UK Staycation Tips

UK Staycation Tips

As I’ve recently been on a 4 day trip up to Scotland, I thought I’d share with you some tips for your staycation in the UK…

If travelling by train, check if you can travel at a cheaper time as some trains are cheaper than others.

Try using a ticket splitter website to get your train tickets cheaper. Sometimes having multiple tickets for one journey will be cheaper than having one ticket. Likewise, two singles can sometimes be cheaper than one return ticket. It’s a minefield, so be sure to do your research.

Check out if you’re valid for a railcard. A couple of years ago I saved more than the cost of the railcard when getting a Two Together Railcard, but it’s valid for a year so you can make the most of it. Mum makes the most of her Senior Railcard. A Disabled Persons Railcard will cover you and a friend or family member.

If you’re able to book seats on the train when you buy your tickets, do so! Some trains can be like cattle trucks, especially if there’s a big event on. You don’t want to be stood up on a long train journey!

If travelling by train, check out the Days Out Guide website for 2-for-1 offers etc on various tourist attractions around the UK. Please be aware you’ll need to retain your train tickets for the vouchers to be valid.

Check various websites (such as Booking.com, lastminute.com, hotel brand websites etc) before booking your hotel. Certain websites will be cheaper than others for the same hotels. It also helps if your dates are flexible.

Some hotels have tourist offers, so be sure to check them out. For example, last year I stayed at Days Inn in Liverpool and got a bargain deal on 2 nights bed & breakfast in a King size room with tour bus and river cruise tickets.

gbk1

Search the internet for discount vouchers for food. Slug & Lettuce have 50% off on Mondays, so that’s always a good one. I always go on trips/holidays armed with printouts of discount vouchers! Also, check if your favourite eateries have an app… I’m a fan of Gourmet Burger Kitchen and their app which enables customers to get freebies and discounts.

Check out the official tourism website for the city/area you’re visiting. Sometimes you’ll find special offers and discounts for all sorts on them. Also, don’t forget to check out the leaflets in the hotel lobby, train station or tourist information centre when you’re there.

York PassTalking of tourist information centres, sometimes they sell discounted tickets for tourist attractions. For example, I managed to get half price Sea Life Centre tickets at Balloch tourist information centre (Loch Lomond, Scotland).

Sometimes, just sometimes, you can get discount vouchers for tourist attractions (such as Sea Life Centres and theme parks) on cereal boxes and other food packets.

Some cities (such as York and Edinburgh) have a tourist pass which you can purchase. The pass gives you free or discounted entry into many tourist attractions as well as discounts on refreshments and gifts. I’ve used both the 2 day York Pass and the Edinburgh Pass and got my money’s worth before the first day of use was out.

———————

Have you got any UK travel tips?

15 comments

  1. Jo says:

    Some good tips there. I get Tesco Clubcard points when I shop and those vouchers can be used for certain days out or meals out, I got a good deal for tickets to the Eden Project and I’ve also used them for attractions in York too.

  2. Hi Nikki,

    Our best buy for a staycation is undoubtedly National Trust annual membership, whch also makes a great Christmas gift for my brother and SIL each year. They were given the gift of English Heritage annual passes one year, by their eldest daughter, only they found places where the tickets could be used to be few and far between, so didn’t consider membership to be good value for money. Other ladies I work with have recommended the Historic Houses Association, as the better choice to run alongside the NT. Either way, I manage to get a good return on my NT investment each year and as most places have now started charging parking fees for non members, the gain is realised even sooner!

    Slightly off subject, although relevant to the ‘special offer’ or ‘deal’ culture we are so fond of these days. When you mentioned about purchasing multiple tickets for one journey, I instantly thought about special offers on a supermarket products, where it can still sometimes be cheaper to buy one large bottle of something at full price, rather than two small bottles at an offer price, or buy one get one free – you really do have to look twice at quantities versus prices. Hubbie was amazed at the skill involved in shopping, when he recently got to see what the inside of a supermarket actually looked like 🙂

    Great post, glad that you had a good time north of the border.

    Yvonne

    • Nikki says:

      I’ve been thinking about getting a National Trust membership. It might push me to visit more NT places. I got free entry to Powis Castle due to Dad being a volunteer and I have a sticker in my car for parking (although Powis Castle don’t charge for parking).

  3. Kelly says:

    It’s been more than 10 years since my last trip to the UK, but I remember the summer I spent studying there some 35 years ago I had a Brit-rail pass and used it all summer long.

  4. rashbre says:

    We’ve used a number of the tips you feature, including lastminute.com, booking.com and railcards. We’ll also use saved hotel points sometimes mixed with cash to get good deals direct from hotels. Nowadays some hotels still give better deals direct.

    Another useful hint for longer train journeys is to look at First Class “upgrades”. On some journeys it can be very little and even includes food and drink.

    Its also handy to remember that many galleries and museums have free admission, which is a great add-in to a day out.

    And for London, lastminute.com also does theatre tix, including big shows cheap because of last minute sell-offs – a current example is Wicked at £17.50 instead of around £60.

  5. Tracy Terry says:

    Oh my goodness, I love travelling by train and have always dreamed of sleeping on one – something that in all probability I’d find uncomfortable and would hate.

    Great tips, thanks for sharing.

    • Nikki says:

      Oh, I’ve always fancied doing the Caledonian Sleeper (overnight train) up to Scotland! Our nearest stop would be Crewe, but I’d be tempted to do the whole trip from London. I think that trip has to be made at least once in a lifetime if you enjoy travelling by train!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *