Going to London is always worth the time. As Samuel Johnson so fittingly said, “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.” However, you might spend years in London, while still missing out on some of the best things London has to offer. There are countless guides about things you have to do when you’re in London, or lists of things not to miss. However, most guides fail to mention that many of these things can be extremely expensive. This is where I come in. Beneath are my tips on “How not to end up broke in London”. It’s actually very simple: Don’t overpay! It’s no big secret,that London is an expensive city, not only to live in, but also to visit. Make sure you get the best deals on everything you do.
Plan ahead. Set a vague date in the (not too distant) future and look for flights. You can comfortably book cheap flights to London on fly.co.uk. Make sure you remain flexible until you know when the cheapest flights are scheduled to depart. Then set the exact date. Take it as a general rule: The more flexible you are, the less money you’ll have to spend.
This also applies to any other form of transport you’ll need. Look for transportation from and to the airport. Find out what travel cards are available for the oyster card, which will be your most trusted friend for any sort of transportation in London.
Also, think about what kind of comfort you’ll really need. Do you have to stay in a four star hotel with a swimming pool in the middle of summer, when you’ll be spending most time exploring the city than you actually spend in the hotel? If all you need is a bed with clean sheets and a shower, look for bed and breakfast. If you don’t mind sharing your room, or if you even travel in a group, a hostel might be your best bet.
So now you’re in London, you have a place to stay and can travel anywhere you want without paying anything extra. The next question is what do you want to do while you’re there? Keep in mind that famous touristy attractions such as Madame Tussaud’s or the London Dungeon are expensive. If you’ve always wanted to take a picture with a wax figure of Angelina Jolie, by all means, don’t let me stop you. But you’ll find that these attractions are not much different than in pictures you can find online. Most of the museums in London, however, are free to enter.
Like I said, I don’t want to tell you what to do once you’re there, but there is a great book called “Tired of London, Tired of Life” by Tom Jones, that offers one thing to do for each day of the year in London. You won’t have to do it on that specific day, just pick out your favourite ones, be a little crazy and do them whenever you want to.