London is slowly loosening closure rules and allowing travel once again, but with a few key differences. What exactly are those differences? Well, when we started asking ourselves this question, there wasn’t a single guide out there. We had to search so many different websites just to gather some information. By doing this research we decided to create a comprehensive guide to things to do in London during and after the COVID shutdown . We will update this guide as more information is released. This guide will cover everything you need to know before visiting London. It includes all the current rules that you will need to follow. We update this guide 2x a week, so please remember to check back for the latest information.
Key / General City Rules Social distancing rules still apply (stay 2 meters away) and stay home as much as possible. All stores have clear markers of where to stand, along with a limit on the number of people allowed inside a store. In England people are allowed to gather in groups of up to six people in outdoor spaces such as a park or private gardens. Residents in England can form a “support bubble” with another household if they live alone or are single parents with dependent children. Those in a “support bubble” will be able to act as if they live in the same house, which means they can spend time together inside each other’s houses and don’t need to be 2 meters apart. As of June 15, 2020, anyone using public transportation must have faces covered. There is no stipulation as to what grade it should be. Except that the mouth and nose must be covered. More about London public transport If you are traveling from London to Wales or Scotland they both have different regional rules which we advise you to check before you leave.
Traveling to london
Q: What rules apply to travelers entering the UK by plane, ferry or train? A: While flights and ports remain active with reduced capacity, travelers arriving in the UK by plane, ferry or train – including UK citizens – will have to isolate themselves for 14 days. They will have to fill out a form … to provide an address, indicating where they will self-isolate for the next 14 days.
Travelers can be fined £ 100 for not filling in the form with the correct details. Surprise visits will be used to check that travelers are supposed to self-isolate. Those in England can be fined up to £ 1,000 if they don’t isolate themselves.
Q: Can I travel to London if I live in Scotland or Wales? A: As lockdown measurements differ in each UK nation, it is advised not to travel between them and should instead “respect” the measurements for each area.
Q: What should I do before arriving in London? A: Traveling from the UK there are no additional rules apart from the Key / General City Rules mentioned above. However if you are traveling from outside the UK you will need to fill in a form … provide an address showing where you intend to isolate yourself for 14 days.
Q: What if I don’t have an address to isolate myself from? A: If you do not provide an address, the government will arrange accommodation at your expense.
Q: What can I do in those 14 days? A: Travelers should not leave the premises or have visitors, except for essential support. Wherever you can, trust others.
Q: Is anyone exempt from self-isolation? A: Anyone arriving from the Common Travel Zone (ATC) – the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man – does not have to go into quarantine, only if they have been in ATC for at least 14 days. Those who are also exempt include: Trucking and freight workers Medical and health professionals who provide essential health care Those who arrive for prearranged medical treatment Passengers in transit, as long as they do not go through border control Seasonal agricultural workers, if they isolate themselves where they work …
UK residents who normally travel abroad at least once a week for work
Traveling around London using public transport
Q: Is there any change in the use of public transportation? A: You must now cover your face for the entire journey on the London tube and bus. Face shields can be a simple cloth that covers the nose and mouth. You can buy one in a store or online. Free face masks are available at certain metro and bus stations for a couple of weeks – from Monday, June 8.
Q: Are there any changes to my public transportation payment? A: Most subway stations only accept contactless or Oyster card payments for travel. The ticket machines at all London Overground and DLR stations accept cash. Some metro stations also continue to accept cash, but it is important to use card payment whenever possible to reduce the spread of Covid-19.
Q: What do I have to do before using public transport in London from COVID-19? A: Wear a face mask (it is mandatory and you will be fined if not), stay two meters away from others when possible, wash your hands before and after the trip, carry hand sanitizer and / or use the disinfection points available at the stations.
London bus service
Q: What has changed with London buses since COVID-19? A: People can now ride on the front of buses after improvements were made to driver displays to help keep you and drivers safe.
New limits have been put in place on the number of people allowed on buses at any given time. On double-decker buses, 20 people will be allowed to board at a time. On single-deck buses, six to ten people will be allowed at a time.
