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craigeo
November 19th, 2008, 04:48 AM
Hi,
I live in Wisconsin, USA. My son is taking a trip with school (he's in high school) next summer to London.
Looks like a great opportunity. 8 days total, taking tours every day.
I happened across this website...
http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/questions/americanbritish.html
I didn't really realize there were this many differences with the languages.
I really don't know exactly what tours they will be taking, or where exactly they will be at.
But, does anyone have any advice for him for this trip? What to see, etc. Cultural differences, etc?
Thanks,
Craig

pp.
November 19th, 2008, 07:36 AM
Beware of the traffic. Cars run on the "wrong" side of the road. Always make a point of checking both sides for traffic before crossing.

BobCFC
November 19th, 2008, 08:47 AM
I don't know how rural your part of Wisconsin is, but you have to be street-smart as you would be in any major metropolis like NY. It depends how naive to city life you are I guess.

I am not saying it is dangerous for tourists or anything but the sheers numbers of MILLIONS of them in one place attracts pickpockets from poorer east-european countries.

eg don't keep your wallet in back pocket etc. Be sensible about buying something on the street.


Take the tube (subway); many Londoners manage without a car at all and the cabs are expensive because they train for about 3years learning the roads before they get a licence. (Our taxi drivers are seen as degree-level qualified unlike yellow cabs in NY)


All the national museums and galleries are free, the British Museum is the most famous in the world and has all the stuff we plundered from the empire such as Egyptian hieroglyphs, mummies and Greek statues (real Indiana Jones stuff). Plenty of 1000 year old buildings lying around too. Depends if he is here for the history or the nightclubs lol. The legal age for an adult is 18 in the UK for clubs and pubs etc

Food and drink is expensive in tourist areas, if you happen to be staying further out you might want to buy there and take it with you into central London.

The flip side to this is an amazing choice of Indian curry, Thai, Italian, Chinese, French, Vegetarian restaurants etc. London is probably the most diverse city in the world, over 300 languages spoken and nearly 25% population born overseas.

My favourite thing about London is the way it is lit up at night. Most of the buildings are floodlit and it is especially nice around the river Thames and the bridges.

smoker
November 19th, 2008, 10:05 AM
your son will have a great time, don't worry about language, or cultural differences, London is a cosmopolitan tourist city, he will have a great time, have a look here:
http://www.visitlondon.com/

CJ56
November 19th, 2008, 10:19 AM
London is in many ways a mixture of New York and one of the Continental capitals - Berlin, Madrid, Rome - it's a great place but you do have to keep your wits about you slightly.

Try not to get in the way of grouchy commuters/office workers/shoppers; watch out for pickpockets etc; until a month ago it was stupidly expensive for overseas visitors - now that the Pound has collapsed, it's dirt cheap, no telling what the exchange rate will be next summer, but you may have to watch what you spend on drinks & snacks & so on; it's very big in that it covers a huge area, although most of the good stuff is in the middle, but don't get lost...

I should think the trips will be to places like Oxford, Bath etc. They're much smaller & very nice most of the time

mr.propre
November 19th, 2008, 10:47 AM
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=946853
Here you will find a few tips.

Been there small month ago, just for 3 days and didn't had a moment to stop, but saw the most stuff that I REALLY wanted to see, except Marx grave and Greenwich. Be sure to buy a London pass and a travel-card. Both the tubes and the busses are a great way to get around and we would visited less museums if we didn't had the London pass, some museum are quite expensive for what you get, but the biggest ones are free.

My personal tip for him, visit a pub on Friday evening/night, really unique something and I wished that all the bars where like that in Belgium.

ice60
November 19th, 2008, 12:55 PM
tell him to keep away from the chavs. lol

on the news the other day it said 50% of adults think british children are no better than animals lol

http://www.news24.com/News24/World/News/0,,2-10-1462_2427808,00.html

http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/video/Barnardos-charity-survey-on-attitudes-to-teenagers/Video/200811315152799?lpos=Latest+Video_5&lid=VIDEO_1691813_'Don't+Demonise+Teens'&videoCategory=Latest+Video

i've lived in london all my life and if i went by what's said on the news (there are no guns but a lot of stabbings) i would never go out, but as it is i walk home through london in the night about 3 times a week and never have any problems. (i am a chav though so i'm generally causing the problems lol j/k)

Yownanymous
November 19th, 2008, 01:03 PM
I'm a British child!!!

