Although there are many similarities between Australia and the UK, there are a few Manchester travel tips worth remembering. For example, did you know that Manchester has an efficient tram system? The Metrolink is a speedy way to get around and there’s a great train network as well. Use these and Greater Manchester will open up to you.
Another tip is to check your travel options when a soccer match is on. Public transport may be busier and some roads may even be closed and pedestrianised.
By and large Manchester is a safe city, but like with any overseas trip it’s important to be aware of your surroundings.
As an Australian passport holder, you won’t need to sort out UK visas before your holiday. UK tourist visas are valid for up to 6 months and can be granted at UK border control. Simply present your valid passport when asked. Proof of an onward or return journey may also be required. Keep these documents close to hand as well. Check gov.uk for all the latest UK visa information.
The UK currency is British pounds (GBP). These can be easily obtained at currency exchange outlets in Australia like Travel Money Oz. British banks and post offices offering a bureau de change service can also exchange dollars for GBP. ATM machines are everywhere, just check with your bank regarding any overseas charges for using your card. Contactless card payments are also widely accepted. For more on currency, visit the currency page.
Manchester is a very multicultural city, so you can expect a diverse range of cuisine. Curry Mile offers some of the best Indian cuisine in the whole of the UK. Make sure you don’t miss out on putting this claim to the test! Apart from curry, you’ll find a good mix of Manchester pubs serving British food favourites and restaurants offering modern dining and European dishes.
Tipping in Manchester and the UK isn’t mandatory. The minimum wage is pretty good, so tipping is usually reserved for exceptional service. You may want to tip wait staff or taxi drivers for a great experience. If this is the case, 10 per cent of the bill is sufficient. Occasionally, restaurants will automatically add gratuity to the bill, too.
The voltage and frequency in Australia and the UK are the same: 230V and 50Hz, respectively. You shouldn’t need a voltage converter when using your electrical appliances, but you will still need an adapter. The plug pins and sockets in the UK are different. Pick up an adapter at the airport, or find one in the many UK electrical stores and even in some pharmacies.
English is the primary language in Manchester, but due the city’s multiculturalism you may well hear Panjabi, Turkish, Urdu and more. Besides languages, there’s also the city’s own Mancunian accent. Considered a working-class city, hearing the Queen’s English when in Manchester is unlikely. Mancunian is often described as a broad, northern accent due to the city’s location in the UK.
Your holiday begins when you touch down at Manchester Airport. It services long-haul international flights, as well as shorter European trips and some domestic flights. There are three terminals and the airport’s located around 12km from the city centre. When departing, arrive two hours early to check in and clear security. There are plenty of shopping opportunities and restaurants to help pass the time.