5 Money Saving Tips & Free Attractions for Tourists Visiting London
If you are visiting London whether for the first time or you’re a regular, it’s very easy to leave with your bank balance empty. That’s of course if you fail to plan. The reality is, you can visit London and have a great time without spending such a ridiculous amount of money. Here’s how:
- Oyster cards
No matter how long you’re here for, if you are sightseeing and paying for your pass on a day to day basis, then you are throwing away a good amount of money. Getting a visitors oyster card will save you half the money you will spend on daily travel cards. It is a quick and easy way to pay for travel on public transport in London. Buy your card before you leave home and save money with special offers. You can check the all the rates on the TfL website. Make sure you do yours research before you arrive on how to get your own oyster card. You may be able to order it online and have it ready upon your arrival. All Oyster Card information is available on www.tfl.gov.uk in different languages. Remember that TFL buses across London don’t accept cash anymore and a single bus journey costs £1.50. Getting a day pass will work out to be much cheaper than getting ticket for each journey separately.
- Take advantage of the free sights
One of the advantages of London is that there are so many attractions that are absolutely free and just as beautiful to enjoy. These include galleries, museums, parks, palaces and much more. If you are a theatre goer then be sure to do some online research because you can always find something cheap. Some of the free attractions one can visit while in London are:
- British Museum: Founded in 1753, the British Museum’s remarkable collection spans over two million years of human history.
Great Russell Street
- Greenwich Park: Greenwich is the oldest enclosed Royal Park, 74 hectares (183 acres) in area, and is home to a small herd of deer. On top of a hill, visitors enjoy sweeping views across the river Thames and Central London.
- Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace – Free until 31st January 2016: For a display of British pomp and ceremony, watch the Changing the Guard ceremony outside Buckingham Palace.
- Museum of London: Step inside the Museum of London for an unforgettable journey through the capital’s turbulent past. Discover prehistoric London, see how the city changed under Romans, Saxons and medieval times.
150 London Wall
- Queen’s House Greenwich: With this elegant house Inigo Jones introduced Palladian style to England. Commissioned by King James I for his wife, Anne of Denmark, it was a garden villa to complement the Tudor palace at Greenwich. The House now displays a series of historical paintings portraying the history of these Greenwich buildings and portraits of Tudor and Stuart kings and queens associated with its history. The Queens House is closed from 27 July 2015 until 4 July 2016.
- Winchester Palace: The Palace was built in the early 13th century as the London house of the Bishops of Winchester and from the street you can see the remains of the great hall of Winchester Palace.
- Go online
You will always find something cheaper if you search online. Turning up at an attraction and buying tickets at the site will be undoubtedly more expensive. You may even be able to get an early bird discount for shows and exhibitions.
- Take your own packed lunch
When you go to shows and exhibitions buy your lunch from the more affordable local shops and take it with you. Food is always more expensive from the attraction areas and it’s really an unnecessary expense. There is no difference in the quality of food and you will be saving a good amount.
- Shop smart
There’s no shortage of shops in London and you don’t need to shop at the most expensive stores. Opt for the more affordable fashion stores and have a good look around. You can find things you love at half the price the shops you will first come across will be selling. Make sure you check out these super affordable stores with good quality:
- Top Man/Top Shop
These tips are offered by David Carr, a Londoner working for Grand Sapphire, a wedding and event venue in South London.
These are just 5 tips to save money whilst making sure you don’t miss out on any of the fun or excitement of being a tourist in London. Researching before you arrive and planning well will make sure you don’t leave London with nothing to your name. It should be a holiday and not a regret.