Traveling to London with the family is no inexpensive affair. Flights and accommodations alone for a family of four traveling for the week can easily run upwards of $5000, with a standard hotel room accounting for 36% of expenses.
More families are becoming comfortable with apartment rentals in lieu of the standard hotel. There are several advantages to this type of accommodation, especially in an expensive city like London.
The first advantage to renting an apartment in London is cost savings. Your average London hotel room can range anywhere from $300 to $500 a night. An apartment rental in that range can land you in a space twice the size, a more agreeable option for a family’s needs.
Plenty of space for families to stretch their legs — Photo courtesy of Matthew Carnegie
Companies like FlipKey, a subsidiary of Trip Advisor, have been providing apartment listings since 2008. Where renting an apartment online was once a roll of the dice, it’s now becoming just as reliable as booking a hotel room. On FlipKey alone, there are over 240,000 listings.
London is one of the more popular regions for apartment rentals not only because travelers are always visiting the city but also because decent hotels are fairly expensive. Whether you're looking for an apartment near major the best London attractions or you'd rather something on the outskirts, you can find hundreds of rentals around the city.
The cozy living room after a long day — Photo courtesy of T. Browne Smith
For example, a cozy apartment near Clapham, an area in central London, is away from tourist congestion but still easily accessible by public transportation. Renting at $177 a night, this 750 square-foot flat had two decent sized bedrooms both with queen sized beds, desks and storage space for clothes and other personal belongings. Both rooms led out to a small courtyard, which provided extra breathing space and a place for kids to stretch their legs. The master bedroom had an en-suite bathroom while a second bathroom sat just outside the other bedroom, a great configuration for a small family.
Apartment kitchen complete with stovetop and dishware — Photo courtesy of T. Browne Smith
Another invaluable amenity for a family vacationing in London is a kitchen. Breakfast alone can easily run $50 a day. Being able to prepare family meals is like instantly putting money back into your pocket. A stove and refrigerator provide the flexibility to eat exactly what you want, when you want, how you want. It relieves the pressure of finding something to eat early in the morning as well as dining out for every meal.
Washing machine and dishwasher — Photo courtesy of T. Browne Smith
Apartments in London that also have laundry capabilities are most popular amongst families. By mid-week the urge for fresh clothes sets in as the dirty pile outweighs the clean. Being able to launder your family’s things during vacation allows you to pack lighter. And it’s always nice to return home with a suitcase filled with clean clothes.
In general, renting an apartment in London works out well because it helps lower accommodation and food costs while providing essential amenities for families such as space, privacy, laundry, and an overall flexibility to stay in a space that feels more like home.