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Living in Berkeley


Get a California Driver License

If you plan to drive as a new resident to the state of California, you are required to apply for a CA Driver License within 10 days of arrival at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Even if you will not be driving, a valid CA identification card is a useful form of ID, especially if you are coming from another country.

Parking Permits

A parking permit may be purchased as a postdoc or visiting scholar. For more information, see the links below.

P&T Parking and Transportation (Pay Online)


Cycling is a great way to get around in Berkeley. There are lots of keen cyclists in Berkeley and lots of hills for the brave and superfit. Be sure to get a decent lock as bike theft is very common. People under 18 are required by law to wear a helmet while cycling, and you must register your bicycle with UCPD to bike on campus.

Instead of bringing your own bicycle, you can also participate in the Ford GoBike bike-share for an annual or per-ride fee.  There are stations throughout Berkeley, including on the edges of campus.

Public Transportation

It’s easy to commute around Berkeley and neighboring areas by bus, bike, shuttle, and BART. Check out the links below for more information.
 Bay Area Rapid Transportation (BART)
 AC Transit
 San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency
 Trip Planner
 Campus Shuttles
 Shuttle Routes & Schedules



Berkeley Bowl

A Berkeley landmark – this has an amazing fresh produce section, bulk food section, deli, café and more organic goods and ancient grains than you can shake a stick at. There are two branches in Berkeley. 


220 Oregon Street Berkeley

Tel 510 843-6929

920 Heinz Avenue Berkeley

Tel 510 898-955




You can get a loyalty card and get discounts on lots of products every time you shop there


Shattuck Place Berkeley

Tel  510 526 3086











Trader Joe's 

Has lots of good own brands and is quite economical – try the legendary 'Two Buck Chuck' i.e. a bottle of Charles Shaw wine for only $2 – not great, but not as bad as you might think!


1885 University Avenue

Tel 510 204 9074




Whole Foods 

Great stuff here but on the pricey end of the spectrum


3000 Telegraph Avenue

Tel 510 649 1333




Monterey Market 

An economical fresh produce market in North Berkeley


1550 Hopkins Street

Tel 510 526 6042




The Natural Grocery Company

Farmer's Markets in Berkeley

There are lots of farmers markets to choose from!

Ferry Building

Embarcadero, San Francisco A permanent market open daily.  There is also an outdoor market on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Temescal Farmer's Market

Oakland  Open Sundays 9am - 1pm, 5300 Claremont Ave.



There are several furniture options within a few miles of Berkeley. IKEA and Target provide affordable furniture options, a lot of which can be found used on Several furniture stores including CB2 and Z Gallerie can be found on Fourth Street.

There are several shopping centers in and around Berkeley:
 Bay street in Emeryville
 Westfield mall in San Francisco
 Broadway Plaza mall in Walnut Creek
 College Avenue shops, Solano Avenue shopping, and Telegraph shops in Berkeley


Cell phone discount

As a UC Berkeley employee,  you are elegible for a discount with several mobile phone providers (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile). More information here.


Earthquake Preparedness

UC Berkeley and other parts of the Bay Area lie on the Hayward fault zone, putting us at high risk of earthquakes.  If you'd like to make an earthquake preparedness kit, it should include water, ready to eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables, high energy foods (and don't forget about food for your pets!), vitamins, first aid (soap, bandages, scissors, tweezers, non-prescription pain relievers etc.), plates/utensils, battery-operated radio, flashlight, batteries, tape, matches, paper and pens, etc.

You can find more ressources on earthquakes and other emergency events including the possibility for registering for the emergency notification system WarnMe on the website of the Office of Emergency Preparedness. More information on earthquakes can be found on the website of the USGS Earthquake Hazards Program.

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