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The following pictures and information are provided to help employees who are considering an assignment in Coalinga, California, to see what it is like to live and work there.
Coalinga is located in Pleasant Valley at the eastern edge of California’s coastal mountain range. It is just an hours drive from Fresno — California’s sixth-largest city. Coalinga is exactly halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The beach communities of Monterey, Morro Bay and Pismo Beach are within easy driving distance, as are the Sequoia, Kings Canyon and Yosemite national parks.

Coalinga offers a full range of services to its 19,000 residents (population as of 2009), including an excellent school system, medical centers, parks and a two-year college.
The average temperature in the summer is 80° F (26° C). The average temperature in the winter is 50° F (10° C).
Fresno’s Yosemite International Airport (FAT) is about a 45-minute drive from Coalinga. It offers nonstop flights to a number of major western U.S. cities.

The San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) are about three hours away by car.

work environment

The Coalinga field office has an on‑site gym and offers mail services for employee use. Employees can find services for other personal needs (for example, banking and meals) in the city of Coalinga.

Employees who work in the Coalinga field office are required to live in the area.
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Coalinga offers a number of housing choices, including single family homes and apartments. The decision as to where to live is usually based on personal needs, lifestyle preferences, and proximity to work and area schools.

Employees can bring their own furniture or rent partially or fully furnished homes or apartments.
The town of Coalinga has houses to buy and to rent. The average-sized home is 1,800 to 2,000 square feet. Many single family homes are in neighborhoods close to the amenities of town. Several of the new housing tracts have parks and recreation centers.

Rental agreements for homes are normally on a two- to three-year basis. The first month’s rent and a security deposit are due upfront.
Coalinga has a number of apartment complexes, including studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. Some facilities include security, covered parking, health clubs, swimming pools, barbeques, spas and clubhouses. Many facilities will accept small pets, but an extra security deposit may be required.

Rental agreements for apartments are normally on a two- to three-year basis. The first month’s rent and a security deposit are due upfront.
  • Power: All homes and apartments have electricity installed. Residents request that power be turned on with the local provider. Services are billed monthly. Electrical outlets are 110 volts with 220 volts for dryers and washing machines.
  • Telephone: All homes and apartments are equipped for phone service. Multiple phone lines (for example, phone lines for fax machines or teenage children) can also be installed. Cell phone service is also available. Residents sign up for service through the phone company and are billed on a monthly basis.
  • Gas: In most areas, one company provides gas and electric service. In certain areas of town, electricity and gas services are provided by separate companies. Some homes with acreage and on the outskirts of town may have propane tanks on the property. Propane tanks are filled at the resident’s expense, as needed. Residents should check with their landlord or realtor to find out what services are required for their home.
  • Water: All water flowing to homes and apartments is filtered through city water systems. Water is safe for drinking, cooking, bathing, and washing clothes.
  • Internet: In general, homes have Internet service capabilities. To reduce costs, most people bundle Internet, phone, and cable services through one service provider. Some apartment complexes provide free wireless Internet to their residents. Coffee shops often provide a free wireless connection for their customers. Local libraries have computers with Internet access for public use.


Coalinga has 11 schools: five elementary schools, two junior high schools, one high school, a junior college and two continuation schools.

More information about Coalinga schools is available on the Coalinga-Huron Joint Unified School District website.

special needs

Both the West Hills Community College and Cambridge Continuation School offer classes and resources for special-needs students.


While the city of Coalinga is small, the city offers a variety of grocery, clothing, furniture and other household stores. A wider range of imported items can be found just a few hours away in nearby major cities (for example, Fresno, Los Angeles, San Francisco).

Grocery shoppers have a choice of chain or locally owned supermarkets, including:

There is no indoor mall in Coalinga; however, there are several retail stores in town. Department stores, such as JCPenney and Macy’s, can be found in nearby Visalia or Fresno. 
In the nearby town of Hanford you can find stores such as Lowe’s and The Home Depot that sell materials for do-it-yourself projects and nurseries that sell seeds, trees, bushes, flowers and pottery.

For a fee, you may find someone to landscape and care for your yard on a regular basis.
Most modern furniture can be purchased in nearby Visalia, Fresno, Hanford or other surrounding areas.

support services

Coalinga has several medical offices, including the Coalinga Regional Medical Center, a full-service hospital. Health insurance for expatriates on assignment in the United States covers services in the local area. Medical facilities offer prescription filling, laboratory, X-ray and ultrasound services.

