When moving to the UK, so many expats have their sights on London. Some may not have even visited this city before! But take a second and consider the pros and cons of London – there are a lot. Here’s some things you should think about before deciding to live in London.
Perks of living in London
London is a city unlike any other – That’s both good and bad. Even living in England has it’s own pros and cons.
But first let’s cover some of the perks of living in London and some wonderful things the city has to offer.
One of my favourite things about London is the amount of free museums available to visit. You could spend days at these museums and still not see everything they have to offer. The British Museum is one of my all-time favourite museums in any country, and I can never get over the fact that it’s free! Other great museums to visit include the Imperial War Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum.
So many major cities like Chicago, New York and Toronto all require a hefty price for admission, but London is different.
Thousands of restaurants, pubs and bars
You could live your whole life in London and never eat, drink or visit all of the restaurants, pubs and bars. There’s so many! If you enjoy trying new food or unique drinks, you will never tire of London’s selection.
A nice thing, too? Many places are open late.
London has been through just about everything and it shows. Spend a few hours walking along the streets of London’s various neighbourhoods and you’ll see history everywhere.
I would definitely recommend taking some guided walking tours to get a better understand of the history around you.
Fantastic public transport
When living in London, there is no need for a car. You can get just about anywhere using London’s fantastic public transportation system – from buses, trams, trains and the famous Underground, you can easily get around the city.
For an expat, the cost of buying a car (and paying for insurance) can be very expensive. Having the ability to get around for both fun and work relying on public transport is a must. You can absolutely do that in London. You can even take a train straight to London Heathrow airport!
Many people living (or working) in London rely on an Oyster card to get around in the city. You can find out more about these payment cards here: How do you use an Oyster card?
So much to do!
From museums, to restaurants, from live theatre to hidden gems, there is always something happening in London. For those who want to experience new things, London is a wonderful city. If there’s a concert, play, or live event happening in England, it’s likely going to be in London. It’s the hub for everything!
“When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”Samuel Johnson
Lots of career opportunity
If you’re looking for a job, London might have it. Compared to a tiny village in England, London has numerous job opportunities in countless fields.
Cons of living in London
London is far from perfect. So what are the cons of living in London? Consider these points before you decide to move!
One of the most expensive in the world
London is repeated rated one of the most expensive places in the world to live. And they’re not wrong! Prices in London are higher than any other part of the UK – this includes rent, bills, even a pint at the pub. It’s no secret that London is expensive.
Noisy, loud, busy
With almost 9 million residents, London is massive – but that also means it’s noisy, loud and busy. For those who want a quiet life, London probably isn’t for you. There is always a hustle and bustle about the city, with crowds, noise and business.
Poor air quality
One of the unfortunate side effects of such a large city is poor air quality. Many expats who come to London from around the world have been prescribed inhalers by doctors in the city.
Still interested in living in London? Check out some tips on what to expect your first month living in England.
Pros and Cons of London – what’s next?
If you’re still interested in living in London, I would absolutely recommend a stay at a hostel. London hostels allow you to sleep in the city and get a feel for the different neighbourhoods. It can also give you a better picture of what it might be like to live in London. Before committing to renting a flat or a room in London, give a hostel a try first.