Even Julius Caesar wanted to ‘relocate to London’ in 55 BC, so its small wonder that people from all over the world are attracted to it! While the hard costs of relocating to the city are well documented by relocation professionals, today I want to talk about enjoying the delights of London without breaking the bank in the first couple of weeks.
You’ve been told this countless times and indeed, not everyone has an unlimited budget to blow on entertainment, so if you want to ‘do London’ on a shoe string, then you need to get creative about what you do for fun. We’ve put together a short pocket guide on how you can enjoy a lot of what London has to offer without busting your budget.
While we all want the opportunity to eat out at a celeb chef restaurant in the heart of London, the chances are that you’ll be using “The F-word” more than Chef Gordon Ramsay if you splash your cash at the Michelin starred restaurants in town. You can find excellent restaurants in London though, for reasonable prices. Look for restaurants in your area, and read reviews. A big factor in the cost of a meal out in London is the price of the drinks. If you want to go out with a group of friends then consider choosing a restaurant that allows you to bring your own tipple. Try new restaurants as opposed to the big brand names. Look for authentic ethnic cuisine in your area. You can find some absolute gems hidden away just waiting for you to discover them
Top Tip: If you’re in the mood for ethnic cuisine, and don’t know the restaurant, see how many ‘locals’ are going there. People love home cooked food and if it’s authentic, then it’ll be packed with folks from home. The same does not apply to McDonald’s!
The ‘pub crawl’ is sort of a British tradition and you’ll experience at least one with co-workers or friends after moving to London. Going out on a pub crawl need not be expensive. Yes, there are the exclusive cocktail bars and clubs in London that charge the equivalent of a third-world country’s debt for a pint of beer, but most local pubs have lower prices and it’s a great way to get out of your London apartment and meet new people. The trick is to look for pubs that have a happy hour: You’ll get great specials on different drinks.
You can enjoy living in London for much less than you’d expect. Yes. It’s an expensive city, but if you know where to look you will never run out of ways to experience London on a budget.
Much of the true beauty of London is in its history, which is exemplified by the architecture on show. You do not have to pay to marvel at the wonders of St. Paul’s Cathedral. It is absolutely free to watch the ‘Changing of the Guard’ at Buckingham Palace, so get out there and walk the city streets, you’ll be amazed and what a day of sightseeing can do for your soul.
There are many museums and art galleries in London that do not charge an entry fee. You can spend an entire day in the British Museum and still not have even covered a third of it. The Science Museum is a phenomenal attraction if you have children, as is The Victoria and Albert Museum. If art is your thing then you must visit the National Art Gallery as well as Tate Modern.
London is one of the most ‘green’ cities in the world. As soon as spring has sprung, Londoner’s take off their coats and head for a picnic in the park. Hyde Park with the meandering mighty Serpentine River is a favourite.
The trick to living in London is to get out and explore the city as much as possible. Every corner offers new things to see and every street gives you the chance to learn about the city that is now your home.