Iamnewtouk Guide

Basics

UK is overall a very tolerant and welcoming country and friendly to immigrants & visitors from all parts of planet. UK (along with U.S. and Europe) donates a lot of money for Developing Parts of planet, which is often neglected in sensational news hungry media reports. In author's opinion , UK scores much higher on Human Rights Protection Scale than many other countries the author has visited so far. If you wish to further enhance your knowledge about UK's efforts for the developing and under-developed parts of the world then please checkout the following websites
http://www.aidsportal.org
http://www.dfid.gov.uk
http://www.myplatform2.com
http://www.developments.org.uk

Note: If you are a vegetarian, you should always ask before buying any food item as name of some food items can be misleading. e.g Cheese Burger and many Mc Donald's Milkshakes (e.g. Strawberry) are also Not VEG.
Veg marked Sandwiches here can have Eggs. There are two kinds of vegetarian terms used here
1) Vegetarian - No-Meat, But Egg is OK and products from Animal Milk are also OK.
2) Vegans - Only Plant products, NO Meat, NO FIsh, No Animal Product like Eggs or Milk, Yogurt etc.

What you might call Vegetarian In Asia is actually known as Hindu-Vegetarian (food option offered in most flights) here.

Emergency No is 999 here. (112 in europe). When you call 999, Operator asks for police or ambulance? If you say Police then call is transferred to Police Department. If you find understanding their accent difficult then you can always ask them to let you talk to someone who speaks Spanish/Portuguese/Chinese/Hindi etc.


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Etiquettes

What is considered rude/inconsiderate/anti-social/taken-for-granted here (Grooming yourself for UK Culture and Social/Office Climate):-

Well every culture is different! Something which can mean "thumbs-up" in one country can mean "derogatory" in other. There are some habits/physical gestures which can be pretty normal/ok in your continent/country but here they are not liked.

1) You need to say "thank you" for every little favor! For Ex:- Cab drivers here are not supposed to handle your luggage or put it in/take it out from boot of their cab. So when they do it, they expect a "thank you". When driving, in a face to face road block situation, if someone lest you go first, they expect a "thank you" gesture in form of raising palm of your hand. The superstore counter guy/girl packs your stuff for you in carry bags, they too expect a "Thank You". Basically, nobody is a servant here. They are doing their job and for the extra nice things they do, they expect an appreciation back.
2) Honking Horn Anywhere! Breaking the Q when stuck in traffic jam, crossing roads without proper signal is all considered Rude and Uncivilised!
3) Shouting, playing loud music in tube/bus. Always check the volume of your earphone/headphone. Don't stare at people/girls in tube/bus. Especially don't stare at girls here. Its Not OK here. They might find it disturbing or irritating and might change the seats because of you. Try to giveup your seats for elderly or pregnant ladies. Click Here for Tube Etiquettes
4) Breaking the Q anywhere - Bank, postoffice, BUS Q, Ticket counter Q, Cash/ATM Machine Q ( Stay 2 steps behind the person on cash machine). You need to arrive at time if any friend/colleague is waiting. LateComing is totally totally not liked here. So always give yourself 15-30 mins grace time for Tube/metro/buss/traffic/TicketQ issues.
5) Mobile not silent in Cinema. Picking calls in Cinema is totally disliked here. I will say again. Don't pickup calls in Cinema and don't obstruct other's view by sitting high. While watching movie, when you change sitting posture, don't push the chair of person sitting infront of you. Its highly irritating. Also if you are one of those whoss legs vibrate during the movie, please don't do that as it vibrates all the seats linked with your seat because the base of seats is usually connected with each other. Also don't talk during the movie, that is so normal in some other countries, but is considered disgusting behaviour here.
6) Overtaking someone sharply when driving. Overtaking someone sharply when walking.
7) Pushing/Shoving in Tube, Bus, Shops especially places where buffet food is served.
8) Sneezing/Coughing without covering your mouth. Never go to your office when you have flu or cough n cold. Coughing disturbs other in office and is not taken as Normal. You are expected to take cough syrups or soothing lonzenges to keep the volume of your coughing in control.
9) Letting the (office/venue/lift) door shut on person coming behind you.
10) Picking things at display in shops and not putting them back nicely where they are.
11) Never treat a Waiter/Server in a rude way. Order anything with respect. "1 bacardi please" is Ok. "1 bacardi" isn't OK.
12) Always greet old people in parks with a smile. Always meet superstore counter staff with a smile. Don't forget to say "Thanks, good bye!" when leaving.
13) Don't ask for emailid/ telephone nos from strangers in first meeting. Don't ask personal Qs. Don't give out judgemental remarks based on someone's choices. Don't peep into neighbour's windows. Don't make noise after 11pm in night. In multi-floor buildings, be considerate of people living on floor below you.
14) Don't pickup/touch others' kids without their permission. Don't offer them candy etc in their care-taker's absence.
15) Don't frown when you don't like/want something. Frowning comes so natural to some people but here in UK its considered as display of disgust/repulsion.
16) Don't stand with arms folded together. Its usually a Club Bouncer's posture and is considered aggressive here.
more will be updated soon..


To find out any location in UK based on postcode or street name click www.maps.google.co.uk
To find out any local business like, Surgeries (GP), Nursing Homes, Plumbers, B&B etc click www.yell.co.uk.
To find out about your neighbourhood safety records etc see here http://www.upmystreet.co.uk

A little Note on Racism: Don't be afraid to seek help from Police. Police here is your friend. They are very friendly chaps. You should report to them any racist comment/incidence happened to you without any fear. Although most visitors/tourists have a very pleasant stay in UK with rarely any mildly-racist remark/comment made at them. London is most diverse place on planet and so least racist in UK, countryside areas in UK can have a few less-educated ppl who might spoil your day by making a mildly racist remark, overall British people are very friendly and decent people. UK Law provides you protection and compensation for every wrong thing. You should also be careful about saying a remark about any other ethnic person. London is world's most diverse city and every ethnic person here has equal rights.
Govt Report- What Qualifies As Racism?
How to Report Racist Incident In Central London - Westminster Council


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SIGHTSEEING IN LONDON / THINGS TO DO IN LONDON :-


Official London Tourism site here www.visitlondon.com


http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk - 2FOR1 London Attractions (With Train Tickets)

Check out www.LondonTravelPlanner.mobi, www.journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk or transportdirect.info to plan your journey From Point A to Point B, inside london on Train/Tube/Bus/DLR etc. Its a very useful website. It tells you the total expected journey time PLUS the Start and Destination Maps with walking route (If a walk is part of your route to reach an address) in green color.

Note: To travel on tube and buses in london you will need to buy an Oyster Pay As You Go Card from TubeStation or other TFL ticket Counters. This card will always charge you minimum fare on your local travel in london and so you don't have to worry about calculating prices and fares of your local travel inside london. If your age is less than 25 and you plan to use National Rail (Overground Trains) to see London/UK during your stay here or if you plan to use Oyster Pay As You Go Card for more than 12days in london then you will save even more if you buy a national rail young persons rail card (Costs £25 for an year) from a national rail/overground station and linking it with your Oyster Pay As You Go Card. You will save around £2 on your daily off-preak travel in london and 33% on your off-peak national rail travel outside london. Check this http://IAmNewToLondon.com/tips/TFLOysterFaresJan09Onwards.html to see how much you can save.

If Its your first time in London and you want to see the most of it within one day then best option is to buy a BusTour Ticket. They cover almost all of the important attractions in london and you can getoff or geton the buses at any of their stops. They usually include a free Thames Cruise as well (best part of day trip). Tickets can be bought on Bus but best way to get discount is either book online or from their main ticketing booths at Original London Visitor Centre Trafalgar Square (Charing Cross Station), Whitcomb Street (Piccadilly Circus) or Grosvenor Gardens (Victoria) stops.
Latest of whats happening/to see, in London here
HopOn-HopOff Bustour + Thames Cruise for £20
http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk - 2 FOR 1 London Attractions (With Train Tickets)
London Pass - Covers 55 Attractions
The website www.sustrans.org.uk has maps of all local cycle paths!
Click here for Bus Route Maps In London
http://www.railcard.co.uk ( Comprehensive information to save on train travel )
Top 10 things to see in London
Helicopter Sightseeing Flights- London/UK
Best of London In Summer
Current Popular Theatre In London
www.timeout.com/london/
www.thisislondon.co.uk
www.viewlondon.co.uk
http://www.londontown.com


NOTE:
1)The TransportForLondon Dept runs a very helpful and little known Mobile-SMS service for people lost in london and trying to get to somewhere from somewhere. When you are lost in london, at any time of day or night, type a Text Msg(SMS) on your mobile like "A to B" (Where A and B can be name of Bus Stop/Tube Station/Post Code) and send it to 60835 and you will receive back in few seconds a Text Message from TFL telling you about the best/fastest route to reach your destination. For Ex "Holborn to Baker Street" MORE HERE.
2)TfL has launched a new service to help you get home. When you're out and about, just text CAB to 60835 and the telephone numbers of your two nearest (Your Mobile's Location) licensed minicab operators will be sent directly to your mobile phone.


To find out any location in UK based on postcode or street name click www.maps.google.co.uk. It also is useful to find out prominent businesses, restaurants, bars, clubs, tourist attractions in london and UK
Click here for Bus Route Maps In London
Click Here For Bus Route Maps in UK (Outside London)
Grab a Pocket Tube Map from any london-underground station and keep it handy.
http://www.londontown.com/TubeMaps/TubeMapLarge.jpg - Best Resolution Tube Map
Some interesting and helpful maps you can order online.
Click www.nationalrail.co.uk Or http://www.transportdirect.info to plan UK National Rail journeys and check ticket prices.
Don't forget to buy National Rail Card (costs just £25/year) and save 33% on off-peak Rail travel in london/UK.
Important: Link it to your Oyster Card and save money (Roughly £2/day) on day-to-day travel. Check this http://IAmNewToLondon.com/tips/TFLOysterFaresJan09Onwards.html to see how much you can save.
A great guide for Tourist Accomodation in London/UK
A helpful guide for tips on Transport to/from/within the UK or Europe

Pronounciation

You may well need some tips on how to pronounce London place names.

Gloucester Road - GLOSS-ter Road
Leicester Square - LESS-ter Square
Holborn - HOE-burn, or HOE-b'n
Covent Garden - the 'o' is short as in codpiece
Greenwich - GRENNITCH
Dulwich - DULLITCH
Vauxhall - VOX-all
Plaistow - PLAH-stow
Chiswick - CHIZZICK
Putney - The 'u' is pronounced as in butter, not as in butcher
Marylebone - Mary-lea-bone (say it fast)
River Thames - River THEMMS
Southwark - Su-therk (su as in subtle)

Some other Attractions:- 1) If you are into literarture,books,cinema etc then SOUTHBANK (Near Waterloo/Embankment) is the place to checkout. Its a nice walk along thames. Full of tourists in summer. International food and lively music. Street Performances and decorations. A spot dedicated to skate-boarders.
2) A large and lovely used books-stall outside NFT(National Film Theatre) which is kinda heaven for someone into reading books. :)
Nearby National Theatre is famous for its performances and festivals.
3) This thames-walk is also the spot for world famous Thames Fireworks which happen in August/September every Year!.




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Tourism Travel Sightseeing in UK :-

UK Activity weekends backabushxplorers
Anderson Tours - UK SightSeeing
Info about Bus travel in Great Britain Click here
http://www.crosscountrytrains.co.uk/ - Cheapest Online Train Tickets
TheTrainLine.com Another Provider of Cheap Online Train Tickets
http://www.transportdirect.info-Live Bus/Train Departure Times
Check www.nationalexpress.com - Get Around in UK on Bus for as Little as £5
Check www.megabus.com/uk/ - Get Around in UK on bus for as Little as £1
http://www.railcard.co.uk ( Comprehensive information to save 33% on Train travel )
Backpackers Tours of England , Wales, Scotland http://www.roadtrip.co.uk
Scotline tours of Scotland http://www.scotlinetours.co.uk
Visit Scotland - Official Tourism Site of Scotland Click here
Aeroplane/Helicopter Flying Lessons all over UK


Popular Concert Venues :-
Trafalgar Square, Hyde Park, Kensington Olympia, Wembley Arena, Birmingham NEC.
Popular Ticket Sites :-
www.ticketmaster.co.uk
www.eventbrite.co.uk
http://www.365tickets.com/

SHOPPING IN LONDON/UK :-

Most Stuff in UK comes under 14-28 days full refund Guarantee and its perfectly safe to buy on internet.
By law you are entitled to 7 days refund period for ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING (product/service) you buy in UK. Many Credit cards here come with Purchase Protection/Free Extended Insurance/Best Price Guarantee kinda benefits. So use those free facilities.

Govt funded organisation For Consumer Complaints and informing public about Popular Scams in UK
Consumer Direct
www.consumerdirect.gov.uk/watch_out/scams

Oxford Street is the world's most popular shopping street. Famous for Selfridges and many other reputed stores. Nearby Regent Street is also quite popular. World famous Harrods is just 10-15 mins bus ride from here or take tube to Knightsbridge Tube Station.

However, buying on internet is significantly cheaper than buying from street-shops.
Popular sites to find cheap Cameras and electronics:-
http://www.pricerunner.co.uk - A Leading Price Comparison Site
http://www.pricegrabber.co.uk - A Leading Price Comparison Site
http://www.kelkoo.co.uk - A Leading Price Comparison Site
http://www.become.co.uk - A Leading Price Comparison Site
http://www.amazon.co.uk - for books , memory cards, cameras etc
http://www.komplett.co.uk - for Computer Accessories
http://www.maplin.co.uk - for All electronics- also have high street stores - easy to return stuff
http://www.dabs.co.uk - All electronics
http://www.comet.co.uk - All electronics
http://www.ebuyer.com - All electronics
http://www.expansys.com - All electronics + PDAs & Phones
http://www.dixons.co.uk - All electronics - usually costly - amazing festival deals
http://www.Argos.co.uk - All electronics - Leading high street shop - 28 days money back
Good Old EBay
Buying from U.S.
http://www.hotukdeals.com - user maintained list of HOT UK DEALS
http://www.HottestOffers.co.uk - Another good list of HOT UK DEALS- Retailers Discounts etc
http://www.bview.co.uk/vouchers - UK's leading site for Discount Vouchers and Business Listings plus reviews.

Reclaiming Unfair Bank Charges

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6170209.stm
http://unfairbankcharges.org.uk/
http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/reclaim/bank-charges

Reclaiming/WipingOut Unfair Loans in UK

http://www.unfairmadefair.co.uk/

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ACCOMODATION :-

Etiquettes for Flatshare Hunting

1) When you contact someone through gumtree or other website, always provide some basic information about you in your first email.
Example of a Good Contact:-
Hi, I am XYZ originally from XYZ part of Asia/Europe. I work with XYZ company in a full time job as IT/Marketing/XYZ Consultant.
I am looking to rent a decent place for minimum 3-6 months.I am a clean person, non-smoker, eat both veg & non veg, social and with an open mind.
I like a quiet place as I am not a noisy/party person myself. My budget is upto £450 only. Please let me know if my details match your requirement.
Cheers
Example of a Bad Contact
Hello, I am XYZ looking for room. I am working. My contact no. is 653656536153. Call me back!
Example of a VERY VERY Bad Contact
Hello, My contact no. is 653656536153. Call me back!
NOTE: When you book a viewing appointment with the landlord or agent, always inform them if you can't make it
Usually while booking you will say "I will be coming in evening at around 7pm to see the flat." - So take it as a commitment! In evening if you can't make it, before 5-6pm (not later than 6:00pm), always inform the landlord/agent.
Good Approach.
b) - "Sorry I won't be able to come as I have found another option. Please don't wait for me!"
Bad Approach.
- No call or message from you and landlord keeps waiting for you! THIS IS CONSIDERED VERY BAD and should be avoided.

One of the biggest concerns of anyone moving to London/UK is Accomodation.