Q: Are London buses running during closure? A: The buses are operating with reduced services . 124 bus routes have reintroduced payment on their buses. You can find a complete list of buses that accept payment Here
London Underground service
Q: What has changed with the London Underground since COVID-19? A: New markers at London Underground stations show the distance between people. Signs have also been installed on the escalators asking customers to stop six steps away, as well as on the station elevators to ensure that a maximum of four people use them at a time. Certain areas of metro stations have been blocked to ensure a smooth flow of people. No Waterloo & City line service No night or night tube service on the ground. A reduced service is operating on the Tube, London Overground , DLR, TfL Rail and London Trams Updated daily more information
Q: What stations are still closed due to COVID-19? To: Stations closed: Borough, Chalk Farm, Charing Cross, Clapham South, Covent Garden, Gloucester Road, Goodge Street, Great Portland Street, Hampstead, Heathrow Terminal 4, Hyde Park Corner, Kilburn Park, Lancaster Gate, Manor House , Queensway, Redbridge, Regent’s Park, South Wimbledon, Southwark, St James’s Park, Stepney Green, Swiss Cottage, Temple, Tufnell Park Updated daily more information
Q: Which lines are busiest during a lockdown? A: Avoid traveling on the Central line between South Woodford / Redbridge and Stratford – Jubilee Line between Stratford and Westminster – District line between Dagenham Heathway and Aldgate East – Victoria Line – London Overground between Stratford and Willesden Junction – DLR between Woolwich Arsenal and Canning Town Updated daily more information
Accommodation in London
Q: Are there any changes to the hotels, short-term rental apartments (Airbnb) and hostels? A: Hotels, short-term rental apartments, and hostels comply with government regulations to ensure that they remain safe for travelers. Businesses offering vacation accommodation (including hotels, hostels, B & Bs, campsites, caravan parks, pensions, and short-term rentals) must be closed for leisure-related stays. Most hotels, short-term rental apartments, and hostels have drastically changed the way they operate. Here at Safestay for example, we are implementing some key changes to our 2 London hostels – Safestay London Kensington Holland Park & Safestay London Elephant & Castle. A rigorous deep cleaning is being carried out during the lockdown in our hostels and hotels by our trained teams. We have reinforced the frequency of cleaning that involves the cleaning team disinfecting the rooms, common spaces and private areas of the hostel, and in particular the objects and areas of shared use (lobby, elevators, door handles, public bathrooms , room cards, etc.).
Q: How does Safestay protect guests? A: In addition to a rigorous and frequent deep cleaning, we have introduced a contactless registration service through WhatsApp. The next time you make a reservation at Safestay a confirmation will be sent to you by email and also via WhatsApp. Our WhatsApp service will allow you to check-in online before arriving. In this way, the registration and collection of the key will be very fast and social distancing will be maintained. Also, there are no mixed dorms. We have changed the room settings to make sure that when they book, they do so for the entire room. We currently do not provide single beds in mixed dorms until we know it is safe to do so.
WHAT CAN YOU CURRENTLY DO IN LONDON?
Shopping in London
Supermarkets are still open with altered hours and social distancing measures. Non-essential retail stores in England were allowed to reopen from Monday June 15th. Retail Stores will have 2m markings and arrows on the floor to show customers how far away they should be and which way to go. People will also be asked to keep a fixed distance from each other on escalators. Some retailers only allow solo shopping when possible, and some retailers, like Primark, will allow a group of people to enter their stores starting Monday, but they must be from the same household. You are also advised to only touch the products you are going to buy. Lastly, like supermarkets, retailers will ask shoppers to line up to avoid overcrowding in stores and allow people to maintain 2m of social distance.
When shopping in supermarkets, you must keep a distance of 2m between you and others, and only buy what you need. This can include controlling the number of customers within the store and limiting access to avoid congestion. They can also implement queue management systems to limit crowds at entrances and maintain social distancing. Tesco and Sainsbury Supermarkets like Tesco and Sainsbury have introduced new measures of social distancing in stores. Currently there are rules to limit the flow of people entering the stores. Some stores have introduced directional markings on the floor and new signs to create a safe flow of movement around the store, as well as separate entrances and exits. It is advised to buy on your own and pay without contact when possible.
