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London Marathon Spectator And Travel Tips

Mar 27, 2008
Having ran the London Marathon four times here are my top tips on: watching, travelling and generally enjoying yourself on London Marathon day.

Top five tips to spot your friend running the London Marathon:

1. Tell them to get their name printed on their running vest, not only will it help you spot them but also other people in the crowd will shout out their name for support.

2. If they are running for a charity find the supporting station for that charity, contact the charities before the race to find out where it is, give them a photo of your friend and then more people are helping you look out for them.

3. Avoid the first 6 miles of the race as these can be very congested resulting in it being hard for you to spot your friend.

4. Enter your friends expected finish time into the 'Real Time Runner Tool', its on my website - link at bottom of page, to see where they will be and at what time.

5. Wear comfy shoes as you can be standing around for a long time, but trust me your friend will really appreciate it when they here you shout out their name - its very motivational!

Top five London Marathon travel tips:

1. Avoid using your car, roads are closed and traffic on open roads is very high.

2. If use of a Taxi is unavoidable ensure it is licensed, there will be a hologram sticker on the windscreen, as sadly a lot of unlicensed minicabs appear on race day.

3. Use Docklands Light Railway and London Underground to travel.

4. Use an Oyster Card to travel, ticket machines have large queues and fares are half priced on Oyster cards compared to paper tickets.

5. Carry an underground map with you, stations can close at very short notice, having a tube map will ensure you can easily change your route.

Top five general 'enjoy your day' tips:

1. Mobile phone signal can be poor on marathon day, especially near the finish; this is due to the large amount of people using them, so try to plan when to meet with friends before the day and don't say 'near mile 10' a few others might have had that idea!

2. Take a cheap umbrella with you encase it rains, if it doesn't drop it off at a charity shop on route. When it rains people will dash for shelter but if you have your umbrella you need not, taking advantage of the fewer people means you can get a better place

3. If you are planning on eating out book ahead, restaurants get very busy and in my experience hardly anyone books despite everywhere taking booking these days.

4. If you have children with you remember most pubs will not allow them inside despite it being marathon day. If you do want to go to a pub find a child friendly one before you leave home.

5. Have fun and get into the marathon spirit, take some change for the street collections, just check some ID before throwing in anything - genuine charity collectors will happily show you some.
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