Quick Note: When you move houses In UK, you can take advantage of Royal Mail Redirection (roughly £5/month). This facility will automatically redirect all your post from old address to new address. You can even apply Online for it at www.royalmail.com. You will never miss that important bank/creditcard statement or your visa papers from homeoffice.


Q1- How much is average living cost in london?
Ans- London is divided into 6 Zones. Click here http://www.bbc.co.uk/london/travel/downloads/tube_map.html Or http://www.londontown.com/TubeMaps/TubeMapLarge.jpg to see the map. Central London is Zone 1 and is the costliest place to live. In this zone, a room in an average shared accomodation (3-4 rooms in one flat/house) will typically cost you £600-£700+ Pcm
As you move towards outer zones, rooms/flats/houses get cheaper. The best website to check for room rents is http://www.gumtree.com.. To get these cheap accomodations, either visit the local Newsagent shops' windows or PG Accomodation section of this Guide! Crime and security scene of all these areas is more or less same. Check www.upmystreet.com for the crime scene in the neighbourhood you are thinking of moving in. For women, London is comparatively safer than many parts of South
Your Rights As Tenants - All Kinds of Tenancy Explained here
www.gumtree.com - A leading site for london
www.studenthousing.lon.ac.uk - Excellent guide for student accomodation
www.rightmove.co.uk
www.ononemap.com - Amazing Google Maps Based Site!
www.spareroom.co.uk
www.easyroommate.com
www.findaproperty.com
www.homesandproperty.co.uk
www.hotproperty.co.uk
www.primelocation.com
www.gartoo.co.uk
www.springboardurban.co.uk

Q: Types of Short Term/Bed&Breakfast/Tourist Accomodation in UK?

Two Kinds of Rental Accomodation:-
Shared Acco - 2 or more people share same house, kitchen, toilets etc. Every tenant gets an individual room. Most shared-acco rental contracts are for 6 months (rolling after that) with 2-4 weeks notice period. You are expected to pay deposit (usually one month's rent) and one month's rent upfront. Usually these contracts are done direct with landlords and estate agents arenot involved in them
Whole House/Flat - This typically involves three parties 1)Tenant (single person, couple or group of friends), 2)Estate Agent, 3) Landlord. Landlord is more or less invisible in this arrangement (although by law, you can ask for Landlord's contact details). Estate Agents take care of the house, rent and all maintenance. You will have to go through a Credit Check (at your cost - £45 Approx) and in some cases might have to provide reference letter from your Employer. Estate agents will charge admin and contract drawing fees ( £60 - £125 Approx) to you. Contracts are Assured tenancy agreement of 6-12 months. (rolling after that - with one month notice period). In most cases, You will have to pay 1 months rent in advance and deposit which could be 1 to 1.5 times of monthly rent. You are liable to pay for remaining term of contract if you have to leave before the term is over, unless you, with mutual agreement between you and estate agent, find out someone who is interested to take up the property on rent.

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House Move Tips:-


1a) Register yourself on voter's list (www.aboutmyvote.co.uk) and with a local GP (Free Healthcare Doctor) (find nearest surgery/clinic on NHS website) as soon as you move into a new accomodation.
1b) If you are the sole occupier or have a non-earning spouse then you can get 15-25% council-tax discount if you apply for it in writing at your local council office.
1c) When you move houses In UK, you can take advantage of Royal Mail Redirection (roughly £5/month). This facility will automatically redirect all your post from old address to new address. You can even apply Online for it at www.royalmail.com. You will never miss that important bank/creditcard statement or your visa papers from homeoffice :)
2a) Always take meter readings on the day you move out and move in. Check from your landlord/estate agent about who are the utility (gas, electricity, water) provider companies for the house you are moving in. Its your responsibility to call up utility companies and inform them about your house move. Any laziness here can spoil your credit history later. To find out which utility company provides cheapest gas/electricity in your area try www.moneysupermarket.com Or www.uswitch.com.
3a) Virgin Media is the best choice for Telephone/Cable TV if they provide fibre-optic (Not services through a Normal BT Telephone Landline) services in your postcode area. Its usually a 12 month contract. Otherwise you can go with SKY TV and Broadband. You will need British Telecom (BT- Telephone Line) for Sky Broadband. Sky & BT both will also require you to sign a 12 Month Contract. For Sky Dish antenna make sure you get the permission from landlord or estate agent in writing.
3b) For Broadband Service comparison check http://www.thinkbroadband.com/
O2 Broadband is also a very good deal for money if you have a O2 mobile contract!
4) Tesco, ASDA and Wilkinson are considered to be the cheapest Groceries and Home Goods Superstores in UK. However, if you are in london, your local high street will most probably have a 1 Pound shop like (poundland, costcutter, 98p shop etc), where most household things are sold for around £1. These can save you lot of money while settling in a new accomodation.
5) Argos, Index, PRIMARK are some other high street shops famous among general public. They provide quality products like furniture, bed linen, clothes etc for cheap prices along with 30 days money back guarantee.



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Hostel/Student Accomodation

HOST - This Company arranges student accommodation in Westminster and rest of London.
Reg Address:
211 Streatham Road
Mitcham
Surrey
United Kingdom
CR4 2AJ
Tel: +44 02086464320
Fax: +44 02086460905
http://www.host.gb.com/


Indian YMCA - check http://www.indianymca.org/ for rates of rooms.
YMCA Indian Student Hostel
41 Fitzroy Square
London W1T 6AQ
Telephone:020 7387 0411
Fax 020 7383 4735
Email: reservations@indianymca.org


London WaterLoo Christian Alliance Centre
Contact Details / Website:
2 Secker Street
Waterloo
London
SE1 8UF
Tel: 020 7450 4601
Fax: 020 7401 9945


Convent Religious Of Mary Immaculate Hostel (For Girls)
Nice Hostel Near Gloucester Road Station
15 Southwell Gardens
London
SW7 4RN
020 73733869

Find More Youth Hostels Click here - Complete List A , Complete List B


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TRAVEL INSIDE LONDON :-

Note: To travel on tube and buses in london you will need to buy an Oyster Pay As You Go Card from TubeStation or other TFL ticket Counters. This card will always charge you minimum fare on your local travel in london and so you don't have to worry about calculating prices and fares of your local travel inside london. If you plan to use National Rail (Overground) to see London/UK during your stay here or if you plan to use Oyster Pay As You Go Card for more than 12days in london then you will save even more if you buy a national rail young person's (age < 25 yrs) rail card (Costs £25 for an year) from a national rail/overground station and linking it with your Oyster Pay As You Go Card. You will save around £2 on your daily off-preak travel in london and 33% on your off-peak national rail travel outside london. Check this http://IAmNewToLondon.com/tips/TFLOysterFaresJan09Onwards.html to see how much you can save.

Check out www.LondonTravelPlanner.mobi, www.journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk to plan your journey From Point A to Point B, inside london on Train/Tube/Bus/DLR etc. Its a very useful website. It tells you the total expected journey time PLUS the Start and Destination Maps with walking route (If a walk is part of your route to reach an address) in green color.
NOTE:
1)The TransportForLondon Dept runs a very helpful and little known Mobile-SMS service for people lost in london and trying to get to somewhere from somewhere. When you are lost in london, at any time of day or night, type a Text Msg(SMS) on your mobile like "A to B" (Where A and B can be name of Bus Stop/Tube Station/Post Code) to 60835 and in few seconds you will receive back a Text Message from TFL telling you about the best/fastest route to reach your destination. For Ex "Holborn to Baker Street" MORE HERE.
2)TfL has launched a new service to help you get home. When you're out and about, just text CAB to 60835 and the telephone numbers of your two nearest (Your Mobile's Location) licensed minicab operators will be sent directly to your mobile phone.

3) If you have a Network RailCard or Student Railcard (Both Cost Just £20/Year), always link it to Oyster to save £1/day on your offpeak pre-paid travel.
To find out any location in UK based on postcode or street name click www.maps.google.co.uk. It also is useful to find out prominent businesses, restaurants, bars, clubs, tourist attractions in london and UK

Most people don't know that travel in London is the 2nd costliest part of your expenses after accomodation. Travel per mile in london costs more than travel cost per mile on a CONCORDE plane(now discontinued). Depending on which zone you live in, your monthly travelcard can cost
zone1=£93, zone1-2=£93, zone1-3=£109.10, zone1-4= £132.90,zone1-5=£159.00, zone1-6=£171.30. Students get 30% discounts on travelcards. If you don't take tube/train to work everyday then your best option is Pay-As-you-Go Oyster Card. It costs less than paper tickets and It will never cost more than one-day-travelcard if you use it for multiple journeys.

Note:
You can top up the credit on your Oyster card and check the balance remaining (or see what amounts have been charged) in the following ways:
- by placing it on the Oyster card reader on one of the ticket machines in a Tube station (when you are adding credit, you must finish by placing your Oyster card on the reader a second time)
- by asking at the ticket office of a Tube station
- Auto-Topup - by going to the Oyster card website: http://www.oystercard.com. If you have a credit or debit card you can arrange for your card to be topped up automatically every time that the balance falls below a certain level

The advantages of having an Oyster card are:
- you save time, because you do not need to queue to buy tickets each time you want to travel
- it is simpler
- fares are cheaper if you use an Oyster card
- you should automatically pay the cheapest fare if you make several Tube or bus journeys, even if you change your travel plans

Note that currently only a few of the National Rail stations in London accept Oyster cards. If you plan to use some local London Overground train services as part of your journey it may be cheaper to buy a one-day travelcard (a paper ticket) from a ticket office, because these are valid on trains, bus or Tube services within the zones shown. There are plans to introduce Oyster card readers at all train stations in London in 2009.

Off-peak Travelcards can only be used after 9:30am on Monday-Friday, or any time on Saturday, Sunday or on a Bank Holiday. The Oyster daily price cap is the maximum you will pay if you use your Oyster card to make journeys during the day.

# Cheaper fares are available if you don't need to travel through zone 1 (the cost depends on the number of zones through which you need to travel), or if you are a child, 16-17 or a senior citizen.
## If you have a Student Oyster Photocard you can buy travelcards for 1 week or longer at a cheaper price. These cost about 30% less than the equivalent adult prices (there are no special student discounts for single or 1-day tickets). Note that these are only available to people who are studying in London and requires a special card (you cannot get a discount with an ISIC or NUS card). For details of how to apply for a Student Oyster Photocard, see: Travel/Transport/London/Guide.
### If you have a National Rail Railcard (a Young Persons Railcard or a Disabled Persons/HM Forces/Senior Railcard) and you register this Railcard on your Oyster card (by showing it at the ticket office of a Tube station), your Oyster daily off-peak cap is reduced by about a third. A Young Persons Railcard can be bought by anyone aged 16-25 or by any full-time student (even if you are aged 26 or over), and this railcard also allows you to get a third off off-peak travel on the UK train system. The daily price cap is not reduced if any of your travel is during peak times.

For more details, see: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/faresandtickets/singlefares/6769.aspx

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MOBILE PHONES :-

Most Mobile phones sold in Asia/Europe are DUAL BAND. Meaning they work on both 900/1800Mhz Frequency Bands. Most GSM networks in South Asia are on 900Mhz whereas most GSM networks in UK are on 1800Mhz.
So a Normal GSM (Nokia.LG,Samsung etc) Phone In Asia/Europe will work in UK too. However UK has 3G networks as well and 3G Sims don't work in Normal GSM phones. Most students prefer T-Mobile (Free Voicemail), O2 or 3 network. O2 is the most popular network among working professionals. O2 is also usually the cheapest network for Roaming in Europe. Recently Three network has comeup with 3Skypephone in joint effort with Skype which is proving to be very popular among those Asians/Europeans who talk a lot with people back home. Three's Mobile Broadband is also the most popular mobile-broadband in UK. Most Pay-monthly (Just like Post-Paid) Phone Instruments come free on a 12/18 month contract. You are liable to pay for remaining term of contract if you break it before the term is over. Not getting proper signal in office/home isn't accepted as a valid reason to get rid of contract. SO MAKE SURE, the network you are interested in shows good strength signal on a friend's phone in office or at home, otherwise you'll be stuck with it for 12/18 months which is a very long period.

Note: When a contract is over, you can port your no. to another network (taking no. with you) within 48 hrs. All you need is a PAC code which your existing network will provide you.

http://www.mobile-phones-uk.org.uk - UK's leading mobile phones review site.
Lebara Pre-Paid Sim = A good Pre-paid simcard with cheap international rates

Some good websites to find mobile phone deals are:-

www.three.co.uk
www.carphonewarehouse.co.uk
O2 Home - for 3G Iphone, Sim only + mobile offers and Broadband
T-Mobile Offers - from T-Mobile
www.onestopphoneshop.com Great Offers - Part of CarphoneWarehouse - No Scams
www.e2save.com - Part of CarphoneWarehouse - No Scams
www.dialaphone.com
Ps: You are strongly advised not to buy mobile phones from small and not well known web sites as there have been some scams reported recently. After few months of operations, these companies declare themselves bankrupt and you don't get your Moneyback ever!


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CHEAP CALLING TO EUROPE and South Asia:-


You can Call most international countries direct for 2p/min from BT/Virgin*/TalkTalk* landline/phonebooth - 0844 838 2718 - no pin needed. From Mobile txt 'phonefriend' to 80041. You will be charged £3 on your mobile bill and will receive a Pin and Access No. Always the lowest rate and best quality call on these Nos.

*Note:Please confirm call charges with Virgin and Talktalk before you make a call on 0844 no.

Most people stay stuck with BT even when some other providers give you a better landline deal.
(Note: You are free to choose any broadband provider with following landline service providers. For Broadband we recommend SkyTV+Broadband, Virgin & O2 ).
1)PostOffice-Landline - No 12 month contract. Same Line rental as BT (£10.50),Call Free and Unlimited to UK Mobiles and 20 Countries (Inc U.S., Canada and Europe) On Weekends Plus Evening UK landline Free.
2)Talk Talk - 12 month Contract - same line rental as BT (£10.50 + *£2.65 after 12 months), Evening and Weekend Free, Plus Call Anytime to 36 international destinations (including US, Canada, Australia)!

Call your family in (Asia, Europe, or Any Country Like China, Japan, Brazil etc) Unlimited If You Have Broadband Connection (128 kbps+) there for £5.99 Per Month Only.
Vonage

On an average newcomers to UK Spend £30/Month on calling cards for calls to their family in Home Country. Two months of that expenditure is almost equivalent of 12 months of unlimited calls to One fixed internet-enabled house in Home Country using the following method.
http://tinyurl.com/5zpms9
Here is How it works, In Simple words
1) You get a Vonage Box and a UK landline No. (0207, 0208, 0203) assigned to it.
2) You plugin the Vonage Box to any broadband connection/router (in your home country where you family and friends live)
3) You connect a normal home touchtone phone to Vonage Box. That phone becomes the Assigned Vonage UK Landline No.
4) Now, whoever calls that Assigned Vonage UK (0207, 0208, 0203) landline No, will reach the Vonage Box and the TouchTone Phone at the receving end.
5) You can use that normal touchtone phone to call any UK Landline No for unlimited time. It doesn't matter if that touchphone and Vonage Box is not in UK. It can be anywhere. All you need there is a Broadband Connection (256Kbps +). So You can Travel with you Vonage Box and stay in touch with your friends in U.K..
6) Add £2 to ur plan and call U.S. and Canada Unlimited too. If ur Bros/Cuzs/Family is scattered in UK/U.S./Canada then Its best to send a Vonage Box back home. Can save a lot of money in international family calls.
7) Plus Free Vonage to Vonage Calls.

 

Best UK Mobile Phone Deals on Internet are at DialAPhone Or Mobiles.co.uk Or Lebara Pre-Paid Sim

http://www.asda-phones.co.uk/ - For UK Use only - ASDA Pay-As-You-GO is cheapest
It will always cost you to call NON-PC destinations backhome unless the Target Mobile Phone is Running SKYPE/FRING/GIZMO on it.
From PC - http://voicecheap.com is probably cheapest.

