London on a Budget with Kids! Eats, Sleeps, and Transport.
Are your ready to do London on a budget with kids? Mind the gap, here we go! Getting to London is quite possibly your biggest expense. If you’re stumped on how to save on flights to London, check out Secrets for Cheap Flights to Europe. I share all my airfare secrets to help shave dollars (or whatever your currency) off your transportation budget. Check this post if you are looking for tips on long-haul air travel. It also covers things to consider if London is not your only destination. If you are fortunate to have enough a reward or miles credit card, awesome! This article will give you loads of information on how to up your travel hack game.
Cheap In-Country Transportation
When it comes to the UK, most people think train travel. I would agree that in many cases train travel is the best choice. For London specifically, you are going to want an Oyster card. Here’s why:
- It’s good on all city buses, trams, trains & subway, Check out where you can use your Oyster card for full details.
- They even go beyond the city into some suburban areas.
- Kids 10 and under travel free and 11-18 year olds travel at half fare.
- It’s contactless & you can top up super easy.
Visitors outside the UK can easily order an Oyster card online and have it mailed to you. Then you are ready to go when you get off the plane!
Do you have some lodging must-haves? I sure do!
- You gotta feel safe.
- Easy on the budget.
- Central to the sites you want to see.
I found this helpful site gives a good understanding of what to look for in family accommodations. While, I haven’t used their recommended facilities yet, their information is valuable to any independent, budget traveler.
We’ve found hostels & Airbnb to be good choices no matter where we travel. For us the challenge is in understanding the vibe of a neighborhood and how it meshes with our family style. It’s hard enough for kids to sleep in a new location, even without a party going on next door or across the street!
I really love the new Neighborhoods feature on Airbnb! Staying outside Zone 1 will certainly save you some money. BUT, London is one of those cities that is so big, you really want to know your neighborhoods. You don’t want to be on the Tube for over an hour each direction getting to your days activities every single day. So, check out the neighborhoods.
Another great option is to arrange to be a house/pet sitter though places like Trusted House Sitters.com. The house sitting option can make overseas travel quite affordable. I highly recommend all these lodging choices! Our family has successfully used each of these.
If you can’t find lodging with a kitchenette, you’ll be eating out a bit more, maybe. That’s why hostels can be such a great choice! There’s built in community kitchens in most! There are loads of places that provide a family atmosphere at a reasonable price. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with Marks & Spencers Cafe, Tesco or Sainsburys in-store cafes or lunch-time grab n’ go meal deals. Or, go gourmet! Just pop into a bakery or deli (or even the big shopping chains) and grab some bread, fruit, deli meat, chocolate, and a nice beverage. Head for the nearest park bench with a view and have lunch like a local!
Alright, THAT should solve all (or most) of your bucket list on a budget travel challenges & get you in and out of London with a few quid in your pocket & a fire in your belly to plan your next ambitious adventure.
Mind the Gap & Stay Captivated!
P.S. I’ve mentioned several other related posts. You can find them below.