For such a relatively small population, Aussies sure do love the Big Smoke. More than 200,000 Australians currently live in the UK capital alone, making it by far the most popular city destination for Aussies abroad. With so many continuing to up sticks and try out the London life, there are plenty of readers who might need a few words of wisdom before they depart for the UK. If you’re an Aussie who has already lived in London, then you’ll probably relate. Here are four things all Australians who move to London learn pretty fast.
The cold will kill you
One of the first things you’re likely to notice after stepping off the place is the brutal weather. Granted London gets some nice days in the summer, but for someone from the Land Down Under, the constant damp and chill quickly gets into your bones and refuses to leave. Fully expect to spend your first six months in London with a constant cold.
The nightlife is absolutely mental
Sure if you’re from Melbourne you might be vaguely aware of a good night out. London is another level entirely. People love to party here and chances are there’s always somewhere insanely cool nearby to get crazy, no matter what time of day it is. Alongside the big nightclubs of East London, the central areas are also lined with exclusive 24-hour casinos where the rich and famous love to play. You’ll quickly learn that before attempting to join them you’ll have to work on your blackjack game so you don’t stick out, preferably practising on the morning tube with an online casino operator such as Paddy Power. Prepare to be hungover most of the time.
Locals aren’t how you expected them to be
Chances are that most of your ideas of Londoners have been gleaned from watching TV in Oz. The locals aren’t posh aristos with a stiff upper lip or cockney chimney sweeps. In reality, London is home to the entire planet – it’s a place where over 300 languages are spoken and you’re just as likely to bump into a mate from school as you are the Duchess of Cornwall on your morning jog. People are also much friendlier than you’ve probably been made to believe, and will happily bend over backwards to help you out of a jam.
The food is way better than you thought
The food situation is probably the one thing that most Australian expats spend the most time bracing for. Newbies expect the food is all grey variations of such lovely staples as jellied eels, steak and kidney pie, suet pudding, and spotted dick. However, you’ll quickly realize that London has the best food scene anywhere in the world. Cuisine from every country can be found easily here, whilst eating out at these places is often a fraction of the price that you’d pay in Oz. You’ll quickly learn to cherish the privilege of being able to casually step out and grab some Nepalese/Tuscan/Russian/Peruvian cuisine whenever you feel like it.
London isn’t for everyone, and sure enough, the crushing expense of living there alongside the weather, pollution and general hustle can prove too much for many Aussies. But if you can look past these things, you’ll find a city that’s more than happy to have you.