Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (https://www.fodors.com/community/)
-   Europe (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/)
-   -   Are prices lower traveling outside London? (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/are-prices-lower-traveling-outside-london-558176/)

cobbie Sep 13th, 2005 10:21 AM

Are prices lower traveling outside London?
 
There are some good fares from SFO-London now. I know London is really expensive. I noticed when traveling in Provence in June that the prices for food & lodging were reasonable. Meals seemed to be the price I would pay here at home.

That said, are meals/lodging less expensive outside of London?? Are small towns less than the non-London cities?? Are the cities as expensive as London?

I've been enjoying the many recent posts about the English countryside and considering taking some of them in.
Thanks!
Cobbie

PalenqueBob Sep 13th, 2005 10:25 AM

Yes - especially accommodations. People who work in London it's said get special wage bonuses to cope with the high cost of living in what is one of Europe's most expensive cities. With the pound at a high rate against the dollar the cost only increases. But outside of London is cheaper but not cheap!

janis Sep 13th, 2005 10:41 AM

most definitely. It is still very easy to find wonderful B&Bs all over for £25 to £30 per person and sometimes less. That is only $45-$55 pp for a nice room, private bath and huge cooked breakfast.

But a couple of things to remember about London -- even tho' hotels ate expensive, it is one of the best place to use priceline. 4 star hotels for less than $100 and 3 stars for less than $60 or $70. And most of the museums and galleries are free. So what you might spend extra for a room you will save in admissions costs.

renting a flat or using priceline, buying theatre tix at TKTS, using public tranport and going to all the free places, one CAN do London preatty cheaply.

In the countryside - rooms will cost less -- but renting a car and paying $5+ per gallon for petrol will eat up some if the savings.

Another option is Scotland and/or Wales - Edinburgh hotels are expensive but £20 pp B&Bs are still easy to find . . . .

Jenn Sep 14th, 2005 02:44 PM

We spend time in London and the countryside this summer. Yes - prices did drop quite a bit outside of the city. Meals, inns and shopping were almost bargins compared to London. Enjoy - the countryside was my favorite part of our trip. It as beautiful and all of the people we encountered we wonderful.

m_kingdom2 Sep 14th, 2005 02:55 PM

Property is vastly cheaper outside of London. Hotels are a little cheaper in as much as the super luxury ones are few and far between when you get out of London hence the mean price will drop. Like for like will be a little cheaper, but I always think that - compared to say Spain - England's not a cheap place to tour around.

As for food, yes I suppose that really mundane places are cheaper. However, listed restaurants can be just as expensive, and are often disappointing.

The cities for the tourist will not be noticeably cheaper....if we're talking about Manchester, Birmingham.. It might be 50 pounds a day cheaper, but I'd say that if you're coming all this way that isn't noticeably cheaper. If you're planning on living there, then I'd call a saving of 250kGBP a noticeable difference. It's all about relative costs and distances.

flanneruk Sep 15th, 2005 12:13 AM

"Outside London" is still a pretty big place. In parts of it, you'll be able to pay less than in London for some things if you look carefully.

Within about 80 miles of London, though, you'll be hard pressed to save anything at all, and value for money will, if anything, be generally poorer.

I've no way of knowing how B+B prices compare. But hotels round my Cotswold house charge roughly London prices, and restaurants throughout the 80-mile area offer generally slightly poorer food than in London at about the same price (Though there are of course lots of places inside and outside London offering both terrific and disgraceful value, I'd say it's actually easier to be pleasantly surprised in London than outside).

British shops run national pricing policies. This doesn't always mean they charge the same everywhere: but it means the kind of areas their higher-priced shops are in are just as likely to be in the affluent areas of Manchester or Birmingham as in London's posher suburbs. Taxis have pretty standard rates per mile - but mileage is usually greater outside London. There are pockets of low petrol prices round Teeside and Mersey/Deeside, but generally petrol prices are pretty uniform: getting pricier the closer you get into a town, the deeper you get into the remote countryside, the further you get from a superstore or on motorways. I'm generally surprised at how relatively expensive most public transport is outside London. And I struggle to think of anywhere that offers bargains like London's travel passes.

Only Liverpool and Edinburgh have anything remotely resembling London's extraordinary range of free attractions. Almost everywhere else in Britain, you're forking out.

Now we don't charge (unlike some money-grubbing nations I could mention) for entry into our National Parks. Nothing in Cambridge or Stratford charges as much for so little as, say, the Tacoma Glass Museum or the Oregon Historical Society. If you plan in advance, paying to join English Heritage or the National Trust gets you into all their properties free. England's 120,000 miles of footpaths (five times as many per square mile as Yosemite's overcrowded trails) gets you free, year-round, uncluttered, access into the wonderful countryside we've spent 3,000 years grooming. Village churches are free (but please donate. There's no need to tip properly-paid waiters and you absolutely mustn't tip bar staff. But the 8,000 medieval churches have no means of support except their rapidly-dwindling congregations and visitor donations)

But you have to work to get good value outside London, just as much as inside.

m_kingdom2 Sep 15th, 2005 02:28 AM

I can't stand these churches - large and small (so I suppose Cathedrals too) - that have a donation box with "minimum donation 5GBP" written on them. So I will never ever give a penny. If they had nothing so vulgar, then perhaps I'd drop them a pound or two. However, these are religious places, not tourist attractions so really shouldn't expect so much as a penny. The church is worth a fortune.

PatrickLondon Sep 15th, 2005 02:57 AM

<However, these are religious places, not tourist attractions so really shouldn't expect so much as a penny.>

Slight break in the logic there. Extra people = some wear and tear, whether they're coming for their devotions or not. If they were regular members they'd be expected to contribute a lot: why should they be expected to contribute more for people who might only be there to gawp?

But then, as my mother used to say "Virtue is its own reward - because it bloody well has to be".


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:42 PM.