Relocating to London? The Ultimate Guide to Moving to the British Capital

Relocating to London? The Ultimate Guide to Moving to the British Capital

Relocating to London? The Ultimate Guide to Moving to the British Capital
21st September 2022

Relocating to London? You’re not alone. Each year over 200,000 people relocate to London, meaning the city’s population is always booming. The UK capital is one of the world’s major global cities, playing a key role in the world economy. With its financial might and business prowess, it’s no surprise that millions of international travellers embark on a business trip to London every year. To get ahead of the competition, read on for SilverDoor’s ultimate guide for those relocating to London and get your move off to a great start.

Key Information

Flight Time: Around 8 hours from the US East Coast

Currency: Pound Sterling (£)

Language: English

Time Zone: GMT

Making the move

relocating to London at night
London's cosmopolitan appeal entices thousands of relocating workers every year

There are a variety of work visas open to those looking to relocate to London. Whether for short term or long term, each visa is specified to the worker’s industry and length of stay. A full break down of visas and their requirements can be found on the UK government website. If you’re looking to bring a pet with you when staying in one of our many pet friendly London serviced apartments, there is also a detailed breakdown of required steps here.

Chiswick business trip to London
Chiswick's ordered suburban streets make it a popular place with families

Once you’ve settled into London life, you may well be considering a permanent home in the city. It’s no secret that London properties are expensive – with the average house price topping half a million pounds and many exceeding that by some margin. With this in mind, ensuring your neighbourhood is suited to you and your family is important when relocating to London. We recommend:

Chiswick – The home of SilverDoor’s founding office, Chiswick is an affluent and leafy village-like district. With plenty of beautiful waterfront eateries and bars, Chiswick is a desirable place to call home for professional couples and those with families.

Fulham – Located in West London, Fulham is a favoured suburban hotspot for young professionals. As well as beautiful views of the Thames, Fulham is brimming with restaurants, cafes, and green spaces to enjoy in your free time.

Richmond – The idyllic Richmond is a comparatively quiet district in south-west London. With protected views of the Thames, Richmond’s buildings are purposefully low-rise, giving it a village-like feel which is echoed by its relaxed pace of life.

Chelsea – Arguably the most desirable London district, Chelsea is centrally located and boasts a luxury lifestyle. Favoured by celebrities for its plethora of high-end restaurants and bars, Chelsea provides an extremely high (if expensive) quality of life for anyone relocating to London. 

Mayfair – One of the safest districts in London, Mayfair is also one of its most attractive. Boasting excellent architecture, an unbeatable array of shops and restaurants, fantastic night life and a popular theatre scene, Mayfair combines comfort and excitement like nowhere else.

Things to know before relocating to London

Tube London
London's tube is the artery that transports the population across the city

It gets busy!

While films like Bridget Jones’ Diary and Notting Hill present London as an under-populated, quaint city of the past, modern London is anything but. Disregarding those quiet and relaxed districts already mentioned, the pace of living in London is intense. Londoners are often rushing between meetings and activities, and because the city is so vast making sure they get on those all-important tube journeys is crucial. As a result, the pavements of London are usually filled with people jostling to get where they need to be – so try not to get lost in the crowd!

Tube living

The aforementioned ‘tube’ is London’s famous subway system, connecting all corners of London across its many lines. While efficient and inexpensive, London’s tube does suffer from overcrowding – especially at rush hour. So, if you need to commute during your business trip to London, be aware of the especially busy times of 7-9am and 4:30-7pm. During these times you will likely need to fight your way on to your chosen carriage or wait for the next train depending on how courageous you’re feeling. Another tip – when using the escalator in tube stations be sure to stand on the right – the left side is used by those hoping to run to their connection in record time!

The good news is paying for the tube is very straightforward – you can simply use your chosen contactless card to track and pay for all journey costs automatically when arriving at and departing from stations.

Culture on tap

London’s 24/7 lifestyle means that no matter where you are or what time it is, there is bound to be a shop, bar, or entertainment venue open nearby. In short, everything is convenient. Furthermore, as the city is one of the most culturally diverse in the world, it boasts a multitude of cuisines and cultural experiences on every corner. The best spots to sample international cuisine when relocating to London are Camden (with its extensive collection of Cuban and South American restaurants and bars), Brixton (with a buzzing African-Caribbean restaurant scene), Chinatown (filled with Chinese restaurants, bakeries and markets) and Tooting (home to countless Indian, Asian and even Australian places to eat).

If you’re set on relocating to London, we have many more articles that may interest you before you make the leap. If you’re moving to London from America, read our guide, or discover our selection of extended stay apartments – ideal for your initial stay before finding a permanent residence.  

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