London Calling

Hey CO+Kers,
I wasn't sure where else to post this, but I hope its the right thread! I live in the US, but have dreamed of living in London, England, (or just the UK in general), my whole life. So I'm trying to get some idea of how to go about making that dream a reality. Obviously I know I need a ton of money... And it won't become reality any time soon, but it never hurts to prepare. So I was hoping to get some tips/advice from people on here who have maybe made a big move like this at all, andwhat its been like, or if anyone here lives in London already, tell me what you can about it. What do you hate? What do you love? What are some of your favorite things to see and do? How is the housing situation etc etc.

I know theres a lot of UK users here, so talk to me! Happy

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9 replies since 14th January 2013 • Last reply 14th January 2013

When you move, it's not just the move itself that costs tons of money... always remember to have enough money for living expenses for as long as 6 months after the move.

Always be prepared to make major changes and adjustments to your lifestyle and habits because it's bound to become a necessary thing with a move that big.

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I would suggest living away from your state,to say Seattle to see if you can cope with the weather and living away from home.
I've changed continents and it's tough.The would be restrictions on working how long you could stay and health care.
London is a great city but it's changing demographic means it's not longer the place that it was in Love Actually.
The economy is tough and there are few jobs for young people.
Read lots,find contacts and plan ahead.

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I live and work in London, and the city itself is awesome. But It is very expensive to live here, groceries are overpriced, drinks and tobacco are really overpriced, and for a small 1 bedroom flat in the outer boroughs of london (anywhere in zone 4-5-6 on the london underground map) your looking at at least £900 a month.

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I'd reccomend living in Essex or Kent where the prices are cheaper to live but the transport links are really good- I love in Romford which is 20 minutes train ride from central london. I have a 2 bedroom large flat with a garden and pay £900 a month- the same thing in a nice area of london would cost double this!

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Maybe we could house swap!? haha

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Hayley, depends on parts of Essex and Kent. Kent in particular can be quite expensive. Parts of Hertfordshire aren't bad. Considering I've lived on the outskirts of London all my life I can safely say that it will be expensive living in London in general but obviously like most cities, the closer to the centre of the city you live the more expensive it will be.

If you live on the outskirts of the city or just outside the boarders in places like Hertfordshire/Essex (to the North of London), Surrey/Kent (to the South of London) and parts of Berkshire/Buckinghamshire (to the West of London).

Thoroughly do your research though as I've found that Kent and Buckinghamshire and Surrey can be quite expensive.

Hayley in my area (Enfield) it's not known as a nicer area of London and would cost at least £800/ £1,000 pcm for the kind of property you're describing.

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Hi, I left London in october 2012 to start my new life in a smaller town up in yorkshire, so I'll tell you all the tings!

1. Nights
It's good because you've got a lot late closing supermarkets/shops and some are 24hr. so when you walk at nights/eve it doesn't feel like a ghost town. Depending on what area you live it's nice to go for a night time walk. I used to live like 10 mins away from river thames which is nice because it's a middle class area not so many tourists and the water and lights are beautiful.

2. Weirdos
I am pretty sure I'll retire one day & end up being a bag lady sat outside McDonalds asking you for money.. Until then I miss these weird people eithir dress up funny, begging you for money or preaching about God, it feels like you keep bumping into them. They remind you that life is not easy nor boring and forces you to engage with a human(london can be lonely at times). Places like kings cross where there is a big homeless community, and waterloo. Yeah you'd think it's a nice touristy bit but at night time it's so alive, so surreal.

3. Window Shopping
I love window shopping best thing to do when you have no life, nothing to do, no internet no boyfriend, nope, nothing. I miss riding on the bus and going to 3/4 diffrent places with nice shops especially book shops and markets where you can smell cooked food or maybe you've got some buskers. Nowadays it feels like if I want go buy some socks it's a day trip to get on a delayed dumb ass expensive train :/

4 Gastro Pubs
Used to spend ages with an old mate spending ages to pick a fancy pancy pub apposed to real one with lots of middle ages guys gulping down larger. I'd buy a jug of something fruity and some nibbles and gossip/laugh then want to sleep. They don't really have thse kind of prentous pubs anywhere else apart from london, but I like them.

I'd say if you aint got money/daddy's credit card then your not going to get a spacious house and will end up in a flat. I'm inventive& creative because of poverty, so what looks like a crack den from outside can still look like a boho shabby chic palace inside.

I didn't like london because i lived there all my life needed a change to explore and wanted to make some real friends and understand what community is. It's can be lonely, there are a lot more young (slightly niave) people, there is poverty when you open your curtains you bound to see a high rise council estate. But even miss this at times!

I'd reccomend you try it for atleast 6 months. If you dont like it you might find you want to move a smaller town like kent or sussex and visit london for shopping/theatre/gigs/trips and that's OK!

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London is a really awesome city but, honestly, I would not move there without visiting it a few times first. I love it there...but only for a few days & then I just want to leave. It's one of those places that people either love or hate but you have to really love it & really think if you want to live there. I'd suggest maybe moving to a smaller city in England first, just to get the feel of the country & then you can visit London & decide if you really want to be there. Newcastle is up North & it is one of the most friendly places I've ever been. It's not too big but it's not too small &, with the way it's laid out, it's hard to get too lost. York is similar & full of amazing shops & museums. I'm from up North so most of the cities I've visited are Northern & really far from London, I don't know if you'd be bothered with cities that far away but those two (along with Edinburgh in Scotland) are my favourite. Just make sure you really research a few different places first to find somewhere you'll be happy & visit it before you move. Good luck, I hope you end up finally moving to somewhere you'll be really happy Happy

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I am visiting London next month for three days. Any recommendations of shops/markets/museums/restaurants? I am looking for nice places that are not full of tourists, and areas where you can find good quality second hand stuff or clothes and accessories with a "different" kind of design.

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