MOVING from Ireland to any other big city is undoubtedly a daunting experience, but when it comes to London, there are some unique experiences that set it apart from the rest.
We've compiled a list of the things you should prepare yourself for if you're thinking of making the leap to London town.
- There's no need to flag down the Tube, it stops for you anyway.
Bob Geldof, when talking to An Irishman Abroad's Jarlath Regan about the day he arrived in London from Dublin as a young man, recalled putting his hand out as a London Underground train approached in order to indicate to the driver that he wanted to get on, as is the unspoken tradition with public transport users in Ireland.
When the train stopped, he naively assumed it was as a result of his signalling. It was only when he travelled on the underground with a friend shortly after and did the same thing, did he realise that the driver was taking no notice and everyone else was staring at him as though he were from an entirely different planet! You live and learn Bob.
2. It's really hard to find a good pint of Guinness.
Understandably, the majority of bar staff in London aren't as well trained up as those back home at pulling the perfect pint of Guinness. If you have to tell them to let it settle, just be sure you do it nicely.
3. The question of Barry's or Lyon's is now a question of Tetley's or PG Tips
Unless you're lucky enough to have family members who will regularly post you boxes of your Irish tea of choice, you're going to have to adjust your palette to the English equivalent.
4. Your house is now a free Air B & B for any of your friends who decide they want to visit London
Whether you like it or not, everybody in your hometown now knows that you live in London, and by god, they will take full advantage of that. The local taxi driver who you've never said more than five words to is planning a weekend break with his wife next weekend. Expect a knock on the door. Seriously...
5. Changing cash is a pain in the you-know-what
Changing cash and performing bank transfers can be a costly annoyance. Try out apps like Transfer Wise and Currency Fair. They give you the best rates and charge you as little as possible for your transfer. Sound lads altogether!
6. You have to change your religious crisp beliefs
It's bye bye Tayto and King, hello Walkers and Wotsits. You'll be having withdrawal symptoms before the first week is out!
7. Pret A Manger will ruin you
No more chicken fillet rolls and a free can of Coke at your local Centra. How does your avocado and mozzarella flatbread taste?
8. Mammy still has you on a tight leash
Even though you've flown the nest, Mammy will want you home for any semi-important occasion (the dogs birthday is not out of the question). A flight home takes less time than the bus from Cork to Dublin so you've no excuses!