Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

It’s been a rough few weeks.

I was going to write about the rest of my marvellous time in Sweden.

I was going to tell you that I was asked to be one of the five (5) members of an academic discussion panel on Brexit, at the Humboldt University of Berlin!

It’ll be on 24.06.17 as part of the Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften, or the Long Night of Sciences at the Centre for British Studies in Berlin.

I was also going to tell you that not only was I featured as a guest blogger on the University of Chester Alumni website, but I’m also going to be on the University of Chester’s official Case Study posters for postgraduate recruitment too! Now isn’t that cool!

Berlin – very British – rbb

However, bearing in mind what has been happening in my home-country of England, there was just no way that I wasn’t going to mention it.

And sadly, this isn’t the first time.

There have been terrorist attacks in both London and Manchester.

Everyone is in a state of shock.

Our sympathies and condolences are with the people, family and friends of both Manchester and London.

Tributes left in St Ann’s Square, Manchester, for the people who died in the terror attack
©Jeff J Mitchell /Getty

The world has been in a dreadful state within the last year.

First, we had that horrible referendum in which my fellow Brits voted to Leave the European Union, and won! Shortly after, we had airport explosions and train attacks in Belgium, awful situations of terror in France, mindless shootings in the US, the senseless mass killing of the gay community in America, a mad axe-wielding teenager in Germany, an airport terror attack and a near military coup in Turkey, another disturbed teenager ran riot of an evening, randomly shooting innocent shoppers, after luring them to a free McDonalds’ burger, in Germany, and the awful fact that Donald Trump, a laughable figure, actually ended up as the President of the United States, and thus, the leader of the Free Western World!

I mean, how did that happen?!

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

Berlin was targeted by a mad man at the German Christmas Market, then London was terrorised in March, Stockholm in April, and very very recently, Manchester was attacked, and just over the weekend, London, all over again!!

Just what is the world coming to?

MANCHESTER

That famous and historical city – Manchester!

I’m a British girl!

I was born and grew up in the suburbs of a most famous and historical city – Manchester.

Manchester is in England and when you think of England you think of icons like King Henry VIII, The British Empire, David Bowie, and of course, The Beatles.

Images of Cool Britannia with absolutely everybody LOL!
@Debbiefm

The Beatles may come from Liverpool, but you can’t have everything can you!

Manchester began as a Roman fort called Mamucium or Mancunium, in about AD 79 and was historically a part of Lancashire, and until the 20th century, became a part of Cheshire.

Manchester is fringed by the Cheshire Plain to the South, the Pennines to the North and East, and an arc of little towns surrounding it!

The lovely” Just So Festival” is an annual weekend camping festival that’s actually in Cheshire, but billed as Manchester!

In fact, where I grew up, is technically no longer known as Manchester, but Cheshire!

Throughout the Middle Ages, Manchester remained a manorial township, but began to expand around the turn of the 19th century, brought on by a boom in textile manufacturing during the Industrial Revolution, bringing extreme wealth to Manchester and making it the first industrialised city in the world!

Phew!

It’s lovely cruising down the Castlefield Canal, or any other canal in Manchester!

Manchester is the highest-ranked British city, apart from London of course, and is the third-most visited city in the UK!

It’s famous for it’s universities and seats of academic learning, architecture, art and culture, museums and galleries, theatre, literature, nightclubs and bars, cinema, music, Manchester Pride, the BBC, science and engineering, sport and excellent transportation. In fact, Manchester has loads of river canals which you can cruise along, free trams that you can use in the city centre, and Liverpool Road train station, which is the first inter-city passenger railway station in the world!

Manchester has about half a million people.

Now that Brexit & Article 50 has been triggered, as an island nation. We’re out. Alone.

So of course, when terrorism came to my home-town and therefore, my city, I was saddened and outraged.

This act of terrorism was not only cowardly, but taken out in an area where teenagers and young children were watching a fabulous concert of Ariana Grande.

Everyone was most upset.

And so was  I.

Everyone was most upset.

