Disclaimer: This mini-series is intended for entertainment purposes only and is provided as-is. I am not to be held liable for any losses or damages incurred as a result of using information from this series of posts, nor do I intend these posts to be anything resembling a reasonable substitute for a travel agent and a good Lonely Planet guide on London. Any numerical information depicted in the posts are subject to change, and I am not accountable for updating these posts to reflect unforeseen changes. All of the individuals depicted in these posts are hypothetical and do not bear resemblance to any individuals, fictional or living. Finally, I declare no conflict of interests and am not endorsing any of the products, services or establishments depicted in my posts.
This post will outline several elements that will be of utmost importance to the trip, specifically, the budget, number of individuals participating, as well as the time of year such a trip is to happen, and any essential prerequisites that are required for the trip to become reality.
For the purposes of discussion, I will structure this trip for individuals in their mid-20s: these individuals will be friends and have some financial autonomy. The movie sent Yui, Ritsu, Mio, Mugi and Azusa to London at age seventeen. However, such an arrangement is improbable in reality. Thus, we will maintain a more realistic age range for this experiment. I will send a group of four to London to better recreate the environment presented in the movie and disperse any misconceptions that this might be a trip for couples. On that note, gender is not particularly important to my discussion: I am merely planning a hypothetical trip.
- An actual trip would be better planned by travel agencies. The whole point of going FFA in the movie was to allow for better autonomy in the plot, but this comes at the expense of, well, expenses.
This is the element that will figure the most strongly in the hypothetical trip alongside timing. It will be money that determines where we may go in the trip and what we may reasonably do assuming a fixed budget. The budget will encompass all elements of travel, including flights, accommodations, food and sightseeing activities, to the closest as can be maintained as to the events in the movie. We allowed our travelers some financial autonomy, but because we wish to maintain realism (i.e. unlimited resources is not an option), we may suppose that the maximum budget for each individual will be 3900 Canadian dollars. Finally, we will assume an exchange rate of 1.00 Canadian Dollar to be equivalent to 0.625 British Sterling Pounds, and similarly, 1.00 British Sterling Pound to be equivalent to 1.60 Canadian Dollars.
Timing and other pertinent considerations
Timing specifically refers to what time of year the trip is to be conducted. I imagine that most individuals would probably wish to replicate the experience at roughly the same time of year as did the girls in K-On!, so we will set the trip to begin for the last week of March, at around the same time as Spring Break for Japanese high school students prior to graduation. This trip will happen during a down season, although it may prove disruptive to work and business schedules. Thus, we will have to suppose that our travelers successfully got a five business days off for the trip. The trip will last three days and two nights excluding flight times, and the extra time may be useful for acclimatizing to any effects that may result from jet lag. Insofar, our assumptions are still reasonable.
- Now that we’ve gotten some of the basics set up, we will move onto the trip itself. I have created a map on Google Maps showcasing the general areas we will visit, plus all of the regions the girls visit and their corresponding real world locations.
I will assume that our travellers are Canadians from the Greater Toronto Area. This is done purely for ease of calculations and out of convenience: the Lester B. Pearson Airport offers direct flights to London, minimising the need to transfer flights at airports. For other Canadian readers, most major cities in Canada will offer direct flights to London as well. American readers can take direct flights to London from most major airports. The Canadian dollar is roughly at parity with the American Dollar, so our US readers will be able to reasonably follow this trip without further action on my part. The next post will focus on transportation and accommodation essentials: in other words, the flight to London, transportation between the airport and the hotel, and finally, check-in at the hotel itself.
Map of London, Houkago Tea Time Style
I’ve supplied a map of all the locations that are visited. This map will be linked to in all of the posts’ opening paragraph for ease-of-access.