If you are thinking about relocating to London then there are some important things you should know about the culture before jumping into it. If you are moving to London from US, you may think that England is very similar but, the truth is, it can be a completely different world than what you’re used to.
Following are some useful tips that will make your visit more pleasant whether you plan on simply traveling for a short stay or are considering a more permanent stay in the city.
Helpful Tips on Etiquette, Behavior and Other Important Aspects
- Contrary to popular belief, English culture is quiet and polite overall. Therefore, say “please” and “thank you” as well as learn and use other local etiquette. Also, don’t be loud, vulgar, or brash as this is considered distasteful. The exception is when watching football matches or other sporting favorites where loud is expected!
- Both cars and houses in London are generally smaller than those in the US so you should expect that. Also, avoid making fun of them which can be considered offensive.
- Homes are considered to be private oases for the English who more than likely will invite you to the pub before they will invite you to their houses.
- Avoid referring to England as European because the English consider themselves separate even though they are a member of the European Union. Also, you should know the difference between England and Great Britain (UK) because calling the Welsh, Northern Irish, or Scots “English” is very offensive to them.
- A passport sized photo is required in many places and for many things, such as for obtaining the Oyster Card which provides discounts on traveling around the city on the London Underground railway.
- If you happen to be 26 or younger, you can get a rail card for around £20. Sometimes, full-time university students over 26 can also acquire rail cards. Those relocating to London who are 60 years old or more can get a rail card for seniors for around the same price. Again, you will need a passport photo to obtain either one of these.
- In order to obtain a Student Visa, you must provide proof that you have sufficient funds to provide for your full tuition as well as to pay for all living expenses while attending school.
- A sponsored Tier 2 Permit is required if you plan on working as a freelancer or independent contractor.
- Although staying at hostels is probably your cheapest route, this doesn’t work well for extended stays in the UK. It’s best to contact a relocation consultant who can provide you with London short term rentals or other more appropriate accommodations. If you would prefer to buy, they can assist you with finding good deals on available houses in London.
Hopefully these tips etiquette, behavior and other important aspects will help you more smoothly integrate into the culture during and after your London relocation.