This post is part of Viator’s coverage of the London Olympics. Leading up to the Games and every day during the Games, we’ll be posting tips from our London-based blogger, Philippa. Be sure to check back often for the latest updates on happenings around London, news on special events and tips for what to see and do in London and the surrounding area while you’re visiting!
Accommodation in London during the 2012 Olympics is selling fast, so you need to book soon if you’re planning to be in London then. The Olympic Games open on July 27th and run until August 12th. In addition, the Paralympic Games are from August 29th until September 9th. The Olympic Torch will crisscross the UK for 70 days leading up to the opening ceremony on July 27th, so there will also be plenty of tourists heading for the UK even before the start of the Games.
While London is well provided with hotel rooms ranging from peak luxury to hostels, and many locals will be renting out their private homes during the Olympics, demand is pushing prices up. Some central London hotels are charging twice to four times the usual nightly rate per room and some of the private rental apartments and houses have ridiculously high price tags as people try to cash in on the Games.
London is a huge city with costly travel and long journey times which will almost certainly be longer during the Games, so it makes sense to stay close to where you want to spend most of your time. If the events you plan to attend are mainly around the Olympic Stadium at Stratford you could consider staying out that way, perhaps in the lovely green Lee Valley which will be hosting velodrome, whitewater, hockey and tennis events and which has camping, hostels and family cabins. The upside is less transport hassles to the venues, the downside is that the area is quiet at night with few restaurants and London attractions. Staying in inner London is more expensive and traveling to venues may be fraught, but at least when you are not at events you are closer to London’s highlights.
There are plenty of websites for agencies renting out private houses and apartments, and of course the usual hotel booking sites. Holiday Inn is the official hotel provider for the Games. The Visit Britain website is comprehensive, and the Inclusive London website is good for accessible accommodation and other specific needs.
Read more about the London Olympics.