Welcome to Gatlinburg

The mountain resort city is a popular tourist destination due to the back drop of the Great Smoky Mountains, which borders the community.

How to get here

We recommend flying into the closest airport Mc Ghee Tyson Airport in Knoxville, TN. Gatlinburg is 41 miles away from the airport and it is best to split a licensed taxi (around $100/$120), as there is not bus or train available.

Please search for the means of transportation available before arrival in the United States. Know where you go and how will you get there. Read carefully the arrival instructions provided to you and prepare accordingly.

Greyhound is the largest bus carrier in the US. Spanning all the way from the East Coast to the West Coast, they cover over 1000 cities all over the United States. Book online to save 15-30% on the ticket fare. There is also an option to purchase a ticket at the terminal if seats are available; we recommend buying in advance. If you exceed the luggage limit you have the option to pay for extra luggage. Taxi service is typically available to or from the bus stops.

Learn more: www.greyhound.com


MegaBus is an intercity bus service providing clean and dependable rides to major cities in the USA. The nearest bus stop is located at Knoxville Transit Center.

301 E Church Ave, Knoxville, TN 37915
Phone: (877) 462-6342
  • Must book online ahead of time to save 15-30% on the ticket fare.
  • There is a strict limitation on luggage
  • Taxi service is typically available to the bus stops

Learn More: https://www.megabus.com/

Transportation

Once you arrive in Gatlinburg an affordable way to get around is the Trolley. It is available for in city transportation every 20-30 minutes and for only $1.00 per day. It is recommended to purchase a seasonal pass for $25.

Learn more


Taxi:

Although taxis are expensive they are the safest way of transportation, especially during the night. Please be sure to call at least 1 hour before expected pickup time to ensure availability.


Bicycle Rental:

Bike shops sell and rent bikes at an affordable cost. Some shops are willing to buy back (at a lower price) a bike at the end of the season. Nantahala Outdoor Center; (828-785-4857);


Personal Car/Rental:

  • Requires valid international drivers license
  • Mandatory liability insurance
  • Must know and follow traffic laws and enforcement
  • Follow rental car rules and regulations

Walking:

  • A great source of free transportation
  • Walk on sidewalks or on path when available
  • Follow street lights (do NOT walk into traffic, wait your turn!

Hiking in the Smokey’s

Pigeon Forge and the Smoky Mountains

Where to Buy Food

WWhen traveling, eating out all the time can be expensive therefore it is highly recommended to prepare your own meals as much as possible. There are a few affordable grocery stores that have been recommended by travelers in Gatlinburg:

Banking

Within your first week of exploring Gatlinburg it is a great Idea to open up a bank account at a local bank. It is highly recommended to set up direct deposit with your job to ensure a fast and secure way of receiving your paycheck. It is also important never to carry large amounts of money and rather to only withdraw money as needed.

Recommended banks are:

  • BB&T
    912 East Pkwy
    Gatlinburg, TN 37738
    800.226.5228
    •Free banking & debit cards
  • Mountain National Bank
    960 East Parkway
    Gatlinburg, TN
    865.436.0800
  • Tennessee State Bank
    414 E Parkway
    Gatlinburg, TN
    865.453.0873

Library

Throughout your summer a great way to utilize your free time without spending money could be in the local Library. The library provides computers with internet to contact family members or friends. The library also offers an array of novels and fun books to read when you are not working or traveling!

  • Anna Porter Public Library
    158 Proffitt Rd.,
    Gatlinburg, TN
    865.436.5588

Community Center

The Sevierville Community Center is a great place to get to meet other community members. The center consists of: a bowling center, gymnasium fitness center, natatorium, aerobics room, cycling area, racquetball court and meeting rooms. The center charges per activity so please be sure to check the Center's website prior to going.

  • Community Center is located
    156 Proffitt Road
    Gatlinburg, TN
    865.436.4990

Safety Tips

Part of the thrill of visiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is to view its beautiful waterfalls and streams. Be careful around the water because the moss on logs and boulders can make for very slippery footing. Never drink the water. It may contain natural parasites and impurities that can make you very sick. Swimming also can make you sick and is dangerous because of submerged rocks, logs and debris. Also, NEVER approach or feed any wild animals you encounter during you visit in the Smokies.

The top 10 Hikes that are recommended:

  • Gregory Bald
  • Mt. Cammerer
  • Rocky Top
  • Mount Leconte
  • Andrews Bald
  • Abrams Falls
  • The Jump-off
  • Charlies Bunion
  • Porters Creek & Alum Cave

Best of..

There is an endless supply of mainstream tourist attractions but there also are many attractions which most tourists don’t consider. Here is a list that focuses on the beauty and resources which the city has to offer:

Average Weather

Afternoon thunderstorms occur frequently in the summertime after a long hot day so it’s a good idea to be mindful and buy rain gear. Below is a chart which displays the average temperatures of Sevierville.