From Symbian Mobile /Win Mobile PDA - Fring is a very good option to voicechat for free.
3Skypephone - Three network offers Free SKype to Skype calls on their network.

http://www.lebara-mobile.co.uk/  - Best Pre-paid Sim  

http://www.1899.com/rates.php - UK landline - 0p/min
http://www.1899.com/sms.php -  International text - 1p/min

 

http://www.18185.co.uk/index2.php - another Good provider like 1899.com

 

http://www.rebtel.com/en/Rates/Rates/ 

 

Or make a complete free call to U.S. Thru rebtel - here is how - http://www.rebtel.com/en/How-it-works/How-to-make-a-smart-call/


Or You can get a O2 Pay Monthly Sim (No mobile phone with it- Only 30days contract) - with unlmited landline minutes addon + rebtel account (voice quality) is good. . makes a cheap & best combination to call outside UK.

If your people backhome can use PC, then going with 3Skypephone is best option.

Editor's choice:-
3Network Phone for family. They use PC at home.
Rebtel account for any other call to Europe/Asia or elsewhere.

If you need to find the international access code for a country, click here.

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Protection from Identity Theft!

Disclaimer: Information provided here is collected from internet and is bound to change over a period of time.
Please check relevant Urls and sources for correct and latest information. Authors of this page, won't be responsible for any claim/loss arising out of use of following information.

Hello There, these 30 minutes of your life can save you from a disaster. Every year around 80000 (and increasing) people in UK suffer from identity theft. You could be the next one. Don't Take It Casually!


Preface: "There's no such thing as a foolproof system. That idea fails to take into account the creativity of fools. - Frank Abagnale"   A Must read article
"You ask people what they've got and they say, 'I'm protected against ID theft now,'" he says.
"But the company often doesn't explain that they're not reimbursing the money you lose - just the money it costs you to fix things."


Some Good Sites to check before you read further (If you have time):-
One Must Subscribe To http://www.getsafeonline.org/
http://www.electronic-identity.org/how-to-prevent-identity-theft
http://www.cifas.org.uk/ - Govt's Initiative to protect your data.
Consumer Direct (For Consumer Complaints) - www.consumerdirect.gov.uk/watch_out/scams

Directory of useful/helpful organisations related to financial matters
Crimestoppers - 0800 555111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org
Financial Services Authority - 0845 606 1234 or www.fsa.gov.uk
National Identity Fraud Prevention Week - www.stop-idfraud.co.uk

Trading Standards (for consumer protection) - www.tradingstandards.gov.uk

Experian's online credit monitoring and ID theft protection service is called CreditExpert.co.uk. It costs £6.99 a month, though it is offering the chance to sign up for a 30-day free trial. The service allows people to check their credit file online, as often as they want, and there are weekly text or email alerts letting you know if someone takes out a loan or card in your name.

Equifax is offering a similar service called Identity Watch at a reduced rate of £3.99 a month rather than the usual £6. A cheaper alternative may be to register with the "protective registration" service provided by Equifax on behalf of Cifas. For £11.75, a mark is placed against your address, and banks will carry out extra-detailed identity checks on applicants for credit.

There are some basic steps we can all take to help avoid our identities being compromised. Many may seem to be obvious, but it is by dropping our guard that the fraudster ultimately will benefit.

Always take particular care of your handbag or wallet.  Don’t give thieves a chance.  Be especially careful with your credit and debit cards.  Try not to keep them together or have them all with you at the same time and never let them out of your sight. Also, avoid carrying documents such as passports unless necessary and never keep in the same bag as your wallet.

Shred all documents when you dispose of them. These can range from credit card or bank statements to letters from doctors, employers and indeed anything bearing your full name and address or signature. Receipts can also be valuable to a fraudster, so take care to shred these too. A Cross cut shredder is better than strip cut shredder and you can find it for only £10 in WH Smith.

Examine your bank and credit card statements carefully. Keep all your receipts until you have checked each one individually against the statements. This will help you to monitor your account.

Check your credit reference agency file regularly for unfamiliar items and take prompt action if you spot anything strange.

Don’t forget to keep your home secure, and keep your personal documents locked away.  Increasingly it is these documents that are being searched for by burglars rather than TVs and computers. Theft or loss of documents such as your driving licence or passport should be notified immediately

Use CIFAS Protective Registration if you have personal documents stolen. Either contact the service on 0870 010 2091 or download details from www.cifas.org.uk/pr.  There is a small charge of £14.10.

Don’t give your personal details to callers, charity collectors or “researchers” in the street.  Check whether they are truly who they claim to be before giving them any information.  Be just as careful when taking telephone calls.  Fraudsters may try to dupe you into believing they are from banks or other companies. If you give them your account and security details they could run up huge debts in your name.

When buying online – keep your passwords secure at all times and regularly change your passwords. Make sure that you have up-to-date security software, and only use sites that provide secure payments and be sure you know who you are dealing with.

Avoid online bank or shopping transactions when using public wi-fi zones or shared computers.

Redirect ALL post when moving house or business address.

Now some advice from personal experience:-

1) Don't throw your credit card receipts etc in high-street bins. Theives have access to them.
1b) Always hide your pin number when entering it, if card holder cannot be removed or has no cover to hide it then you can put hand while entering pin or can ask the shop where you are using it. Remember it is your right and you must use it !!
2) Throwing bank letters and all paper in your local recycling collection is a nice idea. But wait for the collection day. And try to leave it out there just before collection.
3) Atleast every 3 months check your credit file for £2 only. Nothing can prevent you more from fraud. Keep an eye on your credit file always.
4) Make an excel sheet of your credit card details and expiry of special promotions etc. If you loose walet, report all your cards stolen using this information.
5) Don't write down your PIN or Internet Banking passwords anywhere. More advice on this in a section later in this article.
6) Keep an eye on your statements coming by post. Try to switch to paper-free statements for most accounts except one. (for application forms).
7) Always check your statement regularly. Those 2 mins spent on scanning it can save you loads later on.
8) If you have lost wallet, debit cards etc or have become a victom of ID theft involving your bank account. Just using CIFAS Red-flag service would not give you 100% peace-of-mind. Best solution is close those accounts and open new ones. Because your Sort Code, A/c No can be mis-used in future for loan applications etc. If your personal email accounts are hacked too, don't worry, hackers are usually not interested in your personal emails. They are only interested in money. So If you have a linked money-theft incident along with Id-theft then you can use the police report to get your yahoo/gmail account back from respective providers. They will need you to fax them the copies of your passport, utility bills etc.

9) If you have lost money from account because you were a victim of fraud, you are entitled to a refund. All credit card providers are also legally bound to protect you from losses which weren't your fault or happened not because of your negligence. (Negligence includes not informing bank in time, writing down your PINS, sharing that information with a friend or relative, any relative)
10) Fraudster can damage your credit file big time, today, tomorrow or 10 yrs later. So always check your credit file every 3 months.. Thats the only sure shot protection.


About Electronic Fraud:-

Rule No 1) Always have a Good (and latest updated) Anti-Virus and Spybot Protection on your PC. My fav is "Avast Antivirus" and "SpyBot S&D" (works best when you are disconnected from internet,scan your whole system atleast 3 times). Windows Defender is also a free tool from Microsoft. Although its not as good as SpyBOT S&D. The Incident which provoked me into writing this article was a result of carelessness in this department. Victim's system was infected by a Trojan. These are deadly but totally hidden Programs which silently install themselves when you download those free lesser known sound/video utlities on net or programs which come thru open ports in your broadband routers (without NAT firewall enabled) OR if your wireless network is not WPA Key protected and is open to all then a Music-Junkie teenager with a trojan/virus full of system can join your Local Network and your Router's NAT firewall won't protect you infection from that PC because it will be on Local Network, so almost all the ports will be available to the trojan to replicate itself)
One of the primary purposes of Trojan is to wait for a chance to silently download and install a Key-Logger program from hackers' temp-sites which appear randomly on net on random IP addresses. These programs then record everythng you type in every webform and silently email all of it to hacker's anonymous untracable emailids. So your email account passwords and internet banking passwords can all be collected at a silent and hidden server somewhere on internet and hacker would usually wait for a month or two to collect details of every important account you have and access thru internet. Then one fine day, hacker will sit on a table with a 10-20 mins action plan to hack every important account, change passwords and transfer money etc. This all will be done in max 30 minutes while you are stylishly sipping wine with your 3-course dinner in a restaurant.Installment one of the shock would usually reach first to you. That the email account which has your childhood memories and various personal secrets is hacked. Installment two will be more shocking. That all the money in your bank accounts is gone in just 30 minutes..
These hackers are one step ahead of security agencies and usually work from the countries with poor laws for cyber crimes.. like Czech Republic, Iran, Russia.


What you can do to protect yourself from this crisis. (never compromise on below mentioned rules)

1) Download all windows updates regularly. If you use a PDA, use protection softwares made for PDAs. Install a Anti-Virus like "Avast AntiVirus", Spybot scanner like "SpyBot S&D" and some tool to scan the programs running in memory and detect the dangerous ones which are opening communication channels (incoming/outgoing) with internet servers. One of them, one bad day, could be a Key Logger. A good free utility to scan your memory and report about this is "security task manager".
2) Never have your home network unprotected/unsecured. Always have A WPA key protected nwtwork. Never join a unsecured network anywhere. Cafe, school, college.. anywhere.
3) Always keep atleast two different personal mail accounts. The personal one with secrets and stuff should never be accessed from internet cafes anywhere especially while you are holidaying. for ex in thailand or Prague. To share holiday pics and stuff, use another email account specifically made for this purpose.
4) Try to have Two laptops if you can. Never access internet banking and precious email accounts on one laptop. Only download stuff firstime on this one laptop. And only install after making a RESTORE-POINT. (learn windows help for that - its pretty easy). After installing, wait for a week and see if any weird random popups appearing just by accessing google homepage.
If YES :- Then immediately disconnect that Laptop/system from internet and local network (switch off /disable wireless adapter). Uninstall that dubious program. Restore your whole system to last healthy working status- restore point. Clean your system with SpyBot S&D. Do atleast 3 scans. Connect it back on internet and keep a keen eye on it for another week.
If NO :- Scan your experiment system with latest Anti-Virus and SpyBot S&D. If nothing is spotted then copy the program/utility across to more precious PC/Laptop.
5) Never tick "remember password" when accessing gmail etc from mobile. If your mobile gets stolen, your email account too.
6) Never click on any link in an email which asks you to validate your account information, NO MATTER HOW MUCH GENUINE THE EMAIL LOOKED.
7) Never open attachment from people you don't know. Infact whenever you download an attachment, utility from website or file coming thru a transfer-file feature of a chat messenger, even if its coming from a friend, always put it in one designated folder for downloaded stuff and scan the file with anti-virus software first before opening it. Any document including a JPG image can have virus/trojan/worm attached to it. Pls pls use a good anti-virus software to scan everything you receive/download. Never accept file from people in chat messenger whom you don't know, as it makes a direct connection between two parties and by running a small command "netstat -n" one can find your IP address ( Your Computer's Unique Address on Internet) and then several hacking attacks can be done against your PC connected via that IP.
8) VERY IMPORTANT:- Always check the URL-Address in your brower's address bar. IT has to be a common-sense approved URL. First part of All the URLS should end in words like HSBC.COM/ Lloydstsb.com/ . There should be a "/" or "\" after .com or .co.uk. For Ex xyz.hsbc.com.netsecure.com/ will be a fraud site. Its actually a Netsecure.com domain name and xyz.hsbc is a subdomain which is pointing to a subfolder on that website where the hacker have put cloned pages of HSBC's internet banking site. Cloned pages will be 100% copy of a Bank's online site. YOUR ONLY PROTECTION FROM THIS PHISHING FRAUD IS TO CHECK THE URL IN YOUR BROWSER's ADDRESS BAR. It might happen that you receive an EMAIL FROM A HSBC ACCOUNT (CustService@HSBC.com - Its just One line code/ 2 mins job to put anything in the from tag of a phishing email) with a link in the email reading like http://bank.hsbc.com/ but the actual URL its taking you to, (yes the Link text and Link URL can be different words) could be http://bank.hsbc.com.netsecure.com/.
9) Most reputed companies/banks etc will use Https: (secured encrypted way of communication) on their login screens and also whenever an online funds transfer/payment is made. A phishing site can't have a https: as these SSL certificates are only alloted to genuine companies after lots of verifications. So always check for Https: in your browser's address bar/URL bar whenever you are doing anything with internet banking or online credit card payments.
10) NEVER USE SAME PASSWORD FOR ALL YOUR BANK ACCOUNTS. Always have 2-3 memorable passwords (never use your DOB for any password). An easy way is to use a word-digit pwd combination. Keep the word same and in digits use the registration no of your bikes/cars/last 4-5 digits of your mobile no/any memorable year/Your Fav Bus no route twice etc etc. Always do insert atleast 1-2 special keyboard character like # , ~' @, *, %,$ in your passwords. Never use same password for all your email accounts. Always remember your security details incase you forget/loose your password so that you can recover it without any problem. Many people change there password but they have no way to recover it back in case they loose it. And always use a separate email/password for useless subscriptions and shopping websites on Internet. Usually your loginids and passwords are available to see in text form to the web developer of these small shopping vendors and he can try that loginid/pwd combination on net on other shopping websites. Never save your card details ONLINE with any shopping website. And only shop from HOME PC. Never from an internet cafe. Not from a friend's PC unless you know he has latest anti-virus and stuff installed. Better be safe than sorry. Don't access critical accounts on any non-office PC except your Home-PC. Usually Office PC's are monitored and maintained by an IT services company and are more secure than your average home-PC.
11. If you leave your PC unattended, always lock it as you never know what your colleague/mate may be doing on your PC (Just in case scenario).
12. Always see what add-ons are active in your browser, you can find that in "Tools" tab in Internet Explorer and "Preferences" tab in Firefox. Many add-ons are dangerous too. Remove them If you doubt them.
13. Always clear your cache, cookies, browsing history BEFORE AND AFTER using a Friend's PC or Internet Cafe PC for Anything. Never make an exception to this RULE Or a little carelessness here might cost you thousands of pounds.




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ARRIVING/LANDING IN UK :-

Cheap Cab/Taxi Companies Near Heathrow Airport
020 8577 5050
020 8569 4040
020 8570 3939
020 8423 4444
020 8385 0101
Or you can pre-book one of the pickup cabs at good price at www.eurocarslondon.com
.
You can call the above taxi nos. from payphone at Airport and wait outside Heathrow Terminal 1,2,3 Departures - thats their fav pickup spot. If you have a mobile handset with you then you can get a Pre-Paid UK SimCard (Lebara/LycaMobile/Vodafone rates are best) at Airport from a Vending Machine/Calling Cards Kiosk. To read more on which mobile phones will work here, scroll down the page a little.

If its your first trip to UK, you would be worrying about the cold and always rainy weather in UK. But don't pack too much warm clothes as because of lack of significant pollution here, you can really wear same stuff many times. Plus clothes-stores like PRIMARK sell clothes for very cheap price. So better keep your luggage light.
Suggested Clothing:- bring two warm outers (atleast one jacket which can handle water), 2-3 sweatshirts (thick stuff T-Shirts, best for this weather), 4-5 shirts n ties, 2-3 trousers, 2 jeans, one pair of sports shoe and one pair of formal shoes (Shoes are very costly here) and rest you can buy here.

After landing:- Most people land at Heathrow Airport although Gatwick, Birmingham and Manchester are also quite common landing options.

