London has a reputation for expensive hotel accommodation with very little cheap budget hotels. OK so what is cheap. For the purposes of this article lets define cheap as below US $ 100 per night, (60 pounds sterling in local currency) for a standard double / twin room with all taxes paid.
Most of the hotel accommodation in this bracket is termed 'bed and breakfast' hotels. This can be misleading to the unaware. No it's not a cozy family owned guest house with personal attentive hosts, traditional English breakfasts and home-made offerings, commonly available outside London. The vast majority are small hotels with 20-50 rooms, staffed by immigrants on very low salons with very simple rooms, seldom lifts and 'continental breakfasts'. That is not to say that these establishments should be avoided, but there are an awful lot of poor quality ones.
The main cheap hotel districts in London are Bayswater, Victoria and Kings Cross. Here you will see lots of these bed and breakfast hotels together in clusters. An ensuite double or twin room with breakfast in these areas is around 70-100 $ US
Kings Cross has a poor reputation, it used to be notorious for drugs, crime and prostitution. That is all considerably behind it now and it's a district on the up, the whole area is being rejuvenated and Eurostar Trains will terminate at Kings Cross station in 2007. The hotel offers a fitness center and a fitness center. Kings Cross is no more than a mile from the West End, the central entertainment area of London, and there's lots of public transport on your doorstep.
Bayswater is on the northern border of Hyde Park, London's largest, and within a mile are Oxford Street, Kensington Palace and Paddington Station, (terminus for the Heathrow Express airport link. cost conscious traveler. Bayswater High Street (Queensway) is a host to a great variety of economic restaurants and shops.
Victoria is very central, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and the London Eye are all within walking distance. The cheap hotels are south of the railway station, stretching from the coach stations to Pimlico Underground. The area is pleasant and safe.
Room rates are highly variable. In the depths of winter, rooms may be discounted as low as 50 US $, but be warned these tend to be of the hotels of the worst kind. Most of the hotels will also discount less at the weekend.
Some of the better bed and breakfasts include the Montana Excel and Howard Winchester Hotels in Kings Cross, the Central Hotel in Victoria and the Blakemore and Annur Hotels in Bayswater. Some of these may be advertised as three star hotels – beware in small print you may notice the words 'self rated'.