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London Pass do's and don'ts.

If you have used/had experience using the London pass, I would appreciate any, and all suggestions about how to prioritize the list of attractions and navigate them each day (so, as to really take advantage of the Pass, but also not plan, for instance, two sights on a day located quite distant from each other.)

Our pass is valid for 4 days.

P.S : please feel free to add any must-see attractions that may have been on your day-planner, but isn’t necessarily included in the Pass.

Thanks so much!

Posted by
6113 posts

The Pass covers more than you could ever see in 14 days and you only have 4, so you need to check out what you want to see, which maybe different from what others on this forum have preferred.

Buckingham Palace isn't included in the Pass and most of London's museums and galleries have free entry. There are plenty markets. Many like to take a guided walk - none are included in the Pass.

You have already hit the nail on the head - try to group attractions together geographically. If you want to go to the Tower of London, do this first thing in the morning.

Posted by
3034 posts

Well, Craig, Jennifer is spot on. It might help to prioritize what you really want to see from top to bottom and then see how that would fit into a 4-day schedule. RS has a nice guide book that is helpful. Be careful not to over schedule as then you're rushing from place to place while "getting your money's worth" lol. Life a buffet you begin to regret at the end.

Posted by
39 posts

We used the 3 day London Pass last year and felt like we got our money's worth but didn't try to maximize the value beyond just going to the places we really wanted to see (our 7 year old was with us, so his interest was a big factor, too). I did a lot of pre-planning for our itinerary so we weren't crossing the city unnecessarily in a day. Here's what we did with and without the pass:

Day 1- No pass use. Walk around the city and get bearings, see non-paying sights like Trafalgar Square, St James Park, outside of Buckingham. We did the Ghost Bus tour in the evening, it was pricey but a lot of fun.

Day 2- Activate pass. King's Cross Platform 9 3/4, London Zoo (Pass), British Museum.

Day 3- Tower of London (Pass), Thames boat ride (Pass), Westminster Abbey (Pass), theater in the evening.

Day 4- Hop On Hop Off bus tour (Pass), London Walks walking tour (discount with Pass), Natural History Museum, we were going to do Kensington Palace with the pass, but instead just walked through Kensington Park and took the kid to the Princess Diana playground, which was amazing and was one of the highlights of the trip for my son.

If we'd had one more day I would have used the pass for Hampton Court / Kew. I liked that the pass let us fast-track the line in a few places, and I liked the budgeting ease of having pre-paid for entry to all those attractions, that was a value beyond just money saving for us. Also, we got to the Tower of London at opening time, there was no line and hardly anyone there! It was fantastic. Followed Rick Steves' advice to see the Crown Jewels first, and we practically had the place to ourselves. By the time we left the Tower the crowds had arrived. I would say don't forgo the free museums just to pack in sights on the pass that you might otherwise not be super psyched to see, as long as you're using the pass once per day and pick two of the four days to do more than one pass attraction, you should get good value for the pass.

Posted by
52 posts

I researched the London Pass pretty thoroughly before deciding not to get it. My thinking: the savings will be pretty minimal even if you use it carefully. I didn't want our priorities or daily planning to be affected by using the pass. HOWEVER, the advantage of skipping the line would be an important benefit especially if your time is very limited.

Posted by
1332 posts

As mentioned above, the savings using the shorter length passes are pretty minimal and lock you into use it or lose it with your sightseeing schedule.

I've found that the best plan is a general idea of what you want to do each day but have some flexibility. There are some attractions, such as the Tower of London, that can be exhausting after 3-4 hours, the crowds are usually so large that I want to do something completely different, not another such attraction. A pint of beer and then perhaps a London Walk make a better contrast than two big attractions in one day, at least for me.

Skip the line is usually pretty overrrated, although it could come in handy at Westminster Abbey. And, of course, you don't get to skip the security lines which I'm sure are probably even stricter after the last terror attack.

Also, the Pass has a lot of B and C level sights, in my opinion. And, there are quite a few that are quite far away. There's a few football stadium tours, good if you're a fan, but useless if you're not.

I'd just say do your research and understand that you'll be sacrificing some flexibility using the pass. Always buy it as a discount, they seem to have a 20% off sale every other week.

Posted by
11294 posts

Note that with a London Pass, you only get to skip the line at the following six attractions:

Tower Bridge Exhibition
St. Paul's Cathedral
Hampton Court Palace
London Zoo
London Bridge Experience
Kew Gardens

Most importantly, it DOESN'T give you skip the line privileges at the Churchill War Rooms. Due to the movie The Darkest Hour, this is now very popular, and you can wait a long time (1-2 hours at peak times) unless you pre-purchase tickets online. If you are using a London Pass, you have to wait in the long lines with those who have not pre-purchased tickets.

Posted by
1221 posts

I actually like some of the B and C level stuff that's convenient to other places definitely on the schedule. There's a certain 'why not give it 15-30 minutes and see if it's interesting?' because there doesn't seem to be risk of not liking it. Back before it got super popular, we did Churchill War Rooms with that mentality and found it to be fascinating.

Posted by
1332 posts

For B evel sights, I agree that the Jewel Tower and Banqueting House are interesting, worth a visit, and happen to be very close to areas where tourists will be.