Whenever an aspiring creative decides to look for a new city to live, the first thought that comes into mind is to relocate to a stateside city, e.g., New York and Los Angeles. For many, London is not a top choice, despite the fact that the city is renowned for being a bustling mecca. London is a city that has served as a breeding ground for creative successes for very many years.
Do not let its working city appearance fool you. When many people hear of London, some of the images that appear in their minds are those depicting a corporate scene. A scene where people keep to themselves and go about their business with their heads down all day. However, this is not an accurate depiction of the city as it also has a very creative scene.
It acts as a home to many artists with thriving careers. London also happens to be home to some of the most influential startups, advertising agencies and design studios in the world. And as much as it already has many artists and creatives residing in it, this does not mean that there is no room for more.
If anything, its diversity helps make it the ideal location for any person looking for like-minded persons. It is the place to visit when you want to collaborate with others or attain your creative goals.
Having said this, it is worth pointing out that London, like any other destination in the world, comes with its own set of challenges. Armed with the right information, this should not act as a deterrent. The following is a guide on how to survive living and working in London as an artist or creative.
To say that the rent in London is astronomical would be an understatement. There is, therefore, no shame for you to spend the first few weeks bumping on a friends’ couch. But be sure to show your gratitude to your friend by ensuring that there is a steady supply of beer and food.
The next challenge will be for you to find your own place as soon as you have a reliable income stream. Some of the features to consider will include proximity to nearby shops and public transportation and the security of the neighborhood.
A good idea would be for you to consider sharing an apartment with someone you know and trust. It is an easy way to share your living expenses. The fact that London is a tech advanced city means that you can use numerous ways to save on most of your living expenses, e.g., furnishing the apartment.
A good example of this would be on furnishing the bedroom, i.e., the mattress. A mattress is not something that you can carry with you on the bus when relocating. As such, you will need to find a reliable online store where you can purchase a quality mattress.
The mattress brand you choose to buy is important. As a creative, you need to invest in something comfortable, reliable, and durable. In this case, consider buying a Casper mattress. The mattress functions as a bed in a box. The good thing about it is that it will be delivered straight to your residence.
If you are to live in London, you will need a comfortable bed. This is not something that you can afford to live without. The key to getting better sleep is to get yourself a good foam mattress. Pair it with a Casper pillow and you will be guaranteed to get better sleep. Your health and productivity will also increase significantly.
You can always take advantage of the 100-day trial period to give it a test run. Three months should be enough for you to make a decision on whether to keep the mattress or to send it back to its sellers.
The Tube, black cabs, and red buses are some of the transportation methods that make London the iconic city it is today. It is recommended that you register with the transport department using your bank card as soon as you have relocated to the city. You should also consider picking up an Oyster card to make it easier for you to move around the city.
If the distance between your home and your workplace is longer, consider using the Underground. Rely on online resources to learn how it works and how much it costs for you to shuttle from one place to another. If cost is an issue, consider using buses to travel to your various locations.
With buses, be prepared to spend a few hours sitting in traffic each day. Try walking whenever possible to save on expenses.
If in search of a good reason to cook your own food and drink tap water, then look no further than the cost that comes with choosing alternatives in London. Even if you are earning a tidy sum from your creativity, saving the little amount you earn can go a long way into helping you fund your future projects. It also makes it easier for you to further your chosen career path.
Apart from avoiding junk food and not eating out, you can also be on the lookout for websites that offer discounts, coupons, and promo codes. Note that London is home to many festivals, museums, and art exhibitions which you can easily attend free of charge. You, therefore, do not need to spend your money for you to socialize, interact with, and meet new people.
When shopping for groceries, you can consider some of the popular options such as Lidl, Iceland, ASDA, and Aldi. You should find all the groceries you need in these locations. If your tastes call for something extra, consider Pizza Express, Nandos, and Zizzi.
All these provide discounts to clients who download their official applications or subscribe to their newsletters. Discounts naturally provide you with an alternative to save money. Considering that some days are likely to be really tough on you, you can check Time Out and Londonist for information on events offering free alcohol to attendees.
As a creative, you need a good workspace for you to express your creativity. London being home to many creative freelancers means that it is also filled with co-working spaces. There is no shortage of workspaces in and around the city perimeter.
Popular options include The Beehive, WeWork, and Hackney Cogs. Some of the amenities included in this working spaces include Wi-Fi, meeting rooms, desk, and coffee. Creatives looking to work in such spaces will normally need to shell out between €150-€250 per month.
While this amount may seem steep for some, the workspaces do provide an ideal environment for creatives to collaborate with others. You will also get to learn the ropes of living in the big city.
If you cannot afford this, you can always opt to use the Google Shoreditch campus. It offers learning programs, Wi-Fi, and free membership to creatives in the city.
When you are done with creative working, furniture shopping, rent-paying, and Tube riding, you can trust that London is a city that will always provide you with lots of opportunities. There is always something for you to do or see.
You can never run out of things to do, places to visit, people to meet, and opportunities to capitalize on during your time in England’s capital. It is upon you to take advantage of your passion, creativity, persistence, and determination to start building a strong foundation for you and your family.