Goodbye, London –> Los Angeles

Our visit to the UK is over, and it’s time to return home. On this trip, I used my app like Citymapper to help me figure out how to navigate around the City, used my “Traveler” Oyster Card to help me get around the City, or used the GETT app to find a taxi. In London, you can get a fixed black taxi rate if you use the GETT app.  The cost to take a taxi from my hotel to Heathrow was £ 49. If I wanted to take a bus to Paddington + the Heathrow Express, it would be £ 47, not to mention hauling my luggage.  We decided to pay the £ 2 more and leave London in style in a famous Black Cab.

Get to the airport early to get your VAT refund

As a traveler, we can get our V.A.T. (value added taxes) refunded from goods we purchased.  Goods means souvenirs, alcohol, and such, but make sure the merchant provides you with a refund form and get it stamped.  Click this link for information on what’s considered refundable, and how to get your money back.  Your hotel, food, and services are not refundable.

Stephen purchased a bottle of whiskey, so we were entitled a refund.  At Glenlivit, the merchant prepared our paperwork, stamped it, and we had to validate it at the airport. The process does not take long, but you should still give yourself plenty of time to get it done. After Stephen got the forms officially stamped, he dropped it in the bin and in a few weeks, he should see the refund on his credit card.

The Heathrow airport is huge, so even if you have time to shop and eat, do note that some gates can take 15 minutes to walk.  Our flight boarded early, and I think we also took off a bit early.  We made it back to Los Angeles, and thanks to having Global Entry, my customs exit was a breeze.


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