Dining out - keeping to budget in UK

Jun 1st, 2007, 08:21 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
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The problem that tourists face in London is that we know you won't leave zone one. So the restaurants etc within the bottle* know that they pretty much have a captured market.

Where we actually live it is very different indeed. There is a noodle place near my house that will sell you a huge plate of noodles and meat for £3.00.

*look at the route followed by the circle line - hence "the bottle"

audere_est_facere is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 09:59 AM
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Speaking of bowls of noodles with meat for cheap, are there any pho houses in London or outside the bottle? Forty GBP for 4 bowls of noodles does sound fairly shocking.

thereyet is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 10:59 AM
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If you've never been to the UK be aware that sandwiches don;t mean the same thing. (The first time I read in a British mystery novel that people were easting more than one "sandwich" for lunch I couldn;t understand where they were putting al that food.

Unlike deli sandwiches in the US in the UK a sandwich can often consist of one slice or meat or cheese and a single piece of lettuce About 1/4 or less the size of what you would get in the US - where a ham and cheese sandwich is 4/5 slices of ham, 2 or 3 of cheese and a bunch of lettuce and tomato.
nytraveler is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 11:09 AM
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We've been in London with my boys when they were 10 & 12 and also after that.

Some I can recommend to you are:

Pizza Express - pizza, salads, etc.

Churchill Arms - Thai food at an English pub, near the Notting Hill Gate tube stop, my kids can't get enough of the pad thai (noodles with a peanut sauce, with your choice of chicken, shrimp, etc. that you could leave off), I thought Thai food would be too adventurous for them but it turned out they love it so much that they beg to go here multiple times whenever we are in London, the restaurant is next to the pub but somewhat separate and it is casual with a hanging canopy of plants, fine place to bring kids although we usually end up here for lunch or maybe 3 or 4 pm, all dishes cost 6 GPB last summer and we often get 3 dishes for 4 people, pad thai is not spicy but there are some spicy dishes if you like
travelgirl2 is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 11:23 AM
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thereyet, this place looks like a possibility, although I've not been there:
WillTravel is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 11:38 AM
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Try chain restaurants like pizza express, pizza hut, zizzi's and ask are also good. You can get a main course for around £8 GBP per person.

Nando's is a possibility as well.

Wetherspoon's do good meals and often have buy one get one free on their menu's.

If the weather is decent you good get some picnic foods from a supermarket and find a nice spot outside to have picnic food.
Jun 1st, 2007, 11:52 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 250
I took two of my nephews to England and Scotland when they were the same age as your daughters and one was a picky eater as well. We stopped at a grocery store the first day and filled a cardboard box with stuff for the road--peanutbutter, jelly, cheese, bread, fruit, juice boxes, etc. so we could stop whenever hunger overtook us.

After a big breakfast at our B&B we often had a small midmorning snack and then made latish lunch our "big meal" of the day. We found that lunch was often cheaper than dinner for a full meal. We then would find a good place to picnic in the evening--often a playground where there was space to kick a ball around. But we did go out for supper and found kid friendly places to eat.

I am sorry to hear that Little Chef has gone downhill, as the boys enjoyed them.

Our trip was ten years ago so prices would not be relevant, but methods might be.
teacher33 is offline  
Jun 1st, 2007, 11:14 PM
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Loads of advice let us know how you get on.

Yes the Wheatsheaf pub is at the upper end of the price league. The OP did not think pubs were ok for kids, so I gave this as an example of a very respectable country pub rather than a smokey city pub. If you read the info on the website you will see that it is a nice place, no drunks or fights. It is not open all day and therefore does not attract the youngsters who want to get blotto or smashed - hence very safe and child friendly
blightyboy is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2007, 03:03 AM
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Will travel: That place is in Hoxton. Yanks won't go to Hoxton.
audere_est_facere is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2007, 04:52 AM
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honestly - a fair number of Yanks actually DO make it to Hoxton. I've walked right past that cafe half a dozen times or more since is practically across the road from the Geffrye.
janisj is online now  
Jun 2nd, 2007, 10:29 AM
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 5

You said you use B&Bs - do you know of any good ones near Melton Mowbray or the Midlands. Will be there July 15 & 16.
SmurfOlympiaWa is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2007, 10:37 AM
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smurf: I suggest you start a new thread. You have tacked a question about accomodations near Melton Mowbray/Leicestershire on to a long thread about eating in the UK.

If you want someone who has stayed there to see your questions you need a title something like "need accomodations near Melton Mowbray" And be sure to include your budget in the post.

(Sorry, can't give you specific help since whenever I've stayed in Leicestershire/Rutland it has been for a week at a time in rented cottages)
janisj is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2007, 12:01 PM
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Hi I live near Melton Mowbray and will look some up
blightyboy is offline  
Jun 5th, 2007, 02:01 AM
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do a mix and match approach.

Supermarkets can be good places to eat in terms of value but the atmosphere isn't much.

Look out for 2 for one deals in some pubs - the wetherspoon chain do these and they often include a drink. 2 main meals are less than £6 but the choice is limited.


I'm in the midlands where we have a lot of baltis - basic indian restraunt whre you take your own alcohol but the food is good - a good option for your vegetarian as you will often get a vegetable tali for a reasonable price.

Avoid motorway service stations - they charge a fortune.

Some b and B's will offer an evening meal - worth asking and some will offer a packed lunch option but it does vary a lot.

Don't forget to ask the b and b owner where is a good place to eat - local knowledge is invaluable.

sashh is offline  
Jun 5th, 2007, 03:34 AM
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Subway (the sandwich place) often has a special deal on too. At the moment you can get two subs plus crisps plus drink for £7 at my local one.
nona1 is offline  
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