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If you come by airplane from US, you'll probably land in Heathrow Airport, 15 miles west of London, although some schedule flights will go to Gatwick Airport, 21 miles south. European flights will get you to Stansted Airport on the east. From Heathrow, take the Tube (the underground) to any London area for £3.20. From Gatwick take the Gatwick Express to central Victoria Station for £8.90. From Stansted the option is the Skytrain to Liverpool Street Station for £10. Another way to come is by the Eurostar train through the tunnel linking Paris or Brussells to London in about 3 hours.
When you really have "to go" sometimes the situation becomes embarrassing. Where to go when you're in the middle of a shopping street? We researched some options and concluded that the safest place to go is any McDonalds fast food shop. They have the cleanest and more comfortable toilets in UK. Indeed, they're a safe bet anywhere in the world. Beware the automatic toilets. Some people were embarrased when the toilet suddenly opened while they were inside!
London can be cool and damp even in summer, so is best to bring at least a jacket. Even in a hot day you may need it at night, when temperature sometimes drops to a chilling level. In winter you certainly need a heavy coat, warm underwear and gloves. Most of the year you should have an umbrella or a raincoat. If you're on medicine pack enough drugs for the entire trip and ask your doctor to write a prescription using the drug's generic name.
As reminded to me by an american reader, Megan, keep in mind that londoners line up to the right.
The country code for United Kingdom is 44. London has two area codes, 0207 for inner London and 0208 for outer London. Always dial the area code. When calling from overseas, drop the "0". Many public phones accept credit cards, other only British Telecom cards or coins.