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Just how much is London going to cost per day?

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Jul 13th, 2007, 06:34 PM
  #1
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Just how much is London going to cost per day?

Yes I know, how long is a piece of string, but - I am trying to work out my budget for our upcoming trip.

This question is just for transport, food and attractions. We are not big foodies and would be happy to have a pub meal at night if that is cheaper. We are staying in an apartment so will have our own breakfast before we leave and plan to make a packed lunch each day (sandwiches, fruit,water etc which).
We would of course look at the London Pass/Oyster Card for transport etc. Would you be able to average out the admission price of the attractions such as Tower of London, London eye, Globe Theatre etc? Would around 10 pound per attraction be a reasonable average?

Is it possible to do London on say 40 pound a day!

Our exchange rate is app.$2.50 to GBP1.00, which makes it a little tough.

When working out my budget I usually start at AUD100 per day but converting this to pounds doesn't seem to add up to a whole lot.

I just have no idea about this and would really appreciate your thoughts on what you think would be a realistic daily figure.

Thanks in advance.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 06:41 PM
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Hi Stormbird.

You don't mention how big your party is.

Most of the attractions have websites and prices on-line. I know for a fact that the London Eye is more than £10 each as it cost £12 when we went on it in 2000.
Westminster Abbey is £10 and St Pauls £9.50 per person, for example.

Many of the museums are free, though (Natural History and Science etc).

I found it infuriatingly difficult to find an evening pub meal in central London a few weeks ago. Don't know if I was looking in the wrong place!
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Jul 13th, 2007, 06:45 PM
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Forget about the London Pass. You have to really race around to reach break-even. And their public transit offering (6 Zones) is far more transport than normal people can use. Get a 7-day Travelcard for Zones 1&2 loaded on Oyster, plus a few spare £ if you need supplements (such as to get to Heathrow, or any extra days beyond a week).

Before you do anything else, find out what http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk can do for you. Save your Travelcard receipt for the requisite PoP.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 06:46 PM
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You mean per person, right? I would plan 50 pounds per day...well, that's what I'm planning for this fall and I know it won't be easy. But if you're eating breakfast in and taking lunch, it will be possible. 20 pounds for dinner and the rest for attractions and transport, that's about it. Museums are free, if you like that; no shopping besides small momentoes; London Walks are inexpensive and good. It might sound a little grim written down, but I'll take a simple vacation in London any year, no problem.

Don't "average out" attractions; actually figure out where you're going so you'll know if a pass is worth it.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 06:50 PM
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Forgot to give you the site: http://www.londonwalks.com. I went on the St. Paul's Walk and it was 6 or 7 pounds plus we had the guide.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:01 PM
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if you are in a flat, and if you are on a tight or tight-ish budget, you will save more money if you eat some dinners in and have lunches be your "splurge" pub and restaurant meals.

Most places will be cheaper at lunchtime. So planning on eating lunch out and dinners in will save more than fixing your lunches and eating dinners out.

As for "averaging" the cost of sites - really not possible. Many are free and others will cost between £5 and £12.50 or so.

If you are mainly going to museums you won't pay a cent, but if you are mainly going to sites like the tower and Hampton Court you will pay a LOT. Free places include the V&A, Science, Natural History, British, London, and Imperial War museums, the National and National Portrait galleries, and the British Library, among others.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:26 PM
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You guys are fantastic! Thanks for all this info.

There will be 4 of us girls altogether so a number of the two for one offers are definitely for us. (Let's hope that some of them carry over to November as some are only advertised up to September/October). Not to worry.

Robespierre thanks for the advice about the Oyster Card. I have been very confused about the two options, so thanks for clearing that up.

I think the eating lunches out with a light dinner sounds like a great idea, so will check that out also.

I'm not one for shopping, so that's not part of my grand plan. (I think some of my travel buddies are but that's up to them). I was just trying to work out a budget for the basics so to speak, so I think that 40/50 pounds a day is reasonable.

