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How to Plan a Trip to England: Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: September 8, 2022

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Sheep on hillside at Cotswold village, Chipping Campden in England, with Gothic architecture in the background

Chipping Campden village in the Cotswold district of Gloucestershire, England

England is a fascinating island nation with deep heritage and culture, and breathtaking scenery. Below are some frequently asked questions to which visitors seek answers.

Castles and cathedrals give way to cobbled-street villages and picturesque countryside havens, while classic cuisine can be enjoyed in cozy pubs and restaurants along river banks.

When should you visit, how long should you stay, what to expect there, and many other in-destination curiosities are just a few things travelers to England want to know. Look for the answers to your questions here.

  1. Is England open to American travelers?
  2. When is the best time to visit England?
  3. How many days should I spend in England?
  4. Why is England popular?
  5. What are the most popular places in England?
  6. What should I do on my trip to England?
  7. What foods should I try in England?
  8. What is a traditional English tea?
  9. Can I visit other countries with England?
  10. How should I get around England?
  11. What voltage and plugs do they use in England?
  12. Is England good for family vacations?
  13. Is England suitable for senior travelers?
  14. Is England suitable for couples or honeymooners?
  15. Is England safe for travel?
  16. What vaccinations do I need to travel to England?
  17. What airports should I fly into?
  18. What are the visa and passport requirements for visiting England?
  19. What currency is used in England?
  20. Do I tip in England?
  21. How can Zicasso help me plan my trip to England?
  22. Where can I learn more about visiting England?

Is England open to American travelers?

England is open to American travelers.

The country offers many convenient connections and remains a popular vacation choice for those looking for a variety of activities, excursions, and opportunities. If you are planning to visit just England, you will need to ensure your passport is valid for the duration of your stay. Entry conditions are contingent upon the British government, but a Zicasso travel specialist will always provide you with any information and necessary steps if anything changes between planning and departure.

For more ideas on where you can visit without restrictions, view Where Americans Can Travel Right Now.

Learn more: Plan Your Trip to England

When is the best time to visit England?

The best time to visit England is during the summer months of June to August. Warm weather and scattered sunny days bring the landscape to life and the long days offer plenty of opportunities to explore cities, villages, and partake in outdoor adventures.

School summer vacations dictate the time of travel for many American families and the English weather certainly delivers ideal conditions to explore from north to south. Enjoy the beautiful gardens that May and June present and soak up the warm weather in July and August.

For visitors looking to avoid crowds and queues, consider visiting just before the busy months of June to August and enjoy the English spring in April and May or the start of fall in September and October.

Learn more: Best Time to Visit England

How many days should I spend in England?

You should consider a two-week stay to fully enjoy the traditions, culture, and adventures the country presents.

For travelers with limited time, focusing on one destination such as London as a base will offer you the chance to explore this key city and its surrounding gems in as little as five days.

England creates the perfect base from which to explore other UK destinations or visit nearby Europe, and depending on how far you want your travels to take you, will determine how many days you need overseas.

Why is England popular?

England’s popularity has a lot to do with its ancient history and rich traditions. It is the home of heroes and villains, with castles, palaces, and monuments dating back centuries.

The monarchy is a huge pull for tourists, with interactive experiences such as witnessing the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace and being part of the crowd at the Trooping of the Colour ceremony, which marks the British sovereign’s birthday each year.

The country is home to several UNESCO World Heritage Sites, breathtaking scenery, charming towns, and quaint villages, making it easy to combine outdoor adventure, architectural discoveries, and coastal escapes in one destination.

What are the most popular places in England?

Here is a list of the eight most popular places to visit:

  • London
  • Bath
  • Windsor
  • The Cotswolds
  • York
  • Canterbury
  • Manchester
  • Lake District

The 8 Best Places to Visit in England demonstrate the diversity of the country and the different experiences you can enjoy. From a Michelin-starred restaurant in London to a gorgeous garden in the Lake District, you can find the right place for you with more information on the cities, rural escapes, and historical settings.

What should I do on my trip to England?

