1. When looking for hotels in London, Book in advance - Whichever way you decide to go, if possible, book something before you arrive. Not only will your mind be at ease when you get here, but rolling up to a hotel in the rain, laden with luggage, looking jetlagged and pleading for anything resembling a bed, brings out the inner sadist in even the most empathetic hotel desk clerks and you will pay for your indiscretion.
Search for discount accommodation rates of thousands of properties on websites all over the internet. Many of them have great deals.
3. Bed & Breakfast - B&b is a very British way of enjoying home-away-from-home accommodation. Agencies such as Bed & Breakfast GB, London Homestead Services, Host & Guest, Uptown Reservations and Welcome Homes offer small guest-houses or rooms in houses with families Some are centrally-located and others in the 'burbs, but all provide a warm welcome to those who stay. Bed & Breakfast GB also offer the benefit of allowing children under 7 to stay for free in any of their properties. Alternatively, if you want to stay somewhere dirt cheap where someone else does the cooking, just turn up on the doorstep of those friends you haven't spoken with since they arrived unannounced at your place five years ago.
4. Apartments - If you are staying in London for longer than a week, it's worth looking into renting an apartment. They are generally not as well located as hotels, however, prices can start from around ?250 for week with the added bonus of a small kitchen where you can cook your own meals.
5. Stay outside city center - Accommodation is less expensive if you are prepared to stay outside the city centre. One of London's most active pieces of real estate, the Docklands, near Canary Wharf, offer a growing number of hotels at amazingly good value to go with the waterside restaurants, concert-hall and shopping outlets. Here and in other easy to reach locations such as Greenwich, Kew and some central locations as well, you can find hotel chains such as Formula 1, Etap, Ibis - all part of the Accor Hotel group; Travel Inn, Travelodge and Holiday Inn Express. Many of these en-suite rooms sleep up to four from ?27.50 to ?83 a night. You might find that you can't have breakfast slid under the door (not really recommended unless you are having pancakes anyway), but there is usually something available in the cafe next door, or from the hotel bar. Either way, they make for a rather attractive option for the budget conscious slumberer.