From Heathrow (Check Flight Status on all U.K. Airports):-

1) Best Option to reach Central london is to Buy an Oyster Card at Heathrow Underground Terminal and Top it up with £7 Credit(Enough for one day). Piccadilly line (usually no service between 12:30AM - 4:00Am) from heathrow takes you to heart of london and with further connections (www.journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk) you can reach almost everywhere within Zone 1-6 of london. There is also a Heathrow Express Service (Oyster not valid) which costs a little more but is the fastest method to reach London Paddington (Zone 1).
London's Major Overground Stations are VICTORIA (For South West England), WATERLOO(For South East England), PADDINGTON (For West England), KINGS CROSS(For North East England & Scotland), LIVERPOOL STREET (For EAST England), EUSTON (For North West England and Scotland). Tickets bought in advance over the net are much cheaper than bought on the spot. Check www.nationalrail.co.uk to plan UK National Rail journeys and to check ticket prices. Don't forget to Buy a National Rail Network Card (£25 for an year) which gets you 33% discount on any National Rail Offpeak (after 10:00Am) Ticket above £10. You will easily reover £25 or may be more in an year.
2) BUS Travel in UK is the cheapest mode of transport. Almost all UK airports have good long-distance BUS Connections to Important cities and Stations. Check http://www.nationalexpress.com to plan your journey. Tkts can be bought on the Heathrow BUS Station or on the bus itself. Although, tickets bought online are much much cheaper than Tkts bought on Spot. You just need the Booking Reference No. to board the bus. Keep it in writing and not just on Mobile as Mobile Battery usually goes off while travelling. Good connections to Victoria, Waterloo, Euston, Birmingham, Coventry etc.
3) TAXI - is the costliest mode of transport in UK. Especially the BLACK CABS from the TAXI RANK outside Airports and Stations. Your best bet is to phone a Hired Cab Service located in your destination area. They usually have special rates for Airport Pickups.
a) Search for a Taxi Company in your Destination area at http://www.yell.co.uk
b) Call atleast 3 of them , and ask them for special rates for heathrow.
c) Most of them would want passengers to come out of airport and meet at/around some landmark like signboard/bus stop. Inform this thing about landmark to your guests. Also give your guests the contact no of cab company so they could liase with them when their flight lands.
4) If you ask taxi company to wait at Airport in arrival lounge - with a sign in their hand then they will charge you extra for that. Parking at heathrow is quite expensive

Low cost, Prestige VIP Meet n Greet Parking Service At heathrow
http://www.airportdirect.org/ another good + cheap pickup service


If you are Bringing Your Mobile Handset with you..

1) Almost all European/SouthAsian (GSM) Mobile phones work here in UK. UK Mobile Networks don't support CDMA Phones.
2) After landing at Airport you can get a Pre-Paid sim-card(Its called pay-as-you-go in UK) from Vending Machines (Like Coke Can Machines) at Airport for £10. All those sim-cards come with £10 calling credit.
Recommended Sims are:-
1) Lebara Pre-Paid Sim Has Best Rates for International Calls or Try www.lycamobile.co.uk sim Card. Almost same price as Lebara.
2) Vodafone - PrePaid is also a good sime card
Now you can inform people backhome that you reached safely. Don't use international roaming on your own country's Sim as it will cost you more than £1.20- £1.50 per minute to make a call to your country . (Note: If you have come here to stay for more than a month, then get a Three network's skypephone from some mobilephone shop on high-street on pay-as-you-go simcard. Three not only gives maximum UK minutes on pre-paid simcards but if you have skypephone, you can call friends/family with Skype-on-Pc, anywhere in world for free.)
3) Get the private hire cab/taxi no.s from information desk. Then call the taxi/cab service from airport. (Note: Taxi Nos for Heathrow Airport are given above), You can also get private-hire cab/taxi numbers from directory services. Open the sim'card's user guide and find out Contact No of their directory services. That No. will typically start from 118. Ex - 118-118. (Calling mobile network's own directory services will be cheaper than calling 118-118, typical costs 40-50p per call) Call that directory Service No. and get 2-3 taxi services contact Nos form them. Call the taxi services and ask for special rates for Airport pickup. They should send a taxi right away or in most cases will have a taxi already on way to Airport coming to drop-off some passenger.
Note: BUT If you take the black cabs/taxis from outside Airport then that will cost you much more than pre-hired cabs from your destination town.

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TRAVEL TO EUROPE - Europe Sightseeing- Planning your trip

Some websites to buy/compare AIR- Ticket prices:-
- One of the cheapest ones
www.lastminute.com - Usually the cheapest, price fluctuates all day, usuaully best price available at 7-8am in morning
www.opodo.co.uk
www.makemytrip.com
www.virgin-atlantic.com - has Best Flying Club Account In Market, 2 yrs expiry, Get thousands of Miles for flying in economy class, Get Virgin American Express card and earn 1 mile for every 1 pound you spend, Rewards Eg:- 20000 Miles = Return Ticket to Dubai. Click Here To Join Virgin Flying Club Now - Free to Join - No Purchase Necessary Plus You can Earn miles for a Virgin (or JET) flight made up to 6 Months in past., You can earn miles for flying through partner airlines. e.g. Jet Airways is a Virgin Partner
To check how many miles you need for free ticket to a Virgin Atlantic Destination Click here

www.tripadvisor.co.uk
www.tescotravelstore.com
www.southalltravel.co.uk
www.travelocity.co.uk

Get a worldwide travel insurance from www.moneysupermarket.com. It will cover you for any mobile-phone theft, damaged luggage, lost luggage kinda incidents when you are abroad. You must report the claim within 48 hrs and in some cases within 7 days.

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Voting and Credit File Info:-

New Important Article on Identity Theft - Must Read

Citizens of Commonwealth Nations, its citizens are allowed to VOTE in UK in most elections. It doesn't matter which VISA (except Business/Visitor Visa) you have as long as you have stayed for more than 3 months in this country, you are considerd as UK resident and are eligible to vote. http://www.aboutmyvote.com is the site to download registration form and post it to council office to register yourself as a voter. Being on voting list is one of the most important parameters for a good credit score.
Must Read :- Understanding Your Credit File :-
http://www.creditchoices.co.uk/understanding-your-credit-score.html
Must Read :- How to Improve your credit score :-
http://www.moneysupermarket.com/c/articles/money/how-to-improve-your-credit-score
This guide can help you get good credit cards, loans, mortgages when you need them. It takes years to build a good credit file. So start building it as soon as you feel you are resident In UK and will stay here for more than a year.

Some Basic Tips:-
1) Get on VOTERS list as soon as you move into a new address.
2) Don't change address more than 2-3 times in last 3 yrs. Even if you've actually changed, for purpose of online credit card and loan applications, don't show more than 2-3 address in last 3 yr. Maintain a text file of these records and always fill same information on every application.
3) Get a credit card asap (if you don't get it from 1-2 posh providers, try capitalone.co.uk, don't make too many applications in few days, every search is recorded in your credit file, wait for few months) . use it for spending. Clear ur balance in full every month for 3 months. Ask for a raise in credit limit. Then after another 6 months ask for another raise. You should ideally reach 10K credit limit to have best chances for a good mortgage offer.
4) Get your credit file every 6 months for £2 only, from http://www.experian.co.uk and/or http://www.equifax.co.uk
5) Whenever You buy any services in UK which require a contract of 6/12 months or so (like mobile phone, accomodation, etc), in most cases the decision will be made by provider if your credit file is OK.
6) BOTTOM LINE is Credit File is Hugely Important thing in UK. So take it seriously.

Protect yourself from Identity Theft/ Electronic Identity Theft


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HOW TO COMPLAINT FOR CONSUMER ISSUES/ LOCAL GOVT ISSUEs:-

1) For Visa, landlord, highstreet shop related matters,Your first point of contact should be your
Local Citizens Advice Bureau - They provide Govt paid solicitors (including immigration and small claims court solictors) for your help. Get their No. from you local council and always book an appointment if you can. Or go and Q outside from 7:30AM as they always have long Q and they see limited complaints per day.
For local Noise Issue, bad neighbours, Parking issues, Garbage Bin Issues - you should contact your local council office first.

2) If you prefer not to Q outside Citizens Advice Bureau, then for Consumer matters you can call www.consumerdirect.gov.uk and report your problem - In most cases , if you have a genuine case they will contact the service provider on your behalf and that usually solves the matter. But in some other cases they just record your complaint for compiling statitsics and may advise you to take your case to Small claims court

3) For most financial matters with regards to mortgages, payment protection, insurance or bank accounts/bank charges, if you have already contacted the Service Provider atlwast twice in writing and have had no satisfactory response from them (within 14 days of your letter) in writing then you are entitled to contact Financial Ombudsman - If they find your case worthy, they will inform you in writing and in most cases they can et yu a good compensation. However only contact them if you wish to claim less than £1200. Or read the Small Claims Court Guide and make your decision accordingly

4) To write to your local Councillors, MP, MEPs, MSPs about any Important Matter/Issue, please use the site http://www.writetothem.com/ - Unlike in most asian countries, here you will usually get a wriiten reply to your letter. They are really people's representatives here and work for Public Interest..

5) Did you know that Most Credit Card Companies offer you automatic Travel Accident, Travel Inconvenience (Late flight, loss-damage of baggage, late baggage arrival) if you purchase your travel tickets with their CreditCard? (Always read your credit card's additional benefits booklet). Did You know that you are entitled to a full ticket refund (for that "from-to" part of journey) if your flight's take-off got delayed by more than 2 hrs. You should write to the Airline concerned and ask for the refund. They don't automatically give you this refund. You can also be entitled to Financial Compensation on top of ticket refund for some cases like "denied boarding after check-in" etc. Pls check http://www.euclaim.co.uk/ for advice in such scenerios! EU Regulation 261/2004 states that an airline must inform their passenger of their rights when faced with a cancellation, denied boarding or delay. If you have received a refund-voucher without being informed of your rights you may still file a claim for the flight. Depending on the distance and arrival delay you could be entitled to a compensation between €125 and €600. All flights operating from London-UK fall under the jurisdiction of this regulation.

6) Why six is the magic number when it comes to refunds ? To know more,Click here



Software/Ebooks downloads

http://www.filetransit.com/
www.esnips.com
www.isohunt.com - torrent download

Top 5 FileStorage Options

File Savr - Free File Hosting

FileSavr.com makes file hosting easier with Web 2.0 technology and the use of Ajax and Flash. FileSavr has 10 GB upload size limit.

File Dropper - Free File Hosting for MP3, Videos, Documents

FileDropper's beauty is in its simplicity. It has one click file hosting where you simply click on the upload button and select your file. After the file is uploaded you are taken to the page where the file is hosted. If the file is an image, it shows the image directly on the page for easier sharing. Upload size is an impressive 5 GB.

File Factory - free and simple file hosting service

FileFactory lets you host files up to 300MB for free. You don't have to register and there is nothing to download. Your files can be downloaded an unlimited number of times! One thing we found very annoying and spammy about FileFactory was the number of ads they have on the page.

FileDen - Free file hosting and online storage

With File Den's free file hosting and online storage service it's easy to share files across the internet with friends, family, work associates or anyone else. They allow our users to direct link to their files also giving you the oppurtunity to embed your files into your webpages, myspace or other social networking profiles.

Fileqube - Free Online Storage Fileqube has an eye-pleasing design that shows its intentions well. When you upload a personal file it gives you a download link, a link to remove the file, and embed code to drop your file's link on a website. The only downside is the 150MB file size, which is rather small with some of the other sites in comparison.

Reading /Book Clubs/, Book Swaps

http://www.librarything.com/ - Book cataloguing and social networking.
http://www.bookcrossing.com - Leave books for others to be found. Let books travel across the world



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Other Useful Links for Visitors:-

Tourist information
Visit Britain http://www.visitbritain.com/world


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Useful Info for Students

Q:- I am coming to UK to study in XYZ college. How good is XYZ college?
Ans:-
1) Before everything, one should check the UK League Tables also known as Uni Ranking Guides e.g. (http://education.guardian.co.uk/universityguide) More Ranking Links mentioned below.
2) One should do some google research about XYZ college. Check any blogs or reports about it.
3) Try to find communities for that college on facebook. Try to get in touch with community members on these platforms.
A course search facility is available from the UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service) website: http://www.ucas.ac.uk.
Some very useful advice for International Students is also available here
http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/ - UK Council for International Student Affairs
http://all-unied.com/acatalog/advice.html - General Instructions about Culture shock, Weather etc
http://www.gostudyuk.com - Provides information and advice to prospective international students looking forward to study in the UK.

Student Finance Option for International Students - http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/student/fees_student_support.php

League tables in UK

To judge the quality of a university's undergraduate course in a particular subject, you can refer to ranking tables. Ranking sites :-
http://extras.timesonline.co.uk/tol_gug/gooduniversityguide.php - TimesOnline Uni Ranking Guide
http://www.ukeas.com/postgrad/gradschools/rankings.htm.
Also Checkout : http://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk - Highly Recommended Site.
The Guardian newspaper Uni guide (Most Recommended - Tells about course fees and many helpful details): http://education.guardian.co.uk/universityguide.
www.topmba.com ( to search best mba college with your own assessments)
One common way of ranking is based on the average grades of students entering the university to study the subject (A-levels or Scottish Highers are the exams taken by UK students before going to university). Although they can be useful as general guides, do not place too much importance on the ranking when making your choice. A particular dept of a low ranking Uni can be doing very good in terms of job placements after the course. So try to find out the web forums for that University. Or call their respective depts about placement figures.

The G8 (Best 8 MBA colleges) includes Judge Business School (Cambridge), London Business School, Said Business School (Oxford), Imperial College Business School, Manchester Business School, Lancaster Business School, Warwick Business School and CASS (City University, London).

Tip: There are thousands of college in UK. Don't waste your time contacting random people on internet about a random college. Only someone who studied at that college can tell you real stuff about that college. Contact the college directly and ask them to put you in touch with some Alumni of that college. Then ask that alumni about his/her experience at that college. Try getting in touch with Students Union Representatives of the college. They are usually the helping kinds.

http://scholarship-positions.com/category/uk-scholarships/ - UK Scholarships

Student Visa for UK Info

VISA Information at UK Govt site - http://www.ukvisas.gov.uk/en/howtoapply/infs/inf5students
Official British Govt Site for Online Visa Applications http://www.visa4uk.fco.gov.uk

Common reasons for refusal of student visa:-
1) No evidence of the student possessing funds required for the course
2) Insufficient funds
3) Poor preparation, no sound knowledge of the course applied for
4) Lack of English knowledge
5) Forged documents: Students found with fraudulent documents are banned from applying to any UK varsity for 10 years

Q:- Bringing a wife/husband/civil partner and children to the UK?
Ans:- http://www.educationuk.org/pls/hot_bc/page_pls_user_article?d=1125#bringing_partner

Q:- Working while studying? / Working when your studies have ended?
Ans:- http://www.educationuk.org/pls/hot_bc/page_pls_user_article?d=1125#work

Find you way to work - International Students: Working in the UK 2007-08 PDF Guide

Some very useful links

http://all-unied.com/acatalog/advice.html
* specific advice for International Students
* a checklist of things to do before you leave home
* recognising and coping with culture shock
* a glossary of words and phrases in the UK education system

http://www.scit.wlv.ac.uk/ukinfo/index.php - Interactive Map of UK's UNIs And Reputed Colleges Along with addresses
http://www.ukeas.com/interactive_uk_map/index.htm - Interactive MAP of all UK Universities
http://www.imahal.com/education/uk/all/list.htm - List of All Colleges In UK

Big Q:- How to Find out which course to do and from which university?
Ans:- There is no simple Answer. Everyone has different requirements. You will have to do your own research using links provided here. One Good link is Prospects.ac.uk.

UKCISA provide guidance notes for students on "Choosing the right course" at: http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/student/information_sheets.php.

A helpful blog on the subject is http://ukadmissionposts.blogspot.com/ . More on this mentioned below under the section "Find a course!".

How safe is your university town/city? Click here to find out.

An alternative source of information (aimed mainly at British students) which includes rankings for various non-academic factors is published by Push: http://www.push.co.uk

To read comments from other international students about a university, see: http://www.iagora.com/istudy.

