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What To Expect When You First Move To London

So you've taken the plunge, it's official you are moving to London!

Congratulations you! 

You are about to embark on one heck of a journey!!

Here are a few little tidbits that may help you as you make this move. 

I've broken this post into 3 sections....

How You are likely to feel. 
How You are likely to be treated.
How to quickly adjust, or at least look like you are.

Let's get started.

So how are you likely to feel?

Well to tell you the truth, I would be concerned if you're not on a little bit of an emotional rollercoaster right now. Moving to a new city is a big deal. So much of your life is about to change. It should feel exciting, but it's normal to feel a little (or a lot) nervous.

Those butterflies in your tummy are a good thing when you first get to London, they will keep you sharp and alert. 

You need to be. It's a very fast-paced place, especially in the centre and even more so when travelling. 

It's okay, you will get used to it.

A little later in this series, I have posts about how to transition from the country to the city and lots of tips for London etiquette. For now, though, I'll give you the quick version.

When travelling around move fast, don't use much eye contact on the tube. Keep yourself safe. Stay alert, pickpockets are a thing here. Don't dawdle and above all else, enjoy the experience! 

You only get to know a city for the first time once. Enjoy that. 

People don't realise that London can feel like a planet all of its own, especially at first. I'm a country girl so I had the added layer of getting used to city life along with getting know and love this city. I was the definition of a shy small-town girl, if I can learn to thrive in London I am sure you can too. 

So that's the basics of how you are likely to feel now let's look at how others may treat you. 

Right, listen up because this is important. 

Let me let you in on a little secret,

Londoners may feel a little cold and unfeeling, but the truth is many of us are lovely people when you get to know us, we just know the importance of keeping our guard up. That guard is not likey to come down very easily, we know better than that.  Don't take it personally if people in London ignore you, (even when they bump into you) or if they seem unfriendly or unwilling to take to you. If you come from a culture that is known for its warmth, then this is likely to be a shock to the system at first. 

Yes I know this city may feel a little overwhelming, and you are a nice person, and all you want is a little help to get from A to B, but you could just as easily be about to steal my bag while I look down at my phone or watch to tell you the time or check the map. 

Most Londoners are not going to take the risk.

You will get the odd nice person who will help you out, but generally speaking, you are best to go speak to someone working at the travel station or visitor centre if you are stuck or confused about travel.

Also if you fall over in London, because of the chance you could be running a scam, most people won't help you up and unfortunately there are those who would take advantage of your situation. Again pickpockets are a thing here. Get up quickly because you don't want to get trampled. Go sit on a bench for a moment to catch your breath if you must, but when you are going to be in central London especially, the best advice is to make sure you are well-prepared for whatever situation could occur before you set out. 

Don't get me wrong, London is a wonderful city but as I have already stated, many Londoners are only cold because they have to be, it can be dangerous here.

With that in mind, if you know a local who can show you around until you are used to the city it can be really useful. 

Word to the wise, select this person carefully and please watch what you say in public. You never know who is listening. 

This whole series is about how to settle here and so we will be covering how to adjust here in much more depth, in later posts for now though it may help you to read some of my other posts about moving to London. 

Hope this helped