1. Your snot will turn black.
Let’s get this one out of the way first. It will change back once you leave… possibly.
2. TFL will become a god-like force that controls your life.
Anyone moving to London should be prepared to enter an emotional love-hate relationship with the city’s public transportation. The Tube is, for the most part, fantastic… with the exception of the three words that strike fear into the heart of every Londoner: ‘planned engineering works’. Every weekend, part of the network is closed for maintenance, throwing a spanner into the works for the unprepared.
Despite what you might expect, the Tube is also not open 24 hours (yet). So keep an eye out for that last train home, or be prepared for a trip on…
3. The Night Bus. It’s a thing, and it’s…
Well, it’s almost mythical. Every Londoner has a story from the Night Bus, ranging from the awkward to the awesome to the damn right absurd.
4. Tube and queuing etiquette are real...
and passively-aggressively (occasionally just aggressively) enforced. Everyone’s heard the stereotype that British people take queuing seriously. It is true. And when the announcer says to move right down inside the Tube carriage, it’s best to comply. Embrace your inner sardine, or risk a biff on the head with a brolly from an unimpressed Englishman (or, more probably, some serious side-eye). Some other tips: Whatever you do, stand on the right on the escalators. And those buttons on the tube? Don't press them... they don't open the doors. All they do is signal to everyone else that you are definitely not from around here.
5. But if that all sounds like hard work, London is an extremely walkable city.
Most of its major attractions are within convenient walking distance. Wherever you are, you’re sure to be treated to some amazing views, too.
6. London is one of the greenest cities of its size in the world.
London has 35,000 areas, or 11,000 acres, of public green spaces – equivalent to 40% of its surface area. Green spaces include parks, squares, gardens and even forests.
7. We also have beaches!
The Caribbean it ain't, but London is home to several pop-up urban beaches every summer. There’s also a 60-acre sand beach at the Ruislip Lido!
8. 37% of the population were born outside of the UK.
… making the city wonderfully diverse and chock-full of cultural events and festivals all year round.
9. London has world-class food culture.
From Michelin Star restaurants to mouth-watering street food, London is the place to be if you’re a foodie. You’ll find offerings from all corners of the earth, plus interesting fusion cuisine (think Korean burritos or Malaysian satay burgers) – there’s something for everyone!
10. From London, the rest of the UK is your oyster.
From the capital it’s easy to travel onwards across the UK. Brighton is 1 hour away by train; Cardiff is 2; Edinburgh is under 5. But we’re not sure why you’d want to leave – you know what they say:
Written by Grace Waters