What are things to be cautious of while going to Great Britain?
As a Brit I will give you some tips and warnings during your visit.
1.You will need a reasonable level of English to be able to communicate and you should not count on British people to be able to speak your language. This goes for pretty all of the U.K. with the possible exception of London.
2.Although London is our capital city, I would recommend going across the country which is best achieved by train although fares can get expensive.
3.A cheaper alternative is to use coaches. These services go to large towns and cities in the U.K. and it gives you a chance to look at the countryside.
4.If you are renting a car, remember that the U.K. drives on the left hand side of the road. Also roundabouts are very commonplace in the U.K.
5.If you visit a Public House (Pub), in most cases you will need to go to the bar to order drinks and do not assume that a waiter/waitress will come to your table.
6.Tips are usually reserved to table staff in restaurants and taxis. For the former it is usually 10% of your bill and in taxis, round up your fare to around 5–10%.
7.In Pubs, you may hear a person saying “and one for yourself” to the barman/barmaid, this is a form of tipping. As a tourist, unless you have got to know the barman/barmaid well, do not tip them like this since it can be perceived as awkward.
8.When greeting someone, greet a younger person with their title Mr. Miss. etc for the first time however they will usually be on a first name basis thereafter. Older people will take longer to be on a first name basis. Also in a formal setting, people will likely use Sir and Madam and I would advise doing the same.
9.Queuing is a very British thing and exists throughout all parts of British society. If a queue exists, find the back of the queue and join at the back. DO NOT cut in the queue.
10.Indoor smoking in all public places has been banned in the U.K. since July 2007. If you need to smoke in a restaurant or a pub, you will need to go outside.
11.If you are invited by someone to come to their home, it is considered polite to buy either a bottle of wine, flowers or another small gift to thank the host. You should try to arrive either at that time or within five minutes afterwards. It is considered impolite to arrive early and too late.
And now the warnings：
1.Be very careful when using terms such as English, British, Scottish to identify someone as some may not see themselves as such. This is especially true if you visit Northern Ireland.
2.In Northern Ireland, there are clear distinctions between Unionist and Republican areas and therefore you should avoid mentioning the Troubles if possible. If the topic arises, either ask to move on or go along and agree with the view of the community that you are in.
3.Discussion of British politics should be avoided if possible.
4.If you commit any crime no matter how minor or trivial, you will face the same punishment as a British citizen.
5.While the British people love having a drink, we are not a fan of binge drinkers. Underage drinking as well as binge drinking is a major issue within the U.K..
6.If you are having a conversation on your phone, do not talk in a loud manner.
If you follow my advice, you will have a wonderful time in the U.K. and be welcome anytime.
Have a great visit.