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THE UK: Destination Guides

The Unpredictable British Weather

Unpredictable British weather

Malaysians revolve their conversation around food. The first thing we mention when seeing someone, is, ‘Have you eaten?’


In the UK, at the first point of contact, Britons talk about the weather. A survey has shown that Britons spend a total of four months moaning about the climate, be it hot or cold. They whinge about the weather elements four times a day, for a total of eight minutes and 21 seconds! Weather-talk is the nation’s favourite ice-breaker, and what better way to integrate yourself into the British culture than to follow suit!


The British weather is so unpredictable. There are four seasons and each is beautiful in its own way, although there can be drawbacks.Most of you will probably arrive in September or October for your course intake. Average temperatures range from 10 degrees Celcius (50F). The winter then takes a plunge to 0 degrees (32F) or in some instances -18 degrees! This comes with heavy snowfalls and icy conditions. 


Be forewarned – traffic, public transport, university campuses and jobs come to a standstill when the country is hit by wintry conditions. Some university campuses are closed to avoid accidents. Strange but true. Spring may make a late appearance, but it is all worth the wait. When the sun finally shines and the country bursts into an array of colours, there is a vibe of excitement as you watch people rushing out to parks to sunbathe and smell the distinct smoky aroma of delicious bbq.

It is a good idea to carry an umbrella even on hot sunny days. In many parts of the country, it can rain a lot even during the summer. In winter, it gets dark early – a time when people start getting a bit grumpy and depressed.


Top tips to survive the British weather:


  • Be healthy - take your vitamins and eat well
  • Keep warm – a good thick jacket is not good enough. The trick to feeling warm and snug is to layer up! Pile on your singlets, long sleeves, jumpers, hoodies – and yes, that means all at once.
  • A waterproof jacket is a must-have!
  • Immerse yourself in this national obsession. It is a great way to bond with people.


If you fail to see the up-side of the country’s gripe with the climate, then remind yourself of its true importance; how the weather helped save Britain from Hitler and Spanish invasion, and the birth of the popular Oxford detective series Inspector Morse.


To check the weather in the UK, log on to the BBC or the Met Office website.


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