If you have always longed to visit London but have been deterred by reports that even a couple of days in the capital of England could cost you a packet, it is time to realise that it is possible to spend a weekend in London at a cost that would not empty your bank accounts if you plan in advance and do some research to get information regarding what to do and what not to do. There are many suggestions that will help you to spend inexpensive Weekend in London.
Leave Your Car at Home
If you stay in a different city in the UK, it is advisable not to travel to London in your car because you have to incur a lot of expenses such as congestion charges if you enter central London which you will have to do if you wish to see the various attractions as they are located there. Moreover, parking costs in most places of London, especially in central London are exorbitant and they are best avoided. The best thing to do is to take a train to any of the stations such as Victoria or reach Paddington station. For commuting to various places in the city, it is best to load up a pre-pay Oyster card and move about by making use of the extensive bus and tube network. You can also hire a Boris bike or walk to nearby attractions since Paddington area is located close to most attractions of central London.
The advantage of staying in the Paddington area is that you can find many budget hotels near Paddington station that offer comfortable accommodation in London with all necessary facilities in a clean and hygienic environment at an affordable rate. You should do thorough online research to look for cheap accommodation when you are planning to visit London. The timing of your visit is also important because if you try to get an capital accommodation during the peak season such as when there are school holidays, you will find that the room rates are also high but during the off-peak season such as in late spring or early autumn you can strike a good deal. Moreover, if you want to get good value deals, you should book as far in advance as possible or at the last minute. The other strategy is to use comparison sites and to look for accommodation in less fashionable areas of the city. Last minute deals could give good value for money whereas younger travellers can cut down on their accommodation cost by staying in youth hostels or dormitories.
Commuting in the City
You can economise on the cost of your movements in the city for sightseeing or other activities by using the tube more often. In order to minimize the hassles of standing in a queue to get a ticket each time you use the tube and to get a cheaper rate, it is advisable to get an Oyster card for a day or for a longer period at any of the tube station. It will give you ease and economy of movement. Moreover, it would be ideal if you stay in hotels near Paddington station because you would be close to most places of interest and to various tube and railway stations. Moreover Paddington has many different types of hotels and other accommodation options to suit the tastes and budget of different categories of travellers.
Visit Free Entry Attractions
London has many attractions including historic monuments and landmarks, museums, art galleries, theatres, shopping districts, technological wonders and exotic night clubs. It is difficult to see even a small fraction of all these attractions if you are staying only for a weekend and as such, you can do some research and choose to see only those attractions that offer free entry. Some of these must-visit places include a morning trip to Hyde Park and Buckingham Palace for the Changing of the Guard ceremony and a visit to British Museum or National History Museum or National Portrait Gallery and the National Gallery, if time permits. All these places have no entry fees. You can take a stroll along the River Thames to the Southbank and get a glorious view of St Paul’s Cathedral. For good food bargains, you can visit Borough Market, Brick Lane, Camden and Portobello.
If you are interested in seeing a musical or a play, you can visit the Royal Court on Mondays when the ticket price is £10 or you can book advance tickets for the Lyric at Hammersmith and the National Theatre for around £12. You can also see a film at Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square for less than £10.
Cheap but Good Food and Drink
If you wish to satisfy your hunger at a cheap rate, you should keep away from eating joints near famous places and tourist attractions. Eating at Leicester Square and Covent Garden could be quite expensive. You should stick to eating at chain restaurants such as Pizza Express, the Real Greek, Café Rouge and Ask and if you get voucher codes online, you can achieve further savings. For tasty food of the Far East, you can choose Chinatown and if you love curry you should go to Brick Lane. For a cheap pint of ale or other spirits, you can get good value for money at the Samuel Smith chain of public houses as they serve their own brand beer, lager and spirits at an affordable cost.
Staying at hotels near Paddington station will give you easy access to tube and railway stations and a wide variety of accommodation options. It will be ideal for an amazing weekend in London.