Actually a lot of scum hangs about the streets. Please, in all seriousness, watch out, because there are loads of knifings and murders there.

mr.propre
November 19th, 2008, 01:26 PM
I'm a British child!!!

Actually a lot of scum hangs about the streets. Please, in all seriousness, watch out, because there are loads of knifings and murders there.

Well, I didn't had the feeling it was dangerous in the center of London. You always need to stay alert, but where not these days?

Allot of cameras though ^_^

mips
November 19th, 2008, 02:32 PM
Tell him to try Marmite on toast :) Luvly stuff!

gn2
November 19th, 2008, 04:00 PM
~ there are loads of knifings and murders there.

Rubbish.
http://uk.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUKL1754092020080717

Less than 7500 knife related offences in a year in London, note that's not "knifings" it includes all crimes where knives are involved, even simple possession and domestic cases that happen behind closed doors and are no threat to the public.

7500/365 = 20 knife crimes a day in a population of 8.3 million means that there's virtually no chance that you'll witness any knife crime in a week long trip.

jeyaganesh
November 19th, 2008, 07:54 PM
There were 28 teenager killed by stabbing by teenagers. Night life is dangerous in London. Most of the killings happened in East London.

British Museum, Natural History Museum and National Gallery are good place to visit. London always look like Olympic Games are going on. That much crowd.:lolflag:

xpod
November 19th, 2008, 08:18 PM
Most of the killings happened in East London.

Not quite sure how you came up with that nugget of information but going by this April map it seems quite evenly spread to me.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1583228/Murders-in-London-mapped-after-latest-death.html

I doubt the lads going to be visiting any of the dubious Estates down here so he`s even less likely to witness anything along those lines.
Besides,all this talk of knifes & murders is really unnecessary.Just come to London & enjoy the place,and that`s a Scotsman talking.:)

jeyaganesh
November 19th, 2008, 08:22 PM
They are school children, so it is necessary to give some safety tips too.

xpod
November 19th, 2008, 08:28 PM
They are school children, so it is necessary to give some safety tips too.

Quite true,but giving sensible safety tips and scaring the living daylights out of them are two different things.

gn2
November 19th, 2008, 08:28 PM
They are school children, so it is necessary to give some safety tips too.

1: make sure your shoelaces are securely tied.
2: check both ways before crossing the road.
3: brush your teeth twice a day minimum.
4: eat your greens.

xpod
November 19th, 2008, 08:33 PM
1: make sure your shoelaces are securely tied.
2: check both ways before crossing the road.
3: brush your teeth twice a day minimum.
4: eat your greens.

And stay away from London....there`s been a murder.

iponeverything
November 19th, 2008, 08:34 PM
Hi,
I live in Wisconsin, USA. My son is taking a trip with school (he's in high school) next summer to London.
Looks like a great opportunity. 8 days total, taking tours every day.
I happened across this website...
http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/questions/americanbritish.html
I didn't really realize there were this many differences with the languages.
I really don't know exactly what tours they will be taking, or where exactly they will be at.
But, does anyone have any advice for him for this trip? What to see, etc. Cultural differences, etc?
Thanks,
Craig

The potential benefits, IMO, far outweigh the risk. The main benefit as I see would be to get a kid out of his own head - to realize the world is what it is and what he imagines it to be.

This planet with its life, cities, and all its beauty and problems is a truly amazing place and nothing we could ever see on TV or read about it could do it justice. -- The hope would be to realize this one simple lesson.

plb
November 19th, 2008, 09:31 PM
I've never been to London but if it's anything like NYC like some people are saying than I'm sure he'll have a good time. I can't comment on the crime there but I've been living in NYC for nearly 8 years now and have not had any problems such as being held up by gunpoint as that seems to be a popular stereotype. Of course there is crime such as shootings, stabbings etc but I think the majority of it revolves around disputes within certain circles of people involved with drugs and what have you. I believe London has also got all those cameras on every street corner?

