Britain’s currency is the pound sterling (£).There are ATM’s throughout London and major credit cards are accepted. You can change travellers’ cheques or foreign currency around London. Those from outside the EU can enjoy tax-free shopping.
Shops are usually open Mon-Sat 1000-1800 and Sun 1200-1800,with late-night shopping on Thurs until 2000. Visitor attractions are typically open daily from 1000-1800,though most close for a couple of days over Christmas.
New Year (1 January), Good Friday & Easter Monday (March - April), May Day Holiday (first Monday in May), Spring Bank Holiday (the last Monday in May), Summer Bank Holiday (Last Monday inAugust), Christmas Day & Boxing Day (25 & 26 December).
Citizens of the EU do not need a visa to enter Britain. If you’re from any other country, find out about visa requirements before you travel.
It is normal to leave a tip of 10 per cent for good service in restaurants. Taxi drivers may also expect a tip.
Smoking is banned in all enclosed public places. This includes restaurants, bars and clubs.
The minimum amount for a call at a public payphone is usually 60p, but some take phonecards, credit cards or euros. Internet access is available at some hotels, internet cafés and phone booths.
POST & EMAIL
Stamps can be bought at post offices or newsagents. Postcards to Europe cost 68p, to the rest of the world 98p. Many hotels have internet access and there are internet cafés throughout the city.
Some medicines are available over the counter at pharmacists – Boots is the biggest chain. For medical advice, www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk . Reciprocal arrangements with the UK allow residents of some countries to receive free emergency treatment go to the Accident and Emergency department of a hospital.
It is possible to store luggage at London’s main railway stations. Bags may be inspected for security reasons.
Public toilets are provided at coach and main line rail stations. Most charge 20-30p, and there are facilities for people with disabilities and for those with babies. Public toilets, or superloos, are also available around London.
As in all major cities, visitors should be aware of their personal safety. To avoid pick-pocketing keep bags closed and never leave bags unattended. For serious emergencies, call police, ambulance or fire brigade on 999.
BRITAIN & LONDON VISITOR INFORMATION
There are Tourist Information Centres across London, including:
Heathrow Terminals 1,2,3
Liverpool Street Station
St Paul’s Cathedral
Useful Links / Tourist Information
Visit London www.visitlondon.com
Tower of London www.toweroflondontour.com
Edinburgh Castle www.edinburghcastle.biz
Windsor Castle www.royalcollection.org.uk
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