

Healthcare in Fargo

Fargo has a well-established healthcare infrastructure, with several hospitals and medical centers located throughout the city. The city is home to several urgent care clinics, specialty clinics, and a number of doctors' offices. Expats can rest easy knowing that they will have access to high-quality medical care in Fargo, regardless of their particular medical needs.

Transport in Fargo

Fargo's public transportation system is comprised of buses that offer frequent stops across the city. The MetriParks transit system connects neighborhoods in Fargo and the surrounding area, making it easy to get around without a car. Expats should note that transportation options can be somewhat limited outside of usual business hours, making a car more practical for exploring the area outside of city limits.

Safety in Fargo

Fargo is generally considered a safe city, although some areas, such as near downtown Fargo, may experience higher crime rates than others. Expats should take care to avoid walking alone in some neighborhoods at night and keep their valuables secure. The city has well-staffed police and emergency services, so expats can rely on authorities for support.

Neighborhoods in Fargo

  1. South University Deaconess

    South University Deaconess is a vibrant neighborhood located in downtown Fargo. This area is home to many top-rated restaurants, galleries, and shops, making it a hub of local cultural activity. The neighborhood also boasts excellent public transportation connections and proximity to many of Fargo's top attractions.

  2. Northside

    Northside is an up-and-coming neighborhood located north of downtown Fargo. This area is filled with charming residential streets and parks, making it popular among families who value its peaceful atmosphere. Northside is also conveniently located close to many of Fargo's most popular tourist attractions.

  3. South Moorhead

    South Moorhead is a rapidly growing community located in the southern part of Fargo. This neighborhood is home to many new developments, including modern housing options and an array of innovative businesses. Expats moving to South Moorhead can expect to enjoy a youthful, dynamic atmosphere with access to many cultural events and educational opportunities.

Attractions in Fargo

  1. Red River Zoo

    The Red River Zoo is a popular attraction located in Fargo's Lindenwood Park. This family-friendly zoo features over 600 animals representing more than 200 different species, as well as numerous educational programs and workshops for visitors of all ages.

  2. Bonanzaville

    Bonanzaville is a fascinating historical site located in downtown Fargo. This open-air museum depicts what life was like for pioneers in North Dakota during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Visitors can tour over 40 restored buildings and learn about the region's rich heritage.

  3. Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre

    The Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre is a local cultural institution offering an array of theatrical productions and educational opportunities for residents of all ages. This organization is particularly well-known for its devotion to promoting local talent and supporting the arts community in Fargo.

International Schools in Fargo

  1. North Dakota Learning Center

    The North Dakota Learning Center is conveniently located downtown, making it easily accessible from many neighborhoods in Fargo. This independent school serves students in pre-K through 12th grade, with a curriculum that emphasizes bilingual literacy and numeracy skills.

  2. Essentia Health- funded Early Learning Center

    The Essentia Health- funded Early Learning Center is a state-of-the-art facility located on the campus of Essentia Health Fargo. This center serves infants through pre-K students, with a focus on promoting early childhood development skills in English and Mandarin Chinese.

  3. International School of Fargo-Moorhead

    The International School of Fargo-Moorhead is a public K-12 school with a strong focus on culturally diverse learning opportunities for students. This school serves students from elementary through high school, with immersion language learning options in Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Useful expat resources in Fargo

Expat destinations in United States