Our lovely intern Amelia is kindly sharing her experience of living in London for the first time with us. Here we go!
For many people coming to a global city like London is a scary thought. But what if it is something that will change your life for the better? Living in Central London for a week or 5 months will provide you many opportunities to have new adventures. London is known for its royalty, fresh, quirky, progressive, and individualistic atmosphere. Caution – in London you may see some rats, dirty streets, trash bags everywhere, cigarettes, and some unknown substances. But don’t let that stop you from exploring. Just remember to watch your step and stop before you look up to admire the London buildings (out of the way, of course).
In London you will hear many languages, so don’t be scared to be a tourist, most people are. And download the app citymapper before you arrive. You’ll thank me later. It will assist you on your travels through any tube station (the subway btw), buses, and even shows you nifty alternatives.
Here are a few random tips when it comes to your first time living in London:
- Wash your hands. There are so many people in London, and they don’t know how to walk. They will bump into and maybe even cough on you. So bring the trusty hand sanitizer. Stay healthy. Don’t get sick.
- Drinking both alcohol and tea is normal here. If someone asks you for a drink, watch out! They are experts and you may need a liver transplant. I kid, I kid. But be careful. There are plenty of places to get a pint or a cup of tea. Try new places. It is normal to see people out on the sidewalk with a pint.
- Mind the Gap! Don’t be scared of the tube. It is freighting at first, but you will get the hang of it. If you are so lost you might cry, ask for help. Although the stereotype of a Londoner may turn you way from doing this, they will actually help and not be rude. At least most of the time. But do Mind the Gap.
- Find free places to have activities. There are many free museums or events that you can go to. If you are cautious of your money in this expensive city, this will actually entertain you and help keep that cash in your wallet. Remember compared to the US, the dollar is not worth as much here. £1 = $ 1.42.
- Pick up a TIME OUT magazine when you are at the underground station (where you get on the tube). This will let you see what is going on in London. There are so many events and restaurants to try. This will guide you in the right direction (with the assistance from Google Maps or citymapper).
Before you know it you’ll be acting like a Londoner. You’ll be walking at a fast pace, with headphones in, and dodgeing smokers. London is a great place to live. It is not just a global city but a beautiful city. Right when you enter the country start exploring. There is so much to see, you’ll never be bored.