England’s charm comes in many forms, from fascinating historical sights to quaint village squares and outdoor activities set among breathtaking scenery. Here are some ideas on what you can do on a trip to England:

  • Discover the high streets of London on a walking tour, either fully guided or on your own, seeing key sites such as the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, Houses of Parliament, and Knightsbridge stores.
  • Explore London and other popular cities at your own pace.
  • Jump on a double-decker bus and discover towns and villages surrounding the capital city, weaving through narrow streets and past colorful neighborhoods.
  • Spend time in taverns and pubs lapping up local fare. Enjoy a pint and a pie or the traditional favorite, fish and chips.
  • Step into the shoes of royalty for a day when visiting castles and palaces scattered throughout the country, some offering gardens you can get lost in for a while as you savor images of bygone times.
  • Discover the university cities of Oxford and Cambridge as you wander the courtyards and classrooms of two of England’s most famous tertiary schools.
  • Meander through the rich green landscapes of the Cotswolds, absorbing archetypal English vistas and flowering gardens that dance with color.
  • Witness England through the eyes of its great storytellers, embarking on tours that uncover the worlds of Shakespeare and Jane Austin.
  • Put on the hiking boots and amble through the glorious landscapes of the Lake District, the endless green valleys dotted with lakes, biking trails, and captivating scenery.

Our list focuses on some of the best things to do in England and you can find more ideas with our Top 10 Things to Do in England.

What foods should I try in England?

When we think of English food, a few classics come to mind, and while these deserve a mention, there are many other wonderful dishes to whet the appetite when in England.

  • Beef wellington, a classic dish of beef coated in pate and wrapped in phyllo pastry
  • English breakfast, eggs, bacon, toast, mushrooms, baked beans, pork sausages, and optional black pudding
  • Fried fish and chips
  • Scotch eggs, eggs wrapped in sausage meat and coated in breadcrumbs, then baked or fried
  • Bangers and mash, pork sausage and mashed potatoes, a staple in many homes
  • Sticky toffee pudding

What is a traditional English tea?

A traditional English tea is a delight to take part in and consists of an array of baked treats and sandwiches, accompanied by a choice of teas.

Low tea is enjoyed in a more chilled atmosphere, where a casual gathering sets the mood, while high tea is the more popular version of this favorite English pastime. It comprises tables set with delights ranging from cakes to finger sandwiches, quiches, and fruit.

Visit some of London’s premier shopping stores, such as Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, for the ultimate high tea experience, taking your time to enjoy not just the goodies in front of you, but the surrounding ambiance too.

Can I visit other countries with England?

England has connections to the broader United Kingdom and greater Europe. Easy flights across Europe make it a natural hub for starting a larger continental vacation and there are the Chunnel services that connect London to Paris and Amsterdam.

Whether driving, flying, taking a ferry, or the train, some of the best destinations to pair with England include:

  • Wales
  • Scotland
  • Ireland
  • France
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • The Netherlands
  • Iceland
  • Italy

Learn more: UK Tours & VacationsTours of England, Ireland & Scotland

How should I get around England?

There are many ways to get around England. From north to south, east to west, discovering it takes you down narrow village roads, across expansive freeways, and along stretches of train tracks.

Travel by private car through cities for a more intimate and personalized experience or explore in a traditional black taxicab. Navigate London’s underground on the Tube or transfer by double-decker bus for a ride through towns and cities.

Take a train through England’s expansive rail network, charter a boat to travel from one end of the Thames to another, or discover more of England by flying between main hubs located all around the country when traveling longer distances.

What voltage and plugs do they use in England?

England’s power is 230v and plug points have an on/off switch that needs to be on for electricity to be delivered.

Plugs are Type G, which have 3 rectangular pins.

Cameras, computers, and cellphones run on a 110v-240v, so no need to bring converters for those. However, remember to leave your hair dryers and hair straighteners at home as they will not work.

Is England good for family vacations?

England offers so much more than castles, cathedrals, and pubs, and is certainly a suitable destination for families.

Wandering around London for a few days will open the eyes of all travelers to architectural wonders such as the Tower of London or Buckingham Palace, complimented by the changing of the guard. Must-see sights such as Big Ben and Tower Bridge will impress almost as much as seeing it all from high up on the London Eye.

The English countryside boasts outdoor activities that range from archery to kayaking and bicycle trails to picnics in castle gardens, ensuring young visitors are never at a loss for something to do. Enjoy national monuments, intriguing Stonehenge, and some beach time during your family vacation.

From visiting the fantastical world of Harry Potter to enjoying the storybook ambiance of the countryside, the Top 6 Things to Do in London with Family offers suggestions on things you can do with kids of all ages. Find more inspiration and ideas with sample itineraries from our Best England Family Tours.

