London Tips ‘n Tricks

IMG_0491.JPGDid you get a chance to read about my 10 favorite places in London this past Tuesday? Today I’m sharing tips and tricks from my time in London, things that I learned throughout my week spent in London, or things I thought about upon my return.

Tips & Tricks

  1. Bring more money than you think you’ll need, and by money I mean GBPs, or British pounds. Also, when you get your dollars converted to pounds (at your bank prior to your trip), be sure to get smaller bills or coins. I ran out of cash on my second to last day and had to make sure everything I did on my last two days didn’t require tipping or using cash. Everything is more expensive than you think it will be, if you come prepared to spend more than you think you can always convert your money back to your own currency (or save it because the money is so much prettier than USD).
  2. Rain boots and a small compact umbrella are a must! Cliche but true, I wore my Burberries almost every single day and never worried about wet feet.
  3. Learn both the Underground as well as the bus schedules. Save the images on your phone. Something else I learned to do was search my destination on Google Maps at the beginning of my day and did you know that even without WiFi or network connection the map will save on your phone? Neat!
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  4. Plan a few days outside of the city. There are a few tour companies that offer bus trips to various sites outside of the city, we used Golden Tours by Grayline. London is a melting pot and everything outside of the city is the real Great Britain.
  5. Look down before you cross the street. You read that right. It took some getting used to in order to stop looking left first. Often when crossing the street you can look down and the pavement will say “Look Right” to remind you of where you are.
  6. Do not take photographs inside a place of worship unless you are told you can do so. Even if you don’t practice the same religion, be respectful and practice taking mental pictures. The only place we were advised we could take photos was in the Canterbury Cathedral.
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  7. Find a place to sit and observe, and be careful not to pick up the accent by mistake. I found myself saying things like “pardon” or “chap” and giggled that it doesn’t take much to pick up on the local language.
  8. Visit a Boots (drug store) and a grocery store. Have fun comparing and learning about a culture that is unlike your own.
  9. Familiarize yourself with the Change of the Guard schedule at Buckingham Palace. There is a monthly schedule posted here. My only other piece of advice is to arrive early and if you get there early enough grab a spot front and center right near the gates.
  10. If you take the Tube grab a free copy of The Evening Standard. I loved grabbing my free copy and reading in my hotel while I wound down each night.
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Have you been to London? What would you add to this list? xoxo ‘n lols, crystal

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