Resources

BBC (www.bbc.co.uk) News and entertainment.

Enjoy England (www.visitengland.com) Official tourism website.

Lonely Planet (www.lonelyplanet.com/england) Destination information, hotel bookings, traveller forum and more.

National Traveline (www.traveline.info) Great portal site for all public transport around England.

British Arts Festivals (www.artsfestivals.co.uk) Lists festivals – art, literature, dance, folk and more.

Top Tips

  • At major London airports, tickets for express trains into central London are usually available in the baggage arrivals hall; this saves queuing or dealing with machines on the station platform.
  • The best way to get local currency is usually from an ATM, but this term is rarely used in England; the colloquial term ‘cash machine’ is more common.
  • If staying more than a few days in London, get an Oyster Card, the travel card the locals use.
  • Pickpockets and hustlers lurk in the more crowded tourist areas, especially in London. Don't be paranoid, but do be on your guard.
  • Britain’s electrical plugs are not the same as those in the rest of Europe, so bring (or buy) a UK-specific plug adaptor.
  • The unpredictable English weather makes a lightweight, packable waterproof jacket a must-have item, whenever you happen to visit.

What to Take

  • UK electrical plug adaptor
  • Umbrella – because the rumours about the weather are true
  • Waterproof jacket – because sometimes the umbrella is not enough
  • Comfortable walking shoes – England’s towns and countryside are best explored on foot
  • A taste for warm beer

What to Wear

A rain jacket is essential, as is a small backpack to carry it in when the sun comes out. In summer, you'll need sunscreen and an umbrella; you’re bound to use both – possibly on the same day.

For sightseeing, comfortable shoes can make or break a trip. If you plan to enjoy Britain's great outdoors, suitable hiking gear is required in higher/wilder areas, but not for casual strolls in the countryside.

Some bars and restaurants have dress codes banning jeans, T-shirts and trainers (sneakers or runners).

Pre-departure Checklist

  • Check the validity of your passport.
  • Check any visa or entry requirements.
  • Make any necessary bookings (sights, accommodation, travel).
  • Check the airline baggage restrictions.
  • Put all restricted items (eg hair gel, pocketknife) in your check-in baggage.
  • Inform your credit/debit card company.
  • Organise travel insurance.
  • Check mobile (cell) phone compatibility.
  • Check rental-car requirements.