Paqman
November 19th, 2008, 10:01 PM
I live in London and I hardly ever get stabbed. He'll be fine.

plb
November 19th, 2008, 10:03 PM
I live in London and I hardly ever get stabbed.

That gave me a good laugh.. lol

Mazza558
November 19th, 2008, 10:07 PM
I live in London and I hardly ever get stabbed. He'll be fine.

I like the "hardly ever" part - sounds like it's happened more than once.

Paqman
November 20th, 2008, 12:43 AM
I like the "hardly ever" part - sounds like it's happened more than once.

It depends on what paper you read. If you're partial to the Daily Mail then you could be forgiven for thinking we were up to our necks in 12-year old asylum-seeking hoodie crack addicts carrying knives and eating swans.

benny bronx
November 20th, 2008, 12:57 AM
From what I understand, in London, you should not get too excited if a British woman asks you to knock her up, refrain from using the word aluminum, and if you are planning on hitting the pubs, know the words to Blake's "Jerusalem".

Paqman
November 20th, 2008, 01:20 AM
if you are planning on hitting the pubs, know the words to Blake's "Jerusalem".

Er, maybe if you plan to go boozing with a lot of post-menopausal middle class women from the countryside. You'd do better with Song 2 by Blur or Smack My Bitch Up by The Prodigy.

Also, plan to find yourself eating a kebab if you've had a few. This is not optional, but a compulsory part of living in Britain.

benny bronx
November 20th, 2008, 02:01 AM
Er, maybe if you plan to go boozing with a lot of post-menopausal middle class women from the countryside

That's funny. No, I really didn't hear that song being belted out from pubs when I was in London, but I did sing it over here with a bunch of rugby players from england a few years back. It was late.

Paqman
November 20th, 2008, 02:05 AM
I did sing it over here with a bunch of rugby players from england a few years back. It was late.

That makes a bit more sense. Hardcore rugby anthem, that.

It'll never be as cool as the haka, though.

benny bronx
November 20th, 2008, 02:06 AM
It'll never be as cool as the haka, though.

Googling I go.

Edit: Ah yes, I've seen that. It is cool.

Northsider
November 20th, 2008, 03:11 AM
I'm going to London (and Paris) for new years...I'm getting excited!

craigeo
November 20th, 2008, 06:38 AM
hehehe, thanks for all the responses.
He'll be 16 when he goes. The group is led by his English teacher. Apparently they have professional tour guides of the "normal" tourist sites... Big Ben, Parliament, etc. He's planning to take one of the optional tours to Stonehenge.
I'm jealous :-) I've never been overseas. Out of the country I've only been to Canada and Mexico, would love to see Europe.
Is a very good deal too... They are estimating after fund raisers it will cost about $1000 per kid for the whole trip plus money for 1 meal a day, tips, and souvenirs. The $1000 covers plane trip, hotel stay, included tours, and all but 1 meal per day.
Sounds like London is about the same as any metropolitan areas here in the states. The metro area we live in is about 100,000 people total. Includes 3 cities. Was also one year ranked the safest city in the U.S. to live in, so they did a Chevy truck commercial here.
But, we have our share of problems too

ice60
November 20th, 2008, 04:49 PM
Rubbish.
http://uk.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUKL1754092020080717

Less than 7500 knife related offences in a year in London, note that's not "knifings" it includes all crimes where knives are involved, even simple possession and domestic cases that happen behind closed doors and are no threat to the public.

7500/365 = 20 knife crimes a day in a population of 8.3 million means that there's virtually no chance that you'll witness any knife crime in a week long trip.
20 knife crimes a day is wrong. if i asked around i could probably find out about 20 knife crimes per day just through friends of friends.

after i last posted in this thread i went out. i asked my friend about one of her friends and she said he's not coming out because he'd been stabbed a few days a go. all the younger people i know carry knifes.

like i said in an eariler post the media do make it sound worse than it is, it's safer than the media makes out, and safer than many US cities.

gn2
November 20th, 2008, 05:16 PM
20 knife crimes a day is wrong.