Eating and drinking in London
Restaurants and pubs Beginning July 4, pubs and restaurants in England will be able to reopen with certain restrictions, including changes to shift patterns, mandatory table service and increased use of hand sanitizer.
Customers will also have to give their details to staff to facilitate contact tracing if another customer tests positive for the virus. Wetherspoons London’s Wetherspoon pubs will reopen on July 4th. There are some changes to ensure social distance and customer safety. Customers do not need to reserve a table in advance of the visit and are encouraged to order using the Wetherspoon app, where possible, directly from their table. When they can’t order from the table (i.e. they don’t have a smartphone), customers can order from one of the designated outlets in the bar, but customers cannot stay at the bar. Once they have ordered and paid – they must go back to your table. They are also not allowed to move the furniture as it has been placed to comply with the rules of social distancing. Food Markets For a complete list of all open London markets, see our list below!
Things to do in London?
1. Visit one (or all) of London’s famous markets! In light of the announcement on June 15, the open-air markets were given the green light. However, while some have reopened, others have remained closed. So here are some of the best markets that are currently open in London. Camden Market
Camden Market was one of London’s first open air markets to reopen. Therefore, Camden Market has implemented a one-way system that operates throughout the site, to keep all visitors flowing in the same direction. They will also use markings on the floor to keep customers two meters apart, placing tables and chairs at a distance from one another, setting up hand sanitizing stations, improving their cleaning regimen, and using market security guards. to prevent crowds from gathering at certain attractions. Although not all market vendors will reopen, restaurants and street food vendors including Kuku Riku, Magic Falafel, Makatcha, Only Jerkin ‘,
The District Market
The Borough Market has been partially open throughout the closure, to supply fresh produce to local residents. You can’t get the full experience from the many street food vendors, but there is some hot food and coffee available to go. Mercato Metropolitano https://www.instagram.com/p/B94actoF7qT/ Mercato Metropolitano is London’s popular Italian food parlor, located in Mayfair and Elephant & Castle. They return with their brilliant street food, Wednesday through Sunday, just to go and deliver. The grocery section of the Mercato Metropolitano will remain open all week. In terms of keeping customers safe, hand sanitizers will be in both locations and social distancing measures will be in place. Bethnal Green This is the perfect market if you are looking for plants and flowers. It’s usually busy before closing, so expect social distance queues when taking a trip. The market usually operates every Sunday from 8 am to 3 pm. Keep an eye on their website for more information. Lloyd Park Market https://www.instagram.com/p/CAiExZfno_X/ Lloyd Park Market in Walthamstow reopened on May 23. It is a food lover’s paradise with street food, homemade cakes and cookies, farm-made cakes and much more. You will leave full of desire to return the next day. Flea Vintage Market https://www.instagram.com/p/CBYVMZ_nasm/ For those of you who have been craving a vintage products review for a fresh look, we have good news! Flea has reopened at Vinegar Yard. They will be open every Saturday and Sunday with the new schedule from 12 noon to 5 in the afternoon. 2. Spend the day in one of London’s parks! According to new government guidelines, you can leave your home to exercise and spend time in the parks for recreation, sports and other activities only with your home or bubble for support and only in groups of up to 6 people from another home or bubble of support. The parks will also have limited bathing facilities open, so please keep this in mind when planning your visit. All Royal Parks have returned to their regular opening hours as of June 1. Hyde Park is open to the public but will now close at 10pm. 3. Or visit the amazing London Zoo London and the Whipsnade Zoos reopened on Monday June 15th. Both zoos will function as outdoor experiences, which is a great opportunity to see amazing animals and reconnect with nature. To keep you safe, some security measures have been put in place. Zoos are limiting the number of visitors per day and all visitors (including our fans) must reserve their tickets online. One-way routes have been installed around London Zoo to help the flow of visitors and ensure social distancing. Restrooms are open with new hygiene measures. Payments with cards or mobile devices (eg Apple Pay, Google Pay) are the only accepted form of payment.