Month Avg. High Avg. Low
May 77°F/25°C 50°F/10°C
June 83°F/28°C 58°F/14°C
July 86°F/30°C 62°F/17°C
August 85°F/29°C 61°F/16°C
September 80°F/26°C 55°F/13°C
October 71°F/22°C 43°F/6°C

Weather Now

Historical Facts

Gatlinburg is full of fun and attractions now but if you decide to dive back into time you will be able to find fun and interesting fast of how the city developed. Below are just a few fun facts:

  • Gatlinburg’s first settled in the early 1800’s by a widow named Martha Jane Ogle
  • The first building to be constructed in Gatlinburg was the White Oaks Baptist Church in 1935
  • It is believed that the city was named after a general store owner who also opened up a Baptist church
  • The Pancake Pantry is one of Tennessee’s oldest pancake houses.

Medical Centers

It is extremely important to know where the local health centers are in case you become sick or an emergency. As a reminder health care is not free so please check your insurance information prior to visiting a doctor.

  • First Med Family Urgent Care
    1015 E Pkwy
    Gatlinburg, TN
    865.436.7267
  • Pigeon Forge Medical Clinic
    3342 Pkw
    Pigeon Forge, TN
    865.453.1924

Distance from Sevierville to Major Cities

A major component of the SWT program is to travel and we suggest planning a weekend trip to visit a major city that can be easily reached by buses and train. Below is a list of some major cities with their mileage from Sevierville:

Social Security

After you checked-in with your sponsor, you may apply for a Social Security Number (SSN). You can locate the nearest SSA office by calling 1-800-772-1213 (Toll-free) or by visiting the Social Security Administration’s website: www.ssa.gov

When you apply for a SSN, you will need the following original documents:

  • Passport with enclosed valid J-1 Visa and I-94 record
  • Form DS-2019
  • The program sponsor letter provided together with your documents
  • Job offer agreement
  • Form SS-5 - When you are filling out the application form, make sure that:
  • You write your name and date of birth exactly like it is written on your passport and Form DS-2019
  • .
  • You must also mark on the application that you are a Legal Alien Allowed to Work.
  • Please remember to have the card containing the SSN mailed to your housing address or employer’s address.

Nearest SSA Office
Address: 8530 KINGSTON PIKE
KNOXVILLE, TN 37919
Phone: 1-866-331-9091
TTY: 1-800-325-0778

Hours:

Monday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Thursday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

Housing

You must have housing arrangements prior to their arrival in the United States.

Hotel/Motels:

Hotels and motels (less luxurious than hotels) range in price, from economical to deluxe. Please note that sometimes economical hotels and motels are not located in safe areas.

  • Always use a central location.
  • Some include meals or they have restaurants located on property or nearby.
  • Extended Stay Hotels are recommended as they offer long-term deals.
  • Rooms are typically rented weekly
  • Usually 1 to 4 people per room
  • Limited kitchen facilities
  • Limited housekeeping service
  • Damage deposit and late fees are accounted for

Housing provided by your employer

Most employers will offer or arrange housing at an affordable cost, in a safe area. On the job offer, they will provide specific details about the living accommodations.

  • Rented weekly or monthly per person
  • Basic furnished
  • Typically includes a full kitchen and bathroom
  • Usually does not have laundry machine
  • No housekeeping service
  • Damage deposits and late fees are accounted for
  • Utilities may not be included

When Searching for Housing

You should consider the following crucial aspects of finding housing:

  • Budget – How much I can afford to pay, considering my income, deducting all the expected expenses?
  • Lease – What is the length? If you have questions about the lease, you can call the city’s Office of Landlord-tenant Affairs.
  • Payment schedule – Is deposit needed? When and how much? When is the rent due?
  • Utilities (heat, electricity, water, cooking gas, cable, Internet, etc.) – Are utilities included in the rent? If so, which?
  • Safety of the place and neighborhood – Google Earth/Maps
  • Proximity to work, stores, public transportation, recreation facilities, etc.
  • Furnished or unfurnished

Note: Tips to avoid fraud:

  • WikiHow - Avoiding Fraudulent Housing on Craigslist - click here
  • ABC.COM TV Network – Avoiding online housing scams – click here

Postal Service

Packages, letters and greetings can be mailed from any United States Post Services (USPS). You can locate the nearest office by visiting the USPS website: www.usps.com. Also, USPS ships to over 180 countries.

Location of nearest US Post Office:
1216 East Pkwy, Gatlinburg, TN 37738; 865-436-3229


Hours:
Monday- Friday 9:00-5:00pm
Saturday 9:00am-11:00am
Sunday Closed

Postage Price Calculator: http://postcalc.usps.com/

For couriers, the major companies are FEDEX (www.fedex.com) and DHL (www.dhl.com).


The proper way to address an envelope/package is:
Name of the person
Company
Street address
City, state – Zip code

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