LondonLyf
Location Matters
London is a massive city.
30% of my time spent in London was figuring out the best way to get from Point A to Point B.
Location
London is very big (compared to Sydney). You will spend most of your time in the area that you live in and/or work in so choose your area wisely. Think of each area like it's on little city and its divvied up into the city, west, east, north and south.

Tip1
Before finding a place to settle down, I would highly recommend (if you can) to spend some time in a few different areas before choosing somewhere to settle down and make a lists of what is important to you.

E.g. close to public transportation? Groceries, supermarket? Easy access to food? Park?


I ended up living in East London, specifically on Broadway Market and I love my area. The closest tube is about a 15-20 min walk but that was a compromise I was willing to make. The vibes of Broadway Market is similar to Crown Street in Surry Hills with lotsa cafes and restaurants and it hosts an AMAZING farmers market every Saturday.

I was also walking distance to yoga and work which was a big plus! But the biggest plus for me was that it was walking distance to Mare Street that had multiple Asian supermarkets (3 in total) and it was also close to a Lidl.
Re-iterating once again that London is massive and also, it has a lot of chains. And in saying that, you will most definitely (at least once when you're new) end up at the wrong pub/bar/restaurant. This happened to me 3 times in the last 2 years when I turned up at the wrong Dishoon, St. Johns and Hawksmoor.

Tip2
Always ask for the postcode for where you are heading to and double/triple check! London postcodes are quite amazingly accurate but it also gives you a good indication of where things are located.

For example, E2 9BJ lets me know that this address is located in the East as it starts with 'E'. Camden is located in northwest and will have postcode starting NW, Peckham is in the south and it's postcode is SE which tells me it is South East of the river.
Fun Fact: Edward Johnston designed the font for the London Underground in 1916 and it is still in use today.
Getting Around
Day-to-Day Travel
There are a multitude of ways and options to get to places pending on where you live and what is available to you. One of my best friends lives 5 mins away from Highbury Islington tube station and getting anywhere is a breeeeze for him compared to where I live.

The best place to start is to download Citymapper, Google Maps and Uber. These 3 apps are going to be your digital legs to get you from A to B.

Tip3
Citymapper should be your first choice of planning your journey and you can cross check that with Google Maps. Google Maps often give you more optimistic timings whereas Citymapper will take in live traffic updates. During peak hours, this can fluctuate greatly.


London is not cheap but we all knew that already. If you are on a budget and have time to spare, catch the bus! Buses are a flat rate of £1.50 and is not limited to zones. You just need to tap on once when you get on and you don't need to tap off! Tubes start from £2.90 per trip and if you catch the tube and bus, your journey will total to £4.40 per journey. However, I believe that TFL caps your daily spending pending on the zones you travel in.

Tip!!
Hopper Fare allows you to make unlimited bus and tram journeys for free within one hour of tapping on.


Getting to the Airport
There are 4 major airports in London that you should familiarise yourself with - Heathrow, Stanstead, Luton and Gatwick. I believe that there is also London City airport but I have never caught a flight from London City. You can be sure you will be spending a lot of times trying to figure out how to get to all the different airports.

Heathrow airport is the only one that has access to the tube via the Picadilly line. There are special airport trains - Heathrow Express, Gatwick Express and Stansted Express. Be aware that the price of fare can be expensive so book in advance.

There is also regular non-TFL train that you can use to get to Gatwick and Luton. Look on Trainline to find and book tickets online

National Express does coach transfers to ALL airports and this is the most cost efficient way although it could take the longest.

Uber or Taxi Hire. This is the option I usually go with if I am travelling in a group or if I have lotsa luggages or if I'm arriving/departing at weird hours which happens a lot on the budget airlines. Tickets for the <Insert Airport Name> Express are not cheap when you are buying for two and saves you the hassle of having to drag/carry your luggage which is traumatising because not all stations are access friendly.

I also recently started paying a little extra £££ to get priority fast lane through security and would HIGHLY recommend getting it for Immigration. I have spent hours waiting in line to cross the border as I don't have an EU passport and most airports now offer this service but remember to BOOK IN ADVANCE as you cannot purchased it on the day.

Tip!!
If you are looking to book for an Airport Transfer, I would recommend TwelveTransfer. I often book with them instead of using Uber when I catch an outgoing flight to give me peace of mind that I know the car will come at 4.45am in the morning.

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Tilda