My fellow Mancunians rallied round to give each other comfort and support.

They are brave, and so must we all be.

This was not the first time that Manchester has been bombed by terrorists, as the IRA tried to destroy the city in 1996, and sadly, it won’t be the last.

And this time it came very close to home, as the office of my brother – The Writer – is opposite the Manchester Arena! I rang home in the middle of the night with a shaking hand!

Is it safe to travel to Europe right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

And I’m just so sad.

The terrorist have have struck my continent and attacked my country.

This wonderful continent of Europe might make tourists and visitors wonder.

They might think that perhaps travelling abroad isn’t all it’s made out to be.

Get a train ticket and travel through Europe!

They might think that Europe isn’t the place to be after all!

My blog isn’t about politics, and I’m not a politician or a secret agent, so outside of the odd look-between-the-lines rant, I can’t tell you what to do, or advice you as to who best to run your country. Or mine!

What I can tell you is how to cope, and how to keep on living, doing whatever it is you’re doing.

I’m a British person and I live in Europe. People are worried and concerned:

I’M SCARED TO TRAVEL TO THE UK!

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

You don’t need to be.

However!

I’ll tell you something for nothing.

We Brits are as stoic as we come.

Britain is thousands of years old and has been through battles many, many times.

We’re not strangers to attacks.

Or threats.

Or war.

Britain is thousands of years old and has been through battles many, many times.

You’ve only got to look through the last century to see that.

Britain has been blighted by the IRA in Ireland for years, and tourists still love to come to the UK.

Spain has had train explosions from people fighting for the separation of the Basque Region from the country, and tourists still love to visit Spain.

Heck! World War II was started by a madman from Austria, who terrorised the whole continent by his fantasy of German supremacy! Not to talk of the Berlin Wall that was to divide a nation for 38 years, and tourists still love to come to Germany too!

BUT WHAT SHOULD WE DO?

Manchester – And then we have to get up, brush down, wipe away the tears, keep calm, and Carry On with things!

We must cry, and we should.

And then we have to get up, brush down, wipe away the tears, keep calm, and Carry On with things!

Manchester people (of which I am one) are known for plain speaking, and being strong of mind.

We’re stoic, and have a stiff upper lip! #DontLookBackInAnger.

Whatever you think of Britain, the UK is open for business, and always will be.

The point I’m trying to make is:

DON’T LET FEAR TAKE CONTROL

The London Bridge attacks were devastatingly horrible, but you’ve got to keep your head up high, have a bit of a laugh, and get yourself a cup of tea, or in this case, take your beer with you!
©AP

During times of upsetting national news, as British people, we use bleak humour to comfort each other and rally around our community. And even though the London Bridge attacks were devastatingly horrible, you just have to keep your head up high, have a bit of a laugh and a cuddle, and get yourself a cup of tea. Or in this case, take your beer with you! So…

Walk outside your front door.

Drive your car.

Get on that train.

Take a flight.

Sail on a ship.

Take a step at a time.

Don’t let fear take control!

IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL TO BRITAIN & THE UK ‘COS I’M SCARED TO TRAVEL ABROAD? 

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

Sure it is!

Manchester isn’t #reeling, and neither is London. We’re British, we’ve got a stiff upper lip, and we’re going to get on with things, and pull through!

Millions of international tourists and travellers visit and travel through the UK every year, and most visits are completely and utterly trouble-free.

Millions of international tourists and travellers visit and travel through the UK every year, and most visits are completely & utterly trouble-free!

However, if you have any concerns, or need help, or information, I recommend the following:

  • As much as possible, stay away from large crowds and high-profile events
  • Don’t leave bags or luggage unattended. Take care of your belongings and passports at all airports and train stations
  • Remain vigilant, but don’t go crazy and finger-point at random innocent people going about their business
  • Follow the instructions of the local authorities
  • Monitor media and local information sources
  • Allow extra time for your journey due to increased security measures at airports, important train stations, and international borders
  • If you’re German, contact the Außenministerium der Bundesrepublik Deutschland – Andere Länder
  • If you’re American, contact the Embassy of the United States in whichever country you’re in
  • Take out travel and medical insurance BEFORE you travel

Don’t panic. Remember:

Keep calm! Don't worry! Don’t panic!
Keep calm!
Don’t worry!
Don’t panic!

