Is the London Underground haunted?

As freaky as that heading may sound to outsiders, it is not really scary at all! Unless of course you have watched some of the scary videos of ghosts on the London Underground before ever stepping into one! For those who haven’t seen the ‘Haunted London Underground’ Series, you might want to watch these:

Of course, having travelled in the tube for more than 8 months, I can (i think safely) say there are no ghosts down there – and even if there are, they don’t bother you!

Since many of you would be coming to London for the first time, I suggest you get used to seeing such freaky videos often! I personally use the Northern Line which seems to be the most haunted of them all!

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Confusing London Underground

Chance are, once you leave the airport, you’re going to have to take a tube to get to wherever it is that you’ve planned to park yourself for your stay.

Welcome to the London Underground!

The Underground map can look VERY confusing to first-timers! It looks more like a board with modern art sketched out on it! I’ve been travelling for 8+ months by tube, and I still get confused and have to check the map for any and every new place I’m heading to.

Coming back to the airport, the fact that you’re new to London, and you’re heading to the tube – make sure you FINISH your phone calls before boarding the tube! You will have no signal on the tube. Sure, if you read the sign inside it says that the tube runs overground and customers can use this time to make calls etc. But that ‘time’ is so short that you can’t make all your calls!

The London Underground or Tube as we call it here, is the best and fastest means of transport. From Heathrow, you will be taking the Piccadilly Line (blue line). Make sure you know exactly where to change. When you get into the tube, there may be 2-3 stations where you can change lines, but remember, what may seem like a short distance on this tube, is actually a much longer distance on some other line (and vice-versa).

It’s best to pick up a small tube map – and remember to always carry it with you!

Here’s a tube map, just in case you feel like checking where you want to get to before you come to London (I used to love trying to figure out my route from home to school using the map).

Tube Map - London

You should remember that the first time you travel by the underground, it might be really nice, but trust me, London is much more fun on foot!! But if you have to travel by tube, you should get used to checking the times and service updates on the TFL website.

More about London and the London Underground later, till then, just be happy nobody shoves newspapers into your face early morning!

Welcome to London – The land of the Brits

From the moment you step into London Heathrow airport, you will have butterflies in your stomach! Why? Cause you’re in London!!

Some of the first glimpses of London – All the way from up there!

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The Queens land would normally welcome you with grey skies and a bit of drizzle (what I call ‘London Rain’). The lucky few get special ‘warm’ welcomes – unless you’re here in Summer! Heathrow Airport is one of the craziest airports in the world. Landing here for the first time can be freaky (if not scary) for some. However, be rest assured, airport staff does help out.

When I landed in London, I realised that my phone, which I thought was on roaming, was not! I was in a new place, with no phone and no way to contact the person I was to meet at the airport!

So, what should you do, if you’re stuck in my place? Try calling the person – there are loads of pay-phones at the airport. Sometimes, if you’re luck is as bad as mine was – you might realise that your credit card doesn’t work! I had the old school swipe card – unfortunately, whoever planned the pay system for the phone booths decided to keep only chip-n-pin.

You might want to make sure you have either Pounds, Euros or Dollars on you when you land (rather than presuming you won’t need them till you have to pay for the cab). I had kept just enough money to buy stuff on the flight. I did have some nice crisp notes – but pay-phones don’t accept them – and people at the airport hardly have any change!

This does not mean landing at Heathrow is scary or freaky! It just gives a good feel of what life in London is like – crazy but fun (at least for students). If you have problems at the airport, feel free to go to the helpdesk or information desk. There are sign boards around which can guide you.

You should also be aware that the queues for baggage claim can be very long! After a tiresome trip, it is likely that you will get bugged at the first problem that crops up! Keep your cool – the line is long and you’re dying to get out and see the new city – but still, keep your cool!

Before signing off, here are some points you might want to keep in mind before coming to London:

  • You need to know which terminal you’re landing in (especially if you have someone coming to pick you up)
  • In case you need to go from one terminal to another, you might want to check out how to do that on the Heathrow website.
  • If you have a connecting flight, Heathrow will give you lots of stuff to do!

More about walking into London next time! For now – ENJOY every minute of the sun!!