You better let the Met and Reuters know their facts are wrong.

And stop listening to BS bragging.

benny bronx
November 20th, 2008, 06:12 PM
like i said in an earlier post the media do make it sound worse than it is, it's safer than the media makes out, and safer than many US cities.

We actually don't have many stabbings around here (bang, bang). Although rumor (rumour) has it that the pike is making a comeback.

ice60
November 20th, 2008, 07:10 PM
You better let the Met and Reuters know their facts are wrong.

And stop listening to BS bragging.
EDIT: my friend who told me is a 46 year old women with no reason to lie, why do you think she's not telling the truth? you don't know who we're talking about either, if you did, you'd know what happened lol.

are you familiar with the huge statistical differences for crime rates from difference official sources?

in parliament labour and the conservatives both use different sources for their crime rates, both sources are considered good and both sources vary greatly!

if you think your stat is true you have a lot of growing up to do. i'm telling you it's wrong because i know it's wrong. if, like you say, you got it from the Met. then it will only include recorded crime, real crime is always far, far higher for obvious reasons.

BobCFC
November 20th, 2008, 10:14 PM
I live in London and I hardly ever get stabbed. He'll be fine.

:lolflag:

craigeo
April 1st, 2009, 10:21 PM
Hey,
I'm reviving this old thread. Just had another question.
I know I'll need to buy a power adapter for him to plug his electronic equipment into in London.
Is there a standard outlet that is used in London?
Is it true that all outlets run at 220V there? (110 in the US)
Thanks again,
Craig

cinna
April 1st, 2009, 10:28 PM
Better places are in England than London, it's just another capitol city with a funny smell

mr.propre
April 1st, 2009, 10:29 PM
Yes, but most (3-star or more) hotels have an adapter available in the bathroom. But to be absolute sure it's best to buy an travel adapter. Price starts around $14 (see google).

lisati
April 1st, 2009, 10:30 PM
Tell him to try Marmite on toast :) Luvly stuff!
Great stuff! And if you're ever "Down Under" (New Zealand or Australia) there's a similar product "Vegemite" to try as well.

I live in London and I hardly ever get stabbed. He'll be fine.
I didn't get stabbed when I visited London in 1971. You'll be fine.

Hey,
I'm reviving this old thread. Just had another question.
I know I'll need to buy a power adapter for him to plug his electronic equipment into in London.
Is there a standard outlet that is used in London?
Is it true that all outlets run at 220V there? (110 in the US)
Thanks again,
Craig
Don't know about the volts (but it sounds right) but the Brits sometimes have fuses in the power leads.

cinna
April 1st, 2009, 10:33 PM
Great stuff! And if you're ever "Down Under" (New Zealand or Australia) there's a similar product "Vegemite" to try as well.

I didn't get stabbed when I visited London in 1971. You'll be fine.

A lot has changed in London since then, it has become problematic.

lisati
April 1st, 2009, 10:39 PM
A lot has changed in London since then, it has become problematic.

(Sighs) I guess you're right. A lot has changed in my corner of the world too, and some of the changes aren't really that great.

gn2
April 1st, 2009, 10:40 PM
Is there a standard outlet that is used in London?
Is it true that all outlets run at 220V there? (110 in the US)
Thanks again,
Craig

British Standard 1363 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BS_1363)

Up to 250V 50hz 13Amps

LowSky
April 1st, 2009, 10:42 PM
Hey,
I'm reviving this old thread. Just had another question.
I know I'll need to buy a power adapter for him to plug his electronic equipment into in London.
Is there a standard outlet that is used in London?
Is it true that all outlets run at 220V there? (110 in the US)
Thanks again,
Craig

Most converters will do the voltage change without you worrying.

