BACKPACKER INDEX: US$97.65
London hotel prices
Singles from €44, Twin from £76
The Metro is a high-rated cheapie just north of Hyde Park so it's walking distance to most nightlife and sights.
Beds from £23/night
A well-located part of this fun chain that features a lively and cheap bar with discounts for guests.
Beds from £18/night
A top choice for reasonable rates and central location within walking distance from British Museum, West End, and Covent Garden.
London is popular throughout the year, as it’s not dependent on pleasant weather to draw visitors. The months of June through August bring the biggest crowds and the highest hotel prices, so if you are planning on a visit during the summer months it’s a good idea to book as early as possible.
Outside of the summer it’s usually easy to find a room upon arrival, but going door to door in the few neighborhoods that are dense with hotels (like Victoria or Bayswater) can be exhausting, so it’s best to book at least your first night if you can.
Standards at London hotels are noticeably lower than in most other major cities in Europe and elsewhere. In other words, rooms tend to be tiny and often look badly worn, unless you are staying at a pricey boutique or international chain hotel. Apartment life in the city is similar, so it’s just something people have grown used to, though it can be a bit shocking when you first check into a place.
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London is one of the most expensive cities to visit on the planet. Once you learn your way around a bit you can keep your budget under control, but when you first arrive it feels like you are being beaten up by shockingly high prices. Cheap hotels are available in some neighborhoods, but expect a tiny and worn-out-looking windowless room if you go too low. See our recommended London hotels and hostels page for great value at well-located places.
The good news is that almost all of the famous museums, including the huge and amazing British Museum, are free to enter for everyone. The “free” walking tours given by Sandeman’s New London are also excellent and worth the small tip you’ll give the guide at the end. But most of the other famous attractions are crazy expensive, so research the many free things to do if your budget is tight. On the other hand, our review of the London Pass shows that it’s quite good value for many visitors. The London Eye (Ferris Wheel) is extremely popular but it is not included in the London Pass. However, you can save 10% to 20% by ordering London Eye tickets online.
Food and drinks can also be frustratingly expensive, especially if you stay in the main tourist areas. Finding your way to other residential neighborhoods is a money-saving key, and it’ll give you a better feel for the city at the same time. If you are trying to keep costs low while having a great time anyway be sure to check out our London budget travel tips.
London attraction prices
|London Eye||One slow rotation on this huge Ferris wheel offers excellent views. Discounts for booking online.||adults||32.00|
|Tower of London||This historic attraction is popular and pricey. Discounts for booking online.||adults||35.75|
|Madame Tussauds||This chain of wax museums is impressive and expensive. Save 25% off these prices by buying online, and even cheaper after 5pm.||adults||50.00|
|SIghtseeing bus tour||Day pass on the popular hop-on, hop-off open-top Original London Sightseeing Tour also includes free walking tours. Discounts for booking online.||adults||43.33|
|St. Paul's Cathedral||One of the most famous cathedral's on earth, it's closed for tourists on Sundays.||adults||26.67|
|Westminster Abbey||Another historic favorite, partly for who's buried there.||adults||30.00|
|Buckingham Palace||You can visit the Queen's Gallery, among other separate collections here. Prices are lower until April.||adults||15.83|
|Tower Bridge||Much of this bridge is free to enter, but the elevator and the exhibition charge admission.||adults||13.33|
London Transportation prices
|Taxi from Heathrow to city center||75.00 - 100.00|
|Tube ride from Heathrow to city center||5.00 - 8.33|
|All day unlimited tube & bus rides in city center||11.67 - 14.00|
|Oyster card for transport (refundable)||8.33|
|3km taxi ride in London||11.67 - 15.00|
|Tube ride in central London||3.67 - 4.67|
London food and drink prices
|Budget breakfast||Breakfast is included at many hotels, often the classic and filling "full English breakfast." If not, a basic breakfast is easy to find in most neighborhoods.||5.83 - 10.00|
|Budget lunch||Food in London can be shockingly expensive. Good budget lunch choices include sandwiches and filled baked (jacket) potatoes.||10.00 - 16.67|
|Budget dinner||A filling meal at a pub is a good budget choice, as is a stop at one of the many Indian or Chinese restaurants all over.||13.33 - 23.33|
|Coffee (cup)||Finding a cheap cup of coffee can be a challenge, and now Starbucks are popping up all over.||1.67 - 3.33|
|Pint of beer||Most pubs have similar prices regardless of the decor. Some of the chain pubs run happy hour specials which can be good value.||5.33 - 7.50|
|Fish and chips||London's classic tourist meal isn't always easy to find and it's usually quite expensive.||15.00 - 21.67|
|Jacket potato||A large baked potato filled with any range of interesting toppings can be a memorable and affordable meal.||4.67 - 8.33|
Have more information or an update? Send us your tips.
|Airports||London Heathrow (LHR), London Gatwick (LGW), London Stansted (STN)|
Avg temps & precip
|Hi F||Lo F||Precip Inch|
London is known for being gray, and to a lesser extent for being rainy, but the rain rarely comes down hard so the annual rainfall totals are fairly low. Summers are usually very pleasant, almost never getting hot enough to become a problem, and winters are also usually mild with snow being fairly rare.
The gray thing is very true though and cloud cover is common at any time of the year, so take advantage of the sunny days when they come along. And it’s a good idea to pack for drizzly weather so an umbrella might come in handy.
Sunrise and sunset