Expatriate health insurance also covers certain mental health and substance abuse treatments for employees and their covered family members. Confidential counseling with certified psychologists and counselors is available through Employee Assistance and WorkLife Services. This can be helpful for families trying to adjust to a new country and culture.

Dentists, including orthodontists and pediatric dentists, are located throughout the Coalinga area and surrounding cities.
Employees are not provided a driver. Chevron will arrange for expatriates to have driving lessons and an allowance for a vehicle, if needed. Transportation services, including taxicabs, buses and area transits, are available for a fee.
Most households in Coalinga operate without the assistance of outside help. Cleaning, baby-sitting and gardening services are available for hire. Most household-help providers come on a daily or scheduled basis and rarely live in the home.

It is very important to interview and check references. The phone book, neighbors and other employees are good references for these services. 
Automated teller machines (ATMs) are available all over the city. Most merchants take debit cards, credit cards and cash for purchases. Very few accept checks.
The United States Postal Service has several locations around town where you can send letter mail and packages for a fee based on weight and destination. All field offices have mail services available during working hours to send interoffice mail and in some cases employees can ship personal letter or package mail for a fee.

Chevron’s Coalinga field office also provides mail services to employees during regular business hours.
The city of Coalinga is considered a safe community. Residents interested in additional security may choose to live in gated communities or apartment complexes that offer security services. Homeowners can also install security alarm systems, which are monitored by security service companies for a fee.


Coalinga does not experience traffic congestion on the roads, even during peak commute times. Most commutes take no more than 15 to 30 minutes.

Transportation services, such as taxicabs, buses and area transit, are all available for a fee.

recreational and entertainment

There is much to see, do and experience in and around Coalinga.

The city of Coalinga hosts many fun events and activities for residents throughout the year, such as:

  • The Plaza Market in the summer
  • The Wham-O-Bass Hot Air Balloon Festival in November
  • The Annual Horned Toad Derby every Memorial Day weekend (in May)

Coalinga’s Parks and Recreation facilities include:

  • Swimming pools
  • Ping-pong tables
  • Playgrounds
  • Basketball courts
  • Softball diamonds and batting cages
There is a two-screen movie theater that shows new releases in town and locals enjoy attending hometown high school and junior college sports games. 
There are several sports and outdoor recreation clubs in Coalinga. Most clubs are open to the public and some require monthly fees.
While there are no hotels in Coalinga, there are some in the immediate surrounding area. During pre-assignment trips, many employees stay at the Harris Ranch Inn, an extended-stay hotel just 15 minutes from town.
Coalinga is home to a variety of fast-food chains and sit-down restaurants. Diners can choose from several family-owned restaurants and from popular restaurant chains, such as Denny's and Me-n-Ed’s Pizza. Coalinga has several Mexican restaurants and a bakery.
There are no full-service spas within the Coalinga city limits. There is, however, a chiropractic office that offers massages, and a salon that offers waxing and facials. Full-service spas can be found in nearby Hanford, Visalia, and Fresno.

However, all San Joaquin Valley Chevron locations offer a subsidized onsite massage therapy. Appointments are available for up to 30 minutes and can be made directly from your company computer.

additional information

It is a good idea to gain a basic understanding of the American culture, history, and language. Daily interactions and tasks will be completed in English. Chevron offers 80 hours of instruction to expatriate employees and their family members who relocate into the United States.
Pets can be brought into the United States. Dogs and cats must be free of disease when examined by customs. Further veterinarian examination may be required. All animals should have rabies shots 30 days prior to entry. Certain breeds may be required to remain in quarantine for a set time before being allowed into the population. More information about importing pets is available here.

California recognizes religious freedom. Eighty-six different denominations are celebrated and practice in the San Joaquin Valley. 

Find a church in Coalinga

Business casual clothing is typically worn. On Fridays, employees in our main office (BK9525) dress casually and may wear jeans.
The Coalinga Transit System bus transportation offers a fixed-route system that links the city of Coalinga to the city of Fresno. In addition, there is a city bus route that provides transportation within the Coalinga city limits.

Flights from Fresno’s Yosemite International Airport typically require connecting through a larger airport to get to many U.S. destinations. Bus and automobile are good alternatives to air travel. To operate a vehicle, drivers must obtain a state driver license.
  • Hardships across the valley include the poor air quality and the hot weather during the summer months (June through September).
  • Coalinga is a small community without quick access to major shopping malls and department stores. However, the cost of living is relatively lower than in the nearby larger cities.