Tips for Budget Travellers Visiting London

London presents intriguing but pleasant paradoxes that add to the city’s charm and attraction. Although it is a modern, technologically advanced city, it still retains its traditional features and whereas on the one hand, it is one of the most expensive cities of the world, it also presents plenty of budget friendly things to do for those who are visiting on a slender budget. The cutting edge of this paradox is that most of the affordable options provide much more fun than the expensive alternatives. As such, if you are a budget traveller, the following affordable options will enable you to make the most of your trip to London.

Buy a Visitor Oyster Card: Even before you leave for London, you should order an Oyster card online so that you have it in your hand before you land in the city. It will be your ticket to save money for moving around in the city. It is valid on most of London’s public transport system and it can save you more than 50% as compared to buying one-day paper Travelcards or single tickets with cash. The Oyster card will also qualify for discounts on a range of food, drink and other aspects as well as provide you with special offers.

Walking is Good for Your Health and for Your Pocket: Most of London’s main attractions are concentrated in and around central London and quite close to each other. As such, they can be covered quite easily by walking or cycling and using the public transport system only for far-away places. Besides saving on transport cost, walking will also provide the necessary physical exercise that your body needs and will allow you to get close to the locals and get the true feel of the place. You might also come across some hidden gems while walking. Sometimes, it is faster to walk between two stations than going by the Tube, such as between Covent Garden and Leicester Square.

Visit Free Attractions: Some major attractions of the city are ticketed but there are many others that offer free admission. These include museums and art galleries such as British Museum, Natural History Museum, Science Museum, Tate Modern, National Gallery, the Southbank Centre art complex and many others. However, some temporary exhibitions might be ticketed. London also abounds in green spaces that cover nearly 47% of Greater London’s total area. These include Royal parks, gardens and other such places such as Hyde Park and Regent’s Park that are all free to enter.

Budget Accommodation: London is home to some of the most expensive 5 star hotels that offer the ultimate in luxury but alongside it also offers plenty of Budget Hotels in London that provide comfortable rooms with all necessary facilities in a clean and hygienic environment and are affordable and best for budget travellers

Hampstead Heath: Another free open space is Hampstead Heath which is located just four miles from Trafalgar Square and is one of the best loved open spaces offering the highest points in London and the best views of the city’s skyline. It includes Parliament Hill, Golders Hill Park (with a zoo and butterfly house), an open air Lido (open 365 days a year), swimming ponds, splash pools, countless sports pitches and facilities, athletics track, playgrounds, stunning listed Pergola and Hill Garden. It has so much green space that you will feel that you are no longer in the city. It also has a remarkable range of natural habitats, wide expanses of grassland and ancient woodland.

For budget travellers who wish to stay in luxury with the best of facilities but at affordable cost, the best option is to stay at Park Grand London Hotels that also offer the advantage of being located at strategic places that are close to most attractions and places of interest in the city.

Covent Garden: Budget travellers can enjoy visiting Covent Garden located in the West End area as it offers many attractions, including shopping, theatre, restaurants, bars, history and culture. Its main attractions are London Transport Museum, the Royal Opera House, Somerset House and Covent Garden Market, all of them being free. The other areas to explore include The Opera Quarter, St Martin’s Courtyard, Seven Dials, Neal’s Yard and Floral Street.

Visit a West End Theatre Cheaply: Although theatre tickets are expensive, you can cut down the cost by buying tickets in advance or visiting the TKTS booth in Leicester Square for cheap last minute tickets. You can also line up at the theatre for returns or standing tickets.

Get the London Pass: If you want free and fast track entry to over 60 top London attractions, including the Thames River Cruise, Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and London Bridge Experience, you should get the London Pass that also provides discounts at some restaurants and shops.

Bargain Shopping: There are plenty of bargain options for shopping in London, a city which is famous for its boutique fashion offerings and some of the most expensive stores of the world such as Harrods. Alongside, you can do affordable shopping in high street stores such as Primark or at London’s vintage emporiums. London also offers many markets where you can haggle for the best bargains. One such place is Brick Lane Market which is a large East End flea market with street stalls selling antiques, clothes and bric-a-brac at bargain prices. The various markets under the Truman Markets umbrella sell everything from vintage and handmade clothing, accessories, jewellery, music, arts and crafts, and tasty street food. The food trucks are in the yard seven days a week. Another such market is Chapel Market which is a daily street market in London located near Angel and selling fruit, vegetables and fish along with bargain household goods and cheap clothes. The food and wares for sale are primarily for daily use.

Small Shows: Besides the more expensive theatre shows, London also offers live music, comedy and cabaret shows that are usually a lot more affordable than big-name music gigs.

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