What should I know before moving to London?
By Luke Aldred
London is one of the most exciting and interesting cities in the world; it’s incredibly multicultural, has a rich history, great shops and is home to the Queen’s residence, Buckingham Palace. As an international nurse, doctor or social worker, there are a few things to keep in mind before you start planning your relocation to the capital:
Don’t a rent a flat without visiting it
It is important not to rush when choosing where to live; renting a property is a big commitment and it’s important that you’re happy with the space before signing a contract. International movers are at particular risk of scams and inconsistencies because they often try to rent somewhere before they arrive in the UK. You should do some research on the best areas to live in London, but don’t commit to anything until you’re here. As a temporary solution, you could rent an Airbnb, giving you time to do a full and thorough apartment search. Explaining your situation to London-based estate agents can also help, as they will be able to inform you of the differences between boroughs and help you find a good fit. Find out what documents you will need in order to rent a property in the UK.
London rent can be expensive
If you’re planning to rent a studio or one-bedroom flat in London once you have relocated to the UK, you can get an idea of how much it will cost by looking on Rightmove. If renting in the city centre is out of your price range, you could think about renting a room in shared accommodation or moving somewhere further out of the city. London has great public transport, so your commute in to work should still be smooth and easy to plan.
You probably won’t need a car
The majority of Londoners do not need a car due to the capital’s excellent public transport including London Underground, buses and over ground trains - all running very frequently - as well as many bicycle lanes. Traffic in London can be very busy, meaning that public transport is a much more efficient and cost-effective way of getting around. Find out more about London's public transport.
For more information on moving to the UK, read our collection of blogs.