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Premier League Travel Tips

london Premier League Travel Tips

There are many who that think a prerequisite to being a ëtrue supporterí of a club is living in relatively close proximity to that club. However, there are many who donít have the luxury of watching in person week in, week out but are still diehard supporters of their club nonetheless.

But if youíre one of those faraway fans who finally has the chance to travel to England and live the dream of seeing Premier League football up close and personal, itís imperative that you have a trip to remember. It’s a given that you should invest in some travel insurance before you set off for Liverpool, London, Manchester, or elsewhere, but there are several other helpful tips that will go a long way in ensuring that your trip goes as well as possible.

1. Plan ahead

Itís exciting to think about impulsively hopping on a plane to England and winging it, but for those who arenít able to do so, the wise idea is to plan as much as possible well in advance.

Is there a specific match you want to see? Would you like to see one match, multiple matches in one city, or multiple matches in multiple cities? How much time would you like to devote to other activities like sightseeing? Those are all factors that must be considered when deciding on the time and duration of your trip.

Think ahead and research sights, restaurants, activities, and so forth, and find out the best times to do those things. That way, youíll have a good idea about how much you want to and can fit in and how much your travel budget should be.

2. Book travel and accommodations as early as possible

Once youíve decided on the ëwhen?ë and ëwhereí, itís time to make the arrangements. You can save a lot of money – and headaches – by booking your flights and hotel(s) well in advance. A trip like this one is where travel-related cards or memberships are handy, but if you donít have those, make full use of the Internetís vast resources to ensure you get the best rates.

Take note that rates vary based on time of week, time of year, and holidays, and when it comes to hotels, the area and proximity to noteworthy attractions also come into play. But if youíre set on traveling at a certain time or staying at a certain hotel in a certain area, booking early will help you save a lot of money and to get the flight and room(s) you want.

Check out the rates and benefits airlines and hotels offer through direct booking and compare with rates on the webís many discount travel sites before clicking or calling. On discount travel sites, you can immediately compare several rates at once and perhaps save a chunk on a flight + hotel package deal. But direct booking has benefits, especially if you intend to use that airline or hotel chain again in the future or if there are any additional advance purchase discounts on top of what you get by smartly booking early.

When deciding, be mindful of non-refundable rates or how late you have to make changes to or cancel tickets and reservations, because thereís always a chance something could come up that throws a wrench into your plans, or you may well decide to depart a day earlier or add a day or two to the end of your stay.

3. Fully immerse yourself

Thereës nothing at all wrong with taking in popular tourist attractions and visiting the well-known places, but donít be afraid to step outside your itinerary.

It doesnít mean you have to completely ditch whatís on those written or typed sheets of paper, but if youíve ever watched a travel program or two, thereís one tip thatís always a constant: listen to the locals. Donít hesitate to those most in the know about where to go and what to do, whether itís the person who checks you in at your hotel, a waiter in a restaurant, the people you meet at the stadium, or even a complete stranger out and about.

Where do they eat, shop, or go for a drink? What places should be avoided? Be friendly, have an open mind, and even if a recommendation or two doesnít end up being your cup of tea, you could uncover some pretty special (and perhaps budget-friendly) spots.

And remember, even though there are only 24 hours in a day, you can catch up on your sleep when youíre back home! Donít overdo it, but balance fitting in as much as you can with giving yourself enough time to fully enjoy each experience.

4. Make wise decisions about money and valuables

Itíd be nice to think that all people you encounter will be friendly and helpful, but thatís not the case, so you must exercise caution.

There will be places where cash is required, but think in advance how much you might need and donít take more than that. And though itís a common-sense rule, it still bears saying that being flashy with your money is an absolute no-no.

When youíre out and about, try to look more like a local and less like a tourist, and use common sense when it comes to things like expensive (or expensive-looking) jewelry, clothing, and electronics. If itís something you would regret losing (whether by theft or your own forgetfulness), leave it at home. And whatever you do, always be aware of your surroundings and be smart about where you go, what time you go, and who youíre around.

Also, donít leave money, jewelry, electronics, or other valuables out in the open in your hotel room. If you can get a safe, make use of it.

5. Have fun!

Out of all possible tips, this is the most important one. Being able to see your favorite club win would be ideal, but donít let that make or break your trip. Enjoy the football, but more importantly, make memories youíll cherish for a lifetime, and hopefully a few new friends along the way as well.

Eddie Griffin writes for Soccerlens.com.