Entry Requirements

International students: an assessment is made based on the qualifications obtained in the student's own country. In addition, universities also require evidence that the English language skills of international students are good enough. Often students must have a recent IELTS score of at least 6.0, a paper-based TOEFL score of at least 550, or a computer-based TOEFL score of at least 210 (check your university for their requirements).You may be able to take an English course at the university or college before the main course starts (a pre-sessional course).

If you are not in the UK, contact the British Council in your country (see: ttp://www.britishcouncil.org/home/home-contact/home-contact-worldwide.htm). Representatives from UK universities and colleges sometimes travel abroad to meet prospective students at presentations or interviews, or to attend a local "study abroad" or "UK education" fair. The British Council may also organise seminars explaining about choosing a course, applying and living in the UK.

Find a course to study in UK

A course search facility is available from the UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service) website: http://www.ucas.ac.uk. There is a map of university and higher education colleges on the site, and direct links to each of their websites. There is a guide for international students at: http://www.ucas.com/studyuk/index.html. UKCISA provide guidance notes for students on "Choosing the right course" at: http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/student/information_sheets.php

The following sources may also help you to find a university course:
http://www.prospects.ac.uk/ Education Opportunities in UK for International Students
http://www.hotcourses.com
HERO include a "university finder" at http://www.hero.ac.uk/uk/universities___colleges/index.cfm
Hobsons produce a guide "Study UK" at http://www.studyuk.hobsons.com
Study Choice: http://www.studychoice.com contains information about courses at UK universities and other institutions.
Hot Courses provide a directory of courses at: http://www.hotcourses.com. This includes a section of information for international students.
Exploiting online courses to achieve career advancement (Risk Management)
Online Courses from MIT
SII - Investment and Finance Certifications
UKCISA provide guidance notes for students on "Choosing the right course" at: http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/student/information_sheets.php.

A lot of very useful info about courses for students can be found here http://www.ukstudentlife.com/Course.htm

Students should keep in mind that they can very well earn back their course fees by working part-time within legal permissions. There are many temp jobs available in London. Minimum pay rate in London is £5.50/hr. Best way to get a temp job is ask your friends or simply walk down to a nearest high street (where most shops of a town are located) and ask/apply in each shop.

How to find a job as Student in UK /Temp Job/ internships/ Apprenticeships

Please also read the helpful FAQ -Info given after these links

Exploring Your Career Options
http://studentaid.ed.gov/prepare-for-college/careers

A Guide to Interview Success
https://www.msu.edu/user/mkennedy/digitaladvisor/Research/interviewing.htm

How to Get Your First Job in Electronics Engineering
http://www.pannam.com/blog/how-to-get-your-first-job-in-electronics-engineering/

Become an Art Therapist
http://www.arttherapyblog.com/career/art-therapist-jobs/

Interviewing Guide: CSM Career Center
http://www.rit.edu/studentaffairs/ssp/documents/Interviewing%20Guide.pdf

Marketing Communications Career Guide: How To Break In Marcom
http://www.iconicdisplays.com/wp/marketing-communications-career-guide/

Career Cluster Videos
http://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerandClusterVideos/career-and-cluster-videos.aspx

The How-To Career Resource Library
http://findhow.com/career

Guide to Resume & Letter-Writing
https://career.berkeley.edu/Guide/ResumeLetterWriting.pdf

How to Advance Your Career in Restaurant Management
http://blog.directcapital.com/business-insights/small-biz-news/how-to-advance-your-career-in-restaurant-management/

http://www.work-experience.org - The National Council for Work Experience website :
Checkout Local Town Newspaper and
Loot : published 6 times a week. Tues is the best day for jobs.
Evening Standard : published Mon-Fri. Mon is the best day for jobs
Metro : free newspaper issued at train stations. Thurs is the best day for jobs

http://techcityskills.com// - Latest Student Jobs, Internships, Part time, temp jobs in London

http://www.justjobs4students.co.uk
http://www.student-jobs.co.uk - A good resource
http://www.studentjob.co.uk - Another good website
http://www.inspiringinterns.com - Another good website
http://www.freelancestudents.co.uk - Latest students part time jobs, internships and graduate jobs.
http://jobs.thisislondon.co.uk -Site run by the Evening Standard newspaper
http://www.prospects.ac.uk/ -UK's Official Grad Jobs Site
- Work Placements UK: http://www.workplacementsuk.com
- Intern-UK: http://www.internuk.com
- Southern Work Experience, http://www.yeseducation.co.uk
- Placement UK: http://www.placement-uk.com
- Aspect: http://www.aspectinternships.co.uk
- The Student Placement Co: http://www.spco.co.uk
- Eagle UK: http://www.eagle-uk.demon.co.uk
- Jobs.efinancialcareers.com - Graduates & Internships Jobs UK
- Apprenticeships In UK - Apprenticeships In UK

www.work-experience.org - The National Council for Work Experience
GLA Placements - These are amazing paid placements are for students to get first hand experience working for the GLA 2009-10
www.studentemploymentservices. co.uk - SES advertise a number of placements.
www.fledglings.net - Student resources for industrial placements
www.step.org.uk - Shell step Programme offering a range of summer placements
www.ratemyplacement.com - This website gives you the chance to read reviews from students about placements that they have completed, as well as offering various placement opportunities.
www.prospects.ac.uk/cms/ ShowPage/Home_page/Law/Law_ searches... - Work placement opportunities within the legal profession
www.topinternships.com - This website advertises a large number of placement opportunities
www.yummyjobs.com - This company specialises in placements in the USA particularly if you are interested in the hospitality and catering industry
Intern Options.com - Placement Opportunities in Austrailia or New Zealand
Hobsons - A wide variety of year, summer, project based placements in a broad spectrum of industries

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How to find a job as Student in UK /Temp Job/ internships/ Apprenticeships

Please also read the helpful FAQ -Info given after these links

Exploring Your Career Options
http://studentaid.ed.gov/prepare-for-college/careers

A Guide to Interview Success
https://www.msu.edu/user/mkennedy/digitaladvisor/Research/interviewing.htm

How to Get Your First Job in Electronics Engineering
http://www.pannam.com/blog/how-to-get-your-first-job-in-electronics-engineering/

Become an Art Therapist
http://www.arttherapyblog.com/career/art-therapist-jobs/

Interviewing Guide: CSM Career Center
http://www.rit.edu/studentaffairs/ssp/documents/Interviewing%20Guide.pdf

Marketing Communications Career Guide: How To Break In Marcom
http://www.iconicdisplays.com/wp/marketing-communications-career-guide/

Career Cluster Videos
http://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerandClusterVideos/career-and-cluster-videos.aspx

The How-To Career Resource Library
http://findhow.com/career

Guide to Resume & Letter-Writing
https://career.berkeley.edu/Guide/ResumeLetterWriting.pdf

How to Advance Your Career in Restaurant Management
http://blog.directcapital.com/business-insights/small-biz-news/how-to-advance-your-career-in-restaurant-management/

http://www.work-experience.org - The National Council for Work Experience website :
Checkout Local Town Newspaper and
Loot : published 6 times a week. Tues is the best day for jobs.
Evening Standard : published Mon-Fri. Mon is the best day for jobs
Metro : free newspaper issued at train stations. Thurs is the best day for jobs

http://techcityskills.com// - Latest Student Jobs, Internships, Part time, temp jobs in London

http://www.justjobs4students.co.uk
http://www.student-jobs.co.uk - A good resource
http://www.studentjob.co.uk - Another good website
http://www.inspiringinterns.com - Another good website
http://www.freelancestudents.co.uk - Latest students part time jobs, internships and graduate jobs.
http://jobs.thisislondon.co.uk -Site run by the Evening Standard newspaper
http://www.prospects.ac.uk/ -UK's Official Grad Jobs Site
- Work Placements UK: http://www.workplacementsuk.com
- Intern-UK: http://www.internuk.com
- Southern Work Experience, http://www.yeseducation.co.uk
- Placement UK: http://www.placement-uk.com
- Aspect: http://www.aspectinternships.co.uk
- The Student Placement Co: http://www.spco.co.uk
- Eagle UK: http://www.eagle-uk.demon.co.uk
- Jobs.efinancialcareers.com - Graduates & Internships Jobs UK
- Apprenticeships In UK - Apprenticeships In UK

www.work-experience.org - The National Council for Work Experience
GLA Placements - These are amazing paid placements are for students to get first hand experience working for the GLA 2009-10
www.studentemploymentservices. co.uk - SES advertise a number of placements.
www.fledglings.net - Student resources for industrial placements
www.step.org.uk - Shell step Programme offering a range of summer placements
www.ratemyplacement.com - This website gives you the chance to read reviews from students about placements that they have completed, as well as offering various placement opportunities.
www.prospects.ac.uk/cms/ ShowPage/Home_page/Law/Law_ searches... - Work placement opportunities within the legal profession
www.topinternships.com - This website advertises a large number of placement opportunities
www.yummyjobs.com - This company specialises in placements in the USA particularly if you are interested in the hospitality and catering industry
Intern Options.com - Placement Opportunities in Austrailia or New Zealand
Hobsons - A wide variety of year, summer, project based placements in a broad spectrum of industries

http://www.iprofile.org UK's leading Online CV formatting service
http://www.freemycv.com - Upload your CV once, and they register you with other leading job sites.
http://www.cv-library.co.uk ( useful site to compare and develop your own CV by benchmarking it with simillar skills CVs of others available on site)
http://www.jobs4medical.com (for pharmacy and medical jobs)
www.careerforums.co.uk - Career Exhibitions and Seminars
www.theappointment.co.uk - retail and hospitality
www.inretail.co.uk - Leading Job Site for retail sector
http://targetjobs.co.uk - 750+ Pages of Jobs, Recruiters and advice
http://insidecareers.co.uk - Detailed insight into a career as an actuary

http://www.topgradschool.com - World's Top Unis on tour to Screen students and offer advice.

http://www.gradjobs.co.uk - Fresh Graduate Jobs site

http://www.forum3.co.uk -    Jobs for Charity/Non-Profit Sector - 10th and 11th Oct@ Islington Business Center,

http://www.top-consultant.com/ - Biggest UK Consultant Companies - 9th and 10th oct @ Barbical Exhibition Hall - Tkts usually £10

The BBC offers a wide range of work experience placements, including many which require fluency in a certain foreign language: http://www.bbc.co.uk/jobs/workexperience

There is a National Work Placement Exhibition each year. For details, see: http://www.gradjobs.co.uk

For latest on Post Study Worker's Visa etc Checkout http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/


Q:- Working while studying? / Working when your studies have ended?
Ans:- http://www.educationuk.org/pls/hot_bc/page_pls_user_article?d=1125#work

Find you way to work - International Students: Working in the UK 2007-08 PDF Guide

Usually student work experience like internships etc is unpaid. Also you need to make your own arrangements for accommodation if you need to work far from where you are currently living, and need to pay for your own expenses for travel (Student RailCard), accommodation and other living costs. Please Note that if you are from outside the UK, you should have a visa or passport which allows you to work in the UK - even if there is no pay for the work.

Applications process for work placements usually starts 3 months or more before the placement starts, so it is a good idea to start planning as early as possible. Work experience is often for quite short periods, typically between about 1 week to 3 months. The most popular times are during the UK school/university holidays, especially during the summer months.

To find Temp Jobs for 20hrs/week when you are studying regular course - best way is to Prepare a One Page CV and apply to a local Job Centre Office or Reed Agency Office and other local recruitment agencies on the nearest highstreet. Check Yell.com to find a Local Recruitment Agency or contact local council office for help. Also Drop copies of your CVs to Local Highstreet Stores like Primark, Newlook and supermarkets like ASDA, Tesco etc.

OTHER USEFUL LINKS:-

For Latest Student Visa and Uk Education News - http://www.workpermit.com/news/2008-08-05/uk/foreign-students-tier-4-points-based-system-proposals.htm

Information About NI Number- You must apply for NI number before or soon after Jjoining a Job. Because preference is given to candidates with NI Numbers.

Student Finance - Bank Accounts
Money Super Market Guide for Student Accounts - Aug/Sep 2008
For help with College/UNI Projects
www.superiorpapers.com
www.projectsdeal.com

Studying in the UK
British Council http://www.britishcouncil.org/

Education UK
http://www.educationuk-in.org

Study abroad agency
Study Overseas Ltd http://www.britishhighereducation.com

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Guide to qualify as a Solicitor in England

Some Useful Sites:
http://www.llm-guide.com/
www.legalweek.com

Solicitors Regulatory Authority

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Useful Info For Pharmacists

Following UNIs run conversion Courses so that Foreign Pharmacy Graduates can register with RPSGB as a Pharmacist. To work in UK as a Pharmacist, which is a lucrative job sector, one needs to do either a conversion course or full course from a UK Uni/College :-
1)Brighton
2)Birmingham
3)Sunderland
4) Robert Gordon Uni in Aberdeen, Scotland

Good Places to do Full UK Pharmacy Course :-
1) The London School of Pharmacy - UCL - http://www.pharmacy.ac.uk
2) Kings College London
3) Portsmouth

Psychology/Psychologist

The British Psychological Society is the society one needs to register to work as a psychologist in United Kingdom.

BPS has different grades of membership:-

http://www.bps.org.uk/membership/grades/grades_home.cfm

If one is a Student, he/she can get student membership and then continue his/her study in the field.

To Practice Psychology in UK, one needs to get Graduate Membership (GBR) and this is same for overseas/home student. Following link shows Graduate Membership details:-

http://www.bps.org.uk/membership/overseas-info/overseas-info_home.cfm

Overseas students at times have to do a conversion course to obtain GBR, following link shows various courses at undergraduate & post graduate level including conversion courses:-

http://www.bps.org.uk/careers/accredited-courses/accredited-courses.cfm

Conversion courses details can be seen on the following link:-

http://www.bps.org.uk/careers/accredited-courses/accredited-courses.cfm?action=conversion

Pharmacist

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (RPSGB) is the society one needs to register to work as a Pharmacist in United Kingdom.

This link details about registration process for overseas applicants:-

http://www.rpsgb.org.uk/registrationandsupport/registration/registrationfromothercountries.html

Other Medical professions

HPC deals with registration of various medical professions, details about registration process for various professions can be found on the following link:-

http://www.hpc-uk.org/aboutregistration/professions/

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Useful Info For Nurses

This section will be updated soon.

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TIER1 VISA/HSMP/Workpermit/Job Market Info

For Work Permits/Work Visas/ Tier 1, Student Work Visa You can checkout one of these Companies
http://www.workpermitconsultants.com
http://www.easyworkpermit.co.uk
http://www.permits2work.co.uk

A leading HSMP/Workpermit Forum for your Visa Related Queries - http://www.immigrationboards.com/
HomeOffice Site for HSMP/Tier 1Visa:- http://www.ind.homeoffice.gov.uk/workingintheuk/

UK Govt Site for VISA related FAQs http://www.ukvisas.gov.uk/
Official British Govt Site for Online Visa Applications http://www.visa4uk.fco.gov.uk/
LatestGovt Updates on Work Visa/HSMP Information here http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/

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Jobs In UK Guide!

