London is a city with many wonderful places to see, and things to experience. As a tourist, you will really enjoy the sights that London has to offer. If you are visiting London for the first time, you might be feeling a bit nervous, and that is acceptable. After all, it is a new place for you, and quite a big one. So how can you prepare yourself for an amazing trip to the capital of England?
#1 Preparing your legal documents
The first and most important thing to do during your preparation is to make sure that you have your passport and visa documents with you. Before leaving the house as well as getting on the plane, check whether your passport is with you or not.
Upon arrival, you will be required to present your passport and other relevant documents to the respective authorities. Not being able to show the proper papers can lead to serious problems, which is something you do not want to deal with.
While in London, if you face any problem with your documents, or in case you end up losing them, do not panic. Contact your country’s embassy or consulate immediately.
#2 Preparing for the weather
The weather in London, pretty much like the rest of England, is wet. It rains a lot over there. On average, the city experiences a little over 100 days of rain each year. So chances are high that you are going to encounter rainfall at least a few times during your trip.
London is usually cold when it is raining. Hence, not only do you need to keep yourself dry, but you also have to keep yourself warm. You should prepare accordingly. For this, you must carry waterproof jackets. These jackets can prevent water from entering inside, as well as keep you warm. Select jackets that are seam sealed. This will prevent the entry of water through zippers or buttons.
Also, once you are in London, be sure to check the weather regularly, especially before you plan a visit somewhere. You cannot shut yourself indoors and wait for the rain to stop, but you can make necessary preparations for it, and then go out.
#3 Preparing for the commute
Once you have arrived in London, you will probably look to hire a car or taxi for your daily commute. You can even rent a car if you like. However, you would be better off availing the city’s public transport system.
To travel within the city and outside of it, you can use the bus or train. As a tourist, it is recommended that you get an Oyster Card. It is the easiest way for you to avail all sorts of public transports, including buses, trams, trains, etc. The Oyster Card is a prepaid system that facilitates contactless payment. You can top up the card with as many credits as you like. Being a tourist, this is the most convenient way for you to commute within the city.
You can order the card prior to arriving in London. And when you are here, the card will be delivered to your address on time.
#4 Preparing for the culture and tradition
Being the capital of England, there is no doubt that London deeply maintains the country’s culture and tradition. The people over there are well-mannered, polite, and have this gentle vibe to them. And they expect to see the same from people who visit there.
Of course, you cannot know every custom or tradition of England; it is a matter of practice. However, you should have some idea regarding the dos and don’ts in London or England. For instance, you should never poke fun at the Royal Family, always use ‘thank you’ and ‘please’ while talking, and other stuff like that.
By the way, NEVER show the ‘V’ or peace sign to anyone; it is taken as an offensive gesture over there.
#5 Preparing for the sightseeing
London has a lot of places for you to see and explore. Whether or not you can cover all of them depends on how long you plan on staying there. Some of the places in London that you must visit include the Tower of London, the London Eye, Madame Tussauds, the British Museum, National History Museum, Tower Bridge, Buckingham Palace, and of course, the Big Ben.
You should also try to visit the Kew Gardens, Hyde Park, and Westminster Abbey.