*Some of you have asked about how we found our accommodations so this is for you. I apologize for the tempting nature of this post. Warning: starting to look at apartments in London may just lead to wanderlust and passport renewing so read with caution.
Traveling with three teenagers means finding a place to stay where you're not all on top of each other. It's tricky: you can't really fit into one hotel room but you don't really want to shell out for two hotel rooms. In the past, we've had great luck using VRBO (Vacation Rentals by Owner) to find accommodations in other places and we're a fan of that route. It ends up being more room for a family, less expensive than getting a couple of mediocre hotel rooms, and the kitchen makes it cheaper for meals. We typically get groceries for breakfast (bread, fruit, yogurt, juice) and then eat our main meal in the early afternoon when we're out and about, then have a little something from the grocery store back at the flat at the end of the day. I like to think that we don't spend any more on food than we usually would at home (in fact I like to think I'm saving money. That's right, we're doing our budget a favor by traveling to England! We really should do it more often, you know, just to save a bit here and there. Please don't pop my bubble.)
When we knew we were heading London-ward I checked in with a friend who lives there to see if she had any recommendations for places to rent. As luck (and her absolute generosity) would have it, she and her family were going out of town for much of the week and she offered her lovely place to us while they were gone (Thanks again, Therese, what a kindness!) It really was perfect.
^leaving the flat
For Easter weekend, we booked a two-bedroom place in an apartment hotel on the other side of the city near the Tower of London (be sure to check hotels.com; we got a fabulous deal on this much less than the listed price). It was great to check out an entirely different part of the city and it was convenient with a tube stop right across the street.
If you're going to London with your family, here are a couple of great VRBO places we found that didn't work out this time around. If you're like me, you might like to look just for fun:
. . .
Somehow (:my incompetence) this post got deleted yesterday so here goes again...