Today, the rise of a mobile society frequently results in people relocating internationally. For example, every year some Americans cross the Atlantic to live and work in the UK. This transition sometimes proves stressful. Consider seven key differences people frequently notice moving from Boston to London:
One: Traffic Rules Vary
One of the first differences Americans notice in the UK becomes apparent immediately: traffic lanes flow on opposite sides of the street in Boston and London. An American who drives in the British capital for the first time may experience a sensation of driving in the wrong lane. Don’t worry, this impression diminishes over the course of time.
Two: Anticipate Some Climate Differences
Another significant difference involves weather conditions. Boston typically experiences a broad range of temperatures over the course of a given year. With an average low of 22 degrees Fahrenheit in freezing January and an average high of 82 degrees Fahrenheit in blistering July, residents of Boston expect sharp differences between winter and summer.
While London also offers four distinct seasons, residents enjoy milder changes. Average temperatures fluctuate annually between 40 degrees Fahrenheit to 74 degrees Fahrenheit (a much narrower window). London usually reports less snow and more rain.
Three: London Offers Unique Historical Landmarks
One of the most striking differences between Boston and London relates to the popularity of the unique and distinctive tourist attractions in each city. Both metropolitan areas offer visitors a variety of fascinating landmarks and rich cultural exhibits.
Comparing the two locations in this respect resembles equating apples with oranges. Each possesses unique value beyond description. Visitors point out that Boston does not display as long a history as London (it became an established city just a few centuries ago).
Additionally, Boston lacks the stature of an international capital city. Yet despite these differences, it would prove foolish indeed to dismiss the importance of popular tourist attractions in either location.
One noticeable difference: London boasts numerous sites associated with the British monarchy, while Boston features several locations that figured importantly during the Colonial Era and the American Revolutionary War.
Both cities also offer visitors delightful, highly respected cultural venues for live performances, music, art, and curated collections. Visitors might easily spend weeks exploring these attractions. Consider touring both the magnificent Tower of London and the site of the Boston Tea Party sometime soon!
Four: Prepare For Television Programming Differences
Expatriates from Boston who reside in the British Isle note television programming in London lacks the diversity of U.S. television. However, they do note that in general, the British in London enjoy a higher quality of televised entertainment. Consider the differences between the award winning British drama Downton Abbey and USA-based TV productions drawing viewers in Boston (like Young Sheldon or The Connors).
Five: British Unions Exercise Clout
In the past, Boston witnessed numerous strikes instigated by labor unions. Yet today, these types of workplace disruptions occur infrequently in Massachusetts. Yet some people who have relocated to London note they often witness British unions exercising authority in terms of the distribution of services and the right to perform certain types of work. These differences likely owe much to disparities between U.S. capitalism and European socialism.
Six: London’s Subway Differs From The MBTA
One difference people from Boston notice in London involves the sheer size and extent of the impressive London subway system, “the Tube.” During the 2017-2018 period, it served over a billion travelers. It encompasses 270 stations and some 250 miles of track. People widely praise the cleanliness and timeliness of this transportation network.
While Boston’s subway may seem less satisfactory by comparison, it does function as a cog within the large Massachusetts Bay Transport Authority. The City of Boston does not invest as much in its underground train system, but does offer door-to-door paratransit services, for example.
Seven: Expect a Far Less Egalitarian Society in London
Sometimes differences in society in the UK and the USA surprise Americans who relocate to the British Isle. Some observers note limited upwards social mobility in the United Kingdom. For centuries, the English maintained a class system of titled nobles and commoners, something unfamiliar to U.S. citizens (for whom equality remains a potent political aspiration). The egalitarian society in Boston, a seat of the American Revolution, tolerates social inequalities less willingly than the culture of London (a city historically linked to the British Crown).
Whether someone relocates from Massachusetts to the UK on a temporary or a permanent basis, a Boston long-distance move requires care. By learning as much as possible about a destination address, travelers gain greater confidence. Appreciating the unique aspects of two of the world’s greatest cities, Boston and London, holds value today!