Common Questions asked by Most Newcomers to UK on HSMP, Holiday Maker Or Work Visas

Law Employment

http://www.steenandco.co.uk - Provides high quality employment law advice

http://www.hewetts.co.uk/employment.htm - Employment Law for Employees and Employers

Click here for more Information About NI Number- You must apply for NI number before or soon after joining a JOB. Because preference is given to candidates with NI Numbers

1) How is UK IT Market/Testing Market/SAP Market/Networking Security Market Etc etc now ?
Ans - Average. There are jobs in every skills as long as you are good in your skills and can prove that.
Must read The UK IT skills crisis: an essential guide for IT professionals Interview Questions Sites
http://www.geekinterview.com/Interview-Questions
http://dba.fyicenter.com/interview/
http://www.allinterview.com/Interview-Questions
http://www.careerride.com/
For Interview Preparation Guidelines Click here - Must Read


To get a better idea about the jobs available in your skill set and salaries offered checkout
http://www.jobserve.co.uk
http://www.Monster.co.uk
http://www.jobsite.co.uk
http://www.reed.co.uk
http://neuvoo.co.uk/en
http://www.iprofile.org/ - UK's leading Online CV Formatting Template
http://jobs.guardian.co.uk
http://jobs.timesonline.co.uk
http://www.efinancialcareers.com - for finance, retail banking, investment banking jobs
http://www.freemycv.com - Upload your CV once, and they register you with other leading job sites.
http://www.activetechpros.com Benchmark your salary against Similar Profile People from All over the world.
http://www.jobmanji.co.uk/ - Jobmanji has thousands of job listings in London for Accounting,Finance Etc. Search today on Jobmanji
www.cv-library.co.uk ( useful site to compare and develop your own CV by benchmarking it with simillar skills CVs of others available on site)
www.agencycentral.co.uk
www.alec.co.uk
www.beancounterjobs.co.uk
www.careerbuilder.com/administrativejob
www.cvposter.com
www.cwjobs.co.uk
www.dovajobs.co.uk
www.engineeringjobsite.co.uk
www.elanit.co.uk
www.experteer.co.uk
www.fish4jobs.co.uk
www.flipdog.com (Now Part of Monster.co.uk)
www.gumtree.com
www.itjobswatch.co.uk
www.job.com
www.jobs.co.uk
www.jobsite.co.uk/it
www.jobs.guardian.co.uk
www.jobsearch.co.uk
www.jobnut.co.uk
www.jobs1.co.uk/directory/recruitment_leisure.html
www.jobsearch.co.uk
www.jobcentre.gov.uk
www.jobserve.com UK's leading jobsite.
www.jobsgroup.net
www.jobsite.co.uk

www.manpower.co.uk
www.singaporejobsonline.com
www.peoplebank.com
www.planetrecruit.com
www.recruitdirectory.com
www.redgoldfish.co.uk
www.reed.co.uk
www.skillfair.co.uk
www.totaljobs.com
www.itgraduatejobs.co
www.technojobs.co.uk
www.theitjobboard.com
www.topjobs.co.uk
www.totaljobs.com
www.thejobzone.co.uk
www.ukjobsnet.co.uk
www.workthing.com

www.jobs4medical.com (for pharmacy and medical jobs)
www.theladders.com. (good site for 50K+ jobs but it is paid)
www.careerforums.co.uk - Career Exhibitions and Seminars
www.theappointment.co.uk - retail and hospitality
www.inretail.co.uk - Leading Job Site for retail sector
http://targetjobs.co.uk - 750+ Pages of Jobs, Recruiters and advice
http://insidecareers.co.uk - Detailed insight into a career as an actuary

2) Is it right time to enter UK market ?
Ans:- Yes!! Only if you already have a good offer or above mentioned job sites tell you that there is a demand for your skill set.

3) I am coming on an HSMP. How long will it take for me to get a JOB?
Ans:- Ask GOD. :). nobody else can tell the future. :) Well on a serious note, if your english language skills are good and you are good in your main skill-set too then on an average it takes 2-3 months to get a good job (You'll need an average of £500/Month to survive in London). How it goes is, you email your resumes for the job offers to recruitment agencies, they call you and get all your relevant details and feed it in their system according to their own format. Then they go cold for a while and only call you when in their database you match with the requirement they have. Usually, employers here rely a lot on Agencies and assume that Agency would have done the basic screening etc. In 90% of interviews, employers hire someone from the first 10 candidates sent by the agency. So make sure you impress the agency guy with your best communication skills. Having good terms with Agency Guys (talk a little about weather, holidays, music concerts etc, if possible joke about prime minister, finance minister etc :) and then casually ask about the update/progress on any job query) is half the battle won.

4)For 2+/3+/5+/7+ Experience guy how much salary to expect?
Ans- It depends on which Company you join and which part of UK you join. London is a costly place so salaries are higher. Suburban areas are less costly so salary is less. Don't be fussy for your first job. Take whatever you are offered. Once you're in job and have evaluated the worth of your skills according to the job market, you can always switch in 6-12 months time.

For permanent job - £30K - £40K Salary per annum can be called a good start.Salary-Tax Calculator
Contract - £200 - £350 Salary per day is a good start
For contracting:- You will need an umbrella company to bill your hours on your behalf and pay you salary and expenses. Umbrella companies are expert in managing your accounts and can get you good share from your billing. A 70-75% takehome is considered pretty good.

 

Note: If you have a confirmed contract offer then you can approach following companies for your billing
www.payschemeplus.com

5)How easy is it to get the job I apply for?
Applying for a job in London is tough and competition is very fierce. Even if you are experienced in your own country you might not perform with the right etiquette to appear like the best candidate. There are some agencies who provide grooming for new comers e.g. Successful Flare can help you maximise your job application. They are experienced City interviewers who specialise in supporting non-native speakers of English to start their London career, through the whole application process from application form and CV to interview and job offer!

 


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Travel/Driving Within UK

It is a general understanding that your Foreign Driving License is valid authority to drive in UK for 1 year from your date of entry. You don't need an IDP (International Driving Permit) to drive within UK for first 1 year. You should apply for a learning license within frst 1 year and try your best to clear the practical driving tests within 1 year. If for any reason you leave the country for more than 3months within 1st year, then at the time of re-entry your 1yr cycle starts again.
Note: To Drive in Europe . If you are a UK resident and you don't have a UK license then you'll need an IDP.
To findout cheapest insurance for your car try
First Alternative - Build Upto 75% NCD (Most others offer 65%)
http://www.postoffice.co.uk - Good source of all kinds of Insurance Needs
Gocompare.com Car Insurance
www.moneysupermarket.com- Price Comparison site
http://www.confused.com - Price Comparison site
http://www.adrianflux.co.uk - Independent broker
http://www.quotelinedirect.co.uk - Independent broker
http://www.performancedirect.co.uk - Another Cheap Provider
Note:
1)Don't lie to Insurance company about anything. Here they work on the principle that your statements are assumed to be true. Not many checks are being made. But once you get stuck in an accident, they won't cover you if they can prove in court that you lied. So better not do that as it can land you up in criminal charges.

2) Drink Driving is the most dangerous driving offence in UK. Its a criminal offence and not a civil one. Its taken as "intention to kill" by law. Which means 11 yrs of criminial record. Your DNA, 3 photographs and Fingerprints taken at Police station. Minimum 12 months of driving ban for first offence. Hefty fine. Costly insurance for next 5 yrs. Loss of eligbility for PR/Citizenship till expiry of BAN Period. (Note: Driving ban may expired in ninimum 12 months but Fine Entry in records expires in 2 yrs from conviction date. Fine Amount will also affect your car insurance for next 5 yrs) . Car rentals won't give you a car for 5 yrs from date of offence as their insurance won't cover you. Some basic facts to be kept in mind always:-
a) Most people get caught as "Morning After" case. They had just too many drinks last night and next morning when they are feeling absolutely fine, alcohol in their blood is usually above the legal limit (80 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood, breath alcohol - 35 µg (microgrammes) per 100 ml). It is because on an average 1 Unit (25ml of Spirits in UK ) takes 1 hr to be digested by your system. Please remember Coffee/Hotshower/ChewingGum etc NOTHING will help to speedup breaking of alcohol into glucose by your liver. Your Body/Liver will take their own time.
Note: Police Can ask for a breath test on a pub car park. A private car park is also actually a public space because residents park their cars there. You can be charged for intention to drink drive when you walk out of a pub and move towards your car.
To understand legal limit and metabolism of body related facts etc please see below links:-
UK Legal Limit, Can/Pint of beer Into Units Calculation, Alcohol Absorbtion in Blood
NHS Guide About Alcohol Consumption
Drink Driving law in UK
List of Some Solicitors for Defence of Drink Driving Offence
Can't Afford the Case - Legal Aid Info
3) Speeding over limit gets you minimum 3 points for one fault. U'll loose license at 12 points. You'll have to re-apply again from scratch. Within first 2 yrs of having cleared a full driving license test, if you end up accumulating 6 points, you'll loose your license and will have to start from scratch.
4) Its a very hard process to get driving license in UK. People celebrate passing the practical test like its their 18th Birthday. So don't take any risk with it.
5) Most new cars come with 3 yrs limited warranty. Some Korean ones come with 5 yrs warranty too. For second hand cars www.autotrader.co.uk is a good site. www.cargiant.co.uk is another big dealer of second-hand cars. Plus most car makers have their own certifed used cars scheme. You can also buy decent cars from local dealers or private sellers thru gumtree, autotrader or ebay.
6) Every car older than 3 yrs is required to have a MOT done. Its an Annual fitness test for the Car. You will also need to Pay roadtax(depends on Carbon emission and Engine size) on the car. Keeping a Car is a very costly affair in UK and thats why second hand cars are very cheap. If you are in london you don't need to have a Car as public transport is very good. For those occasional needs you can try cheap/hourly car rentals from www.streetcar.co.uk. If you are buying your first car in UK then its advised not to spend more than £2500 on it. If you are lucky you can get a decent car from a private seller for as cheap as £500-£800. Once you are used to all aspects of car-keeping like roadtax, insurance, maintenance cost and all, you can always go for a bigger/costlier car.

Ten Ways To Cut Motoring Costs
Where to Look, If caught in a motoring offence

More information about license and regulations here www.dvla.gov.uk
To find out about cheap petrol prices in an area check this http://www.petrolprices.com

To find out Travel Tips to/from the london postcode you are interested in
http://journeyplanner.tfl.gov.uk

General Map /Travel Directions Sites for whole of UK
http://maps.google.co.uk
http://www.theaa.co.uk
http://www.mapquest.co.uk/
http://www.streetmap.co.uk/


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Travel Outside UK

Plan your Road/Rail/Air travel here - http://www.routerank.com/
Schengen States - More Info Here on Entry Conditions and restrictions
Foreigners with HSMPs, WorkPermits on their passport can travel to Switzerland without needing a Schengen Visa, as long as they don't travel through a Schengen State.
For list of documents you need for applying Schengen Visa and Fee Details etc Click Here
French Consulate is the most generous embassy when it comes to duration of Schengen Visas. They easily give you 3-12 months Of visa on same day.
French Schengen Visa Info
French Consulate Online Appointment Booking System


You will need :-


1)Travel Insurance - get cheapest from www.moneysupermarket.com . Get 1 yr Multi Trip covering most international countries. (around £27) It not only covers your health/accidents but also gives you compensation for late flights, lost -damaged baggage etc. Plus 1 yr insurance will help you get a longer term scehengen visa. The other alternatve, "European Health Card" is only available to you if you have PR/Citizenship of UK. But that card doesn't cover for late flights and other losses. Spending money on travel insurance is worth every penny.
2)Proof of Lodging -  Book a hostel from hostelworld.com


Note: To Drive in Europe . If you don't have a UK license then you'll need an IDP (International Driving Permit).


British Airways Holidays and Destination guides
Hostelworld Holidays and Destination Guides
Times Summer 2008 Travel Guide
Learn the lingo - Travellers Language Guides (Survival MP3 Clips)
Travelling to UK from EU - Alcohol n Tobacco Import limits

Some not conventional places to visit and talk about http://www.backofmyhand.com/




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Find the cheapest flights to Europe:-

www.skyscanner.com Covers Easyjet, RyanAir and all major budget Airlines
There are usually no paper tickets for discount airline flights (you should print out your internet booking).
Cheap flights may be "non-refundable", which means that you cannot get your money back if you need to cancel. However, if you cancel you should be able to receive back your tax and airport charges - you will need to write to the airline to claim this money back.
For a list of budget airlines routes from each UK airport, see: http://www.flycheapo.com/flights/united-kingdom
You can find budget airline routes between any two European countries or airports using the search tool at: http://www.flycheapo.com

Top 10 Honeymoon Trips - Expedia's Famous Travel Packages
STA Travel UK specialises in travel for students or people under 26 years old. They have negotiated with some airlines to get special discounts or more flexible tickets for these customers. You may need to have an International Student Identity Card (ISIC) or an International Youth Identity Card (IYIC) for some of the offers: when you buy online you will need to send proof that you are a student or under 26 before your ticket can be sent to you.

Low cost, Prestige VIP Meet n Greet Parking Service At heathrow
http://www.airportdirect.org/ another good + cheap pickup service


For best deals in foreign currency checkout
www.onlinefx.com
Best Debit/credit card to use abroad

For maps in europe
http://www.viamichelin.com/
http://www.mapquest.co.uk/
http://www.multimaps.co.uk/
An interesting search engine http://kartoo.com/


#####Post Office's Travel Checklist#####
360money - another Good supplier of Pre-Paid Credit cards which anyone can get!

Don't go on holiday without...
...our handy checklist of travel essentials. Ten top tips for your most enjoyable holiday yet

1. Online check in - Checking in online can save you loads of time at the airport. You can drop your luggage off in a designated area at the airport, or better still, just take hand luggage and start your holiday while everyone else is waiting for their bags!

2. Luggage love - Don't lose your luggage or walk off with someone else's. Get a really distinctive suitcase, or decorate yours with colourful straps and ribbons. If you don't want to put your address on your suitcase, just put a mobile number instead.

3. In flight essentials - Your holiday experience begins on the flight. Take ear plugs, eye mask and travel pillow for sleeping on the plane, and socks and a jumper to keep warm.

4. First aid kit - As well as any prescription medicines, remember to pack paracetamol, plasters, insect repellent and dehydration sachets.

5. Spare juice - You'll need batteries or the charger for your camera, MP3 player, laptop or handheld computer. Make sure they're charged up, take spares and a battery charger, and don't forget the right adapter for the country you're going to.

6. Extra eyes - Lose your glasses and sightseeing loses its edge. Take a spare pair with you, it's a requirement in some European countries if you're the designated driver. Contact lens wearers should go disposable. You won't have to worry about losing a lens or carry solution around with you.

7. The right suncream - Take suncream that's the right strength for your skin. Cancer Research recommends at least SPF15, higher for children, people with fair skin or lots of moles or freckles.

8. A pre booked parking space - For the ultimate in convenience, pre book a guaranteed parking space at the airport. A Meet and Greet service is ideal if you've got lots of luggage and/or kids.

9. Connections - Don't get stung when making calls, sending texts or using the Internet on holiday. Ask your network provider if your phone will work abroad and what the charges are. Remember that it can cost as much as £1 per minute even to receive calls abroad. The moneysupermarket.com guide to international roaming

10. Travel Insurance - Your own travel insurance is essential, even if you have an EHIC card. It's your peace of mind in case your luggage gets lost, or someone in your family becomes ill.

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Top 5 Web Proxy Sites to Hide Your IP Address:-

Part of IAmNewToLondon/UK Guide
Support the research behind IAmNewToLondon/UK guide! Buy Broadband/Tv/Mobiles/Flights/Gifts from here. Disclaimer: Information provided here is collected from internet and is bound to change over a period of time.
Please check relevant Urls and sources for correct and latest information. Authors of this page, won't be responsible for any claim/loss arising out of use of following information.

There are 2 problems that you may see with web proxy sites these days:

1) New proxy sites appear every day. Most of them are full with ads and last for few days.
2) People create these sites for many purposes, but the 2 primary ones are making money and stealing information such as passwords. Most online proxy sites are rarely created with a true purpose of offering privacy protection.

1. Hide My Ass - since: 2005
Website URL : http://hidemyass.com

2. The Cloak - since: 1999
Website URL: http://www.the-cloak.com

3. Anonymouse - since: 2004
Website URL: http://anonymouse.org

4. Proxy.org - since: 2004
Website URL: http://proxy.org

5. Proxify - since: 2004
Website URL: http://proxify.co.uk

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Simple Guide On How To Keep Your Windows Computer - PC - Laptop Safe From Virus, Trojans, Worms, Rootkits, Dialers, Spyware and Malware etc etc. And How To Clean VIRUS from your PC - Laptop.

