Passports & Visas
To enter England (Great Britain) , you need a valid passport. Citizens of the EEA member states (the 27 countries of the European Union EU, together with Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein) and many other countries including USA, Australia, Canada and New Zealand do not require visas to gain entry to Republic or Northern Ireland.
If only one parent is traveling with a child under 17 year of age and that child’s last name differs from the parent, a signed notarised letter from the parent with the same last name as the child’s autorizing permission to allow that child to travel.
For more passport information contact the U.S. Department of State (877/487–2778).
What to Pack
England can be cool and damp so a coat is required; something heavy for Winter and lightweight in the Summer. And, as rain is always to be expected, a raincoat and umbrella won’t go amiss either!
For outdoor activities you will want to bring sunglasses; and comfortable walking shoes. The weather is changeable so go for layers that you can put on or take off as the temperature changes. And if you are planing to do a lot of walking, comfortable walking shoes. Travel light and save yourself the burden of handling large and heavy luggage.
Some formal dress codes will apply at certain expensive restaurants and nightspots so a jacket and tie should be considered. Otherwise casual clothes will suffice when touring around Britain.
England has a maritime climate which is dictated by the convergence of moist air from the sea with dry continental air coming up from the south. This leads to an unsettled weather pattern where many types of weather can be experienced during the day. The west of the country tends to be milder, wetter and windier, influenced by the Atlantic, whereas the east will be colder in the Winter due to the effects of the North Sea.
Temperature ranges are wider in the northern part of England.
January and February are the coldest months with an average temperature around 44°F.
July and August are the warmest months with an average temperature of 69°F.
In England the official currency is the pound sterling(£). One pound sterling consists of 100 pence.
Gratuities and tips are lower in England than in the United State and some restaurants include these as a service charge on the bill. When tipping in restaurants you should pay 12.5 to 15 % and there is no need to tip bar staff or in clubs unless you are being served at your table.
Police, Fire, Ambulance: Telephone: 999
24 hour medical treatment is available in UK hospitals under the National Health service and you should expect to be billed but it is nowhere as expensive as it is in the United States.
The electrical current in Great Britain is is 220–240 volts and the plugs are three-pronged. Adapters are widely available and its a good idea to bring a couple for your various gadgets.
Traveline provides information on all public transportation in Scotland including timetables.
Most stations and bus terminals in England will accept credit and debit cars for payment of tickets and other service.
Many routes fill up quickly so it is advisable to book in advance. With many of the bus companies you receive an email receipt when you book on-line.
First Class, as well as standard class coaches are available on most scheduled services, with wider seats. Standard class is pretty good, while First class can be two to three times more expensive. There is the Weekend First ticket on offer at weekends and holiday where you can upgrade to First Class for as little as £5. Booking in advance is advisable to get the cheapest fares, up to half the price!
Save on-line with The Trainline.
England functions on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). During the summer it becomes GMT+1.For example, New York is Greenwich Mean Time -5 hours & Los Angeles is Greenwich Mean Time -8 hours.
Being England the only language you will need is English.
You will need either a full valid national driving license or an international driving permit (IDP). You can acquire an IDP from the American Automobile Association or from Automobile Association or Royal Automobile Club in the UK. IDPs are only valid with your regular driver’s licence They are not mandatory but having one can prevent issues when dealing with local authorities.
Cars in England drive on the left-hand side of the road and both driver and passengers are required to wear seat belts at all times by law. Most cars have manual transmission so be sure to specify that you want to hire an automatic if you are uncomfortable with changing gear manually. Car hire starts from as little as £30 per day and £117 a week for a mid size car.
You will pay a lot more for gasoline (petrol) in the UK, about £4 per gallon. The imperial gallon is 20% more in volume than the US Gallon and is dispensed at the pump by the litre (4.5 litres to the gallon).
On street parking is available in most urban areas in England. Parking fees vary depending on where you are in England. Pay and display machines, which dispense tickets, are marked with a large P. Tickets should be placed on your dashboard for viewing by traffic wardens who inspect paid-for-parking zones regularly. Parking regulations are enforced with fines for cars parked illegally. You will also find privately run parking lots.
There are no vaccinations required to visit England.