AVLtoday City Guide Live

Asheville 101: Our guide to becoming a resident

Becoming an Ashevillian is easy with these tips.


The next best chapter of your life awaits.

Photo by @overasheville

Table of Contents

Picture this: You just moved to The Land of Sky and you need some help with the practicalities of life (we can’t just kick back and hike all day, unfortunately). That’s where we come in. Keep reading for Ashevillian 101, our guide to all things Asheville.

The essentials

Voter registration

Make sure you’re eligible and registered to vote, find your polling location, and preview upcoming elections and sample ballots here.

car asheville blue ridge parkway

We live for drives like these on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Driver’s licenses and vehicle registration

New residents in need of a NC driver’s license will need to provide proof of age and identity, a Social Security document, a document confirming your residential address, and one document proving liability insurance coverage.

To register your car in the state of NC, you’ll need to bring proof of NC vehicle insurance, vehicle title or registration card, MVR-1 Title Application, MVR-180 Odometer Disclosure (if the vehicle is less than 10 years old), and a valid NC driver’s license or out-of-state driver’s license, to any NCDMV license plate agency (such as the NC License Plate Agency off of Atlantic Avenue).

Registration fees vary depending on the vehicle type.

It’s recommended to make an appointment at any of Buncombe County’s offices to obtain a NC driver’s license or to register your vehicle.


Establishing yourself with a primary care provider is one of those things you’ll be glad you did when you need one. Reach out to the professionals at Range Wellness, Lantern Health, or MAHEC, to name a few. Pro tip: Websites like DocSpot filter physicians by location, patient reviews, insurance, language, and more.


The campus of Asheville High School.

Photo by Warren LeMay

Educational needs

School registration

Prepare your student for the school year by registering them with Buncombe County Schools or Asheville City Schools. Here, you’ll find your school zone (based on your home address). Then, check out these other online enrollment details to complete the registration process.

For information on Asheville’s private schools, check out Niche’s list.

Library card registration

If you think libraries are only for checking out the occasional book, think again. Register for a library card at your nearest Buncombe County Library branch to take advantage of:

  • Events, including book clubs and panels
  • eBooks, music, and movies
  • Online databases
  • Private meeting spaces for groups
  • Books-by-mail
  • ZOOM passes

To get your card, you’ll need proof of identity and proof of address. Residents of any age can apply for a free card to be used at any Buncombe branch, too, so long as kids ages 0-13 have a parent or guardian who has a photo ID and proof of local residence. Pro tip: Non-Buncombe County residents can also get a library card for $20 per year.


Waste Pro recycling and trash bins.

Photo by AVLtoday

Home necessities


Thanks for thinking green. For everything you need to know about recycling in Asheville from where to place your bin to pickup times and accepted materials, check out our guide.


Moving is exciting, but no one wants to unpack by candlelight. Establish your services with Duke Energy Progress by creating an account or updating your address in your existing account. If your home uses gas, sign up through Dominion Energy. Pro tip: You can complete a free virtual home energy chat with Blue Horizons Project to learn how you can save money and energy every month.

Internet providers

Check out some of the internet providers in the 828:

  • AT&T | Get fiber optic internet starting at $55 per month.
  • Spectrum | Get your first year of internet for $50 a month.
  • Optimum | Choose from various television bundles or get internet for $40 per month.
  • T-Mobile | Get price-locked internet for $50 a month.

The original Burial Beer location on Coxe Ave.

Photo by @burialbeer

The ultimate AVL initiation

Having a NC driver’s license and an 828 area code may qualify you on paper, but you’re not officially an Ashevillian until you’ve taken part in some local fun that is only found in Land of the Sky.

Outdoor fun

It’s no secret that Asheville is an outdoorsy wonderland, but you may be surprised at the number of activities that exist beyond hiking, camping, and chasing waterfalls and other pools.

For instance, did you know there’s a league of pétanque players in Beer City? And how about all of our great disc golf courses? Another must-try is the e-bike sunset tour. If you’re looking for outdoor action that is more gentle, we’ve also got a guide for that.

Beverage hoppin’

If you’re unsure why Asheville is nicknamed Beer City, our brewery guide should clear that up. But even if you don’t enjoy beer, you’ve still got plenty of ways to sip around our flavorful city.

Take a coffee crawl to learn more about our indie roasters — or see our guide to spots with NA-friendly drink programs to find all the best mocktails in the city.


With historic buildings like Biltmore Estate and the Basilica of Saint Lawrence, Asheville has its fair share of stories to tell through the yearswhich makes sense, given that the city has 226+ years of history.

Explore our history coverage to learn about vintage hotels, ghost stories, and local landmarks, and check out these interesting facts about Beer City’s past and quirks.

Is there something you’re still left wondering about to get you properly established in Asheville? Ask us your question and we’ll do our best to answer it for you, like a good neighbor.

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