Please Also Go through The Identity Theft Guide! Its a big thing in UK/U.S.

Note: PC Trojans are usually after your credit card details and internet banking passwords. Read the bottom of page if you are more interested in details on that topic.

Virus Protection : Before Your PC - LAPTOP Got Infected..

If you think your PC is already infected, scroll down a bit more)

1) Download Free SpyBot S&D and Free Avast AntiVirus and do a full system scan with both. These Two FREE Utilities can save you from 99.99% of VIRUS INFECTIONS scattered on Internet.

2A)Then You should also download and install "trusteer" from your internet banking site. Around 60 UK banks offer trusteer for FREE. This software won't allow any hidden trojan in memory to record/steal your internet banking password. Read more about trusteer here trusteer.com

2b) Windows Defender (Click Here To download) - Free Utility (Comes Inbuilt with Vista And newer versions of Windows- downloadable from Microsoft Site for Win XP) - Always have it Switched ON. It protects your system from Trojans or Its variations. Even if it doesn't clean your system, It scans all Incoming/outgoing connections to Internet from your PC/System

3) Always keep an eye on what Internet Explorer- Add Ons Are Running In Memory, while you are browsing the Internet. Never Download and Install Useless toolbars like uploaders/radio/300 smileys etc etc. Some of them have hidden trojans which record all your keystrokes and passwords when you type them on Internet banking/shopping forms. Show little carelessness in this matter and you are doomed!
Sane Advice - in most cases you won't really really need any toolbar except Google/Yahoo toolbars .
To Disable unwanted addons in Internet Explorer (IE) in the Menus - Go like this , TOOLs -> Manage Addons -> Enable or Disable Addons. Then Disable any Addons you don't recognise from a trustful source or Any Addon you don't use anymore.

4) Download Free Security Task Manager for Win XP - www.neuber.com/taskmanager/ It scans your memory and shows you lots of details about programs running in your memory. If you find something Dodgy, just Terminate And Send it to sandbox/quarantine. Better safe than sorry!


You should also
5. Immunize your system with SpywareBlaster or Windows Advanced Care.
6. Use SUPERantispyware, MBAM or Spyware Terminator (Editor's Choice) to scan for spywares and trojans. If any infection is detected, better and safer is send the file to Quarantine than to simple delete them.
7. Check if you have insecure applications with Secunia Software Inspector (MUST..MUST...MUST..Do It Right now).

These days most home computers are connected through wireless routers, but the problem is most people don't know how to Secure their wireless network because the Default Configuration the ROUTERs come with, usually, isn't very secure. Always setup a WPA Key to secure your wireless network. Read your Router's user manual for more help. So Click here for your own Safety. Plus If you know how, then change the wireless channel to 11 coz that Channel causes least interference with Microwave and Washing Machines etc. For all kinds of computer tech problems checkout http://help.expedient.net/techtips/index.shtml

For more Virus/Antivirus information please look here http://help.expedient.net/mailnews/viruses.shtml

Protection : After Your PC - LAPTOP got Infected

1. Disable System Restore and Re -Enable it after step 3. (That is if you know about what is System Restore- If you don't, don't worry too much about it. Proceed Anyway)
2. Clean your temporary files. Usually in C:\\Windows\Temp.
3. Schedule a boot time scanning with Avast AntiVirus with Archive(Zip files)Scanning turned on. If Avast does not detect it, you can try DrWeb CureIT! instead.
4. Use SUPERantispyware, MBAM or Spyware Terminator to scan for spywares and trojans. If any infection is detected, better and safer is send the file to Quarantine than to simple delete than.
5. Test your machine with anti-rootkit applications. I suggest avast! antirootkit or Trend Micro RootkitBuster.
6. If still in doubt and worry, Make a HijackThis log to post here or, better, submit the RunScanner log to on-line analysis.
7. Immunize your system with SpywareBlaster or Windows Advanced Care.
8. Check if you have insecure applications with Secunia Software Inspector.(MUST..MUST...MUST..Do It Right now)


Note Contd From Top: Nothing is 100% safe online or offline. When you use your credit card to pay for petrol on petrol pump (or at a grocery store), usually a CCTV is recording what your PIN is (If you don't hide it with your hand)... and rest of the details on the magnetic strip of card can be easily copied from 10-100Mts away. Most of the credit cards get CLONED on Grocery Shops or Petrol Pumps and usually the owners are not aware of it. (Only way to prevent this is Always HIDE your PIN With your Hand, doesn't matter how awkward it looks) And you can (in most cases) NEVER trace where it was CLONED. You will only realise, when you see fraudulent transactions on your Credit card statement. Report it to the Credit Card Provider immediately so that they can cancel the CARD with immediate effect. Usually by LAW(UK) you are protected against such fraudlulent use of your card. so You shoudn't be made responsible to pay penny for the fraudlulent transactions if you report them in time.

USE a Credit Card always inplace of Debit Card if you can. All Credit Cards come with Fraud Protection (BY LAW) where you don't have to pay for any fraudulant transactions if Its Not your fault (You fault like writing the PIN on a paper and keeping it in Purse and then loose the Cards in the Purse and Pin all together). The moment you write your PIN Anywhere and if It can be proved in court, you are not Protected for any losses.

Credit cards usually come with many Intrinsic Benefits-Promises (Always Always read the booklet which comes with the CARD) which most ppl don't USE or are not AWARE OF... like... Purchase Protection, Price Promise, 1yr free Insurance on electrical goods (On top of 1 yr standard warranty), Travel Insurance, UnEmployment Insurance.. etc etc

Guide for doctors new to the UK :-

Part of IAmNewToLondon/UK Guide-youtube
Support the research behind IAmNewToLondon/UK guide! Buy Broadband/Tv/Mobiles/Flights/Gifts from here. Disclaimer: Information provided here is collected from internet and is bound to change over a period of time.
Please check relevant Urls and sources for correct and latest information. Authors of this page, won't be responsible for any claim/loss arising out of use of following information.

Guide for doctors new to the UK


Introduction
International doctors make a valuable contribution to the NHS. Many come for postgraduate training and then return home, while others remain permanently. The UK has always been a popular choice for many reasons, including cultural and historical links with certain countries and having English as the main language.


The National Health Service (NHS)
The NHS was founded in 1948 to provide healthcare free at the point of use to the entire UK population. Although there have since been significant changes in the structure and funding of NHS healthcare, especially in the 1990s, it still covers the whole of the UK population and is still mostly free at the point of delivery. Exceptions include outpatient dental treatment, some health appliances and sight testing, for which patients are expected to pay in part, or fully, themselves. Patients also pay a fixed amount for drugs prescribed in primary care, although there are exemptions or reductions for certain groups, such as children, the elderly, the unemployed, those on low incomes and some patients with chronic conditions. There are no charges for seeing a doctor or for treatment in hospital


Career structure and training
Most doctors work for the NHS in some capacity, in hospital services, general practice or in public health medicine and community health. Some will also be employed by universities, teaching medical students or carrying out research. There is a close partnership between universities and the NHS; clinical academic staff treat patients, and their career paths are similar to those of NHS doctors. Other options include occupational medicine, forensic medicine work in the prison service or in the armed forces medical service. Some doctors work exclusively in private practice, but this is unusual.

Medical training in the UK is designed to meet the needs of the NHS, and its length and structure may differ from those in countries with different healthcare systems.

In February 2003 the UK’s chief medical officers (CMOs) published a document entitled Modernising Medical Careers, which proposed radical changes to the UK medical training system.

It consists of following programmes. For full detail, go to http://www.mmc.nhs.uk

Foundation programmes
Under MMC a new two-year foundation programme for all medical graduates was established to replace the pre-registration house officer (PRHO) year and first year of senior house officer (SHO) training. The foundation programme started nationwide in August 2005. It aims to link medical school and general practice or specialist training through a programme of general training with participants undertaking a series of placements within various specialties and healthcare settings. Doctors on foundation programmes will be expected to gain a wide range of competencies encompassing both clinical and professional skills before they can proceed to the next stage of postgraduate medical training in the UK.

Foundation Year I (F1)
F1 posts are similar to the ‘internship’ year undertaken by medical graduates in many other countries and must include at least three months of general surgery and three months of general medicine (as required by the Medical Act 1983). The GMC has responsibility for the F1. While EEA graduates/IMGs are able to apply to F1 posts, it is strongly recommend that you do your pre-registration year in your country of qualification.

Foundation Year 2 (F2)
F2 develops post-registration skills and enables trainees to undertake placements in three specialties. The Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board (PMETB) is responsible for the F2. It typically consists of three, four-month placements and includes opportunities to work in primary care. F2 posts will build on competencies learnt during the F1 year as well as generic competencies including: time management, IT skills and team working which are applicable to all areas of medicine.


Specialist training
The medical royal colleges and their faculties (royal colleges) draw up the criteria for specialist training curricula and assessments which are submitted to the PMETB which is the sole competent authority responsible for the approval of training posts and programmes. It sets the standards within which selection for specialist training operates and certifies doctors for application to the specialist and GP registers. A network of regional postgraduate deans, with specialist input from the royal colleges, is responsible for ensuring that standards are met at a local level as part of their remit for quality management of postgraduate medical education and training.

When an individual successfully completes the foundation programme, they will move into a specialty training programme which, upon successful completion, will lead to the award of a certificate of completion of training (CCT) either for specialist or general practice training.


Trainees who are not eligible to receive a CCT because they have not completed all their training in the UK may still be eligible to enter the specialist or GP register by virtue of their non-UK training or a combination of their UK and overseas training. They will not, however, be granted a CCT. GPs who qualified outside the UK will need to apply to the PMETB for a Certificate confirming Eligibility for GP Registration (CEGPR). Doctors wishing to enter the specialist register on the basis of overseas training need to apply to the PMETB for a Certificate confirming Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR).

Training for general practice
There is a well-established postgraduate training programme for general practice, the vocational training scheme (VTS), which lasts for a minimum of three years and is compulsory for all doctors wishing to work in general practice. For information about applying for GP training, please visit the National Recruitment Office for General Practice Training website at www.gprecruitment.org.uk


Since August 2007 those UK-trained doctors looking to obtain a CCT in General Practice, have been required to complete a single training and assessment system through the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP). Satisfactory completion of the MRCGP has become an essential requirement for entry to the GMC's GP register as well as providing membership to the RCGP.


Career structure in academic medicine
There is a close relationship between the NHS and the UK medical academic sector. The NHS benefits from the research and teaching carried out by university staff, while universities benefit from the clinical training which NHS staff provide for students. Medically qualified staff may be employed by universities to carry out non-clinical teaching and research and are treated in the same way as non-medically qualified university teachers. Clinical academic staff teach medical students, provide clinical services to patients and are engaged in research and administration. They are employed by universities but given honorary NHS appointments.

A new training pathway for clinical academics has been in operation since 2006. The Integrated Academic Training Pathway provides dedicated academic training programmes in strong host environments in partnership between Universities, local NHS Trusts and Deaneries. These programmes are derived of three phases: Academic Clinical Fellowships (ACFs) are of three years' duration and are aimed at new entrants to specialty training. 25 per cent of the programme time is protected for research and academic studies and 75 per cent for clinical studies. Once the ACF period is completed trainees should be in a position to compete for a PhD scholarship. Following completion of a higher degree, trainees can compete for a Clinical Lectureship (CLs). These are aimed at both doctors and dentists who have obtained a PhD/MD (or equivalent) and already have specialty training experience. The CL phase lasts for four years and provides an opportunity for a substantial piece of post-higher degree research and facilitates applications for further research funding. At the end of the CL period, trainees should be in a position to apply for a Certificate of Completion of Training.

The main posts in academic medicine are those of clinical lecturer, senior lecturer, reader and professor. Most posts are for fixed terms, although some may have security of tenure. Lecturers are usually given honorary specialist registrar posts, and senior lecturers, readers and professors have honorary consultant posts. Some staff may also be jointly employed by a university and the NHS

There are also several other, usually non-clinical, positions available within universities. The post of demonstrator is normally a short fixed-term position offered for full-time or part-time teaching. Research staff can be employed as research fellows, either in a clinical or non-clinical capacity. These posts are normally for a fixed term, usually one or two years.

Research funding in the universities often comes from the Medical Research Council (MRC) in the form of project grants. The MRC also administers its own institutions and units and employs medical graduates within these units, either as clinical or non-clinical staff. Other sources of research funding include medical charities such as the Wellcome Trust, industry, pharmaceutical companies or the European Union under various programmes.

Most teaching in academic medicine is to undergraduate medical students, but it may include postgraduate training and teaching of other healthcare groups. Specialist postgraduate teaching may take place within the undergraduate medical school or in special postgraduate institutions, often attached to NHS hospitals.

Immigration regulations for international doctors coming to the UK
Any international doctor coming to the UK must satisfy UK immigration requirements. These are handled entirely separately from registration matters, and the granting of a particular type of registration has no influence on a doctor’s immigration status. Immigration law is very complex and doctors should seek detailed advice from the Border and Immigration Agency(BIA) www.bia.homeoffice.gov.uk or from an immigration adviser. Doctors who are still overseas can seek advice from the British High Commission, embassy or consulate.

Nationals of European Economic Area (EEA) Member States and Swiss nationals
Doctors who are citizens of the EEA, with the exception of Bulgarian and Romanian nationals, and Switzerland can enter the UK freely and work here without any restrictions. Bulgarian and Romanian nationals need to seek specific permission to work in the UK.



Non-EEA doctors


Doctors who do not have any rights to live and work in the UK must satisfy immigration requirements appropriate to their reasons for coming to the UK. The various immigration processes can take time and doctors must factor this in when they are applying for posts. Please note: the UK has introduced a new points-based managed migration system from 2008 which will replace all existing immigration categories. Please check the BIA website for up-to-date information - www.bia.homeoffice.gov.uk

Doctors taking the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test
Doctors entering Britain to sit the PLAB test should request leave to enter the UK for the purposes of taking the PLAB test. This does not entitle them to work here.IMGs subject to the immigration rules may be admitted to the UK for a period of six months to take the PLAB test, and extensions may be granted by the BIA, with the maximum amount of leave an individual can be granted being 18 months.

On passing the PLAB test, doctors may apply to the Home Office for permission to remain in the UK to undertake a clinical attachment, or for permission to switch to a work permit/the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme to work in the NHS.

Doctors undertaking clinical attachments
Doctors seeking to enter/remain in the UK to undertake a clinical attachment can apply for leave to enter/remain which will normally be granted in line with the clinical attachment. Leave will not normally be granted for more than six weeks at a time with a maximum of six months in total.

Doctors working in the UK
On 7 March 2006 the Department of Health announced changes to the immigration rules relating to postgraduate doctors. These changes came into effect on 3 April 2006 and mean that doctors can no longer undertake training posts on permit free postgraduate training status, with the exception of non-EEA graduates of UK medical schools undertaking a foundation programme Instead, they need to meet the requirements of another employment category. In most cases this will be work permit provisions, as has been the case for non-training medical posts for some time.

Employers must apply for the permit from Work Permits UK and will usually be required to show that no suitably qualified resident worker was available to do the job. The process is simplified if the post is considered a shortage occupation. A work permit is specific to a particular post, and if a doctor moves to another job before the work permit expires, he or she will need a new permit.
After the employer has successfully applied for a work permit, the doctor must submit an application for limited leave to remain.


Doctors are also able to work under the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP). This programme has been changed with the new tier system. It doesn’t allow doctors from non-EAA countries to work in training posts in UK. It is initially given for 3 years and then applicant can seek a further three years under the programme, and then apply for indefinite leave to remain (permanent residency).
Note: In Spring 2008 the HSMP is being replaced by Tier 1 of a new points-based system for migration.


After five years spent on a work permit/the HSMP/Tier 1 a doctor can apply for indefinite leave to remain (permanent residency) in the UK.


