Making Your Money Go Further: An Affordable Stay in London

Affordable Stay in London

Those not in the know will forever suggest London’s an expensive place or even a rip-off city; don’t believe them. The truth is that, if you’re interested to come and discover its delights, you’ll also probably be prepared to do a little digging and find out where you can save money on travel, restaurants and eateries, daytime attractions and nightlife venues – because, don’t doubt it, there’s many a saving to made in London…


The world’s your Oyster – almost

The public transport payment options for London are, well, a bit complicated, but don’t worry, that’s a good thing; it ensures you can definitely save money. Before anything else, it’s very much in your interest to pay the relatively small outlay (entirely refundable) for an Oyster card – an electronic tap-in-and-out, top-up payment card. That’s because all fares are cheaper with an Oyster card; all fares are more expensive if you rely on the old-fashioned method of paper tickets – indeed, you can’t even use cash at all on buses in London anymore. You’ll also be able to combine an Oyster card with a Travel card – either for several days or up to a week or (depending how long you’re staying for) for a month. Be aware too that when you travel within one geographical public transport zone, it’s cheaper than travelling between zones. In short, do your research into London’s public transport; it pays off when you’re here – literally.

Look out for 2-for-1 deals

Getting your mitts on vouchers that enable you to pay ‘2-for-1’ for entry into some of London’s biggest and best attractions sounds like it might be a difficult thing to do, but actually the capital’s most popular attractions are eager to get as many people through their doors as possible and are falling over themselves to offer up bargain prices for visitors. The trick is to hunt down such promotions online – that means going to a search engine and tracking down the official site of an attraction you’re interested in and finding out whether it’s running any deals (it most likely will be; especially if you’re prepared to book tickets ahead of time). Indeed, restaurants and even takeaway chains will make deals available online for their specific London outlets, you’ll find.

Don’t Look a Gift Horse in The Mouth

Or, in other words, if you find something offered you in the capital for free – don’t blink; go for it! Indeed, you don’t even need to look for free entry opportunities for some of the major attractions – the likes of the British Museum, the Natural History and Science Museums and the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery are all free to enter (but these wonderful locations do all welcome a small ‘contribution’ on the way out to help with their upkeep). Plus, lest we forget, London’s also home to a plethora of free public spaces of natural beauty – including Hampstead Heath, Regent’s Park, St. James’s Park and Hyde Park (perfect then for the Grand Park London Hyde Park hotel); not to mention the thousands of smaller park spaces here, there and everywhere. Again, though, do your research because some stylish and salubrious nightlife locales like Kensington’s Sky Garden (a short hop on the Tube away from accommodation near Hyde Park London Paddington) are free to enter.

Get Merry During Happy Hour

Finally, speaking of sleek evening venues with their colourful cocktails, don’t forget about ‘happy hour’. Usually running from early evening (4pm or 5pm) to mid-evening (7pm or 8pm), it’s a period during which drinks prices are dramatically slashed and other inviting deals may be available – and it’s employed by watering holes throughout the capital, but especially the West End, and on most nights of the week. Embracing happy hour is bound to make your night go with a real swing!