If you haven’t already been to London, there’s a good chance that it’s on your bucket list, and you’d love to get there one day. That is if you can afford it. There’s an assumption that going to London will cost you the earth, but that’s simply not true. Like most capital cities, there are certain things that will cost you more than anticipated, but there are ways to explore on a budget. If you’re desperate to tick London off your list, here are some top tips to help you discover this incredible city without breaking the bank.
If you’re eager to see the best London has to offer, it’s wise to plan how you’re going to get from A to B in advance. Using the tube is quick, but it can be costly if you’re buying single tickets or day passes. Instead, get yourself an Oyster card and top it up. The cost of each journey will be significantly lower so you can travel further for less. It’s also a really good idea to walk in London. It’s easy to assume that it’ll take you ages to get to where you want to go, but actually, the tube stations are often very close together. If it’s a nice day, it’s lovely to escape the crowds and enjoy the fresh air. You’ll save money, and you can see the city. If you’re on a tourist trail and you want to see the sights, look into buying a bus ticket, which enables you to hop and off when and where you want. This will save you time and money if you’ve got a day of sightseeing mapped out. Try and avoid hailing cabs if you don’t want to spend a lot during your time in London.
Eating and drinking
Like all tourist hot spots, London has plenty of overpriced bars and restaurants. Avoid eating anywhere near major landmarks and head for the suburban districts if you’re after good quality, smaller crowds, and more affordable prices. If you sit at a table on the banks of the River Thames underneath the London Eye, you’re going to pay a lot more than you would at a restaurant tucked away in the back streets of Notting Hill, Herne Hill, Highgate or Hampstead, for example. If you’re not sure where to go, have a look online at pages like Gourmet Guide top restaurants in London and tailor your search to suit your budget, the kind of food you’re looking for, and the location. You can get everything from Michelin-starred fine dining delicacies to traditional fish and chips served in the paper, so don’t worry about running out of options.
Seeing the sights for less
If you want to see the sights while you’re in London, you may be bracing yourself for a hefty bill, but it is possible to spend less and see more. Look out for bundles, which will save you money on individual tickets, and book online in advance. Many of the city’s museums offer free entry, and there’s plenty to do if you don’t want to spend a lot. Take a picnic to Hampstead Heath or Hyde Park, hire a bike and create your own sightseeing tour, watch the lights twinkle in Leicester Square or visit the Southbank Centre. If you want to catch a show, see which tickets are available on the day.
If you’re keen to visit London, it is possible to see the city on a budget. Take these tips on board, and have a fantastic time!