International Resource Consultant at Sugarman International. From: Hertfordshire, UK. Lived in London for 1 year. Currently: Living in Sydney, Australia
What was your biggest struggle when first arriving in London and how did you overcome it?
Rent prices: If you are on your own and do not want to share a room, rent for a bedroom even in a shared house in London can be pricey, I paid £700pcm for my own room in Shepherds Bush. Follow our hints and tips document in our registration pack for the best areas in London to live including estimated rent prices!
Commute: was longer than expected – it took me around 50 mins in zone 2. I became quite content with my commute though! I got really into reading and zoned out completely on the Hammersmith and City Line and almost looked forward to it!
Work hard play hard lifestyle can cost: When working in London I was on my University placement year on £15,000 (I know, not a lot right!) and my work loved to go for drinks on a Thursday and a Friday most weeks, with leaving do’s and birthdays constantly happening and great bars all around my office in Aldgate East, it’s sometimes hard to say no!
Everyone in London is always on the move, you feel as though people are always in a rush to get somewhere which is very different to Australia. London weather can also be questionable!!
How did you look for accommodation and how easy/hard was it? How did you find it?
I used the website Spareroom.com – this was an easy way to find accommodation for me*.
Note* make sure you tick bills included when searching areas.
How did you adjust to using public transport and how do you find commuting?
Once you know your route, all is well! However, it is always worth working out your commute (if possible) before finding accommodation or making sure the area you are looking to live in has good transport links to where you are planning on working.
How did you go about finding friends/networking, how easy was it to make friends when moving?
From living in Australia compared to London, I found it a lot easier to make friends in Australia, just because there is a large UK/Irish community in Australia and I started off in hostels where you make lots of friends and also completed regional work where I made many friends. I also joined Facebook groups such as Irish around Sydney.
In London, the majority of my friends were from work or others from my University who were working in London whom I had already met. You have to make more of an effort to make friendship groups in London. I would recommend joining lots of Facebook groups such as Aussies/Kiwis in London and living in an area such as Clapham with a large Aussie/ Kiwi community.
How have you found the culture in London?
London is extremely multicultural, with the sheer volume of tourists on the streets at the weekends especially you get to experience many different ways of life.
Are you missing anything from home?
London is extremely busy with lots going on all the time, whereas where I am from is quiet and in the countryside. Luckily enough I was close enough to home to visit some weekends. There are lots of lovely day trips from London that are easily accessible on the train to wind down such as Bath and the New Forest. Follow websites such as Timeout for regular information on what to do in and outside of London.
What have you found the best change to be since moving?
Independence: As living in London was my placement year at university, I loved the independence I had. There is so much to do in London that days spent exploring or walking around London, especially exploring some of the beautiful markets or free museums such as the Tate Modern and the Natural History were my favourite things to do.
Was it hard to find and register with a GP?
Relatively easy: I googled the closest GP to my living area in Shepherds Bush and just needed identification documents to register. Registration took about half an hour filling out a few straight forward forms. You do have to however have a permanent address before doing so.
International Resource Consultant at Sugarman International.
From: Hertfordshire, UK. Lived in London for 1 year. Currently: Living in Sydney, Australia