5 things to do when you can’t go home for Christmas

Alone at Christmas in London

We’re getting ever closer to the season of Christmas jumpers, fairy lights and family rows!  In case you’ve been living under a rock, Christmas is on it’s way and many of our residents will be heading home to spend the festive period with their friends and families.

But what if you’re not able to head home this year?  The thought of spending Christmas alone in London may not be a nice one…but that doesn’t have to be the case! We’ve pulled together 5 ways in which spending Christmas without your friends and family can be that much easier and can ensure you still have a great time.

1. You’re not really alone – find out who else is around and get planning!

If you’re alone at Christmas, the likelihood is they’ll be plenty of others who are in the same situation. Check with other residents as to what their plans are and in no time you’ll have a group of new friends for an ‘Orphan Christmas’! Maybe you’ll cook a big Christmas dinner together in one of our kitchens, or enjoy the Christmas dinner served in our catered hostels.  Or maybe you’ll just decide to go for some festive drinks.  Whatever you decide, you’re sure to find other residents to spend Christmas with at LHA London accommodations.

If you leave it too late to organise a gathering, don’t despair! There are still many ways in which you can enjoy the holiday season with other people locally. One example of which is the ‘Don’t be on your own day’ at The Alexandra pub in Wimbledon. They offer a free Christmas dinner to anyone who’s spending Christmas alone, making it easy to meet others in the same situation and celebrate the festive season with a group. The owners say: “The only stipulation is that they’re on their own on Christmas day and fancy some company, along with (we hope) a few laughs.”

2. Do some volunteering

Why not put your free time to good use, and feel amazing in the process? Homeless charity Crisis has a huge operation over the festive period and is looking for volunteers of many talents, from doctors to musicians, to kitchen helpers and anyone who can lend an ear. Or, you could help to ensure the elderly have a cracking Christmas by lending a hand at the Rotary Club’s Christmas Day party. This fantastic initiative saves approximately 450 over 65’s from being alone on the day.  Not only will this make you feel great but you’ll also not have the time to feel lonely! There are many more volunteering opportunities to help make Christmas better for someone else, check them out!

3. Book a Christmas shift

Do you work in retail? If you don’t have any social plans, then why not earn double pay? It may be busy but the festive vibe will be great and your bank balance will thank you!  You’ll also get first pick on the items in the sales: win-win!  If you’re not already working in retail but like the sound of a temporary Christmas role, there are plenty on offer to keep you busy and your wallet happy!

4. Enjoy the peace and quiet

What other day of the year can you enjoy London without the crowds? The tube will be closed so take the excuse to whizz around on your bike. Or walk off the chocolates in the crowd-free streets. You’ll have never seen Westminster so quiet, giving you a chance to properly take in Big Ben and the House of Commons. Enjoy crunchy steps, hazy views and icy trees in Hyde Park, or Kensington Gardens, just remember to wrap up warm!

5. Indulge!

Christmas is a time to indulge, so make the most of the free time to do whatever you want, guilt-free. Stay in your pyjamas all day, treat yourself with some online purchases, munch your way through your favourite foods forgetting the calories or watch all the cheesy Christmas films you can! Then nap to your hearts content. Or, scrap the clichés and use the time to do something different, that you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time. Start learning a new language or start working on that novel you’ve always dreamed of writing.  Enjoy yourself, you deserve it and it’s not often you get an entire day to yourself.

P.s. Don’t have so much fun with the above activities that you forget to call home!