If you're an American in London and feeling a bit nostalgic (or just looking to purchase from a company you are familiar with), here are some restaurants and stores you can and can't find in the city.
Note that if you're interested in getting to know about the local food scene, you might consider taking a London food tour.
If you’re looking for Five Guys’ award winning burgers, there are 39 locations in the Greater London area alone.
You can customize your burgers and hot dogs with as many as 16 free toppings, add fries and a shake, and even purchase alcoholic drinks (if you are over 18).
Sadly for some, you won’t be able to find the American-chain Cheesecake Factory in London.
If their diversity of foods is what you’re after, you might try Jimmy’s O2.
They offer a buffet that includes Chinese, Indian, Mexican, and Italian foods, along with salads, desserts, colorful cocktails, and other options for alcohol.
If you’re missing this American-west-coast based burger chain, sadly you will not find one in the United Kingdom.
While Five Guys burgers are located throughout London, we realize that for some devotees of In-N-Out Burger that is not an option.
If you’re willing to give a new burger joint a shot, you might try the very well reviewed Lucky Chip which has locations in Hackney and Islington.
Craving waffle fries and a Chick-fil-A chicken sandwich? This chain had previously opened locations in Reading and the Scottish Highlands.
Recently those have shuttered and they have no plans to open new locations.
If you need to satisfy your cravings for some next level chicken, you might try Butchies buttermilk fried chicken sandwiches or chicken tenders.
Hot shake fries, Mac “N” Crac, vegan options, and many other items are also on offer.
Shake Shack has come to London. You can visit multiple locations, order online for take-away, or get your meal through Deliveroo.
Just like in the States, you’ll find amazing Cheeseburgers, crispy chicken bites and burgers, hot dogs, fries, beer and wine, and of course shakes.
The American-Chinese fast food franchise Panda Express has over 2,000 restaurants in the US and across the world, although none of them have yet made it to the United Kingdom.
A similar take out place that is currently in London (and soon adding more locations) is Wok & Go.
You can find Sweet Chili, Pad Thai, Thai Green Curry boxes along with street food boxes, vegan boxes, sides and drinks, all to go.
Chuck E Cheese
This family fun center with food, perfect for children’s parties, does not have locations in the United Kingdom.
A potential option instead is KidZania in Shephard’s Bush, an impressive site made up as a real-life city for kids.
Children can explore grown-up jobs (like airline pilot, doctor, musician, news writer), earn a KidZania currency, open a bank account, and experience over 100 hands-on activities such as wall climbing, chocolate-making, face painting, and more.
Food can be purchased at Fire House, which serves pizza, pasta, nuggets and items that appeal to a kid’s palate; Mission Foods Outlet, which serves Quesadillas, wraps, and nachos; and The Coffee Shop which services sandwiches, fruit drinks, milk, and Oreo Biscuits.
In the last few years all of the American Eagle locations in the UK have all closed, although items can still be ordered online and shipped to the UK. A potential option for “effortlessly cool and totally accessible” clothes is Hollister which has three locations in London as well as an online store.
Do you need tools, building materials, storage options, paint and other home repair supplies?
While Home Depot does not have either a brick and mortar or an online presence in London, there are other options.
Homebase and B&Q are both home improvement retailers and garden centers with locations within the London area.
Sadly there is no Target within the UK. So where would you go to find bath towels, sheets, make-up, appliances, toys and clothing all in one place?
One option is Argos which has ten locations within London, and another is Matalan.
For items that are a bit more high-end, try one of Marks and Spencer’s 87 locations within the London metropolitan area.
While there are no Walmart stores in the UK, they do own a store called Asda that has 43 locations within London.
Asda crosses over with Walmart in only the food arena. You’ll find a deli counter, bakery, butchers, fishmongers, and packaged foods in addition to all of the usual items you’d find in a supermarket.
For more of a “a bit of everything” type of store, try Argos, Matalan, or Marks and Spencer.
PetSmart or Petco
Neither of these stores have shops in London.
While there are no chain pet stores like that of PetSmart of Petco, there are many other options within the city.
This page lists most of the pet stores within London, ones you can narrow down by searching near your nearest tube station.