Cost of food outside London

Dec 8th, 2009, 05:34 AM
  #1  
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Cost of food outside London

I am trying to budget what a 3 week trip to England and Wales would cost next summer, and am having a hard time guestimating food costs. We were in London 9 nights three years ago, so I know what to expect there. If you can tell me roughly what to expect compared to London, I can estimate what the damage would be.

Breakfast would be taken care of most days, so I am just interested in pricing lunch and supper at restaurants. Would you estimate prices to be the same as London, higher or lower........? If it matters, we will likely cut a path from Kent over to Avon and Cardiff, up to York.

Thanks.
poutine is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 06:01 AM
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Considerably lower. Restaurants for lunch are a mug’s game. We go to pubs, so should you.

A good pub lunch will be around a fiver for a main course (which is enough) before drinks.

You can spend as much as you like for dinner - £200 a head is perfectly possible. But depending on the sort of food you like a lot less is possible.

A decent pizza (not, in general something we do well) is around £7, A curry about the same, Chinese £10-12 and a pub meal about the same.

Plus drinks. (In a pub – beer around £3 a pint , wine around £10 a bottle, soft drinks around £1.50 a glass, double that for a restaurant).

It is possible to eat for a lot less – using cafes etc.
Cholmondley_Warner is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 06:11 AM
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Thanks CW. Pubs would let in kids 11 and 13? I think I remember that in London some would not allow children. Generally what would you expect a pub to charge at supper time?

Thanks for the tip on pizza
poutine is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 06:26 AM
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Thanks CW. Pubs would let in kids 11 and 13?>>>>>
In general, no.

Some will, if they're eating and if they are the right kind of pub (ie hell holes full of kids). Very few will let them in in the evening.

Ask first.

Also keep your eye out for a pub chain called wetherspoons which does allow rug-rats in until about 9pm.

They should be up chimneys, selling matches or down mines in any case.
CW - doesn't like children. Persecutes them for a living.

Enjoys it.

Pubs don't charge different prices at different times so whatever they charge at lunch is what they will charge in the evening
Cholmondley_Warner is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 06:32 AM
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That's too bad - for me at least. I would rather have the option of eating in a pub once in a while. Is banishment due to liquor laws?

The 12 year old has a job - just not all day. The law forces me to school the bugger.
poutine is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 06:43 AM
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Is banishment due to liquor laws?>>>

Sort of. Kids aren’t allowed in pubs after 9pm in any case.

Before that it’s at the Landlord’s discretion and most sane people hate children. We go to the pub to get away from the ankle biters.

Pubs with big gardens and a large food trade will let them in, small neighbourhood places won’t.

As I say – ask. If the pub won’t let them in they will normally know some place that will.

Obviously they aren’t allowed Vodkas. Just gin.
Cholmondley_Warner is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 07:18 AM
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Last summer I was sitting at an outdoor table at a pub in London and the table next to us was a couple with a very young child. The kid made his escape and ran into the pub, followed closely behind by the dad, calling at him to come back. When they emerged, the dad said the kid had run right into the landlord's arms.

Just planning for the future.
Nikki is online now  
Dec 8th, 2009, 07:47 AM
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Picnics are a great way to keep lunch prices down. Local cheeses, bread, meat, fruit, etc.

Meals at museums, National Trust properties, etc. are usually good and fairly reasonable.

I would guess well over 90% or higher of country pubs which do a dinner business will let children in up until 9pm.
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Dec 8th, 2009, 07:50 AM
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Chumley is a misanthrope who knows a lot about London pubs, especially boozers' pubs where police and criminals go. There are pubs outside London which are very different, and are more like family restaurants. You will have no problem taking children aged 11 and 13 into such places, especially at lunchtime.

Such pubs are usually part of a chain, with a standard menu and most of the food will be bought-in. They can be good, and good value, especially if you avoid the cheapest.

This menu is a typical example.

http://www.vintageinn.co.uk/thetrave...estcaerphilly/

Look at the standard food menu as well as the lunch menu.

