Is there any common scam in London that I can prepare myself to avoid?

Never buy anything in a pub that isn’t sold by the Landlord. It will be stolen and possibly fake.

Street prostitution is now, mercifully, rare in London. If you are approached by a woman on the street, they are more likely to be a thief than a prostitute.

Now much less common than they used to be but “tequila girls” (often wearing a bandolero of shot glasses) are likely to sell you highly overpriced, watered-down, poor quality tequila.

99% of street dealers in London are selling shit drugs. Those guys in Camden turn a huge profit selling salad or pebbles wrapped up in cling film.

Every policeman in London carries a badge and works with a partner. If in any doubt, insist on going to the police station. London coppers do not take bribes and will never ask for one. If they fine you, there is a paperwork which they must hand over BEFORE you hand them the fine.

Aberdeen Steakhouses might look like restaurants….

Never, ever take a taxi from the kerbside that is not a black cab. If you want a cheap ride home, use an app or a bus.

Sometimes there are pop up auction houses selling cheap electronics and perfume (they used to be more common, in areas like Oxford Street). Don’t. You will not be buying what you think you are buying and probably wont be paying what you think you’ll be paying.

Similarly, strip bars in Soho (also much less common than in the past) are called “clip joints” by Londoners and are set up to extract as much money as possible from foolish, drunk punters. Many used to be run by some of London’s most dangerous gangs. That beer is going to cost you a lot of money or some broken bones. (This is not true of places like Stringfellows or Spearmint Rhino. Unless you are very foolish or very drunk, you should be able to tell the difference). If you want to see strippers in London and not pay a fortune, go to a strip pub. You will pay £1–2 per dance - “pound in the pot” - to the girls who walk around the bar before their dance, collecting the money in a pint glass. Yes, you do have to pay the girls even if you are about to leave and will not see them dance. These places are not classy but they are usually a laugh and female punters are welcome. You will not be enjoying the most erotic experience of your life unless you have some very unusual kinks.

Be very, very careful buying concert or theatre tickets from places in the West End - they are often selling at vastly inflated prices. Check the theatre/venue FIRST.

Building work. All building work in London is a rip off ; some of it is an outright scam. Never employ a tradesman in London who cannot show proof of address, company registrations and professional indemnity insurance. You will be ripped off.

Uber and similar app taxi drivers will tell you that they are following the direction on their satnav. Often they are picking the longest route option that their satnav gives them. Check your route befo*****d - if you have phone that does apps, you have a phone that can do google maps & directions - and insist on going that way when you get in. If they refuse, get out and report them. London South of the River is not dangerous and you do not need to pay extra to go there.

Bus tours for tourists are sold on the street on a commission basis. If you take up their offer, you will be paying over the odds. Book it online.

Biggest scam in London? The Heathrow Express.


Perfect Money/Payeer/Epay/Neteller: