"Cheap Eats" Eating, Drinking and socialising Tip by tvor

  Chinese food from a kiosk in Camden Stables Market
by tvor

Favorite thing: London is one of the most expensive cities in the world. Hotels and food are costly but you can find budget options and still avoid the flophouse and street vendor options.

For food, try pubs. Everyone says that. Some pubs are still a bit pricey but still they're cheaper than restaurants. Cafes are often good value, if they're diner style cafe's not trendy "Cafes" or bars. Tea rooms are often good too, for a light lunch or late afternoon soup and sandwich. Often Chinese and Curry restaurants have good value for money, serving up large portions that can be shared between 2 or more people. The Wetherspoons chain of pubs tends to have really reasonable prices, there is a small number of items where two meals selected from them cost about 6 pounds total.

If you are in the area of some of the markets, like Camden or Portobello Road, there are always hot food kiosks where you can get fast food (as in quick and hot, not tepid and bad for you), often a tasty ethnic dish such as curry or chinese, cheap.

Grocery stores and places like Marks and Spencer food halls have take out sandwiches and salads and beverages. They even have small bottles of wine.

Fondest memory: Avoid fast food joints which, while reasonable in price though probably more expensive than you're used to at home, don't tend to have good quality food. Besides, why go to a McDonald's in London! You can do that at home!

If you want to treat yourself to a really nice restaurant, go for lunch when the menu will be cheaper. Some churches (For example St. Mary Le Bow near St. Pauls... see restaurant tip) have tea and lunch rooms and museum cafes are often very reasonably priced.

For specific suggestions, Timeout has a book on Cheap Eats in London and i believe there's a Cheap Sleeps in London as well. Cheap eats can be bought off Amazon.

Address: Various

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Sep 22, 2005
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