If you’ve been presented with an opportunity to move to London, be it via a new job or just a passion for the Capital, you should take the chance to experience life in such a big city. Before you do so, however, there are several things you need to consider – as London life can be a bit of a culture shock if you’re not prepared.
Be smart about your accommodation
London is different from many cities in that it is a collection of several villages that over the years morphed into one city. This creates a lot of variety. Some areas are more exciting, like Soho, whereas others prioritize safety and greenery like Richmond. If you’re moving for work make sure you’re fully aware of the transport links. The tube is renowned as a feat of civil engineering, but a daily commute from one end of the District line to the other is not worth it. If you have kids, keep their schooling in mind as the same will go for them, and try to find somewhere nearby that suits your needs. If this means putting them in a school close to your work, then so be it; when you are considering this, be sure that wherever this is that it can accommodate you.
Have a checklist and go local
You should have a checklist of essentials to do when you move into a new property. These include shopping and cleaning, checking for pests, making sure all your utilities are sorted out (don’t forget internet) and if you’re coming from abroad make sure you get lots of blankets as it can get pretty cold. When sourcing products or services that require delivery or somebody going to your house remember to go local. London is a big city, so don’t assume that everywhere is covered, for example, if you live in Dulwich and you need to deep clean your carpets make sure you search for carpet cleaners Dulwich, not carpet cleaners London.
Explore as soon as possible
The cultural opportunities that come alongside moving to London are vast, but routine can be a powerful opiate. Explore as soon as you make the move so you don’t get caught up going to the same places every week. There is so much to do; you can spend years and go to a different event space, restaurant or bar every week. There are apps like Dojo that can help out with this.
London can be a city that can constantly amaze you if you catch it on the right day. No article can possibly do it justice, but if you keep these tips in mind, you’re less likely to find yourself in a less than savory situation. One final tip is to develop an interest in the weather. The London climate can be hot one day, freezing the next and regularly raining. Learning to find these changes interesting (or at least how to pretend to find them interesting) can be an easy way to escape a bit of British awkwardness if you ever find yourself needing to make small talk.