Britain is safe.

Ordinary people don’t carry weapons of any kind. There isn’t a need to!

They say that most accidents and deaths occur near to, or in the home. Statistically, you’re safer outside your home!

And if you’re still not sure take a peep.

See you next week!

Book your hotel here!

IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL TO BRITAIN & THE UK ‘COS I’M SCARED TO TRAVEL ABROAD?

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

This article is not sponsored, and all opinions about taking control of travel nightmares and the fear of terrorism, are my very own!

Next week, I’ll continue my articles on Sweden.

In June, I’ll also be visiting Slovenia! Yay! Follow me on Twitter & Facebook to find out what I’m up to!

On June 24th, I’ll be at the Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens with Travel Massive Berlin.

From July 4th – July 7th, I’ll be at Berlin Fashion Week.

I’ll be there. Will you?

If you’re not in Berlin in June, you’re crazy!

Save the Date!

June & July are going to be awesome!

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

 

Watch this space!

Note! I never travel without insurance as you never know what might happen.

I learnt my lesson in Spain. And obviously, in countries like Qatar, where technically the risk is higher, I can’t imagine going that far beyond, WITHOUT INSURANCE. No siree! You can get yours here, at World Nomads!

Please note that there are now affiliate links (for the very first time) connected to this post. Please consider using the links, because every time some sort of accommodation or travel insurance is booked via my links I get a little percentage, but at no extra cost to yourself!

A win-win for all!

Thanks a million!

Is it safe to travel to Britain & the UK right now ‘cos I’m scared to travel abroad?

Is it safe to travel to Britain and the UK right now? Are you scared to travel abroad? Will you let terrorism take control? Have your say?

See you in Berlin.

If you have any questions send me a tweet, talk to me on Facebook, find me on Linkedin, make a comment below, look for me on Google+ or send me an Email: victoria@thebritishberliner.com

If you like this post, please Share it! Tweet it! Or like it!

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London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!

London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!
London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!

Last week I told you six (6) easy ways to spend 48 hours in London! This is all well and good I hear you say, but how do I eat and drink without breaking the bank?

It’s true that London is known as one of the world’s most expensive cities, but amazingly, you can still eat well, and save quite a lot of money at the same time, by being diligent, keeping your eyes and ears open, and thereby saving yourself a pretty penny!

But how?

Read on….!

London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!
London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!

As breakfast, Britain has kedgeree (with origins in India). Kedgeree was very popular in Victorian times and is a mixed breakfast dish of smoked haddock, rice and hard-boiled eggs, Scottish porridge (with a dash of whisky for cold days), the all-day breakfast or the full English breakfast known as “a fry up.”

Book your hotel here!

Get yourself a full English breakfast or an all-day breakfast, otherwise known as a "a fry up." Yum!
Get yourself a full English breakfast or an all-day breakfast, otherwise known as a “a fry up.”
Yum!

A full English breakfast generally consists of slices of toast, rashers of bacon, fried sausages, fried mushrooms, fried or scrambled eggs, fried tomatoes, black pudding, and a dollop of baked beans, accompanied by ketchup or HP brown sauce! It could also sometimes involve hash browns or a portion of chips!

London is flushed with gastro pubs and fancy restaurants. Skip all that and go for an even more authentic touch of a “greasy spoon” otherwise known as a local cafe.  Go local and try breakfast there. I was able to have fried egg and toast and a mug of “workman’s tea for just £3.10. Many places have breakfast before 11:00 a.m. and for under £4.00.

If you’re really vigilant, you can find some places charging just £1.50!

