Moving to a new city - London

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

I am in London on a short term stint before returning home to NZ in July. Here is a step-by-step process on how I settled down in a (yet another) new city.


  • Buy flight tickets - your arrival date is set
Which airline? Which airport? Which transportation option into city?
  • Start looking for accommodation
Book the first week at a friend's place, if you're lucky, or hostel/Airbnb. Research the areas you would like to live in your new city, then arrange as many house visits as possible in those areas in the first three days. Upon recommendations from friends, the Internet - Gumtree,, FB groups - and office location, I chose Islington. I wanted to stay in zone 1-2, close to supermarkets and transportation options to my hangouts, central city, in/out of airports and Eurostar. This gets immensely easier if you have at least the first ten days free of any commitments.
  • Last week before leaving, start packing. 
Do you really need that? Give away or sell unwanted things. Say your goodbyes. Buy some favourites you will miss, and as thank you presents for your hosts in the new city. 
  • On day of travel. 
Don't forget to take out any sharp objects from your carry on. Don't forget to carry some local currency in cash, chargers and adapter, screenshots of important documentations. Leave early or on time. Better early than late! Missing your bus/tram/train and/or flights is not much fun. I've been there. You've got your passport on you, right?
  • First week in the new city, get your essentials. 
Sim card, bank account (after you've sorted your aforementioned accommodation). Transport - bike, metro card? Loyalty card to your new supermarket - shampoo, toothbrush, etc? Do some sightseeing in your city and neighbourhood to get used to your new surroundings. I usually come prepared with a list of things to see, cafes to try out, must eat dishes. The hunt for a new local haunt begins. 

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