Most of you will roll their eyes at being told to stay safe during the hottest days of the year. Understandably so. You all know how to keep cool, where to go, what to avoid and that of course we need plenty of fluids in us to stay well hydrated when the sun is out. But please trust me when I tell you that a heat wave in London isn’t like any other heat wave. At least not if you have to go to work every day, regardless of temperatures and distance. It’s a completely different story from being a tourist where you decide at your own leisure how much or little you want to do and when. So if you’re not too rushed off your feet, maybe you can spare a few minutes to carry on reading and potentially pick up a few refreshing ideas on how to navigate through London without collapsing on the tube during this tropical climate. I promise to keep it short ;)
I’ve already mentioned the good old “drink plenty of water” in the induction but this point is so very important that it just has to be mentioned one more time. There are loads of supermarkets and sweetshops around London and sometimes they even hand out free bottles directly at the tube station but please don’t rely on that. If you want to save money, make sure you bring a reusable bottle with you that can be filled with fresh drinking water by any coffee shop across London free of charge.
Please remember that there is no air conditioning in London’s underground system due to the tunnels dating back to Victorian times. The fact that we still use the very same tunnels now goes to show how well the Victorians built everything but sadly air cons weren't invented yet back then. So if you think it’s hot in the streets, expect even higher temperatures underground in the stations and especially inside the trains. There are of course some newer trains and stations already where air cons have been installed but again please don’t rely on that being the case for your full journey. Dress lightly and maybe even bring a battery operated mini fan you can use if it gets too much.
Expect more delays and therefore allow more time to reach your destination. It is hard enough to travel through any city when temperatures are scorching and if you’re having to run for connecting busses, trains or tubes it will naturally make you even hotter and increase the risk of your body overheating.
Please wear sun cream to avoid burning your skin and if at all possible also wear a hat or baseball cap so you don’t get a heat stroke. Both have terrible after effects and are really not worth skimping on the cream and hat.
Last but not least, everybody reacts different to the heat. Some take it very well, others are more delicate. There is no shame in having difficulties with hot weather and in particular if you have any ongoing health issues like asthma or heart problems, please take extra caution. If possible, take someone with you when you travel in your spare time and if you must travel alone to get to your workplace or host family, always check in with your friends once the destination has been reached so others know you’re okay. Vice versa it would be lovely if you can check in on your friends too making sure they are also alright. If you feel like you are about to faint or need medical attention for whatever reason, don’t hesitate to approach staff working at underground stations, the bus driver or even fellow passengers. People in London are a lot more helpful than they may seem so don’t be shy!
I promised to keep it short so this is the end. If you are unsure about anything at all don’t hesitate to contact your country manager at ADC College. In a real case of emergency remember the UK’s emergency line is 999!
All warnings aside I hope you get to enjoy some of the hot weather after work or on weekends. Maybe dip your feet in a pond or indulge in plenty of delicious ice cream. Happy Summer everyone!
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