If you’re planning to move to London either for work or for education, you’ll already know that the cost of living is very high. Although it has in recent years fallen out of the top 10 most expensive cities, it can still be an unpleasant shock to find out what you wanted to try or even basic items you love might be too expensive
It is true that whenever you move from one country to another, there is a myriad of different financial factors that come into play when judging the comparative quality of life between the two countries. Where a particular item may be cheaper, another may be more expensive. It must be noted that London, on average, enjoys high salaries for its workforce, higher than anywhere in the UK and one the highest in Europe. So while everything seems to be more expensive, it’s also the case that if you come into London to work, you’ll get a bit of a bump up because of the location. If you’ve come to study, enjoy the free shows.
There is a very wide range of prices for monthly rent in London. As with all places, this depends on the size of the accommodation and location. You can find some good hostels in Central London that offer very reasonable rates; the rates get better, the longer the stay. They can be very decent places to stay being clean and having good amenities. This is not standard across the board, so you’ll have to check reviews or visit to see for yourself.
If you want to stay in a house or flat, consider grouping with a couple of friends and sharing a flat. This will make it easier to rent closer to the center in zone 1 or 2.
If you don’t mind not being in the city center, move into accommodation in zone 4 to 6. This will drastically lower your monthly rent cost, meaning you get a nicer, bigger place or just save money. London does have very good public transport, and it’s generally easy and quick to get from one part of a city to another. Do bear in mind that you should really buy an Oyster card, which will save you a lot of money compared to buying individual tickets.
Shopping for daily goods such as groceries is as expensive as you would expect it to be in a city like London. That’s to say it’s not overly expensive given high wages and the general standard of living. Unless you live next to one of the better fruit and veg markets, like the ones in Lewisham or Chapel, it’s better to just go to your local Tesco, the largest supermarket chain in the UK.
If you’re a smoker, it’s best to quit and not just for your health. The average retail price of a pack of 20 cigarettes is £11.00.
Something that might be appreciated is energy rates, and Internet costs are relatively low when compared to many places around the world. You won’t be using the air conditioner, but you’ll need central heating.
Moving to another city takes some adjustment, you’ll win in some instances lose in others. The great thing about London is that while it is an expensive city, there’s a lot than can be done for free or cheaply. Even students can enjoy their stay.