7 Quick Tips for your London Family Vacation – a very Popular Destination
London England is one of the most popular travel destinations for a family vacation. A London family vacation is not only affordable, but your children can learn about London’s history and culture as well.
Although affordable compared to some destinations, remember the American Dollar is continuing to go down in value.
So if the dollar goes down, that effectively raises the cost of things in most countries, including England.
Some Facts about London
London is the capital and largest city of both the United Kingdom and England. The city is often considered the leading global city, thus exerting a considerable impact upon commerce, education, and the arts. London also exerts considerable influence on entertainment, fashion, finance, tourism and many other things.
A Few London Stats
Sovereign state: United Kingdom
Area: Greater London 607 sq mi
Population: – 8,825,000 (2017)
Greater London 8,817,300
London is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. London’s popularity has increased over the years. It is the fourth fastest-growing of the major cities in the world. The city has a diverse range of cultures and people. More than 300 languages are spoken in the region.
London contains four World Heritage Sites:
- Tower of London
- Kew Gardens
- The site comprising the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, and St Margaret’s Church
London has many other attractions. A few other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, and St Paul’s Cathedral. More landmarks include the Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world.
The Rubens at the Palace is a family hotel located at Buckingham Palace Road and within five minutes walking distance of the Palace itself. It is less than a quarter mile from the Victoria Tube and has the following conveniences: Air conditioned rooms, non-smoking rooms, TV, cable TV, mini bar, coffee or tea, roll away beds, and cribs.
7 Quick Travel Tips You Need To Know Before Visiting London
1. Get an Oyster Card. It will save you time and money. Get an Oyster Card (its FREE, with a small refundable deposit) from a Tube Station. Preload a given amount onto the card. Your tube rides are discounted. Plus if you visit several places in a day, some travel there may be free.
2. Museums and art galleries are FREE. The Science Museum, the Natural History Museum, the British Museum and more are free to visit. You could easily spend a day wandering through these museums. Soak up and marvel at the rich heritage London has to offer. Although the admissions are free, feel free to give a donation.
3. Tips aren’t a necessity. Yes, you can if you feel it’s deserved. But if the service at a restaurant is good, a small 10-15 percent tip is more than enough. In the United States or some other countries tipping is pretty much expected. But in London it isn’t as big a deal as in other countries, but of course it is definitely appreciated. Likewise, there’s no need to tip when ride in a cab. However, it usually makes sense rounding up the amount to the nearest pound.
4. You can tour Buckingham Palace. Yes, you can actually tour this famous building that’s a working palace. Many people don’t realize you can actually go inside. The tours are in the summer months. Tickets should be purchased online before you travel. It’s well worth a visit while in London.
5. Black Cabs can be faster transportation. It depends on your reason for travel. If you’re in a hurry official black cabs can use bus lanes. However, Uber is much cheaper than a black cab in London, but they cannot get you there as fast as a an official black cabs can. What’s your priority? Get there faster or lower price. Another good, but slower option, is that flashy Oyster Card to ride the tube.
6. Carry an umbrella just in case. You may have heard that London weather is often unpredictable. Don’t take a chance that rain will ruin your day. Pack an umbrella (or a raincoat) with you. You’ll stay (mostly) dry when those unpredictable rain showers cone. Be sure to check the weather forecast on before you go out every day.
7. Explore Camden Town area of London. Camden Town is one of the best neighborhoods in London to explore. The markets are a major tourist attraction on weekends. You can find goods of all types, including fashion, lifestyle, books, food, and junk/antiques. You’ll see all sorts of bizarre items there. They and the surrounding shops are popular with young people. Especially those searching for alternative clothing. You can find all sorts of things from various ethnic foods, hand-made items, novelties, to specialty cuisine. It’s kind-of an alternative counterculture that is exciting and can be most inviting.
10 Important Things to Know Before Visiting London
by Love and London
Published on Youtube on Oct 8, 2015
These are some things to know before your first visit to London. My ten tips will make your visit to London easier and help you not stick out as a tourist. London underground tips, how to tip in restaurants, and how to pronounce some of the trickier names, and more. **Updates and corrections: – They call it the River Thames (not Thames River) – For all oyster cards, zone charges have increased. For example, travel via zones 1-2 for the day (plus any bus rides) it costs £6.60 the most for that day
Another family-oriented hotel is the Millennium Hotel, located in the Mayfair section of London. The hotel overlooks Grosvenor Square and the services are similar to the Rubens.
They include: air conditioned non-smoking rooms, cable TV, restaurant and baby sitting services. Also included are roll away beds, mini bar, tea and coffee, and cribs.
Your London Family Vacation – Lots of things to Do
There are a myriad of venues in London, including: Madame Tussauds, the Tower of London and St. Paul’s Cathedral. More attractions are Kensington Palace, Buckingham Palace and The Changing of the Guards.
Visit the London Aquarium, take a Cruise on the River Thames, and enjoy many other attractions. In addition, children will love Chessington World of Adventures. It is only 12 miles from London and has wonderful rides, games, and many adventures.
Shopping is an experience in London and one that the entire family will look forward to. From Harrods to Camden Town, Regent Street to Convent Garden; there is a treasure-trove of items you and your family will almost surely find appealing.
Getting around London can be easier than you think if you purchase the London Pass. It allows for free entry to over 50 attractions, and includes a free 160 page guide-book.
Moreover, if you are a holder of this pass it allows you to avoid the waiting line. At £12 a day, this is a great and inexpensive way to visit all the important sites and attractions during your stay.
Dining in London can also be affordable if you take your time to find the right places. There are restaurants around the theater district that offer pre-show menus at special prices.
So too, here is a partial list of restaurants that offer meals for £15 and under: Jimmy’s in Chelsea, Fire and Stone in Covent Garden, Embassy London in Mayfair, Tiger Tiger in Soho, to name a few. Also check with your hotel concierge for suggestions as well.
If this is your first time vacationing in London here is more information and tips to know about. You will find some invaluable tips for locating the best family style hotels, restaurants, attractions, and more.
Travel Advisories, Alerts and Registration with U.S. Embassies
Check for any travel advisories and alerts for the United Kingdom. Other important information and tips can also be found there. Consider registering with the U.S. embassy STEP(Smart Traveler Enrollment Program) program or consulate in the country you’ll be visiting. It will make it easier for the U.S. Government to find or contact you in the event of an emergency in that country.
This is what they say about the step program:
- Receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country, helping you make informed decisions about your travel plans.
- Help the U.S. Embassy contact you in an emergency, whether natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.
- Help family and friends get in touch with you in an emergency.
Inquire about Documentation your Family Needs
A London family vacation is family travel at its best. If you are signing up for a London package, be sure to inquire as to the type of documentation the family needs.
Ask about any other information pertinent to the trip such as vaccinations for your children as well as for yourself. London England is an historic city as well as one you will enjoy for any vacation, whether for yourself or your family.
Take advantage of the hospitality of this great city and map your plans to visit soon.
When you do visit
Keep these tips in mind when you are traveling in Europe. It can save you some of your hard earned money. It can give you a bit more control of your activities. Who knows, the extra freedom you could gain could lead you to an adventure you’ll cherish for years to come.