Travel Kit

Electricity Connections
Mains appliances run off 240V in the UK and sockets are of the three pin variety. An adaptor will be required if you wish to bring your own appliances for use in this country. Adaptors can usually be bought at airports, large rail stations, and in branches of shops such as Rymans, The Luggage Company and Boots.

Shaver sockets are two pin and 110V.

Modems and Telephones
Telephone sockets in the UK are of a specific type. Adaptors to convert your own modem cables into these are available from shops such as those listed above (under electrical adaptors), from British Telecom shops and from computer accessory outlets. You may need to go to Reading to buy these type of accessories if you are staying in Henley, or try the airport, international rail station or ferry port as you enter the country.

Mobile phone companies in the UK include Vodafone, BT Cellnet, Orange and Mercury One-2-One. If you already have a mobile, check whether your company has a roaming agreement with one of these, before you travel. If not, you may be able to hire a mobile for a few days at the airport when you land. The signals for most mobile networks in Henley are appalling, and particularly bad down at the river itself. On the hills around the town the signal improves for most phones. Visitors to the Royal Regatta should note that the use of mobile phones in the Stewards' Enclosure is forbidden during the regatta.

See also the "Staying Connected" page for more on making telephone calls.

Connecting to the Net
There are many ISP's now in Britain, most of which charge a monthly fee to give you a dial-up connection. However, the big players like AOL, MSN, and Compuserve may have arrangements whereby visitors from abroad who are already their customers can dial special numbers and use their regular account. Demon customers from the Netherlands also have a dial-up facility of this kind in the UK. The most recent big new ISP in the UK is Freeserve, which claims to give free access to the Net: be warned that your account may take a few days to set up and their technical support is not free. The other alternative, of course, is to use a cybercafe and a freemail account. Just be warned that you will need either transport or a friend with a computer since there are no cybercafes in Henley yet.