Top Pitfalls When Traveling To London
It’s very common to make some mistakes when visiting a city for the first time, but we’re here to help. If you book a discounted business class flight or cheap first class flight to London via our gurus and do any of the following, it will be very noticeable that you’re a tourist.
Sightseeing in London
- You take a ride on a double-decker bus.
- You visit Buckingham Palace first.
- You wonder when you will see the queen. (You won’t see the queen.)
- You’re standing in line to take a ride on the London Eye.
- You stop traffic on Abbey Road to take a photo like the Beatles’ album cover.
- You get a photo of yourself in front of a red telephone booth.
- You mispronounce Leicester Square when asking for directions to it.
- You say you love Leicester Square. (Leicester Square is a huge tourist trap with mediocre restaurants, dive bars, and pickpockets.)
- You carry a large backpack full of travel gear wherever you go.
Getting Around London
- You eat on the Tube.
- You fall asleep on the Tube.
- You take 10 minutes to top up your Oyster card.
- You get claustrophobic on the Tube.
- You forget to use your Oyster card when exiting the Tube and cause delays.
- You look the wrong way before crossing the street.
- You’re the only one talking above a whisper on the Tube.
- You’re the only one talking on the Tube.
- You drive, walk, or stand on the wrong side of the street and sidewalk. (Cars drive on the left side of the street. Pedestrian traffic flow is on the right.)
- You stand on the left side of an escalator. (It’s actually stand on the right and walk on the left.)
- You arrive at the exit of the Tube and stop in the doorway to check your map or your phone, blocking the exit for everyone else.
- You try to make conversation with strangers on the Tube. (Unless you’re asking for directions, don’t ever speak to people you don’t know on public transportation.)
- You’re wearing UGG boots.
- You refer to London as “London, England.”
Weather in London
- You think it’s raining all the time.
- You’re shocked to see someone wearing shorts during winter.
- You’re the only one on the street without an umbrella when there’s a downpour.
Dining & Shopping in London
- You think British food is awful.
- You leave a tip at a bar. (Locals never tip bartenders because 12.5% is already included in the bill.)
- You’re confused when someone offers you a biscuit but gives you a cookie.
- You’re shocked when there’s no ice in the water you ordered at a restaurant.
- You ask for chips, and someone gives you French fries. (You should ask for “crisps.”)
- You ask when it’s tea time. (Whenever you feel like having tea, it’s tea time.)
- You eat at chain restaurants like Angus Steakhouse and T.G.I. Friday’s.
- You try to get a table for dinner at a restaurant after 10pm. (Locals eat between 6pm and 9pm, and restaurants stop seating people before 10pm.)
- You shop at chain stores on Oxford Street or Regent Street.
- You wear “Mind the Gap” or Union Jack (UK flag) shirts right after buying them as souvenirs.
Misunderstandings in London
- You hear people talking about football and you ask which NFL teams they like.
- You try to convince locals that football is actually called soccer.
- You compliment someone’s pants and they react with embarrassment. (Pants are underwear. Trousers are pants.)
- You ask someone where the bathroom is and they point to a sign that says “WC” so you ask again. (WC stands for water closet, which means bathroom.)
- You confuse Tower Bridge with London Bridge.
- You imitate and mock the different British dialects.
Now that you’ve learned more about the London lifestyle, take advantage of the best deals on business class flights to London and first class flights to London and luxury London hotel accommodations when you book your trip via Alpha Flight Guru.