Visiting a overseas nation is at all times a novel and rewarding expertise. However there are sometimes issues to know forward of time.

Throughout our latest 5 week running a blog journey to England, we determined to current you with our high Journey Suggestions for England.

Though it is likely one of the most culturally related nations to the States, as with each nation there are some issues it is best to know earlier than venturing throughout the pond.

england travel tips

In the event you maintain a passport from the US, an EU Member State, or sure Commonwealth nations, you do not want a visa prematurely of visiting the UK.

three passports

In any other case, it’s essential to apply for a visa beforehand. There are a selection of several types of visas, relying on the aim of your journey. Verify with the UK Government website to find out the best way to apply.

Take word, you could have to go to a biometrics appointment to get your {photograph} and fingerprints taken.

On the time of this writing, the present wait time for a UK visa is about 7 weeks. We managed to get Alpana’s visa in 5 days with their precedence visa service. It’s value checking these totally different premium visa providers.

british pounds

The forex in England is the British Pound. If exchanging forex, test along with your native financial institution earlier than you go. They typically provide the most effective alternate charges. Keep away from alternate cubicles at airports, as they’ve the worst charges.

Nearly in all places we visited accepted credit score or debit playing cards, and lots of are totally cashless. Be sure you inform your financial institution or bank card firm of your journey plans, in any other case transactions might not course of.

Our debit card gave excellent charges, with minimal charges. We suggest carrying largely your individual forex, with possibly £200 money, and exchanging at affordable alternate locations if wanted.

holding umbrellas

The most effective climate is often in the summertime. Nonetheless, that can be when there are the most important crowds. Additionally take word that many lodging choices should not have air con.

One the opposite finish of issues, it will get darkish very early within the winter, with the solar setting by 4pm.

We travelled in September and October. Some days have been sunny and ideal for sporting shorts, whereas later within the journey lengthy pants and a light-weight jacket have been good for many days.

It does rain comparatively incessantly, however it’s usually very gentle. We don’t suggest taking on suitcase area with heavy raingear, a small umbrella or gentle poncho is completely ample.

In 5 weeks, we solely had sooner or later the place it rained a lot that we cancelled plans.

noah riding on a train

Although it could appear tempting to rent a taxi, in case you are flying in to Heathrow or Gatwick and are heading to London, trains are your best choice. They’re much cheaper and sooner, as driving in London is a sluggish process. It might take over an hour to get into the middle of the town by way of automotive.

The Heathrow Specific takes about quarter-hour, and delivers you to Paddington Station. The Gatwick Specific takes about half-hour to get to Victoria Station.

As soon as off the practice, you may taxi to your lodging.

noah riding on a bus

England has a sturdy public transportation station. There are usually trains between main locations, in addition to buses each inside, and between cities.

Take word that some areas solely settle for contactless fee. In London, it’s essential to have both a contactless credit score or debit card, or buy an “Oyster Card”. They’re accessible at most stations and might be preloaded. Every rider will need to have a separate type of fee.

Most bigger cities and vacationer locations even have hop on, hop off busses with a set route. Though these are usually not a budget-friendly method to get round, they’ve recorded commentary that has quite a lot of nice historical past and knowledge.

Taxis and providers comparable to Uber are additionally choices.

the car we rented

In the event you select to hire a automotive, which we did, there are a number of necessary issues to remember.

Initially, in case you are not used to driving a handbook, be sure that to order a automotive with automated transmission.

Keep in mind that vehicles drive on the left hand facet of the highway. Extra disruptive, in our expertise, was that the driving force sits on the proper. This utterly adjustments your reference body, and it is rather straightforward to seek out your self drifting left.

narrow road in england

The lanes are additionally very slim, and barely have a shoulder. This, mixed with driving from the precise hand seat, led us to run up on a curb and blow out a tire.

You might also usually discover the velocity limits on small, winding roads being sooner than you might be comfy with. We regularly pulled over to let a line of following vehicles move.

another picture of the car

All that being mentioned, the roads are very nicely maintained, and in good situation.

cars parked by the side of the street

As lots of the cities and cities of England have been constructed earlier than vehicles, parking is usually a problem.

Most cities do have paid public parking heaps, with kiosks the place you pay and obtain a receipt to show in your dashboard. The costs have been pretty affordable.

As for avenue facet parking, it’s best to test native laws. In all places we went, there gave the impression to be totally different parking legal guidelines.

