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Tips & Tricks for Your First Visit to London

Last updated on July 24, 2020

Travelling to London is an incredibly rewarding experience. With so much to see and do, this really is a world-class city that belongs on every traveller’s bucket list.

These tips and tricks will help you plan and prepare for your first trip to London with tips and tricks on everything from booking accommodation and finding local restaurants to navigating public transport and budgeting your travel money. 

Get a Contactless Card

London has (for the most part) gone cashless. This includes public transportation and even bars and restaurants. To avoid any inconveniences, get a contactless card from your bank and start tapping your way around the city like a true Londoner. 

Do and See WAY More by Joining Tours and Buying Skip-the-Line Tickets

You will see and do so much more in London simply by joining local tour groups. From fascinating walking tours to action-packed river cruises, you can really do so much more with your time by letting a local expert guide you.

It’s also worth spending an extra pound or two on skip-the-line tickets. There’s nothing worse than spending half of you travels waiting in line (especially when it’s raining!).

Planning your trip out like this will give you the chance to make the most of the limited time you have.

Be Sure to Book Your London Accommodation Early

It’s no secret that London is an expensive city. But, fortunately, one of the best ways to cut costs during your trip to London is to ensure you book your luxury accommodation in Paddington London ahead of time. 

This will save you the trouble of last-minute bookings and – better still – will ensure you get the best deal on your room!

Make the Most of the Many Free Things to Do in London

While the British capital can be an expensive city for travellers and residents alike, there are also plenty of free things to do in London.

Namely, many of the city’s world-famous museums are free to enter and ask only that you leave a donation if you can. 

Additionally, you can stroll the streets looking for murals painted by the likes of Banksy, and search out the many famous film locations around the city. 

Don’t Forget to Tip Your Waiter for Good Service

While tipping culture in the UK isn’t the same as it is in the United States, leaving a tip a restaurant for good service (10-15% is more than enough) is always appreciated.

The Weather is Always Unpredictable (Even in Summer)

You may have heard that London’s weather can be a bit finicky, making it difficult to pack for your trip.

While you should be prepared for sun, rain and snow (depending on when you visit), you’ll be safe so long as you pack a jumper, jacket and umbrella (or ‘brolly’ as the locals call it).


Walk or Cycle around the City

If the weather is favourable, always try to walk around London instead of taking the bus or taking a taxi.

Not only is walking or cycling a cheaper way to get around London (not to mention better for the environment), but it also gives you a chance to explore the city on your own terms. In some cases, it can even be quicker!

Best of all, with online maps and apps, it’s easy to craft your own walking tour and stop off at all of the London attractions on your bucket list.

Find Local Places to Eat

London has hundreds (if not thousands!) of top-notch pubs, restaurants, food trucks and markets from which you can get delicious food.

In particular, Borough Market is famous for its global cuisines ranging from traditional British food such as pies to spicy Indian meals.

Of course, you don’t have to even leave your hotel for a bite to eat with luxury hotels like the Park Grand London Heathrow offering home-cooked meals from breakfast through to dinner. 

Are you planning your first trip to London? What questions do you have? Leave a comment below to connect with the community and get advice for your trip!

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