There are hundreds of things to embrace in the UK, like Big Ben, royal guards and a pint of Guinness. But there are also things to avoid, like winter rain, too much Guinness, and fees hiding around the place. We’ve put together some handy ways you can avoid the nasty winter freeze from fees and keep getting the most out of your money. You’ve put a lot of time into your budget, so let’s keep hidden costs from budging it.
1. Using Cash
Great British pounds (GBP) may sound like a heavy currency, but it’s light in your pockets and is a convenient way to pay exact values.
2. Using a Card
The UK is well-equipped to cater to all kinds of cards – we definitely recommend you have one safely on you at all times. But some credit cards may charge high transaction fees for overseas purchases or provide an unclear fee sheet for your currency exchanges. Travel Money Oz Currency Pass lets you lock in the exchange rate+ when you load GBP funds into your account, with the Travel Money Oz app you can also check your spend 24/7 and reload when you're ready.. and it's accepted everywhere Mastercard is! Bonus.
Just because you have cash handy doesn’t mean you have to tip (unless you’re sophisticated and feel the need to tip your top hat). The practice of tipping is very rare in the UK, with most bars, cafés and restaurants not expecting it from their customers. In some cases, a restaurant may have already incorporated a service fee into the cheque anyway. So if your budget is tight, don’t feel obliged to pay the extra pounds. But if your meal was marvellous or you’ve accumulated too much change, giving the waiter a tip is always appreciated.
If you’ve heard that a museum is free to get into, be careful when you time your visit. Some attractions and accommodation may charge different prices for different days, depending on tourist traffic. Planned timing also goes for buying train tickets outside of London. Either purchase the tickets a couple of days in advance, or consider getting a rail pass. This keeps the fares from rising considerably.
5. ‘All Aboard’ Cheap Fares
Wherever you are in the UK, you can always go… downtown. But you’ll want to have the cheapest fares when you do. Like in Australia, it pays to have the right transportation card with the price of fares changing depending on how they’re purchased. Travelling through London, the fairest fares come with using the Oyster card. But you actually don’t have to fork out the extra cash to buy the new card. Travel Money Oz Currency Pass is a Mastercard product that has all of its benefits. This means it can be used just like an Oyster card (and it also gets you priority queuing for the London Eye).
For your return ticket, beware and be prepared for the departure tax. It can rise up to 150GBP (that’s one way to shed off those extra holiday pounds).
If you’d like more travel tips on avoiding hidden extras in the UK, contact the Travel Money Oz experts today.
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