London is expensive; many people will tell you that. In fact, it is possibly one of the world’s most expensive cities. I love London and I hate to travel there and not be able to do all the things I want to do. Just because I am travelling on a budget, doesn’t mean I have to sacrifice the finer things. It is all about knowing where to find bargains and what to do instead of forking out a fortune. Whether you’re only visiting London or live in London, then you can ensure you still enjoy the city on a budget.
London’s West End boast some of the world’s most famous plays and musicals featuring world-class actors. It is no secret that getting a top-price ticket to many show can cost as much as £120. That is a lot to pay when you are travelling on a budget or want to see a lot more than just theatre. There are many ways to get cheaper tickets for the theatre, however. Web sites including lastminute.com do deals for theatre-goers. You can also head to the TKTS booth in Leicester Square to pick up discounted tickets. If you choose this method, I recommend you get there early to beat the crowds and avoid disappointment.
Stay away from hotels
London’s hotels can be eye-wateringly expensive, especially if you want to stay in the centre. It can be really off-putting to travellers considering visiting the capital. However, there are ways to find top-quality accommodation for a much lower price. Vacation rentals in London offer people either a room in a house, or a whole house to themselves. You can then stay there during your trip, living as a Londoner would. Services like cleaning are all provided, so you get that hotel comfort, but for a much smaller price.
London’s tube and bus networks operate using an Oyster card. This is a travel card with a chip that allows you to top up money and ride on transport. Many services accept paper tickets, but these tend to cost a lot more than the Oyster. Before visiting, find out where you can purchase an Oyster from. Top it up with some cash and you will be ready to go.
London is full to the brim with an interesting and extensive history. That means on every street corner there is something new and exciting to discover. It can become expensive having to shell out for admission prices to every attraction. Luckily, many of London’s museums have a free entrance policy. They ask that you donate what you can, but you are under no obligation to do so. This means you can see dinosaurs in the Natural History Museum or centuries-old sculptures in the British Museum and not pay a penny.
In many cities, you can find free walking tours, and London is no exception. The way it works is that your guide will give you a tour for free. You then judge how good you think they are and pay them accordingly whatever you can afford. This is great because where some tour companies may charge a lot and then give you a terrible guide, you can’t get a refund. With free walking tours, if your guide is no good, you simply don’t tip them.
If you are planning a trip to the UK, there is a lot more to see and do than just London.