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Topic: Live in London on a Budget  (Read 5270 times)

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Live in London on a Budget
« on: June 26, 2011, 07:26:27 PM »
Everyone complains that life in London is expensive but I disagree! Here are some tips if you want to cut your costs and enjoy yourself while you live at the capital.

Go out as frequently as possible
There are hundreds of pubs and bars out there and most of them are desperate for clients. Find when they have discounts on drinks and take advantage of that. Do you like gigs? There are tens of free gigs in pubs around London every week; just search for them in Time Out London. Do you like cinema? Do Orange Wednesdays! If you have a mobile phone from Orange, you can get 2 for 1 cinema tickets on Wednesdays. These are valid for any film and any cinema, but remember that cinemas are more expensive in Central London, especially Leicester Square. Eat out with your friends. Avoid expensive restaurants in Central London. Visit the multi-ethnic neighborhoods in Greater London and enjoy the food there. Not only is it much cheaper (starting from 5 pounds for a full meal per person) but it is a lot more original. Be prepared for hot, exotic flavors!
Reduce your bills
Consider renting a room in shared house, rather than renting your own flat. Maybe you could also move to a cheaper neighborhood. If you don’t want to live with strangers, why don’t you find a house to live with your friends? When you view a property, do not forget to negotiate the price with the landlord, as landlords are usually desperate to find tenants as soon as possible, although they will not say so! Try to reduce your utility bills. Replace your light bulbs with energy-saving ones and shop around to find the company that provides the cheapest broadband.
Go shopping as frequently as you want
Go for a walk in Oxford Street. Visit Primark for clothes and shoes in really low prices. There are several other shops with good offers, too, especially at the end of a season. You just need to shop around a bit to find them.
Do the shopping for your house wisely. Go to Wilkinson’s for everything that you need around the house; they are really cheap. Do not look down on Poundland or 99p shops either. When it comes to food, go to cheap supermarkets like Tesco and look out for special offers. It is also a great idea to shop locally. Try small foreign shops in your neighborhood, such as Indian shops, that sell food in bulk. Meat in halal shops is usually cheaper than at the butcher’s, although of equally good quality.
Reduce transportation costs
If you want to save money and keep fit, follow the trend and buy a bike. Second-hand bikes are really inexpensive and can save you lots of money. Get the bus instead of the tube and buy a travelcard if you use it a lot; if you are a student, you are entitled to a discount. Do you want to explore new places? See whether you are entitled to a train travelcard and use it to visit cities in the rest of England. Book tickets with Megabus, you can find bus tickets for as little as 1 pound.
The best things in life are for free!
There are so many nice places around; just take your friends for a walk along the Thames or go to Hyde Park for a picnic. If you like the arts, you will be surprised with the number of free exhibitions in London. Start with the British Museum and the National Gallery and take it from there. Take every opportunity to socialize; you will meet people from all over the world!

Thanks for reading. If you have more ideas about how we can cut our cost of living in London please share them.

This article was originally published in my website and can be found in this url
http://www.move-to-england.com/hot-topics.html [nofollow]


« Last Edit: June 27, 2011, 12:08:11 AM by BusyBee »
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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 12:56:20 PM »
Some more:

Also sign up to websites such as : Groupon, Living Social, Crowdity, Kelkoo for discounts

For free movie tickets join See Film First. I have gotten plenty of preview tickets and premier tickets through them. Look up the discount days at your local theaters (mostly Tuesdays) that are not tied to a contract or £1 movies weekend movies for children.

For food- get a Tastecard which can get you 50% off your bill, I have even gotten one for free through Living Social. Also using TopTable to make reservations can earn you free meals. For chain restaurants get coupons on myvouchercodes or moneysupermarket.com .

Go local: Our Wandsworth Gym Membership lets us into any Wandsworth leisure center or pool + gives us discounts on local restaurants, hairdressers and services. Getting fruit and veg once a week at a local street market shaves about 30% off our food bill.

For travel get an Oyster card as there is a discount on all fares when using them. Also sign up to The Trainline, etc , where you can get emails notifying you of seasonal/limited deals (£1 to Poole, £30 to Edinburgh).
LLR Oct 2009, ILR Nov 2011, Citizen June 2013
DH's Greencard May 2013- back in the USA Aug 2013!


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2011, 07:41:36 PM »
Those are great tips, thanks for sharing! (although I end up spending more money than I intended with groupon  :o I am hopeless!
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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011, 09:48:28 PM »
Love the coupon sites - sorry vouchers!


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2011, 01:25:02 PM »
London is actually pretty walkable -- you don't always have to take a bus or the Tube.

Visit charity shops for clothing and household items. There was a very "upmarket" Oxfam in Holland Park.
>^.^<
Married and moved to UK 1974
Returned to US 1995
Irish citizenship June 2009
    Irish passport September 2009 
Retirement July 2012
Leeds in 2013!
ILR (Long Residence) 22 March 2016


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2011, 11:48:56 PM »
Visit charity shops for clothing and household items. There was a very "upmarket" Oxfam in Holland Park.
I got 19th century books for £2/each at Oxfam in Chelsea. Look at all of the charity shops on the Kings Road, also in Putney & Richmond for designer clothes. I found Stella McCartney dresses (with tags!) for £40 in Putney before!


More: Look at special events where you can get into normally ticketed places for free:
Chelsea Physic Garden- look on website, every few months they have events that are free to go to, and entrance to the garden is included
Historic Churches are free when you go to worship
Chiswick House and Syon House- I have seen events which include entry at each of these places
Historic Home Gardens lots of historic homes have fantastic gardens that are free - York House in Twickenham is exceptional, Hampton Court Palace has fantastic gardens, etc
Free Art Classes- Prince's Art School has free drop-in drawing classes. Central St Martins also occasionally has these.
Free Events- I Google every event I could want to go to and look for email competitions for free tickets, so far this year I have been to a festival, London Fashion Week preview & sample sale and the ideal home show for the cost to typing in my email address. Also The Londonist has a list of free weekend events every thurs/fri on their blog.
LLR Oct 2009, ILR Nov 2011, Citizen June 2013
DH's Greencard May 2013- back in the USA Aug 2013!


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2011, 01:43:57 PM »
Good list of freebie events, Danielle. The only trouble is, if you're living in London, after a while you tend to put off a lot of these things thinking you can always do them another time.
>^.^<
Married and moved to UK 1974
Returned to US 1995
Irish citizenship June 2009
    Irish passport September 2009 
Retirement July 2012
Leeds in 2013!
ILR (Long Residence) 22 March 2016


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2011, 04:27:08 AM »
Go for a walk in Oxford Street. Visit Primark for clothes and shoes in really low prices. There are several other shops with good offers, too, especially at the end of a season. You just need to shop around a bit to find them.

Or better yet, if you want to keep your sanity, go to a Primark that's not on Oxford Street. The check out queues are soul destroying.

I also recommend picking your favorite shops and signing up for their emails. You'll be first to know about sales and specials.

Online ASOS.com does great knock offs and even better sales. There are a few others like this.

Sign up for Amazon Prime.
First month free, then only £49 per year for free shipping and other benefits. Save the shipping money for after work bevies! In the US, Prime members get free streaming video. Hopefully one day soon UK will follow.


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Re: Live in London on a Budget
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2012, 04:59:47 PM »
I sign up to everything- bars, restaurants, clubs, cafes- so when I want to go out I have a bunch of vouchers ;D


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