Navigating Heathrow Airport and Getting to the Hotel
Once you get off the plane, you’ll pass through Passport Control, baggage claim, and Customs. Getting through passport control and customs can take a long time, so pack your patience. No doubt, security at Passport Control will be extra tight. Don’t tell the Passport Control agent that you’re in the country to study abroad. That sounds to them like a long-term visit that one needs a Visa for. You might say you’re on a school trip or a spring break holiday. Be prepared to show the agents your return flight itinerary.
Once you’re through these check points, you’ll follow the signs for the London Underground/Tube. Pick up a tube map. Take the Piccadilly Line (no other options) to the Earl’s Court tube stop. Use your paper ticket to get out of the tube terminal and throw away the ticket. From then on, use your one-week tube ticket that I’ll give you before we leave Atlanta.
We’re staying at the Nadler Kensington Hotel. From the Earl’s Court station, cross the street at the cross walk, turn right; then take the left at the Blackbird pub. Turn left on Courtfield Gardens and the Nadler is on your left.
First Day’s Activity
After you’ve checked in at the hotel, dropped off your bags, and freshened up (don’t go to sleep!), you’ll go on a scavenger hunt with the partner that you teamed with before leaving Atlanta. I’ll assign each pair (one group of three) two sites to find, take pictures of, and post on this blog by 9pm. Feel free to explore the city on your own before, during and after your hunt. This activity is designed to make you familiar with the tube system.
London’s public transit system makes it easy to travel around the city quickly and affordably. You have the one-week travel cards that will allow you access to zones 1 and 2 on the London Underground (called the tube) and to overground buses.
Tube map (the closest stop to our hotel is Earl’s Court on either the Piccadilly or District line).
The bus system is more difficult to navigate than the tube, but can be a useful tool, especially when traveling at night. You can get information on London bus routes here. The easiest way to navigate the bus system, though, is to plan your journey using the hotel’s WiFi before you leave. You can use the official journey planning function for London public transit, or download helpful apps like Citymapper.