One of the best parts of living in Edinburgh is without a doubt the Festival season. However, due to the popularity of the summer months many places hike their prices up, where both visitors and locals are forced to pay premium prices. So we have come up with some ways to lessen the strain on your purse-strings and ensure that you still get the full festival experience.
When it comes to shows, students get the best deal. Some great free venues (yes, completely free!) include Cabaret Voltaire, The City Café, The Hive and Bar 50. You can pick up a guide on all free events in local pubs or check it out here http://freefringe.org.uk/. As well as many free shows, there are also many that offer cheaper prices to those with a valid student card. Be sure to bring this along to participating shows to get your discount.
For great prices also check out Virgin Money’s Half Price Hut, where some performers give tickets for that day that are sold on to you for half the price! The Half Price Hut is open for ticket sales and collections from 10th-29th August from 10am-9pm.
Food and Drink
There are always great places to eat in Edinburgh, and during festival season there are some real gems that will fill your belly without exhausting your wallet. One such gem is The Mosque Kitchen- get a cheap and cheerful curry for under £5- that is conveniently located nearby the George Square venue. Or you could grab a beer in Wetherspoons or one of the student bars located in Cowgate, where many of the bars double as Fringe venues too.
If you’re staying in an area near one of the beautiful parks the city has to offer, then why not grab some picnic style food and drink from a local store and settle down in a relaxing grassy area? And if it’s sunny, some supermarkets provide ready-marinated BBQ meat kits- so get that disposable BBQ out!
If you’ve got friends who are looking for somewhere to stay during the festival period, instead of staying in the city centre during arguably the most expensive month in the city, why not suggest they stay in a neighbouring city then travel to Edinburgh during the day? Because of the busy season, many hotels and hostels increase their prices. However it is still possible to find good hostel deals here in Edinburgh- check out The Hostel on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile which offers beds from £16 during the festival period.
The University of Edinburgh offers up its halls during the summer- including the McDonald Road Residence, located within walking distance of Princes St, which includes WiFi and kitchen facilities. Property-sharing sites like AirBnB are also great for finding some cheap (and usually really nice) accommodation.
If you are going for more of a festival-style vibe, then why not give up a roof altogether and try camping in the city? You can find some great camping sites on Edinburgh Festival Camping.
We hope that these tips are useful, and let us know if you have any great ideas to share too!
(Image courtesy of James Ratchford www.shootthemagic.com)