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55

I posed this question to @OdeonCinemas, @OdeonHelp and @ApolloVictoria on Twitter and received the following replies from each: Provided it doesn't create a trip hazard, or get in the way then there shouldn't be a problem. -@OdeonCinemas (source) As long as it doesn't block any aisles you will be fine :) -@OdeonHelp (source) So small bags in ...


46

I can reassure you that eating anywhere in London is not perceived as out of the ordinary. Any place you want to have lunch/dinner of just a coffee they will serve you with out any hesitation. London is a very busy city, individuals eating alone is common especially in the city centre where most businesses are placed.


40

The Walkie-Talkie (20 Fenchurch St) is only the 13th-tallest building in London at 160m height, but it does have a free viewing gallery (height 155m): The famous enlarged glass dome of 20 Fenchurch Street is dedicated to three storeys of exquisitely landscaped public gardens and London’s most exclusive social spaces, including observation decks and an ...


37

Because Kings Cross station is one of the handful of big stations both owned and managed by the infrastructure operator Network Rail, the best source of information isn't National Rail Enquires (as normally would be the case), but Network Rail's own station page for Kings Cross, and more specifically the Kings Cross station facilities page This contains ...


35

No it is not rude. I've lived in London most of my life and travelled in hundreds of black cabs and can assure you that cabbies really do not care what you get up to in the back of the cab -- as long as you pay the fare, give them a decent tip and don't spill food/drink/bodily fluid.


34

London has a constant flow of business travellers who are on their own and likely to be seen dining single. Also, there are several neighbourhoods that cater to the singles crowd. As a consequence, there is no stigma attached to eating alone like there might be in other cosmopolitan cities. But more to the point, London restaurants will happily ...


33

I've been in a similar situation many times when travelling during business hours to/from meetings - or, often, when going to the airport - where I've had to jump in on conference calls where I knew it would be for the duration of the ride. I usually excuse myself before the call, letting them know that I'm going to be on a call (even if I'm not talking). ...


33

The Heron Tower (also known as the Salesforce Tower) is the 3rd tallest building in Greater London with a roof height of 202m, and has a restaurant & bar at 175m / 574ft called Duck and Waffle. Entry to the bar is free, and open to the public.


32

I lived in London for four years. Perhaps I just didn't appreciate it, but I can't say I really was that aware of the class system on a day-to-day basis. Sure, you were aware that in Peckham in South London there tended to be a lower socio-economic 'category' of people than say, Kensington. And yes in Mayfair there were the private members' clubs and ...


32

Let's assume that "London" is any major mainline station - they're all reasonably central and well-connected for onward journeys - and that you're only interested in rail not buses or taxis. All but one (Luton) have a station connected directly to the airport, though getting out of the terminal and to the station is quicker for some than for others. I haven'...


30

On two tickets - no way. If you suffer any delays at all, you'll miss the checkin deadline for the onward flight, and you'll have to buy a brand new ticket. It's just too tight On one ticket, if you miss the second flight you'll be rebooked for free, so it just depends on how long you'd have to wait for the next flight and how much of an issue it'll be for ...


29

If you've got a contactless credit or debit card, you don't need an oyster card. Since September 2014 you can just tap in using that contactless card everywhere you can use an Oyster card, and it charges you the same rate as an Oyster card, with the same daily capping policy. (there are other high tech "contactless" options too like NFC smartphone apps ...


29

I'm surprised no one has suggested Paddington Station itself. Paddington Station is the very same that gave Paddington Bear his name, so there are tons of shops and statues to keep a young child fascinated. If you plan to do the sightseeing and shopping on the way back there is no way you'll miss your train, as you are already at the station.


29

If you don't mind being outside, you can get some good views over most of London from some of the hills that surround it. Two good spots are Parliament Hill, in Hampstead, and Alexandra Palace, in Muswell Hill.


28

If you're only going to be travelling within London (i.e. not starting outside of London, and not visiting outside of London), then by far and away your best bet is either an Oyster Card, or a Contactless payment bank/credit card. TFL have a very good website on the Oyster Card, with details of how to get one. They also have a section of the website for ...


28

Honestly, the Piccadilly Line is what I'd do. I'm not sure how you feel you'll take two trains to get there tho - from Heathrow, depending on the terminal it's direct all the way to Kings Cross - 23-25 stops. (Takes about an hour). I've done this very trip myself. In terms of luggage, that line is the arrivals line - people expect the luggage, and unless ...