We're planning a splurge of Afternoon Tea at The Capital and a couple of theatre shows and probably a day trip but most of these we can prepay here before we leave. We've been paying for these type of things over the last 4 months (we're also doing France and Czech Republic)and so it's just been a little bit at a time and so does not come into accountability when hubbie wants to know how much we plan to spend each day - it just doesn't count!Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:42 PM
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unless there are specific blockbusters you "must" see - don't buy theatre tickets ahead of time. Just go to TKTS in Leicester Square (be sure it is the stand-alone TKTS and not one of the ticket agency store fronts). They sell best available seats to most plays and musicals, and sometimes opera and ballet, on the day of performance for 1/2 price plus a small booking fee.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:44 PM
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The site is actually www.walks.com and yes they are great and very inexpensive. You will hear stories and information that you would otherwise not know...
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:48 PM
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Be aware, mind, that even half-price theatre tickets are realtively pricey. We paid £100 for three tickets to Mary Poppins recently. I certainly would never have paid the full £200 for the tickets at the box office.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:51 PM
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I've never seen Mary Poppins at TKTS - where did you buy your tickets, and where were your seats?
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Jul 13th, 2007, 07:58 PM
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Hi janisj.

Yes, we bought them at TKTS. We specifically asked for them and they told us that some were being returned within the next 10 minutes and to wait at the side. This was a few weeks ago (June 30th to be precise).

Two were top price tickets in the stalls, five rows from the front on the left hand side and the other was one row behind (directly behind the other two seats) and was the next price band down, for some reason.

I don't know why there were some available - whether we just happened to hit at the right time, perhaps?
London was horrendously busy that Saturday due to the Gay Pride event and a 10K run the and the Diana Concert on the next day.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 08:05 PM
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What are our chances of getting tickets for The Mousetrap at the TKTS Leicester Square? Last time I was in London (1979) we couldn't get into see the Mousetrap because it was booked. This is why I thought I should buy these in advance. What do you think?

Also thanks mim for the correct site for the London Walks as I am very interested.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 08:38 PM
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More thanks for the London walks recommendation - it looks fantastic!
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Jul 13th, 2007, 09:45 PM
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stormbird: the Mousetrap is never available at TKTS. Not because of it being a blockbuster or sold out or anything - just the theatre's policy.

AR: You really lucked out - those sound like great seats.
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Jul 13th, 2007, 11:31 PM
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janis, a slight correction. I was surprised a few weeks ago that TKTS did have tickets for Mousetrap. They are sold only at full price however, but it has now been added to the list of "convenience tickets" they sell, including a few sold out shows like Billy Elliot -- but the agents there will actually suggest that you are better off going to the box office as you will actually save money by not having to pay the extra service charge on top of a full price ticket.

And yes, Mary Poppins was available almost every day at TKTS at half price. I was quite surprised by that. But I'm not sure where the figure of 200 pounds at the box office for three tickets comes from. Top price at the box office was still 55 pounds -- that comes to 165 pounds if my math is correct. But that translates to about $330 US, about the same price as they would be on Broadway. So it's nice that you can get half price tickets in London -- you sure can't for Mary Poppins in New York.

By the way, I can look at the officiallondontheatre website and see that yesterday (Friday) Mary Poppins seats were available at TKTS for 30 each including the service charge -- half price of the 55 plus 2.50 each service charge.
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Jul 14th, 2007, 12:15 AM
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Hi NeoPatrick,

According to my invoice, I paid £96.50 for the three Poppins tickets. The £200 came from the logical conclusion that as I paid half price, it would cost just short of £200 full price. OK, so you end up doubling the service charge as well, but it is as near as makes any difference for the puposes of rounding up an example rather than being correct to two decimal places on the nearest penny.
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Jul 14th, 2007, 12:34 AM
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thanks NeoPatrick. I was last there in Feb and as always in the past - Mousetrap was not on offer.

Maybe after 3 years MP has finally run its course. They have posted closing notices -- but not until next Jan.
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Jul 14th, 2007, 01:01 AM
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We're in Paris now, and were in Lodon earlier in the trip for 4 nights. it was VERY expensive, almost ridiculously so because of the exchange rate. We literally ate "take-out" food for every meal (baguette sandwiches, etc....) and it was still pricey. Luckily, many things are free (National Gallery, British Museum, etc..) so that does help. We walked many places as the Tube seemed expensive, too. Basically, everything was doubled because of the exchange rate to the dollar. (2 to 1). The one expensive thing we did was see "Billy Elliott" which was totally worth it! I would say your 10 pound average/person for the atrractions would be a good one. The Eye was 15, I think, and we didn't do that. The London Tower was less, and worth it as there is so much to see there, and you can spend the better part of a day there. Have fun!
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Jul 14th, 2007, 02:40 AM
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The Mousetrap isn't really any god - it's just long running. You could do much better with almost any other show. I'll tell you whodunnit if you want.

Also keep an eye out on the National Theatre on the South Bank - great plays for much less than the West End and with Travelex sponsoring - many are only £10:

http://www.indielondon.co.uk/theatre..._season05.html
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