Tips for tourists in London.

Standard
  1. Use public transport.

The London Underground goes everywhere. It is know colloquially as the Tube. In the centre of London there is a station every half a mile.  There are overground trains.

Despite the name the Underground (Tube) is sometimes above the ground

the Overground sometimes goes through tunnels.

There are bus stops all over.

Buy an oyster card. Half the price of trains and overground train tickets. You cannot get on a bus without an oyster. They do NOT take cash.

In the south of the city there is a tram.

Fairly big city 25 miles by 25 miles.

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2. Book online. This applies to hotels as well as tickets to things such as the London Eye or London Dungeon.  Faster and cheaper, guaranteed to get on

If you just show up do not go at peak time. Go early morn or evening. Go mid week. Go outside the summer.

Premier Inn, Easy Hotel, Travelodge are all cheap

Norfolk Square is v cheap

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3. Go out of season.

October to February inclusive no sun.

Shoulder season like May and Sept is best.

High season is June to August. Spike at Christmas. By 7 Jan is quiet.

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4. Go to attractions early.

Tourists get up at 9.

leisurely breakfast.

They finish at 10

digest in their room

leave at 11.

get somewhere at noon

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5. Bring a coat.

It can rain even in midsummer.

expect clouds.

Not cold but it is damp. The moist air makes it feel cool.

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6. Do not go to Oxford Street on a Saturday or at Christmas.

Manic with shoppers

 

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7. There are excellent day trips to Oxford, Cambridge, Hampton Court and Windsor.

UK is small. You can get anywhere in 8 hours by ground transport.

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8. Do not expect thing to be solely British. This is v cosmopolitan. London is a world city. So many nationalities.

So many visible minorities. So many whites are Polish, French and Romanian. Many so called English are half Scots, Welsh and Irish.

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9. Get last minute tickets to West End shows.

Go to TCKTS. Not cheap

Theatrical capital of the world.

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10. Sharing a taxi can be cheaper than public transport especially if there are several of you.

Black cabs take 5 people. flip down seats are fun

There are illegal cabs at stations late at night and airports.

if someone approaches you he or she is an illegal cabbie. They know less and will over charge. They might be criminals.

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About Calers

Born Belfast 1971. I read history at Edinburgh. I did a Master's at UCL. I have semi-libertarian right wing opinions. I am married with a daughter and a son. I am allergic to cats. I am the falling hope of the not so stern and somewhat bending Tories. I am a legal beagle rather than and eagle. Big up the Commonwealth of Nations.

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