By the way the US is 120V and the UK is 230V
http://www.kropla.com/electric2.htm
American outlet (http://www.kropla.com/!ab.htm)
UK outlet (http://www.kropla.com/!g.htm)
France outlet (http://www.kropla.com/!e.htm)
Germany outlet (http://www.kropla.com/!c.htm)

mips
April 1st, 2009, 10:55 PM
Is it true that all outlets run at 220V there? (110 in the US)

Is there a standard outlet that is used in London?


UK uses 230V 50Hz although you might also find 240V which is about the same.
http://www.kropla.com/electric2.htm
http://www.kropla.com/electric.htm
http://www.dbicorporation.com/internat/internat.htm



The outlet is a Type G, BS 1363 (British 13A/230-240V 50 Hz earthed and fused)
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/86/G_plug.png


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domestic_AC_power_plugs_and_sockets#Type_G
http://www.kropla.com/!g.htm

craigeo
April 2nd, 2009, 03:13 PM
Thanks, that helps a lot.
Think this should be the last question...
Any good regional food he should try?

BobCFC
April 2nd, 2009, 03:44 PM
Thanks, that helps a lot.
Think this should be the last question...
Any good regional food he should try?


The most popular dish in the UK is Chicken Tikka Masala (mild English curry)... I'd get it with all the trimmings on the side such as Vegetable Samaosas and Naan bread

Guess you gotta try the obligatory Chip Shop too. All though I prefer Chicken Shish Kebab which is large diced marinaded chunks of chicken breast flame grilled on a skewer (like BBQ not fried) wrapped in pitta bread or naan bread (Careful with kebab, don't get Donna that is chopped up processed crap you want Shish Kebab which is large diced chicken breast)

There are plenty of Burger Kings and Pizza Huts if he gets homesick :)

EDIT, oh yes, every American that comes to England always says wow your Heinz baked beans taste 10x better than our Heinz.... (I think one of us adds suger but I don't remember which). So when you have a Full English breakfast (Bacon, Sausage, Egg, Beans, Toast maybe tomato, most Americans say meh beans but then afterword say wow that was the best part.

EDIT2 Wow I'm really hungry now lol

koshatnik
April 2nd, 2009, 08:25 PM
I'm a British child!!!

Actually a lot of scum hangs about the streets. Please, in all seriousness, watch out, because there are loads of knifings and murders there.

Yeah, if you're walking around Peckham Rye at 11pm at night. People really need to keep things in context. Like all major cities, there are safe bits and not safe bits. The not safe bits are going to be obvious, and tbh, the average tourist wont be walking around there of an evening.

London is fine.

craigeo
April 2nd, 2009, 08:30 PM
Awesome... this all sounds great.... except for the stabbings :-)
I'm jealous of my son now getting to go over.

mips
April 2nd, 2009, 08:35 PM
So when you have a Full English breakfast (Bacon, Sausage, Egg, Beans, Toast maybe tomato, most Americans say meh beans but then afterword say wow that was the best part.

EDIT2 Wow I'm really hungry now lol

You just made me hungry as well !

Nothing wrong with breakfast for supper, done it before ;)

dullard
April 2nd, 2009, 09:55 PM
Beware of the traffic. Cars run on the "wrong" side of the road. Always make a point of checking both sides for traffic before crossing.

We only drive toy cars though. They don't hurt.

kamitsukai
April 2nd, 2009, 10:37 PM
Thanks, that helps a lot.
Think this should be the last question...
Any good regional food he should try?

Get him to try black pudding (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_pudding) and then after he's eaten it get someone to explain to him that one of it's main ingredients is pigs blood:lolflag:

Although even I have to admit that I've never fancied trying it;)

craigeo
June 7th, 2009, 03:37 AM
Well he's getting pumped. My son leaves from Minneapolis this Thursday for his trip to London.
Looks like it's going to be a blast.
I've been around most of the U.S. and been to Canada and Mexico. But never been to Europe. I think I'm just as excited for him as he is.

Sealbhach
June 7th, 2009, 03:52 AM
Get him to try black pudding (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_pudding) and then after he's eaten it get someone to explain to him that one of it's main ingredients is pigs blood:lolflag:

It's delicious. Try it, you'll love it.

