Useful Information about London, England

London Transport - The Transport for London website will help you to plan and make journeys with public transport in London as well as find the cheapest prices. Information about the City-Maut (Congestion Charge) for car drivers and low emissions zones is attached.

Attractions in London - Those who go on a language holiday in London will be greatly inspired by the numerous attractions the city has to offer. It is perfectly possible to spend a year in this English metropolis and to still discover something new every day. Since most students only have a limited time during their visit to London, here are the top 10 attractions in London that everyone should see when in London.

Banks - Most banks are open Mondays to Fridays from 09:00-16:30 and some on Saturday mornings. If you wish to open a bank account in Great Britain please ask at our school reception about our course certificate; you must however bear in mind that most banks require minimum course durations of 6 months to be able to open an account. When exchanging money it is generally better to find a bank. The next alternative for exchanging money is the HSBC Bank (52 Oxford Street). Traveller’s cheques, debit cards and other generally well-known credit cards are further options.

Driving a car -Most international driver’s licences are accepted in Great Britain, however you must be at least 17 years old. Wearing a seatbelt is mandatory and alcohol is absolutely forbidden – it is not only a danger for all other road users, but it is also harshly penalised. You must be at least 25 to rent a car. And particularly important: if all the others appear to be driving the wrong you, then you have forgotten that in England you drive on the left.

Emergencies - If there should be an emergency during school opening times, please immediately go to reception or call the school on (+44) 020 7580 2863.(+44) 020 7580 2863. If an emergency should occur at any other time, please either contact your host family (if booked) or contact us on the emergency number (+44) 07850900818. If you require the police, fire services or emergency services, please use the emergency numbers 999 or 112.

Health -the general medical institute (National Health Service) is free as long as one or more of the following points are true: 1. You are participating in a course for at least 6 weeks; 2. You are an EU citizen; 3. You require emergency care; 4. Your home country has made a mutual deal regarding these questions. If you require a doctor, you must find a local doctor. For non-acute problems it is often more sensible to go to a chemist and turn to a pharmacist in the chemist (e.g. at Boots).

Insurance -we recommend that you take out several important insurances, such as: baggage insurance, travel illness insurance, and insurance that covers you if you cancel your trip. Even if you take these insurances out at school, we recommend you do this before starting your trip.

Keeping fit!- There are well-equipped fitness rooms, swimming pools and training courses at the YMCA in Great Russel St. or in “the Oasis Health Centre”, which are both located near the school. Whatever type of fitness you are into, you will find many different options in London.

Telephone - It is cheaper to call after 18:00 or at the weekend in Great Britain. If you wish to make calls to abroad, you can do an R-call; the number for international R-calls is 155. The school can also offer you telephone cards if you require these. If you intend to stay in London for more than a month, you can get a SIM card for your phone from British networks, e.g. Vodafone.

Safety - London is not an exceptionally dangerous city, but you should still always keep an eye on your luggage and your money. At school we ask you to always take your things with you and never forget them at school. If you go out at night in London you should avoid dark places. Never take more money with you than you need and keep your passport and/or your identity card in a safe place. According to British law it is not necessary to carry these with you all the time.

Great Britain information (up-to-date as of: 18.06.2014)