Chumley would hate the place, but you must draw your own conclusions.
chartley is online now  
Dec 8th, 2009, 08:03 AM
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Chumley is a misanthrope>>>>

When I'm in a good mood. Otherwise I'm just horrible.
Cholmondley_Warner is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 08:45 AM
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I dated Miss Anne Thrope once. Lovely woman. If you need to save money, buying food in supermarkets (waitrose is a pretty upmarket one) will save you a LOT of money.
http://www.jeremytaylor.eu/England_1.htm
JeremyinFrance is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 10:08 AM
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Food prices outside London really don't differ much from London prices at all.

Saying that always enrages the more insular provincials, who insist you can get a phenomenal tripe and onions from a stall in Bury Market for a tenth the price of oysters abd champagne in one of those poofy Michelin 3* places that London's so stuffed with. In much the same way a certain kind of New Yorker's always telling you how expensive food in London is (the kind who's never eaten out in New York, usually).

But actually, whether it's a bacon butty in a greasy spoon, a pie in Wetherspoons, a pizza in a chain or something edible at Loch Fyne, like for like prices are usually almost identical. Oddly, one exception is fish and chips: though prices hardly vary within 80 miles of London, they drop sharply north of Birmingham, though you've got to go out of town in York to find sub-London prices. Even in working class cities like Cardiff, cheap eating is usually findable only outside the areas tourists congregate in

In glorified suburbs, like Kent, food tends to be slightly pricier than in London, because there's not the constant stream of business or the competition.
flanneruk is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 10:15 AM
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I would agree with JeremyinFrance, we found lots of prepackaged meals at Sainsbury, easy to buy and heat up.
Racer042 is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 11:44 AM
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"There are pubs outside London which are very different, and are more like family restaurants."

Again, generalisation's difficult.

Lots of pubs outside city centres (including London-area pubs outside tube zone 1) positively welcome children, at least at lunch. They're not necessarily chains - but most look, from the outside, like places that want families eating rather than curmudgeonly old farts muttering antisocial rants into their beer mugs. They also, typically, promote themselves externally with chalkboards about things like food.

Often, though, there'll be a pub a few yards down the road whose regulars just want somewhere they can tell dirty jokes and get pissed: their rights are just as important as brats', and quite rightly these pubs' guvnors don't want kids on the premises.

The juxtaposition works similarly in Highgate and London's other leafy suburbs, in any nice village (the definition of a really liveable village is that it runs to BOTH a boozers' pub and a pub you can take the kids to for Sunday lunch) and the suburbs of every decent English town. But the definition of a really civilised city (like Liverpool, Oxford or Brighton) is having both family places and boozers' paradises in the centre.
flanneruk is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 11:54 AM
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. I find I totally sgree with flanner here/
avalon is offline  
Dec 8th, 2009, 03:07 PM
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It depends on the establishment and the license. We had a heck of a time in Glasgow trying to find a pub that would allow our 10 year old to dine. We gave up and ordered from Pizza Hut one night.
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Dec 8th, 2009, 05:58 PM
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Even in Glasgow there are numerous Wetherspoons which cater to the young uns. A bit of research beforehand goes a long way.
wellididntknowthat is offline  
Dec 9th, 2009, 12:56 AM
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curmudgeonly old farts muttering antisocial rants into their beer mugs. >>>>

These places are called pubs.

Anything else is a ponceteria.
Cholmondley_Warner is offline  
Dec 9th, 2009, 02:01 AM
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Most country pubs allow children. Town/city centre ones are less likely too. If the pub has a garden they probably will - if you sit in the garden. Some pubs have a separate family room. As far as the law is concerned they have to be in an eating area and not propping up the actual bar.

Some will have 'families welcome' signs outside but it's always worth asking otherwise. It often comes down to their discretion. Lunchtimes are easier than evenings, and how busy they are makes a difference between a 'no' one day and a 'yes' the next. Also the kids; if they see quiet well-behaved kids you'll get a yes, if they look like nightmares, they'll say no.

My son used to come with us to pubs a lot during the day (oh that sounds bad)and we were only once told 'no'.
nona1 is offline  
Dec 9th, 2009, 02:07 AM
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It is traditional for British children to stand outside the pub with a glass of warm flat coke and a packet of crisps.

At least it was in my day…..
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