A lovely bowl of porridge, milk & honey. And if you’re so inclined, a dash of whisky too!
A lovely bowl of porridge, milk & honey. And if you’re so inclined, a dash of whisky too!
  • GET YOURSELF A SANDWICH: Legend has it that “sandwiches” existed over 2,000 year ago however, an English aristocrat is credited with making the word “sandwich” popular.

In 1762, John Montagu, the 4th Earl of Sandwich, asked for meat to be served between slices of bread, in order not to disturb a gambling game of cards.  From then on, people started to ask for “the same as Sandwich!”

A sandwich anyone?
A sandwich anyone?

In Britain, pretty much every shop, supermarket and pub, will sell you a large variety of wonderful sandwiches, spanning from an egg and cheese sandwich to a chicken and chorizo one. I usually get myself a lovely prawn and cocktail sandwich, but this time I had a British outdoor – bred Wiltshire cured ham hock, and extra mature Barber’s West Country cheddar cheese sandwich, covered by sweet, tangy onion, and ale chutney and mayonnaise, accompanied by a mixture of spinach and rocket salad!

In Britain, pretty much every shop, supermarket and pub, will sell you a large variety of wonderful sandwiches!
In Britain, pretty much every shop, supermarket and pub, will sell you a large variety of wonderful sandwiches!

Sandwiches are a staple!

If you went to a supermarket and took the “meal deal” which includes a sandwich pack, a packet of crisps or potato chips, and a soft drink, lunch would generally not cost more than £4.30!

  • HAVE A “CITY” LUNCH: Many restaurants that happen to be located in the “city” have specially-priced lunches. You can find them in the banking, finance and shopping districts.

I decided to go to Mayfair.

I decided to go to genteel Mayfair!
I decided to go to genteel Mayfair!

For those of you who don’t know, Mayfair is in one of the most exclusive real estate, residential and shopping areas in London, as well as the largest concentration of five-star hotels, global corporate head-quarters and prominent embassies!

The restaurant I chose was just one minute from The Ritz London hotel and was called Quaglino’s.

Book your hotel here!

The restaurant I chose was just one minute from The Ritz London hotel and was called Quaglino's!
The restaurant I chose was just one minute from The Ritz London hotel and was called Quaglino’s!

I had the “bar lunch” on the mezzanine level next to the cocktail bar, which was a main course and a glass of wine for £10.00!

I ordered the Quaglino’s Fish and Chips with a small turret of mushy peas-mint sauce, a small turret of tartar sauce, half a lemon, and a glass of white wine.

The bill with a service charge of 12.5% turned out to be only £11.25!

This is what the fish and chips looked like, except my meal came with a tiny turret of mushy peas-mint sauce, tartar sauce and a glass of white wine too! ©VisitBritain
This is what the fish and chips looked like, except my meal came with a tiny turret of mushy peas-mint sauce, tartar sauce and a glass of white wine too!
©VisitBritain
  • SPLASH OUT ON A FANCY DINNER: For the month of January and February, twenty-two fine dining / top London restaurants offered specially-priced menus from only £15.00. Sponsored by the London Evening Standard newspaper, which believed that everyone could afford to eat at the best places, for only a fraction of the cost. The offer was a set-priced two course lunch or dinner including wine, for £15.00, a set-priced two course lunch or dinner including a glass of champagne, for £20.00 or £25.00 per person!

I decided to reserve a table at the French Restaurant: Le Pont De La Tour.

Le Pont de la Tour’s French outside terrace. You can clearly see the Tower of London.
Le Pont de la Tour’s French outside terrace. You can clearly see the Tower of London.

Le Pont De La Tour is a traditional French Restaurant that combines Parisian chic with a modern twist, and fabulous views of Tower Bridge, the River Thames, and the London Skyline. I had made a reservation for a table as close to the riverside terrace as possible, as it was too cold to actually have dinner on the terrace. The restaurant happily obliged.

The service was impeccable.

I had picked the restaurant because the end of my city of London walking tour was on the other side of Tower Bridge. I arrived a little early and was offered the possibility to have a drink at the bar so I ordered Japanese beer! At 6 p.m. sharp, I was welcomed again, and escorted to my seat which was the exact table that I had requested: the inner terrace with a view of Tower Bridge.

