You want to visit the best restaurants and see all the shows, especially one or two in the Opera House. You want to stay inner city and you don’t want it to look or feel budget at all. Basically, you want a champagne holiday on a beer budget. And you don’t want to get into a lot of debt to do it.
Believe it or not, it is possible. You just need to be smart about how you travel and experience the city. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Be smart about eating out
You can still soak up the ambience of a really great restaurant without eating there for a super expensive dinner. There are plenty of options that give you the experience and the vibe of a place for a lot less of your hard earned cash.
- Go for lunch. The lunch menu is often a lot cheaper than the dinner menu. You are also use to eating smaller meals at lunch time so you probably won’t order as much food. You are also less likely to drink as much. Although given you are on holiday it might not work that way and you’ll just end up sozzled.
- Go for a pre dinner drink at the bar and then eat at a cheaper establishment. A lot of great restaurants have a bar attached. 360 Restaurant in Sydney Tower has a great bar and it’s just as awesome sitting there looking at the view over Sydney while you are having a drink as it is while you are eating dinner. Another option is Opera Bar at the Opera House. Smashing location.
- Eat at the bar. A lot of these restaurants will do a limited bar menu. Momofuko Seibo and Rockpool Bar & Grill are two fine dining restaurants that do this well.
Don’t pay full price
There are so many of these discount ticket websites that you will vow to never pay full price for anything again.
- Last Tix, Half Tix and Smart Tix all offer discounted tickets to concerts, theatre, comedy musicals and whatever else happens to be going down across town. Unless it’s super popular and a sellout. You won’t find those ones there. Anyway you can easily see a show at the Opera House for much less than you would imagine. Just sign up online for these websites and they’ll keep you notified of what’s going down.
- Sign up to the Opera House newsletter. They will often email with discounted tickets for shows.
- Check out details for local theatres. Many of them have a cheap night per week where you either pay what you can afford or they have designate rush seats.
- Spendless online have cheap movie tickets or everything from IMAX to Gold Class.
Stay in a Serviced Apartment
There are plenty of inner city serviced apartments in Sydney. They are usually around 4 to 5 star and offer one thing in particular that you don’t get in a hotel: a kitchen. You can choose to prepare certain meals at home instead of eating out 3 times a day for your entire stay. The money you say will allow you to go a bit upmarket when you do eat out and not feel the pinch.
Kristy Alexander is frugal mum and freelance travel writer for HotelClub. When she’s visiting Sydney she stays at the Medina Executive hotel Sydney for its central location and apartment facilities such as kitchen, lounge suite and laundry.