Home » Bethel » Bethel FAQs

Bethel FAQs

Here’s some FAQ’s that I have put together which are what most people seem to email us about.

Housing

How much do you typically pay for a rental in Bethel?
You usually pay anywhere from $700 to $1700 a month.

Im going to show up in Bethel on XX, Can I get advanced housing?
Its not suggested that you get advanced housing in Bethel. Alot of times, as with any housing, its always recommended that you inspect the premises before signing any contract.

Are there any grants for low income families?
Bethel does have what we call “Housing” where the Alaska Housing Authority manages it, this type of housing is for low income families, be aware the waiting list is very long.

Is there running water and sewer in Bethel?
After 1998, the city council passed a ordinance requiring all residential houses to have running water, depending on where you live in the city, either it is piped water (above ground) or its brought to your house on a (set schedule) basis. Likewise with sewer.

Why shouldn’t I get a place before showing up to Bethel?
Honestly, alot of the Landlords in bethel at times do not require their residences to sign long term contracts, and when they move out, often there is broken walls, doors, windows. Sometimes the landlord will not fix these as they are ‘adequate’ for living.

Lifestyles

Do you like living in Bethel?
Yes, I have lived there all my life, I grew up there. But due to the nature of my business, and wanting something more then what Bethel had to offer me, I moved to Anchorage, where I could work full time on my internet business (web hosting). I return to Bethel every spring summer and fall.

Is there any crime out there?
Of Course there is. Often is deals with alcoholic families, the majority of police calls deal with domestic violence.

Is there allot of alcohol and drugs in Bethel?
Depends on who you ask. Personally I see more alcohol in Bethel then I do anything else. There is a small group of people from what I heard in the past that use cocaine and “weed”. But these people are pretty few. Be aware that Bethel is “DAMP” meaning you can keep alcohol for personal consumption but you can not sell it.

Does it really get to -30* F in the Winter?
Yes, it does. But Bethel is no different then any other city / town in Alaska. Its a bit colder then Anchorage, but not as cold as Fairbanks where it gets to -60* F at times. Its simple common sense, bring warm clothes, warm boots etc..

Is it safe for my child to live in Bethel?
Yes, I grew up there, i was safe. Growing up in Bethel is likely no different then growing up in any small town in America, the only differences is that Bethel is literally in middle of no where.

Are there any movie theaters in Bethel?
No, there is no movie theaters, but there is Video World, run by long time residence Seo (sorry if misspelled :) He usually has a wide selection of DVD’s, VHS and games

Anywhere to work out? (weights etc)
Yes, the local “Teen Center” does have weights available

How is the local hospital?
Its an non-for profit government run hospital, which provides free care for Native Americans. Plan on waiting at least 3-4 hours being seen as its the only hospital for all 53 surrounding villages

Is there a bowling alley there?
Yes, its run by ONC and is located in Subdivision

How are the schools out there?
There is ME, Kilbuck and High School, all three are run under the Lower Kuskokwim School District, They are all very good public schools with many after school activates to keep your kids busy.
Is there a college out there?
Yes, there is, its called KUC and its a community college

Is there High Speed Internet in Bethel?
Yes, GCI does have Cable Modem Access, you do need to have basic cable service though them to get this service.

Is there Cell Phone service in Bethel?
Yes, but its only local cell service, if you bring your phone from anchorage or the lower 48, it will not work, you will get a message telling you to call Unicom to signup for service.

Dialing 911 will work of course (if its an emergency)
Is there a college out there?

Yes, there is, its called KUC and its a community college
Cost of Living

How does Bethel differ from Anchorage in terms of cost of living?
Plan on paying at least 10% to 40% on everything you buy out here

Im going to get a State job out in Bethel, is there any benefits to these types of jobs?
The state gives you a cost of living increase of 30% (I think) to make up for cost of living compared to Anchorage

How much is a gallon of milk?
About 5.99

How much for a gallon of gas?
About $2.89 a gallon

Recreation

I want to buy a snow-go after I move out there, is there a wide selection of machines?
Yes, you have all the available models to choose from with local dealers

I have a 4 year old, 12 year old and 17 year old, we are moving to Bethel next XXX, what is there to do out there to keep my kids busy?
For your 4 year old there is the local Kilbuck playground, pinky’s park and play center at the Teen Center (now called Parks & Rec)
For your 12 year old, there’s the local Boy Scouts, playgrounds, little league soccer, baseball, parks
For your Teenager, there’s many local jobs ;) there’s many after school activates, there high school activates like volleyball, wrestling, and basketball

Is there little league baseball, football and other stuff like that there?
Yes, during the summer there is alot of activies for kids held by the Parks & Rec Dept

Any parks?
Yes, Pinky’s Park

Travel

How much does it normally cost from Anchorage to Bethel?
Normally anywhere from $200 to $500

In the winter, where can you go? I heard you have a “ice road”
You can travel as far as Aniak if the ice is frozen enough, be careful of open holes, many people drown each winter because they fall into the open water with their snow machines (usually because of driving in the night time)

Is there any great fishing spots? I love to rod & reel
Yes, you can travel up the Kiseralik River, if you have an airplane, there is countless other areas of interest (check out my pics in virtual tour area)

Transportation

Should I bring my 2013 F-150 out there?
No, don’t bring any new trucks out here, the roads during summer are terrible, filled with pot holes that will tear your truck to pieces within a few years. Trust me :) I lived there all my life. There’s only 1 paved highway, which as of last fall, was so rough (due to permafrost) the max speed you could go on it was about 35 mph without having a rollercoaster of a ride.

How much does a used truck or car go out there for?
Usually they go for the blue book (at or near)