Heading to London this summer? Having just returned from a fun London get-away with a few friends, here are a few tips that might help with your planning.
The author received GoCity Passes in exchange for a review. All thoughts and opinions are her own.
1. GoCity Pass is the way to go
If you're going to be hitting the major tourist spots, you'll most likely save money with the GoCity Pass. We visited The Tower of London, Kensington Palace, and Westminster Abbey and rode the Hop on Hop Off Bus. Without the pass, the cost would have been 123 pounds, but we paid just 94 pounds with the Explorer Pass.
2. Get there early
If you're planning to hit the tourist spots, the best bet might be to visit just one major attraction every day, arriving first thing in the morning to avoid long lines and uncomfortable crowds. There is so much to see and learn at these historical sites, so my suggestion would be to plan for at least a few hours if you want to really enjoy yourself and not feel rushed.
3. Take the tube
The Tube is an experience in itself, so don't be afraid to make the most of it by finding a lodging option outside the center of the city. The benefits? London's neighborhoods are calm and a nice break from the city's crowds and congestion. And when you ride the Tube along with regular commuters, you'll get an authentic London experience. Helpful Tip: You can use your contactless credit card for the Tube, eliminating the need to purchase tickets from the kiosks!
4. Be prepared for wishy-washy wifi
We had planned to use WhatsApp to avoid having roaming charges, but we couldn't figure out how to get wifi on our phones (even though we had all checked with our cell phone providers before the trip).
But the good news: Many stores, cafes, and tourist attractions have public wifi service, so it was never too much of an ordeal to find an available wifi network. And guess what? Without the ability to use Google Maps, we actually "resorted" to using a physical map! What a throwback to the 1900s!
5. Relax and enjoy yourself!
in London's parks and cafes. This is a vacation, after all, so make sure to set aside at least a day for some serious vacation downtime, picnicking, strolling, or biking through London's wonderful public parks — Hyde Park, Regent's Park, Richmond Park, St. James's Park, Victoria Park... the list goes on and on. And, as you'll see for yourself when you arrive and start exploring, there is at least one lovely cafe with tempting treats on every street corner. Grab an outdoor table, sip a cappuccino, and enjoy your London vacation!