Registration for doctors from non-EEA countries – IMGs
The first port of call for IMGs wishing to practise in the UK is the GMC. Conditions that allow the GMC to grant full registration to IMGs are governed by law – The Medical Act 1983. Doctors must have an acceptable primary medical qualification, and will be expected to have completed (overseas) appropriate experience or internship of at least 12 months equivalent to Foundation Year 1. IMGs who have not completed an internship prior to coming to the UK will only be entitled to provisional registration and will have to undertake a Foundation Year 1 post.

At the outset IMGs should check with the GMC whether their primary medical qualification makes them eligible to apply for registration. They then have to provide objective evidence that they have the knowledge and skills needed for working as doctors in the UK. This is done through one of the following ways: passing the Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board test; sponsorship; possession of an acceptable postgraduate qualification or eligibility for entry in the specialist or GP register.

English language requirement
The majority of doctors who qualified outside the EEA, and who are not citizens of an EEA member state, are required to demonstrate their English language proficiency, regardless of the type of registration for which they are applying. For most doctors this will be demonstrated by obtaining a satisfactory score in the IELTS test (International English Language Testing System). The IELTS test is administered by the British Council and can be taken in many countries. It consists of four sections (speaking, listening, writing and reading) and is scored on a nine band scale with one being the lowest (non-user of English) and nine the highest (expert user).

Candidates must obtain an overall score of 7 with minimum scores of 7 in speaking and 6 in listening, writing and reading. Doctors must achieve the required IELTS score before they can sit the PLAB tests. IELTS test scores remain valid for two years. There is no limit to the number of times candidates can sit the IELTS exam.

PLAB Exam-

Where posts are advertised
Most jobs are advertised in the careers section of the BMJ – www.careers.bmj.com, in the Lancet – www.thelancet.com/home or on the NHS Jobs website – www.jobs.nhs.uk It is also worth looking in specialist journals, depending on where your interests lie, and in national broadsheet newspapers, where research and academic posts may be advertised, as well as posts outside medicine for which a medical background might be useful.

Clinical (observer) attachments
A lot of IMGs choose to undertake a clinical (observer) attachment to gain familiarity with the NHS. Clinical attachments are work placements carried out in a hospital or general practice surgery, where a doctor shadows another doctor to find out about the work that they do and how the NHS works. They might also help you overcome cultural differences that you may face in the UK and will familiarise you with local accents. You may also encounter medical conditions that are common in the UK and with which you may not be familiar.

They are not paid placements, and indeed some hospitals ask doctors to pay to undertake clinical attachments. Normally, you will be allocated a named supervisor who is responsible for you. Attachments usually last between two and four months. Experience shows that it is advisable to do a clinical attachment shortly before taking part 2 of the PLAB test or after you have successfully passed it. This ensures that you will get the most out of it.

As doctors on clinical attachments are only observing, and not engaging in clinical practice, they do not need GMC registration. There is no central body that arranges clinical attachments so doctors must arrange their own by contacting hospital medical staffing departments directly, enclosing a copy of their CV.



How to apply
Employers will often ask for a curriculum vitae (CV), and many will also have their own application forms. There are no firm rules about how to set out a CV, but it should be well-presented, starting with basic information about yourself and including full details of your education and academic qualifications, previous employment, publications and references. A well-written covering letter will help to make a good impression. If English is not your first language, it is probably worth asking a native speaker to check whatever you are submitting. There are also commercial companies which will help you to draw up a CV. Employers will then form a shortlist and invite a small number of applicants for interview.

Authors:-
1)Simply Navin
2)Dr Amit Sharma
To contact the author to add more useful info ( like PG Acco Nos) to this guide pls email

helpguide@

Useful contacts
Border and Immigration Agency
Tel: 0870 606 7766
www.bia.homeoffice.gov.uk

British Medical Association , International Department, BMA House, Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9JP.
Tel: 020 7383 6133/6793 Fax: 020 7383 6644 Email: internationalinfo@bma.org.uk
www.bma.org.uk/ap.nsf/Content/HubDoctorsFromOverseas

British Council (General Enquiries)
Tel: 0161 957 7755 Fax: 0161 957 7762 Email: general.enquiries@britishcouncil.org.uk
www.britishcouncil.org

British Medical Journal , BMJ Publishing Group, BMA House, Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9JR.
Tel: 020 7387 4499
www.bmj.com
www.careers.bmj.com

Department of Health , Richmond House, 79 Whitehall, London, SW1A 2NS.
Tel: 020 7210 4850
www.dh.gov.uk



Foreign and Commonwealth Office
www.fco.gov.uk

General Medical Council , Regent’s Place, 350 Euston Road, London, NW1 3JN.
Tel: 0161 923 6602
www.gmc-uk.org


International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
www.ielts.org



National Health Service
www.nhs.uk


NHS Jobs
www.jobs.nhs.uk

Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board , Hercules House, Hercules Road, London, SE1 7DU.
Tel: 020 7160 6100 Fax: 020 7160 6102 Email: info@pmetb.org.uk
www.pmetb.org.uk

Royal College of Anaesthetists , Churchill House, 35 Red Lion Square, London, WC1R 4SG.
Tel: 020 7092 1500 Fax: 020 7092 1730 Email: info@rcoa.ac.uk
www.rcoa.ac.uk

Royal College of General Practitioners , 14 Princes Gate, Hyde Park, London, SW7 1PU.
Tel: 0845 456 4041 Fax: 020 7225 3047 Email: info@rcgp.org.uk
www.rcgp.org.uk

Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists , 27 Sussex Place, Regents Park, London, NW1 4RG.
Tel: 020 7772 6200 Fax: 020 7723 0575
www.rcog.org.uk

Royal College of Ophthalmologists , 17 Cornwall Terrace, London, NW1 4QW.
Tel: 020 7935 0702 Fax: 020 7935 9838
www.rcophth.ac.uk

Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health , 50 Hallam Street, London, W1W 6DE.
Tel: 020 7307 5600 Fax: 020 7307 5601 Email: enquiries@rcpch.ac.uk
www.rcpch.ac.uk

Royal College of Pathologists , 2 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5AF.
Tel: 020 7451 6700 Email: info@rcpath.org
www.rcpath.org

Royal College of Physicians , 11 St Andrew’s Place, Regents Park, London, NW1 4LE.
Tel: 020 7935 1174 Fax: 020 7487 5218
www.rcplondon.ac.uk

Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow , 234-242 St Vincent Street, Glasgow, G2 5RJ.
Tel: 0141 221 6072 Fax: 0141 221 1804
www.rcpsg.ac.uk

Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh , 9 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JQ.
Tel: 0131 225 7324 Fax: 0131 220 3939
www.rcpe.ac.uk

Royal College of Psychiatrists , 17 Belgrave Square, London, SW1X 8PG.
Tel: 020 7235 2351 Fax: 020 7245 1231 Email: rcpsych@rcpsych.ac.uk
www.rcpsych.ac.uk

Royal College of Radiologists , 38 Portland Place, London, W1N 1JQ.
Tel: 020 7636 4432 Fax: 020 7323 3100 Email: enquiries@rcr.ac.uk
www.rcr.ac.uk

Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh , Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9DW.
Tel: 0131 527 1600 Fax: 0131 557 6406 Email: information@rcsed.ac.uk
www.rcsed.ac.uk

Royal College of Surgeons of England , 35-43 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London, WC2A 3PE.
Tel: 020 7405 3474
www.rcseng.ac.uk


UK Visas
www.ukvisas.gov.uk

Work Permits UK
www.workingintheuk.gov.uk

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Nokia Mobile Phone Hidden Features

These codes will work on most Nokia Mobile Phones to activate/deactivate advanced hidden functions that you can’t change through the phone menu

Code Function
*3370# Activate Enhanced Full Rate Codec (EFR) - Your phone uses the best sound quality but talk time is reduced my approx. 5%
#3370# Deactivate Enhanced Full Rate Codec (EFR)
*#4720# Activate Half Rate Codec - Your phone uses a lower quality sound but you should gain approx 30% more Talk Time
*#4720# Deactivate Half Rate Codec

#pw+1234567890+1# Provider Lock Status. (use the “*” button to obtain the “p,w” and “+” symbols)
#pw+1234567890+2# Network Lock Status. (use the “*” button to obtain the “p,w” and “+” symbols)
#pw+1234567890+3# Country Lock Status. (use the “*” button to obtain the “p,w” and “+” symbols)
#pw+1234567890+4# SIM Card Lock Status. (use the “*” button to obtain the “p,w” and “+” symbols)
12345 This is the default security code

*#21# Allows you to check the number that “All Calls” are diverted to
*#30# Lets you see the private number
*#43# Allows you to check the “Call Waiting” status of your phone.
*#61# Allows you to check the number that “On No Reply” calls are diverted to
*#62# Allows you to check the number that “Divert If Unreachable (no service)” calls are diverted to
*#67# Allows you to check the number that “On Busy Calls” are diverted to

*#0000# Displays your phones software version, 1st Line : Software Version, 2nd Line : Software Release Date, 3rd Line : Compression Type
*#9999# Phones software version if *#0000# does not work
*#06# For checking the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI Number)

*#67705646# Removes operator logo on 3310 & 3330
*#73# Reset phone timers and game scores
*#746025625# Displays the SIM Clock status, if your phone supports this power saving feature “SIM Clock Stop Allowed", it means you will get the best standby time possible
*#94870345123456789# Deactivate the PWM-Mem
press and hold # Lets you switch between lines

*#7760# Manufacturers code
*#7780# Restore factory settings
*#8110# Software version for the nokia 8110
*#92702689# Displays - 1.Serial Number, 2.Date Made, 3.Purchase Date, 4.Date of last repair (0000 for no repairs), 5.Transfer User Data. To exit this mode you need to switch your phone off then on again

**21*number# Turn on “All Calls” diverting to the phone number entered
**61*number# Turn on “No Reply” diverting to the phone number entered
**67*number# Turn on “On Busy” diverting to the phone number entered

Resetting a Nokia to Factory Default Settings - you can reset it to default by using *#7370# and typing 12345 when it asks about a lock code. Do this before you sell your phone to anyone. This Will delete all your phone contacts, SMS/TEXTS and other email settings. Will make the phone totally Blank.

NOKIA Firmware Update

Method A

First check if a Firmware software update is available for your phone on Nokia Site Here

Installing Nokia Software Updater from Nokia Site and connecting your phone with your laptop/pc using the USB cable.

It will automatically find out if there is an update available and will download it and install it.

Please note - This Software Update won't Debrand your phone.


Method B

FOTA stands for:
Firmware Over The Air

The firmware is another word for the phones operating software, and you can update this over the air, free of any cables and without being tethered to a computer.

At the moment only a handful of handsets have this function but hopefully with time this selection of handsets will grow.

The handsets that currently have this feature are N73, N78, N79, N85, N96, 6220c and the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic.

Here is how you use FOTA:

Start on the main screen and type *#0000#.
You will see the following page. - 1st Line : Software Version, 2nd Line : Software Release Date, 3rd Line : Compression Type

Then Press centre key.

Select "Check for updates"

The phone connects directly to the FOTA server, and looks for a newer version of software. ( Your network will probably charge you for Mobile Internet Use)
If one is available, you will get the option to download and update your handset.

This is a much easier way to update the phones firmware, and saves the use of a PC which means you can do it anywhere, away from your desk.

I hope this helps with learning what FOTA is and how to use it.


Nokia Debranding

DeBranding means removing your Network Operator Specific logos, themes and settings and reverting the nokia to its GENERIC settings.

Caution: Debranding Involves change of Product Code in the Phone Software. Debranding Voids your Warranty. Your network won't repair your phone within warranty period if its tech people find out that your have debranded the phone. They find it out within few seconds.

Caution : Debranding needs little expert level in understanding the concepts. A little mistake can leave your phone useless. It won't even Boot to normal screen.

DeBranding is needed for mainly two purposes.

1) In case of 3G phone, the network operator (e.g. 3 UK network) might have disabled the GSM option in Menu. And you are living in a poor 3G area where connection keeps dropping. So you want to change the Network Mode to GSM but you can't. You only find two options. UTMS(3G), Dual Mode.  Dual Mode is a compromise as the phone keeps switching between GSM/3G modes as soon as it finds dignal worth of even a single BAR.

2) You have taken/sold/bought phone to a New Country and you want phone to have regional languages and options.


Method 1 - Change the Product Code to a GENERIC Product Code and Then Use Nokia Software Updater to Load the firmware corresponding to that Product Code.

Here is how to Upgrade your firmware to a Nokia original version (without your operators personalization) with NSU (Nokia Software Update from Nokia Site).

NSU reads the product code of your phone and it searches it’s database for a newer version of the corresponding firmware in order to upgrade it. This is why you will need to change the product code of your phone (written behind your battery - e.g. CODE: 0520001 ) into a non-branded product code, before running NSU.

Find out the Generic Product Code for your phone on Google. e.g. Type "Generic Product Code Nokia E71"

You will find results like - http://blinkthinks.wordpress.com/

http://forum.gsmhosting.com/

From the google results find out the right code for your part of planet and for languages you understand.

Download the NSS software in order to change the phone’s product code.
This is a shareware program that you can download on the site of its author here : http://www.b-phreaks.co.uk/index.php?main_page=page_2

Install the Program, connect your phone,  and Read-then-write the New Product Code.

Connect Phone with NSU (Nokia Software Updater) and it should be able to find a Software Update for your phone. Thats it. That should Unbrand the phone.

Note: We haven't tried the following method which claims to save your phone if Product-change operations go wrong. Worth a try if things go wrong.

Should the worst happen and your phone fail to boot with your new firmware it's not all over. It's likely that you have used a product code that isn't compatible with your hardware. With many phones (symbian phones, 6120, N Series, E Series etc.) it is now possible to restore them to their original out of the box condition. To do this we use something called the 3 keys technique. This technique should only be used to reset a phone when no other method is available. This is a Hard reset.

To reset using the three keys technique power off the phone, hold down the green call key, the number '3' key and the star '*' key. Then power on the phone. follow the on screen instructions.

Method 2 - Flashing your Phone using Official Nokia Repair Lab Software - Phoenix


3 steps (in details below)

1) Download and Install Phoenix

2) Find out Generic Firmwave Files for your Phone on Torrent Networks

3) Flash the firmware to mobile using Phoenix


Note: If you are just after changing the phone's network connection mode to GSM, you don't have to debrand the phone and you can keep your warranty intact.
Once connected with Phoenix, use "Scan Product" Option. Then use "System Mode" in "Product" menu. Set it to GSM and that solves your 3UK Network's Poor Signal Problem

e.g for Nokia E71

Step1

Download the flashing software Phoenix:


Phoenix 2008 Version Nokia Flashing Software Detail Thread

 

http://rs58.rapidshare.com/files/133465712/Phoenix_2008_20_9_34260_Patched.exe



Step 2

Download the Generic Nokia E71 firmware:

RM-346_EURO_100.07.76_v1.0


http://rapidshare.com/files/127286905/RM..._v1.0.part1.rar
http://rapidshare.com/files/127298938/RM..._v1.0.part2.rar
http://rapidshare.com/files/127310599/RM..._v1.0.part3.rar
http://rapidshare.com/files/127322849/RM..._v1.0.part4.rar
http://rapidshare.com/files/127335198/RM..._v1.0.part5.rar


Step 3:

Flash the firmware to mobile using Phoenix. If you are not sure how then there is a guide availble on the internet on how to use Phoenix:

http://www.4shared.com/file/51013479/a12c8744/Phoenix_Service_Software_flashing_guide.html

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Authors:-

1)To contact the author to add more useful info (e.g. PG Acco Nos, Websites) to this Guide please email
helpguide @ IAmNewToLondon.com

Version 1:- 03rd Jul 2008
Version 2:- 05th Jul 2008
Version 3:- 10th Jul 2008
Version 4:- 31st Jul 2008
Version 5:- 31st Aug 2008


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