.

craigeo
June 12th, 2009, 09:44 PM
His group got there about 6:30am London time today. His itinerary looks like a full week so he'll be exhausted by the time he gets home but should be a blast. The 2 things he's most looking forward to is Stonehenge and the Jack the Ripper tour. He loves to try different foods too so I think he's hoping for some "unique to us" food to try... not sure if he'll try the black pudding though. :-)

I-75
June 12th, 2009, 11:47 PM
Off topic...why is a truck called "lorry" in the U.K.?

xpod
June 13th, 2009, 12:05 AM
Off topic...why is a truck called "lorry" in the U.K.?

It`s believed to come from an old English word "lurry"....meaning to drag/pull along.

mips
June 13th, 2009, 12:08 AM
Off topic...why is a truck called "lorry" in the U.K.?

We call them lorry or truck in SA. Either does it.

A truck as in what you guys call a pickup we call a 'bakkie'

thisllub
June 13th, 2009, 12:39 AM
Like every other city in the world Chinatown is the best place to eat.
Give StPauls and the Tower a miss, it will cost you about 50quid for the two.
I hated driving in London.
I suppose it is summer there now but when I was there in November it was ridiculously cold.
Why anyone would build a city where it snows is beyond me.

bruce89
June 13th, 2009, 02:35 AM
Why anyone would build a city where it snows is beyond me.

It doesn't snow very much in London. Even here in Glasgow, it's fairly rare.

thisllub
June 13th, 2009, 09:17 AM
It doesn't snow very much in London. Even here in Glasgow, it's fairly rare.

It did the day I arrived there.
I didn't get to Glasgow but I spent 2 nights in Edinburgh.
Great city. I will certainly be going back to Scotland.

xpod
June 13th, 2009, 10:22 AM
It doesn't snow very much in London. Even here in Glasgow, it's fairly rare.

It did in February...
117489
117490

....although it was probably the most snow we`ve seen since leaving Edinburgh 10 years ago and even then it was only a half dozen inches at most.Still brought London to a standstill though.:-?
I dont think i`ve witnessed proper heavy snow since i was a nipper up in Arbroath.


I didn't get to Glasgow but I spent 2 nights in Edinburgh.
Great city. I will certainly be going back to Scotland.

Your making me homesick:D

craigeo
June 19th, 2009, 02:31 PM
My son got back last night. London looks like an awesome city. (He took 980 pictures) Lots of history and actual architecture. He said the food was about the same as here but served different... lots of stuff served on/in mashed potatoes.
And... he said there's no Mountain Dew over there? How do you survive?

WatchingThePain
June 19th, 2009, 02:40 PM
I don't think that the Cultural differences will be that much of a shock.
It's not so different here from the U.S. really (in an everyday sense). (Flames off).
I say that because I have been to America.

Seeing how other people live is one of the things that makes travelling worthwile.

My 16 yr old cousin came from Canada and I had to show him round for a day.
He had a great time but the only thing I noticed was that he did not have good road sense.
He's from British Columbia.

SuperSonic4
June 19th, 2009, 02:47 PM
My son got back last night. London looks like an awesome city. (He took 980 pictures) Lots of history and actual architecture. He said the food was about the same as here but served different... lots of stuff served on/in mashed potatoes.
And... he said there's no Mountain Dew over there? How do you survive?

Tea, Tea and more tea :p

Did he try bangers and mash in a giant Yorkshire pudding xD

WatchingThePain
June 19th, 2009, 02:52 PM
P.s.

Someone mentioned Mountain Dew.
It was actually available here some years ago, I remember buying it.

I imagine it wasn't that popular and got discontinued.
Will Sprite do?.

We had a drink ages ago called Peardrax (yummy to me), like fizzy Pear Juice but that's now sold exclusively in Trinidad.

craigeo
June 19th, 2009, 03:13 PM
We have Sprite too... not the same. Mountain Dew is highly popular here. He did have bangers and mash and liked it.