The tube. Probably every London residents nemesis.
The tube can be a horrible place 90% of the time, but if I've tried to make a small list of tips and tricks to make it slightly more bearable for you if you are planning a trip to the city any time soon.
- Always have your oyster/ticket ready
There is nothing worse than if a tourist (or sometimes not a tourist) has got to the front of the queue for the tube and are having to rustle through their bag for their ticket. The amount of death stares and sighs you will receive from the queue behind you will not be worth it, I promise. If you know you're about to enter a tube station always have your oyster or travelcard in your hand ready for the barriers!
- Always carry sanitiser and tissue
If you ever did your research about how many people use the tube and how many germs there are on the tube, you probably wouldn't use it.
So just to rest your mind, always carry sanitiser, tissue is also a good one to keep in your bag, just in case!
- Don't use the tube map to judge distance
Something I had to learn early on, the tube map can be quite overwhelming, and tube stations that are next to eachother on the map, may well be half an hour apart. It can be a couple of minutes walk, but unless you know London quite well and know where you're going, I wouldn't advise walking between stations.
- Always have water
Quite soon after I first moved here, I almost passed out in the heat of the tube, there is very little ventilation and so many people crammed in to such a small place, that it can definitely take its toll. A shop might be 4 sets of escalators away, so be sure to have one in your bag at all time, just to be safe.
- Never try to get on a tube if the doors are closing
Something everybody I know hates is when a person will try to run and jump on the tube as the doors are closing, not only is it highly dangerous, but it also delays everybody elses journey. The tubes run every few minutes so you're better off waiting for the next one.
- Be aware of other people
You may only be going one stop but always try to conscious of other passengers, don't play music outloud, don't let your children run around crazily, stand up if you see somebody less able to stand needing a seat. It may be common sense but I witness some of these things everyday and it just makes every bodies lives easier.
- Check TFL
TFL stands for Transport for London, and it will be your best friend if you are travelling anywhere in London. It's a website and app that will plan your journey for you, using the quickest routes, and also tell you if any of the tubes are not running or are delayed. It will save you so much time, trust me.