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As you probably know, I’m planning a trip to Britain for 2013, and without a doubt, one of the most nerve-wracking elements of planning a trip of this magnitude is the cost. How can I possibly afford to do everything I want to do? As of 2009 the trains in Britain have the most expensive fares in Europe, nice budget hotels are harder and harder to find, and with £1 = $1.57, American tourists have to tighten their belts.
Enter Jonathan and Jackie Thomas, from Anglotopia.net (read my Q&A with Jonathan here). They have recently released an eBook called 101 Budget Britain Travel Tips. I just finished reading it and highly recommend it to anyone who is aiming to enjoy Britain to the fullest–without declaring bankruptcy!
This eBook is beautifully laid out, written in a concise and engaging style, and very user-friendly. Many of the tips focus mainly on London, but there are also “Top 5” lists of free things to do in numerous cities from Glasgow to Lincoln to Cardiff! The authors write from personal experience, and that wisdom comes out in some quirky advice that you might never have considered.
Here are some rookie mistakes that Jonathan and Jackie can help you avoid:
• Making your food budget too tight
• Travelling on a bank holiday weekend
• Getting ripped off by Ryanair and EasyJet’s absurd fees
• Booking a hotel in an unattractive neighborhood
• Over-tipping at restaurants
• Paying an arm and a leg for walking tours
• Ignoring international roaming data charges with an iPhone
For someone who is clueless about international travel, some of these tips were revelations. Even more seasoned travelers might be interested to know how they can get £1 train tickets all over Britain, or why it’s smart to skip the trains altogether.
By reading this book you can discover how to save money by utilizing the Greenwich foot tunnels, getting the cheapest bus tours in London, how to see Britain’s cathedrals for free, the way to get half-price theatre tickets, knowing where to buy meaningful (and affordable) souvenirs, watching out for two things when reading hotel reviews, avoiding the Top 5 London tourist traps, and calling home from Britain for free.
If you’ve never heard of an Oyster Card or congestion charges, and you’re not sure about travel insurance, scared of budget lodging, or don’t know a VAT refund from a cashpoint, then this is the book for you!
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