There are three foremost choices on the place to remain: resorts, mattress and breakfasts, and personal lodging.

Accommodations: We stayed in three totally different resorts whereas in England. There may be just about what you’ll anticipate, all kinds.

a hotel we stayed in

Much like America, Britain has a star grading system, with 5 star being essentially the most luxurious.

Mattress and Breakfasts: These are a novel possibility, as you might be staying in a room in somebody’s dwelling. Breakfast can be served, and you may mingle with the house owner and different friends.

Take word that some mattress and breakfasts have shared restrooms.

Non-public lodging: This was our favourite possibility. You might be renting somebody’s property on a nightly foundation.

some cottages we stayed in

The distinctive cottages we rented in Cornwall, Wales, the Lake District and the Cotswolds gave us an opportunity to fake to dwell like locals.

Probably the greatest options is that they often have a full kitchen. This may save loads on consuming out. Plus, generally after an extended day of sightseeing it’s good to not have to return out.

home cooked food

We cooked fairly a couple of meals on our journeys, together with Toad in the Hole, which we posted as a recipe on GypsyPlate. Even Noah bought concerned on our flatbread evening…

noah making a pizza

In addition to the same old AirBnb, we additionally discovered some nice spots from Sykes Cottages.

There may be some nice meals in England, particularly the massive cities, the place there’s a enormous selection to select from.

spread of english food

In smaller cities, you’ll usually discover a mixture of pubs and some ethnic eating places, notably Indian and Asian.

One necessary factor to notice is that in smaller cities oftentimes the one lunch choices are pubs. So our advice is take pleasure in some nice pub meals for lunch (fish and chips are a should), and check out some worldwide delicacies for dinner.

We do suggest making dinner reservations.

Normal tipping charges in England are:

  • Waitstaff 10-15% *
  • Bartenders £1-2 per spherical (excluding pubs)
  • Taxi drivers 10%
  • Tour guides £1-2
  • Resort housekeeping £2 per day

* Word: some eating places do add an optionally available service cost to the invoice, through which case no further tip is anticipated.

All the time test forward of time to see if one thing is open. Particularly in smaller cities, small retail shops and pharmacies are usually closed by 5:30pm.

Additionally pay attention to financial institution holidays. Many shops, and even some points of interest could also be closed. You’ll find a listing UK financial institution holidays here.

The vast majority of massive supermarkets additionally shut at 4pm on Sundays, so maintain that in thoughts.

a shopping cart full of groceries

A few of the frequent grocery retailer chains in England are Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Morrison’s, and Aldi.

We discovered the grocery choice to be wonderful. The produce particularly was very contemporary, and proudly marketed as being UK grown. It was additionally fairly a bit cheaper than American produce.

England has many nice points of interest, proudly owning to its wealthy historical past. From castles to museums, historical relics like Stonehenge and trendy marvels just like the London Eye, there’s a lot to do and see.

collage of attractions from around england

Most often, they’re open every day, except for financial institution holidays. Tickets can often be bought on website, however in case you are visiting in the course of the busy season, it may be a good suggestion to buy them prematurely on-line.

Vital word: The inside of Buckingham Palace is barely open to the general public from late July via early October.

Lots of the museums, such because the British Museum and Nationwide Gallery, are free to enter, although a donation is usually recommended.

four more english attractions

If you’re planning to go to quite a lot of the historic points of interest in England, look into the English Heritage Overseas Visitors Pass. On the time of this writing, for one grownup it prices £39 for a 9 day move and £46 for a 16 day move, and grants entry to over 100 websites.

an electrical converter

Although it could be apparent when you’re a seasoned traveler, totally different nations have several types of electrical plugs.

England makes use of 230V AC energy, with a Sort G socket. You’ll find adapters readily on-line, in addition to many vacationer retailers when you get there.

England is, total, a really protected nation with low crime charges. Nonetheless, the same old precautions needs to be taken. Mainly, concentrate on your environment.

That being mentioned, accidents occur. It’s at all times a good suggestion to get a journey insurance coverage coverage when travelling to a overseas nation.

We hope this information helps your journey to England go as easily as potential. In the event you’re nonetheless within the planning phases, we now have another posts that may be useful: Things to do in England and Wales, Things to do in London, and What to eat in England.

Till subsequent time, and another vacation spot…

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