Should I Rent a Car While in London?

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While on holiday, many people like to hire a car to explore a little further afield and get a better appreciation of the place that they’ll be visiting. However, renting a car in the capital really isn’t necessary, and can actually be rather expensive.

For those with reservations at our 4-star hotels in Paddington, here are a few reasons why you should save your money and leave the driving to someone else during your stay in the city.

Parking

Sadly, parking spaces in built-up urban areas such as London is always at a premium, so if you do decide to rent a car during your stay at the Park Grand London Hyde Park, then expect to pay for the privilege of parking your hire car when not in use.

Parking charges can range from £5 per hour upwards in some areas, so with so many other transport options to choose from during your time in the capital, hiring a car can become incredibly expensive compared to using public transport.

Mind the Gap

A bit of a tourist attraction in itself, the London Tube helps connect the various districts of the city and helps millions of Londoners and visitors get from A to B quickly, conveniently and in an eco-friendly way each year. With tickets available for just one short journey to weekend or week-long passes and beyond, the Tube is one of the cheapest, quickest and most reliable forms of transport that the city has to offer.

With Knightsbridge Station located just a short stroll from our 4-star hotels in Paddington, the Tube can take you to areas of historical interest such as the Tower of London or drop you in the centre of Covent Garden for a little street entertainment and retail therapy in a matter of minutes.

Plus, the Tube runs 24-hours a day, seven days a week, so you'll always be able to get to where you want to go regardless of the time.

Better still, you won’t need to worry about finding a parking space either, so it makes perfect financial sense to make the Tube one of your primary modes of transport during your stay at our Park Grand London Hyde Park.

Tour buses

Unfortunately, driving around London in a car won’t allow you to see many of the sights as you’ll be too busy keeping your eyes on the road, so instead of renting a car, a hop-on, hop-off bus tour can take the pressure off. This option will allow you to see all of the iconic buildings and attractions the city has to offer without having to jump in the driver’s seat.

With several tour bus operators with stops near to our 4-star hotels in Paddington, choose from an array of routes which visit places such as Madame Tussauds, the Shard and London Bridge and leave the driving to someone with grassroots experience of navigating the city.

You’ll also be able to pick up some interesting information and facts on many of the tour bus landmarks as most operators also include pre-recorded headphone commentary in a wide variety of languages. Some also have a live tour guide on the bus who will talk you through the places you’ll be visiting.

As these tours allow you to jump on and off the bus when it suits you, you can get a much closer look at some of London’s most famous attractions without having to worry about the parking metre.

Congestion charges and traffic

Like all capital cities, London can suffer from heavy traffic at peak times. Add in the fact that drivers who wish to use the road in the central parts of London during the week will need to pay a congestion charge plus the cost of fuel, the cost of hiring a car in London soon starts to mount up.

To make your holiday spends go a little further during your stay at the Park Grand London Hyde Park, opt to use trains, Tube lines and buses. It is easy to navigate your way around the city and this isn’t just a much cheaper alternative, but is actually good for the environment too.

Black cabs

One of the most iconic vehicles you'll find in the city, black cabs have become synonymous with the City of London. You'll find plenty of black cab souvenirs in gift shops dotted all around London, and black cabs are often found whizzing around the busy streets picking up fares from tourists and locals alike.

An experience in itself, if you’ll be heading out for the evening and don’t want to take public transport, then the reception team at our 4-star hotels in Paddington will be happy to book you a black cab to deliver you to the door of your chosen destination and pick you up again afterwards should you so wish.

River taxis

One of the more relaxing ways of getting around the city and far cheaper than hiring and having to pay to park a car during your stay at the Park Grand London Hyde Park, river taxis ferry passengers up and down the river Thames from the early morning right up until the evening.

With some taxis offering tours and commentary, it’s a great way of finding out a little more about some of the riverside landmarks that London has become so famous for and offers a welcome break from the busy streets filled with people and traffic.

There is even a river shuttle than transports visitors between the Tate Modern and Tate Britain, so if you’re thinking of taking in some art from up and coming contemporary artists or looking at pieces created by masters of the craft from years gone by, this is the way to get there!

Adorned with artistic designs, the Tate river shuttle is a work of art in itself and can help you experience the best of both venues without having to worry about parking charges, fuel and congestion.