This entry was posted in Leagues: EPL, Premier League. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Premier League Travel Tips

  1. QPR_Fan says:

    Good post! Gonna travel next year with my kid who is 12 years old for some F1 and football. Nothing big tho… Just around Asia. Pretty sure QPR is gonna play at Malaysia for some friendly matches.

  2. Harry says:

    My wife and i plan on taking a trip to London for our anniversary next year (October) and I was wondering:

    1. Which is better? traveling in September or October weather wise and holiday wise?

    2. Part of my trip I wanted to take a day to go to Manchester. How long does it take to get there and how many trains will I need to catch?

    3. I also heard (I think from you guys) that if you plan on touring a stadium, you have to book ahead of time. How do you go about this?

    4. What’s the etiquette on wearing your favorite kit in certain parts of London?

    5. I know this may be crazy to but any recommendations to buying kits and other apparel while there? I am a tall guy (6’4″) and usually a 2XL or 3XL is my range and if there are any shops that sell larger sized gear would be helpful.

    • trickybrkn says:

      Only advice to Americans in England is, don’t bother going into the home support pub pre match with an away kit. And if you are traveling to an away match, check out your support’s fan pages and OS for coaches (buses) or trains that will take you to the match. It will be a great way to meet like minded fans, and you get to walking singing with your team. As sometimes arriving with your Man U kit alone might cause some trouble if you end up being the only red in a sea of blue. For reference sake see this video… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yP5J9qD73rQ

  3. Evan says:

    What about getting tickets to EPL matches? I have traveled a lot and know those general suggestions. But I am a much less adept at actually acquiring tickets to matches I want to see. I am going at the end of November. any suggestions or help is appreciated!

  4. SteveE says:

    Saw Arsenal vs Wolverhampton in Feb. For tickets I went through Arsenal America. It was a pretty good deal, but they screwed up one set of tickets for the supporters for the match. Since I at least had my phone which could jump on wifi, I was able to communicate with them easily. I registered pretty early and as soon as the tickets were available for request I jumped on it. The big games are hard to get for the supporters clubs so if you don’t care about your opponent, go for a smaller team. If you have a phone or tablet with wifi, take it so you can get last minute details if there are any

    Watch the pubs you step into. I walked into the Hoop and Toy (I think) in Central/West London (south of Hyde Park). We got weird looks wearing red and having a track jacket with jersey on. The bartender said I was lucky it was his favorite club because it wasn’t an Arsenal friendly bar. No one bugged us. Chatted one drunk guy up who knew we were Americans, it was fine. Watch signs outside pubs though, saw more then a few that said no team colors which threw me off.

    Know how long it takes to get there. Get there early. Getting home could be crazy. We waited about an hour for the tube, wasn’t expecting that craziness.

    Overall just dive in, it is a lot of fun going to games over there. I think the day I was there was the ManU/ManCity game and everyone watched on the concourse before the game. It was weird to see a nearly empty stadium 20 minutes before kick, then all the sudden fill up in no time.

  5. USFan8 says:

    I read this with one day to go before my wife and I leave for London. We will be going to see our first EPL Match Tottenham v Arsenal. We have been watching the EPL avidly now for 5 years after the 2006 World Cup.

    This was a great read and agree with the all the advice Eddie gives. We started planning before the fixture list even came out. We are neutral fans with a goal of watching a match live. My wife’s favorite line “We are just beggars for good football.” We made sure well in advance that we would not be traveling to England during an international break. For those of you planning to go during October be aware that there is an international break the 2nd weekend in October! Next step in the planning was what city would give us the best chance to see a match? That for us was London with the high volume of teams. As soon as the fixture list came out we scanned the fixtures to pick the best match. The North London Derby jumped out at us immediately! It also helped that we have a friend in England that could help us get the tickets.

    Looking to fully immerse ourselves and enjoy ever moment. I told my wife now that we will be seeing a match live we may not be neutrals when we return state side.

    @trickybrkn the video you linked to is the reason we will be wearing neutral colors. :)

    LAST piece of advice! I highly highly recommend that you download and read the FREE EPL Travel Guide!
    Read it front to cover http://epltalk.com/epl-travel-guide

  6. AJS says:

    I have a trip panned for early December this will cover the following:

    Saturday – Spurs v. Bolton at White Hart Lane
    Sunday – Everton v. Stoke at Goodison
    Monday – Anfield tour; Fulham v. Liverpool at Craven Cottage
    Tuesday – Emirates tour; Chelsea v. Valenica at Stamford Bridge

    I’ve got my tickets and accommodations booked, but would welcome any tips on restaurants/pubs (I’m a Spurs supporter), going to games in these places, etc.

    Thanks!

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