What to pack
As always with international travel, it is recommended that you travel light. Day to day, you can dress casual for class but you will need one business outfit for program visits.
Luggage requirements for all airlines have become very strict. You should check with your particular airline regarding its luggage restrictions. All airlines are strictly enforcing luggage rules; penalties for oversized or overweight luggage can be steep. Be warned that airlines have the authority to refuse to carry luggage that does not meet their regulations.
Getting around London
London has a comprehensive bus and underground transport system. The Underground system, known as the “tube,” has 273 stations, each clearly marked with the Underground logo. Trains run every day from about 5:30 a.m. until just after midnight, but a few sections of lines have irregular service. Check when the last train leaves if you are relying on it after 11:30 p.m.
Remember: fewer trains run on Sundays.
The 12 underground lines are color-coded and maps called Journey Planners are posted at every station. Maps of the central section also are displayed in the trains. The map shows how to change lines to travel from where you are to any station on the Underground system.
There are three types of routes:
- Single-branch routes, such as the Victoria and Jubilee
- Multiple-branch routes, such as the Northern line
- Cyclical routes, such as the Circle line, which loops continuously around central London
You can purchase individual tickets for tube and bus trips. However, it is much more convenient (and economical) to purchase a weekly or monthly travelcard. Detailed pricing information is available at the “Transport for London” website. You can also order travelcards online through the Oyster system. Be sure to purchase a travelcard valid for movement between travel zones 1 and 2 (since you travel in both zones on a daily basis to move from the residence to the classroom). You can also purchase your oyster card once you reach the Queen Mary campus.
It is typically in the 70s, although they have spells of hot weather throughout the summer. As in every season in England, come prepared for rain!