Is England suitable for senior travelers?

England is one of the best destinations for senior travelers. From custom-designed itineraries to group adventures that span a couple of weeks, options to explore England as a senior are many and varied.

Quaint towns and villages offer quiet places to sit and sip a cup of tea or coffee, while the sprawling countryside paints a picture of calm. Visit key historical sights in cities and beyond at a leisurely pace.

From cultural tours to cuisine-focused trips, traveling on England Tours for Seniors is an adventure that captures a fascinating past and shares a modern twist on colonial charm.

Is England suitable for couples or honeymooners?

With scenic landscapes, storybook architecture, and myriad couple-focused experiences, England is most definitely a destination to consider for romance.

With vistas that seemingly never end, cozy villages that ooze romance, and big cities with restaurants and hotels set in unique locations, couples are assured of intimacy wherever they travel in England.

Escape to the countryside havens of the Cotswolds or Lake District where quaint inns and still settings welcome you. Discover rich history in cathedrals and palaces where romantic photo opportunities seem to pop out at you, travel by train through hills and dales, or enjoy a romantic boat ride on the Thames.

Learn more: 7 Most Romantic Places to Visit in England for Couples

Is England safe for travel?

England is a safe country to visit for all types of travelers.

There are sophisticated transport systems, ideally located hotels and guest houses, and roadways and train tracks that connect destinations.

Friendly locals are always happy to give directions and answer any questions you may have when touring England. As with any destination, larger cities do have instances of petty crime, but tourists are rarely affected.

What vaccinations do I need to travel to England?

You can find the complete list of vaccination recommendations through the CDC United Kingdom Vaccination Information, though vaccinations are not mandatory. You should always consult your doctor or a travel nurse for the best medical advice before taking your trip.

What airports should I fly into?

England’s international airports are located in the north and south of the country, connecting visitors to major cities, countryside getaways, and beach escapes. Here is a list of the main airports:

  • Heathrow Airport (LHR)
  • Gatwick Airport (LGW)
  • London City Airport (LCY)
  • Luton Airport (LTN)
  • Manchester Airport (MAN)

What are the visa and passport requirements for visiting England?

US citizens do not require a visa to enter England on vacation, making planning a trip to this much-loved destination easy. You will be allowed into the country for 90 days and need to ensure your passport is valid for six months from your return date to the USA.

For those looking to extend to a destination in Europe, you will need to ensure your passport is valid for six months from the time you plan to return to the USA.

What currency is used in England?

The English work with the Great British pound or GBP (£)

The Great British pound is paper and coin tender, and accepted throughout Great Britain. ATMs are located all over the country in safe and convenient locations, and credit cards are widely used in restaurants, stores, and markets, and when paying for accommodations or tours not pre-booked.

Do I tip in England?

Tipping is not usually expected in England, but is appreciated, with a standard 10% being the norm in restaurants and bars. However, this is not a standard practice among locals. Giving bellboys and porters a couple of pounds as a thank you is a welcome way to demonstrate gratitude for their assistance.

How can Zicasso help me plan my trip to England?

Our England Tours & Vacations are a collection of curated trips where you can get a better idea of what your itinerary may look like.

You can select a sample trip that aligns with your ideal vacation, be it a family trip, honeymoon, adventure tour, or something else. These sample trips are often a stepping stone from which our travelers create unique itineraries.

When you are ready, you can complete a Trip Request to begin planning your vacation. We ask for more information on where you would like to go, how long you would like to spend in England, the size of your party, and traveler ages to help streamline your planning.

You can also provide additional ideas and set a travel budget, after which our Travel Care team will contact you to match you with a top England travel specialist. Our England travel specialists will use their expertise and understanding of your preferences to curate your dream vacation.

Learn more: How to Plan Your Zicasso Trip in 4 Easy StepsHow to Plan Your Zicasso Trip Budget in 3 Easy Steps

Where can I learn more about visiting England?

Castle Combe, England's most beautiful village

Castle Combe village in the Costwolds, England

From London’s high streets and vibrant West End theater district to the quiet gardens of Hampton Court or best-kept secrets of Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill, planning your English adventure will be easy and exciting.

Discover the diversity of English cities, villages, countryside havens, and all there is to experience in England by taking a look at our England Travel Guide.

Get ideas on where to go, how long to travel for, and when may be the best time to visit, and check out sample itineraries with our England Tours & Vacations to create your adventure.

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