London on a Shoestring Budget?

London, United Kingdom Photo By

I think its fair to assume that most people are aware of the astronomical price tag a visit to London can rack up. And unfortunately, with this sub-par economy, the dollar doesn’t go nearly as far as it uses to. This alone can be a big deterrent for people trying to plan a vacation to the famous city. Thankfully, due to being a part of the growing number of financially challenged students, I was forced to devise a way to not only make it to London but more importantly, to have a fulfilling vacation without breaking the bank. If I was able to survive on a shoestring budget, I’m sure many of you can. Aside from my usual tips like utilizing Airbnb and public transportation I was able to come up with a few other tricks as well.

To begin with, the key to traveling for the low is to understand the position you’re in. Yes, that rooftop dinner may be absolutely delicious but the 50-pound price tag that comes with it isn’t. Rule number one to surviving London with minimal money is to get an accommodation where you can cook! This will save you TONS. Cook breakfast and pack a lunch. Splurge on a take-out dinner. It may not be the glamorous life, but you’ll have tons of

extra money for experiences, which are the things we remember anyway.

Another tip for surviving London is to take advantage of the free things this amazing city has to offer. A few

options available include:

Camden Market, United Kingdom Photo By
  • Strolling through the Camden Street Market (One of my favs)
  • Visit the House of Parliament
  • Admire the beautiful trees in the Kensington Garden
  • Learn some history at the Victoria & Albert Museum (Another one of my favs)
  • Visit the Tate Modern
  • Take in the views at the Sky Garden.

Still looking for more ways to save money? Of course, you are! My next tip goes out to ANYONE, budget traveler or not, visiting the city….. Get an Oyster Card. This is the card that allows you to ride on all of London’s public transportation. The cards cap out at 6.60 pounds per day, which is great for peace of mind. To make this deal even sweeter you can get a refund for any unused money on your card. 

My least favorite tip but most practical one is to cut back on the alcohol. This can really put a dent in your pockets. Happy hour is a thing there and you should definitely take advantage of it. I hate to admit it but I drank every day which is something I would advise against. This deeply cut into my souvenir and excursion money.

Oxford Street, United Kingdom

My last tip would be to plan the timing of your trip VERY well. London hosts a plethora of events and you may catch the backlash for that. Prices are hiked up and negotiating becomes harder. Visit during the off-season to save the most. The lines and crowds will be less giving you a more genuine experience.

I hope these tips have eased your worries about the expenses in London. Have any other tips? Please feel free to share them below. I’m always looking for more ways to save some cash.


Not looking to travel internationally yet? Check out my blog on beautiful beaches to visit stateside.


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