Tables set for lunch & dinner at Le Pont de la Tour!
Tables set for lunch & dinner at Le Pont de la Tour!

The French and Italian waiters were very obliging and helpful, and made me feel extremely welcome, as I was on my own. The meal I picked was the Evening Standard Meal Special – a set-priced two course dinner including a glass of champagne – for a stupendous price of £20.00!

I had raviolo of braised beef, buttered spinach, and horseradish velouté for my first course, accompanied by fresh, home-made rice-flour-potato bread, and a small platter of butter.

Raviolo of braised beef, buttered spinach, and horseradish velouté!
Raviolo of braised beef, buttered spinach, and horseradish velouté!

Roasted pheasant breast, chou farcie, parsnip puree, and wild mushroom sauce for my second course,

Roasted pheasant breast, chou farcie, parsnip puree, and wild mushroom sauce!
Roasted pheasant breast, chou farcie, parsnip puree, and wild mushroom sauce!

and a lovely glass of bubbly champagne.

A lovely glass of bubbly champagne!
A lovely glass of bubbly champagne!

They even gave me a plate of petit fours.

On the house.

How nice of them!

A plate of Petit Fours!
A plate of Petit Fours!

The servings were timely and the meals were served hot, and even though these prices were economical, the service wasn’t. I really had a good, comfortable time!

And the damage?

One glass of Japanese beer, two courses, a glass of champagne and a service charge of 12.5%, came to a fabulous cost of £27.56.

So for two days in London a total cost of £46.22 (including the service charge)! That’s £23.11, and therefore less than £25.00 per day!

Hurrah!

Book your hotel here!

London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!
London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!

For more information contact: Quaglino’s. You can enjoy a selection of light snacks and quick lunch dishes from Monday to Saturday for only £10.00, with a glass of wine, at the bar.

For more information contact: Le Pont De La Tour. Enjoy a set-price 2 course lunch or dinner for £15, £20, or £25 per person, whilst looking at fabulous views of the River Thames and London’s Tower Bridge.

For more information contact: London Evening Standard. For specially selected meals, go out and enjoy London with various restaurant offers, at a great selection of leading restaurants.

No voucher or registration details are necessary.

Just reserve your table online or make a telephone reservation. Three course meals are also available and the offer is valid until 23rd February (excluding Valentine’s Day), 2014.

Book your hotel here!

LONDON CALLING: HOW TO EAT AND DRINK FOR UNDER £25 OR $30 A DAY (INCLUDING THE SERVICE CHARGE)!!

Me, taking a selfie of myself!
Me, taking a selfie of myself!

This article is not sponsored and all opinions are my absolute own.

You don’t have to be afraid of London prices, as you now know the secret to by-passing the cost!

Look for specially selected menus for specific times of the day, or times of the year.

A red double-decker London Routemaster bus, pimped up & decorated!
A red double-decker London Routemaster bus, pimped up & decorated!

Watch this space!

Note! I never travel without insurance as you never know what might happen.

I learnt my lesson in Spain. And obviously, in countries like Qatar, where technically the risk is higher, I can’t imagine going that far beyond, WITHOUT INSURANCE. No siree! You can get yours here, at World Nomads!

Please note that there are now affiliate links (for the very first time) connected to this post. Please consider using the links, because every time some sort of accommodation or travel insurance is booked via my links I get a little percentage, but at no extra cost to yourself!

A win-win for all!

Thanks a million!

London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!
London Calling: How to eat and drink for under £25 or $30 a day (including the service charge)!!

Have you ever had an English breakfast? Have you been to a fine dining restaurant in London? What do you think of my London food guide? Have your say!

See you in Berlin.

If you have any questions send me a tweet, talk to me on Facebook, find me on Linkedin, make a comment below, look for me on Google+ or send me an Email: victoria@thebritishberliner.com

If you like this post, please Share it! Tweet it! Or like it!