London hotel tax is 20%

Old Aug 25th, 2014, 11:00 AM
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Oh -- that London vs. SF comparison doesn't count the cost of transatlantic airfare vs. hopping in my mini and tooling down I-80 (or taking Amtrak).
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Old Aug 25th, 2014, 01:43 PM
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janisj - how does the cost of duplex in the UK compare with it in SF - it's fairly pricey up here in de North Woods? How can I cut costs on paint in the UK? ASDA?
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Old Aug 25th, 2014, 10:59 PM
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Really. Guys!
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Old Aug 26th, 2014, 10:33 AM
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Really. Guys!>

It's all in fun at least on my part. I admire janisj's intense knowledge of London and the UK and she is a valued resource who has helped a slew of folks plan their British holidays and save money - even if it is saving money on high-ended things at times it's still saving money.
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Old Aug 27th, 2014, 06:01 AM
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People always assume everyone on Fodors is American.
It is true that hotels are expensive in London. But restaurants, shopping, sightseeing are generally cheaper than in Belgium, where I live. A Starbucks tall cappucino in Antwerp is 3.75 euros, in London it's 2.15 pounds. You can find restaurant menus for 12 or 13 pounds. Places like Boots are a lot cheaper than pharmacies in Belgium. I buy French beauty products from Boots, as they are much cheaper than in my home town.
Belgium is ranked higher in cost of living than the UK. The high taxes on wages in Belgium are one reason for that.

My point is; all these people complaining about how expensive London is. It's not true, from my perspective. And if it is true from your perspective, then don't visit. Do your research in advance; decide if it's worth it for you. There are lots of ways to save money. Judging from the amounts of tourists I see in London, it is worth it for many people.
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Old Aug 27th, 2014, 02:40 PM
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With the British Pound reaching new heights recently - about $1.70 to the $ last time I looked which means about $1.73 effective exchange rate plus any fees your bank ATM or credit card may impose - London is correspondingly more expensive than it was last year or the years before.

Some things in London do indeed seem cheap - like West End Theatre shows I believe are much cheaper than on Broadway but really for someone on the trip of a lifetime for a week or so what difference does it really make?

Now those poor soles who have to live in the U.K.......
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Old Aug 28th, 2014, 12:53 AM
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>>With the British Pound reaching new heights recently - about $1.70 to the $ last time I looked which means about $1.73 effective exchange rate plus any fees your bank ATM or credit card may impose - London is correspondingly more expensive than it was last year or the years before. >Now those poor soles [sic] who have to live in the U.K.......are paid in GBP, so are not affected (at least not directly) by the change in the UK/US exchange rate. Except of course when they go on a summer holiday to Florida, when they have much greater spending power than a few years ago - the opposite of what US visitors find when they come to the UK right now.
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Old Aug 28th, 2014, 05:14 AM
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So the UK does not import a significant amount of goods from dollar and euro using countries?
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Old Aug 28th, 2014, 05:34 AM
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>>So the UK does not import a significant amount of goods from dollar and euro using countries?
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Old Aug 28th, 2014, 05:48 AM
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Its made even harder now that the US and Japan are having a race to the bottom with their currency to stimulate demand and get inflation going.
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Old Aug 28th, 2014, 05:49 AM
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We have more disposable income living in London than we did in Vancouver - groceries are cheaper, wine and beer are cheaper...and our mortgage is about the same. When you make GBP and don't frequent touristy restaurants etc London is more affordable for us than Vancouver was.
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