Top 10 Tips for Traveling to London

View of Hyde Park from our hotel on our last visit.

We’re off to England soon for a bit of vacation (and a wee bit of work thrown in).  I compiled this top tip list during my last visit to London and even though it may come across as a bit cranky (which I was at the time), I think the tips work not only for London but for most other places as well.

  1. Pack a raincoat that covers your rear-end and it should have a hood.  Umbrellas are great, but not on the narrow sidewalks of London and God help you if there is any wind.
  2. Know where you are going.  Nothing is more tiring than trudging around crowded streets wondering if they’ve moved the British Museum.  Have a pocket sized A to Z street guide and study it before you leave the hotel.  Have an alternate plan in case the site you want to see is closed.
  3. Take advantage of the public (and free) museum bathrooms.
  4. Don’t booze it up during the day.  You will be too tired to continue sight-seeing and you might get a headache.
  5. Always carry Advil (or equivalent).  Tums are good too.
  6. Use internet cafés.  They will keep you in touch with loved ones back home and are also handy for practical information (e.g. train times, theatre locations, weather predictions, horoscopes, etc…)
  7. Avoid the tube at rush hour.  Even if you have to violate rule #4 and wait out the crowds in a wood paneled pub with a glass of Scotch.
  8. Throw money at the problem.  This is one of my Dad’s favorite travel tips and one that I back one hundred per cent.  But don’t be an ugly American and throw money around when there isn’t a problem.
  9. Drink water.  Take your vitamins.  Don’t neglect yourself.  If it’s time to stop walking… stop walking.  Get a taxi.  See rule #8.
  10. Don’t underestimate the restorative power of a good piece of chocolate.

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