Guides Edinburgh Edinburgh: How to Book Affordable Accommodation in the City

Edinburgh: How to Book Affordable Accommodation in the City

City Guide October 9, 2023



Booking affordable accommodation is a top priority for many travelers visiting Edinburgh. With its alluring Royal Mile, bustling Princes Street, magnificent Edinburgh Castle, and panoramic Arthur's Seat, the city is undeniably mesmerizing, causing visitors to instantly fall in love while soaking up the atmosphere of Edinburgh and its national parks.

Whether shopping, exploring historical sites, or simply taking in the city's vibrant energy, knowing how to book budget-friendly accommodation is crucial to save money. With the right choices, you could soon enjoy highly-rated private rooms with private bathrooms, instead of dorm rooms.

Because finding cheap accommodation can tremendously impact your budget,(especially if you're looking for family-friendly accommodation options), here's a comprehensive guide to help you navigate your hotel search and find a comfortable and economical lodging experience. Read on for some tips on how to find cheap hotels and hostels offering free breakfast without burning your credit card, thanks to Hostelling International and several bed and breakfasts.

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Hostel Stay: Affordable and Sociable

A cheap hostel is a fantastic option for solo travelers or those on a tight budget. You'll find many hostels centrally located near popular sites like Greyfriars Kirkyard and the vibrant watering holes where folk music is often the heart of the night. Hostels provide a place to sleep and a community atmosphere to meet like-minded travelers.


Edinburgh Airbnb: Home Away from Home

Another excellent option for affordable accommodation is securing an Edinburgh Airbnb. From quaint traditional Scottish flats to modern apartments, Airbnb offers various options that cater to different preferences and budgets. With an Airbnb, you can immerse yourself in the local atmosphere, cooking with produce from nearby markets and enjoying the city like a local.


Budget Hotels: Comfort Without the Price Tag

Cheap hotels are scattered throughout the city, offering comfortable and reasonably priced lodgings. Many of these hotels are conveniently located in the city centre, providing easy access to sites like the hauntingly beautiful Greyfriars Kirkyard and lively venues like Sandy Bell's, known for its folk music.



Tips on Booking

Early Reservation

Making reservations early is one of the smartest moves when planning your trip to Edinburgh. Accommodation prices tend to spike as the date of stay nears due to increasing demand. Early bookings guarantee a secured spot and lock in more favorable rates. This proactive approach allows you to secure some of the best rooms at a fraction of the cost, providing both savings and the assurance of having a comfortable space waiting for you upon arrival.


Comparison Tools

In today's digital age, various online tools and platforms are available to assist travelers in finding the best deals on accommodations. Use comparison websites and apps to view and compare prices across different booking platforms and hotels simultaneously. Some affiliation links could even shave a few bucks off your tab. These tools often provide an overview of the available amenities, customer reviews, and ratings, helping you make an informed decision while potentially uncovering exclusive deals or discounts that may not be visible when booking directly through the hotel.


Off-Peak Travel

Timing your visit to Edinburgh during the off-peak season can result in substantial savings and offer fitness enthusiasts a quieter environment to explore fitness spots like Arthur’s Seat and the scenic trails around Holyrood. During these quieter periods, hotels and accommodations near these iconic landmarks are often less crowded, leading to reduced prices as establishments strive to attract guests. Off-peak travel not only offers a more economical experience but also a more relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere, as the city itself is less crowded, making attractions more accessible and your stay more pleasant. However, always check the schedules for various attractions, as some may have limited hours or be closed during the off-season.


Loyalty Programs & Memberships

Many hotel chains and booking platforms offer loyalty programs or memberships where accumulated points can lead to discounted or even free stays. These programs often provide other perks like room upgrades, late check-outs, and other exclusive benefits. If you're a frequent traveler, joining these programs can lead to considerable savings.



Read Reviews & Policies

Before finalizing any booking, read customer reviews and understand the accommodation's policies. Reviews from past guests can offer invaluable insights into the quality of service, cleanliness, and the actual environment of the place. Understanding the policies helps you avoid unexpected charges and informs you about the services you can expect during your stay.


Booking Direct Benefits

Sometimes, booking directly through the hotel's official website can offer advantages. Some establishments provide exclusive deals, packages, or amenities for guests who book directly, as this approach often means lower operational costs for them. Always compare the direct booking benefits with those offered on third-party platforms to ensure you get the best value.

By following these tips and conducting thorough research, you can find accommodations that suit your preferences and budget and enhance the overall quality and enjoyment of your Edinburgh visit. Happy traveling!


What to Expect in Edinburgh

In the heart of Edinburgh, you're never far from the allure that makes people fall in love with the city. Regardless of where you stay, you'll likely be a short walk or a quick public transit ride away from the Royal Mile and other attractions. Expect cozy atmospheres, delightful stained glass in unexpected places, and possibly a selection of whisky at the hotel bar to enjoy.

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