27

Thomas Exchange will change almost any currency into Sterling - including the Mongolian, Kazakhestan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, Armenian and Georgian currencies, and many other obscure currencies and even pre-Euro currencies such as French Francs, Italian Lira, etc. We do not charge any additional fees and our rates are always better than the Post Office, ...


27

Transaction Fees for Foreign Cards If your bank charges you a fee, as well as a percentage, for every transaction you make in a foreign currency, you could save quite a bit by topping up an oyster card once every so often as opposed to using a contactless payment card every day. For example my bank charges me 3€ + 2% for each non Euro transaction. This ...


26

I also vote for walking. You can save a little bit of time by being in the right part of the train, and then by avoiding a couple of annoyingly slow pedestrian crossings: Travel in the frontmost carriage if you can; that'll put you closest to the ticket barriers at Kings Cross. Get up and go to the doors as the train approaches the station. You want to ...


26

I'm a Londoner with kids of a similar age. Info you might find useful: I've never seen a black cab with a child seat - I suspect there are none. Two of the standard seats face backwards though so slightly safer. If you are going to use the Heathrow Express then taxi is the easiest option from Paddington. Uber is cheaper but still no child seats (and no ...


24

It is indeed possible in theory, and VERY difficult in practice. You need to start, traditionally, at Elephant and Castle at 10am. Going at about 20-30 min per pub you will just finish before closing in Central London. It's hard, really hard, and you need someone to keep tabs on the time and keep everyone moving. There's a webpage with strategies, maps ...


24

Tourists planning to visit the UK can actually buy a Visitor Oyster card in their home countries, if they live in one of 24 countries where local travel agents sell the cards. For instance, people in the US can visit Rail Europe or VisitBritain Shop to purchase a Visitor Oyster card before leaving. If you aren't in one of those countries, the TfL Visitor ...


24

For a general offline case, get a paper street atlas of the city you're in, and learn what symbols to look for for their trains, metros/undergrounds, trams etc! For a general online case, much the same with google maps or similar. Maybe not apple maps, as covered humorously here For London specifically, there are two maps that spring to mind. One has been ...


23

As a Londoner who does that route a lot: The easiest option is to take a taxi, which have plenty of room for luggage. However, it will be quite expensive, probably around £80. The cheapest option (excluding buses, which would be ridiculously tedious) would be the tube, which will cost £5.50 per person each way - assuming you are paying cash (you can save ...


23

With a US passport, you can enter the UK without a visa (for up to 180 days--well more than your 7-hour stay), so that's no problem. The problem will be that Gatwick is far from the city. Fortunately, the Gatwick Express makes transportation into the city fairly easy, and you can buy a round-trip ticket starting around £31.05. The trip to Victoria Station ...


23

Bet you wouldn't have guessed, visiting horse stables -- In the middle of London! A gem of London that's 5 minutes from Paddington station in direction of Grosvenor Sq. The area doesn't really have a huge selection of children's activities nearby, maybe toy shopping on Oxford Street... but, the stables are entertaining and educational for the young. ...


22

When I've needed to do this in the past I've used Victoria Coach Station's left luggage facilities, which are cheaper and more flexible than the rail stations. There are details on TFL: Deposits up to two hours: £2.50 per item (no weight consideration) Deposits 2-24 hours: £4 per item under 20kg Deposits 2-24 hours: £6 per item over 20kg Multiple days ...


22

Yes there is: Google Maps, specifically the "new" version, which offers sensible alternatives automatically. For example, if you enter a query like "King's Cross station to Euston Station", it will tell you that you can take the Tube (every 2 min, estimated time 6 min) and that you could just walk it (estimated time 11 min).


22

The official site is TFL's Journey Planner, and is quite flexible and descriptive: (source) It's also possible to use National Rail's site, depending on where you're going (I used to prefer this site when in London as it shows trains too, not just tube), and of course as jpatokal mentioned, Google Maps handles it as well.


21

There are several spectacular or weird and wonderful statues in the Marble Arch - Hyde Park area which I imagine would interest or amuse a 5-year-old. Dunamis - Park Lane. A 9 meter tall statue of a man holding an elephant balanced on its trunk (apparently, this one is for sale). It's towards the bottom of Park Lane, so a very slight detour, but probably ...



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