London is the biggest city not only in Britain but in the whole of Europe, and with a population density of about 5000 people per square kilometer, it’s no small feat to live there.
The big capital city has officially been named the most expensive place in the world in which to live and work, so it’s not easy to get by. Not only is it a money hole but us Brits have some odd habits, traits and quirks that make it quite hard for newbies to integrate.
Here are some of our top tips to help you get by…
Don’t Talk on the Tube
One of the most important rules of London life, is to keep quiet on public transport. Don’t look at the person pressed up against you in the eye and especially don’t speak to them, just pretend it’s not happening.
When heading down or up any corridor, set of stairs or escalators, keep to the right. Londoners hold a deep and ingrained loathing for anyone that stands on the left.
Don’t Just Use the Tube
Until the night tube is introduced this summer, you still have a sort of Cinderella bedtime as a Londoner. Past midnight, the tubes all stop and you’ll be stuck in whatever part of London you ventured out to, so either learn to be careful with the time, or start using other forms of transport and believe me, using the night bus for the first time is an experience in itself.
Get used to London by travelling over ground with some of the alternative transportation services on offer, like the excellent bus service or even the pedicab service so you can get a breath of fresh(ish) London air at the same time.
Don’t Speak Cockney
If you head into a ‘rub-a-dub,’ or what Londoners call, the pub, you’ll probably be thrown out if you ask for a ‘king Lear’. The old fashioned notion that Cockney Rhyming slang is an actual language used in London is a ridiculous as traffic on the tube at rush hour. Don’t go offending people by assuming this stereotype is true!
Don’t Walk in Large Slow Groups
This is almost as loathsome as standing on the wrong side of the escalators on the underground. If you do walk slowly and happen to be with more than one other person, expect heavy sighing and muttering under the breath of the Londoners who white rabbit their way across the city, always late for a very important date.
Perhaps head to Hyde Park if you want to meander, amble and stroll and keep well out of the way of the business centers.
Do Enjoy London’s Finest Summer Parties
London can be a difficult place to live, especially in the middle of the summer when the sheer volume of people there explodes. You can catch a slice of paradise in your own secluded oasis if you book one of the many fantastic summer venues London has to offer.
Londoners do love their traditions so get in on this new party trend that breaks up the staleness of the summer heat.
Do Talk About the Weather
It’s a favourite conversation topic for Brits so when in the beloved capital, do make a comment regarding the unbearable sunshine or the rain we wish would go away. Failing that, the clouds can be an annoyance sometimes too…
Do Drink Tea
If there is one nation in the world that loves tea its Britain. If there’s one thing they like talking about more than the weather, it’s probably a good cup of tea. This is one stereotype that Hollywood got right.
There will be plenty of independent tea and coffee shops serving drinks that are much nicer than the stuff served at Starbucks. It’s a great way to meet people too, over tea and scones.
Do Your Shopping Online
It can be tempting to grab bits here and there from the local Tesco Express but that can make your monthly food bill soar. Instead stay at home and order a bulk monthly shop online and save cash! London is not cheap to enjoy; those valuable pennies can go towards a good night out or a fun party for you and your friends.