Travelling with kids can be stressful at the best of times. But throw in crowded tubes, frantic crowds and long queues, and you may wonder why on earth you’d even consider visiting London. It’s true that London is incredibly busy, but it is possible to negotiate this daunting metropolis. Once you get there and you’re in the right place at the right time, there’s so much to enjoy and all the hassle will be worthwhile. If you’re planning a trip to London with the kids, here are some tips.
Image from http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/3051533
Planning ahead and getting around
Even seasoned professionals can find the underground map baffling. At first glance, it may take you a while to work out where you are and where you need to get to. The easiest thing to do is find out the location of the places you want to visit and plan your journey online. Every major attraction will detail transport information on their website. Once you know the names of the stations you need, you can input them into a planner and your route will be calculated for you. You can buy day travelcards, which are much cheaper than a series of single tickets.
In some cases, it’s quicker to walk, than it is to rely on public transport. If you’re in Oxford Circus, for example, and you need to get to Bond Street, you’re better off walking. It’ll take you five minutes and save you the stress of getting pushchairs down stairs and navigating escalators.
It’s wise to book accommodation in advance. London hotels tend to be busy for most of the year. Searching in advance can save you time and money. If you have children, it may be better to search for holiday rentals in London. You can enjoy the flexibility of your own home from home for the weekend, and you can save money on eating out.
If you’re planning to watch a show or you want to go on the London Eye, reserve your tickets before you go. Online prices are lower and you won’t have to queue. Popular West End shows sell out months in advance, so be organised to avoid disappointment.
London on a budget
London is notoriously expensive, but there are myriad free attractions. Many of the museums are free for children and some also offer free adult entry. If you’re looking to fill days in the summer without spending a fortune, take a trip down the Thames or enjoy a picnic at Hyde Park. If you search online for tips and tricks to save money, you’ll be amazed at the abundance of options.
Taking children to London may seem daunting, but it can be a magical place for visitors of all ages. Take some time to research and make some plans beforehand. Work out where you are going and plan a rough itinerary for each day. Book tickets in advance and get your accommodation sorted early. If you need help with getting around, just ask. Take your time, don’t panic, and have fun!