It’s a well-known fact that London is not a cheap place to go to for the day, let alone for a weekend. So being a lover of The Big Smoke, I can happily say that I have experienced some wonderful things to do in London that hasn’t broken the bank.
HAVE EVERYTHING WITH YOU
The first step to preparing your day out to this capital city is taking everything that you need so you don’t have to buy anything whilst you’re there. Here are a few things I bring with me:
- A bag that can easily fit what you take and anything you may pick up whilst you’re out and about (flyers, leaflets, postcards etc.)
- A hairbrush.
- A purse… Seems logical right? Well, some people like to just carry everything in their bags and pockets for it to fly about. I have had a few occasions where train tickets and money have fallen out. Keep tickets, money and some ID in here (in case you want a drink!). Make sure you keep it secure!
- Wipes for getting rid of those nasty underground germs! Hand gel is also useful!
- Deodorant as it can get sweaty on trains and walking around. It’s not nice being the smelly armpit on public transport.
- Download a few essential apps such as , and . You can then find out what’s going on in London including any transport issues!
- A camera for all of your snaps! Make sure your battery is fully charged.
- An umbrella or a jacket, it is England after all! Don’t buy them when you’re there as the store owners will have seen you coming!
- Sunglasses because when the sun does pop out, it’s no fun squinting and everything as you walk by!
So you’re packed and ready to go, but what do you do on a budget?
You don’t necessarily have to buy a travel card. Why not get a return ticket and walk everywhere? You will see more, get some exercise and have plenty of chances to take photos. But if walking isn’t your thing, contactless debit cards work the same way as Oyster.
TO DO – FREE
As mentioned before you can download apps or look online for various free activities via
Some of my favourite FREE activities are:
- Decipher surrealism at
- Come face to face with royalty at
- Hear war stories at the
- Relax and enjoy
- Be in awe of (you can also pay to go inside)
- Discover sacred texts at
- Go through fashion’s timeline at the
- Walk among the dinosaurs at
- Study space and time at
- See street shows in
- Meet Mummies at
- Take in the sights and smells at
EATING ON A BUDGET
The cheapest option is to take food with you but if you don’t want to carry it, pop into a Tesco Local and buy a mini picnic. A baguette, selection pack of crisps which you can also nibble on later, fruit and a bottle of water will cost less than £4 for two people.
TO DO – NOT SO FREE
- plays a range of old, new and foreign cinema
- (as seen in Sherlock, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Kick Ass)
- Afternoon tea at
- is so beautiful on the inside as well as the outside. You can even go to the top!
- – It’s best to get a combo deal than to pay for each thing separately.
If you want to see a show, I recommend buying from or go to the theatre on the day and see if they have any spare tickets.
KEEPING WITHIN THE BUDGET…
There is so much more to see in London but don’t feel as if you need to do EVERYTHING you see. For example, if you’re on a budget, DO NOT:
- Buy souvenirs you will never look at again
- Go on bus tours. Everything is accessible by walking, tube or normal buses and are far cheaper
- Eat in different fancy restaurants/cafes but don’t eat from dodgy hot dog stands either!
- Drink a lot of booze! As an ex-drinker, I know that it can be tempting to have a few drinks with lunch but it ruins your day and your spending money
- Go to Oxford Street…. It’s a shopping wonderland and you will spend lots!
- Buy bad quality items from street sellers
You can see how I had a day in London for just £60.00 here!
What do you like to do in London that’s free?