We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Daily Spending in London and Paris

Philadelphia...
Level Contributor
21 posts
1 review
Save Topic
Daily Spending in London and Paris

My boyfriend and I are leaving for London next weekend. We will be staying from March 16-24th, and one of those days we are taking a train to Paris. The flights, hotel and train are aleady all paid for. We are staying in a short term apartment rental, so we will have a small kitchen to prepare some meals. We are planning on at least eating all breakfasts in the apartment, and we will probably carry most lunches with us. We will want a bigger hot meal out either for lunch or in the evenings. I was wondering what our daily budget should be for London, and also for the day in Paris? We are planning to go to most of the major tourist attractions plus some museums. Thank you!

UK
Level Contributor
49,561 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Use credit cards, then you dont need to bring cash apart from a little for incidentals and then a budget isnt really necessary in terms of bringing "X" amount of money.

If you mean you need to set a budget and stick to it, you can pretty much decide whatever budget you want above about $20 and fit your spending to that.

U.S. expats
Destination Expert
for Windsor, London, Dry Tortugas National Park
Level Contributor
20,043 posts
208 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Well, in both cities there are restaurants that span many budgets.

These links might help you plan.

http://london.menupages.com/

http://paris.menupages.com/

Click on an area, and you can check out restaurants by cuisine, review, and price. Menus are a click away.

In London, I would encourage you to take advantage of the 2-4-1 deals by purchasing travelcards from a *rail station* (not a tube station). You will need these anyway to get yourself around London via tub and bus, and it is one of the best priced ways to accomplish this. But you will also get to enter many of London's attractions together, but only paying for one admission.

So,

1) buy a travelcard at a rail station for each of you

2) print off ahead of time or take at the station a voucher for the attraction (s) you want to see. List is here:

http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk/2for1-london

3) At attraction, pay one admission for two people, after presenting your voucher and showing your travelcards. Save lots of money.

Philadelphia...
Level Contributor
21 posts
1 review
Save Reply
3. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Laura,

Thanks for the info about the Travel Card! I'm not too familiar with this, but I did just see another post about it. Is that for traveling on the underground or just trains?

Joe,

Are credit cards widely accepted in the UK and France? We have never been to the UK. I was hoping to use our cards as much as possible, but I wanted to have cash on hand just in case an attraction or store didn't accept cards. In Germany most places require a high minimum amount to be spent before they will accept a card.

Thank you all for your replies!

Watford
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
41,171 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

You can use your credit card to purchase a latte from Starbucks (yes we have them too!) or a three piece suite from Harrods and pretty much everything in between...unless it's a Discovery Card which for some reason has never caught on. Some small convenience stores may require a minimum spend but otherwise you will be fine.

In fact we are ahead of you with regard to security with chip and pin - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chip_and_PIN

The machine will read your card, realise you are not from round here, and produce a slip for you to sign.

warrensburg,MO
Level Contributor
7,685 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

I've encountered many places in Germany and Belgium that want cash only unless you are spending more than, say, €25 to €30.

I have not encountered this policy recently in London or Paris as far as I can recall.

Philadelphia...
Level Contributor
21 posts
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Good to hear that I will be able to use the card in most places! Visa offers us great rewards, and there are no foreign transaction fees for us, so that will be a great help. I can understand having a minimum spending for using a card, but it worries me to carry around wads of cash or leave it in the room!

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
11,123 posts
Save Reply
7. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Take your ATM card as well and just withdraw money as needed. There is no need for wads of cash if it makes you uncomfortable.

London, United...
Level Contributor
3,467 posts
77 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Some London shops do put a lower limit on credit card spends. (This is apparetnly not against Visa/MC rules in Europe the way it is in the US). But it tends to be in the £5-10 range, not €25+. Some places will not take credit cards, but these tend to be things like stalls at street markets or similar.

You can also use your US ATM card (do they still call them "MAC cards" in Philadelphia?) to take cash out of an ATM as usual. If it has a cirrus/plus symbol on the back, it will work here. (Just don't use your credit card because the fees are high.)

Don't leave cash (or indeed any valuables) in your hotel room unless there is a safe to put it in.

Edited: 08 March 2013, 17:49
Vancouver, Canada
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
55,631 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

With respect to transport in London, buy seven day Travelcards at a National Rail ticket office to use with the offers from www.daysoutguide.co.uk as Laura suggested.

Let us know where you've booked to stay and we can suggest the nearest rail station for Travelcard purchase. Seven day cards for zones 1 and 2 cost £30.40 and may be used on all modes of transport in those zones and buses in zones 1 - 6. You will need free National Rail Photocards to buy NR Travelcards; the Photocards will be made for you at the rail ticket office but you must supply passport size pictures for the Photocards.

As far as how much you'll spend on groceries, have a look at the online grocery shopping pages at www.waitrose.com and www.sainsburys.co.uk You need not register, just browse a little to get an idea of what you'll pay for provisions. You may pay with credit cards at Sainsbury's, Waitrose, M&S and other shops.

Most of London's museums are free of charge to enter; special exhibits may require paid admission.

For travel in Paris you may buy a carnet of Metro tickets or a one day Mobilis, which provides unlimited use on the Metro, buses and RER. Mobilis costs 6.60€ for zones 1 and 2, more than enough for one day in Paris.

Philadelphia...
Level Contributor
21 posts
1 review
Save Reply
10. Re: Daily Spending in London and Paris

Thank you for your reply! We are staying just across from Hyde Park.