Top tips for new expats in London: accommodation, travel and social life

Top tips for new expats in London: accommodation, travel and social life

By Thu Ha Larkin

Choosing to move to London is a big decision! It’s a capital city with so much going for it, but this enormous amount of choice can quickly become overwhelming. To make it easier, try breaking down your plans into different categories. This will help you to focus and be more organised in planning your new life in London. There are three key areas to think about: accommodation; travel; social life. How do you fit these things around your career or business?

We’ve got a few recommendations on how to get started with your new outside-of-work London life.


The great thing about living in a digital age is that you can start looking for somewhere to live before you even arrive in London. Websites such as Spareroom, Easy Roommate and Gumtree are great places to start when you’re looking for a house to share with other people. You might be looking to rent or buy a whole property for yourself or your family, in which case, Zoopla and Rightmove are great websites which will list the majority of properties on the market. Coming to London to check out an area before you commit to contracts or mortgages? Airbnb offers short-term lets which are perfect for filling any gaps.

If you are going to be sharing with other people, make sure you get the chance to meet your housemates before you move in. It’s also a good idea to visit the property both during the day and in the dark, so that you get a feel for the surroundings at all times. This should make you feel less disorientated and more comfortable once you move in.


The tube is London’s primary mode of transport for a reason. It is fast and convenient, even if it can get busy and crowded during peak times. It’s ideal to have a contactless credit or debit card, as you don’t need to buy a ticket on any of London’s buses or tubes. Instead, just tap your card at one of the readers on the ticket barriers and your card will be charged when you complete your journey. Don’t have a contactless card? No problem, you can buy an Oyster card which works in exactly the same way – you’ll just need to remember to top it up with credit before you make your journeys.

There is a daily cap in place so that no matter how many journeys you make in one day on London’s public transport, you will never be charged more than the cost of a day travelcard. This puts all of London on your doorstep at an affordable price! Don’t get too overwhelmed by the London Underground maps or the dozens of different bus stops. Download the CityMapper app and it will work out exactly how to get to where you need to go in the shortest possible time.

We understand that arriving in a new city can be overwhelming as well as exciting. The London chauffeur service will pick you up from the airport or train station when you arrive take you quickly and safely to your accommodation. For the first few days or weeks, when you are still getting used to London’s many transport systems, hiring a chauffeur service will take a lot of hassle out of your life.

Where to go and What to do!

London is the most expensive place to live in the United Kingdom, but what many people fail to realise is that so much of the city’s culture is completely free! Many of the museums and galleries are free to enter, and most open late one evening a week so that you can squeeze in a visit after work. The parks are well-maintained and make beautiful spots for weekend picnics or long walks. It’s a good idea to sign up to your local library service – this means that you can gain entry to The Tower of London for just £1. Also, by booking train tickets online, you will often be eligible for 2 for 1 offers on tickets to theme parks and attractions around the UK.

Where to eat
London is considered the capital of the world where any food around the world can be found here. From Korean bim bim bap, Chinese dim sum to French cuisine, nothing is hard to find. Fancy a house cooking, London is the best place for food market, such as: Borough Market, Berwick Street Market, Camberwell, Dinerama to name a few. When looking for places to eat, the Book A Table app lets you see restaurants near you. It shows you what sort of food they serve, how expensive they are and whether they cater for certain allergies or dietary requirements. You can even reserve a table through the app so that you know you won’t be turned away at the door. The London Chauffeur Service company will also offer to secure a table in the restaurant of your choice as part of their extra service.

London truly is one of the world’s best cities to live in. It is dynamic, vibrant and full of energy. You’ll never be bored in London as there is always an adventure to be had around the corner.

Image credits: London expat tips

About Author: Thu Ha Larkin is a fashion & travel blogger who writes for different blogs and websites. She is now working at Belgravia Chauffeurs as a Digital Marketing Specialist. She spends most of her weekends to visit different places around the world and the UK to enrich her life and travel experience.  


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