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London hotel prices 400% higher during Olympics

But Travelodge brings rates down

Holiday Inn Express logo

Spending a night in London while the Olympics are on? Then choose your accommodation carefully. Some hotel prices are more than £300 higher during the event, says Which? Travel.

With less than a month to go until the Opening Ceremony of this year’s London Olympics, excitement is mounting in the capital. But although visitors may be looking forward to seeing the world’s greatest sports men and women in action, they won’t be looking forward to forking out over the odds for a hotel room – as much as 400%

Hotel chains

Booking with Holiday Inn, the official hotel provider to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, at their Stratford Express hotel, we found one night’s accommodation for two people on Saturday 11 August – the day of the Women’s High Jump finals – for £410. It’s a convenient location, but if you were to book a double room for the following Saturday, you’d pay just £79.

Staying at Best Western Ilford hotel on Saturday 11 August, a double room for two now costs £385. Just two weeks ago, when Which? Travel also checked prices, the same accommodation was only £245. A double room the weekend after, though, for Saturday 18 August, is just £64 – £321 cheaper!

Premier Inn is offering double rooms on 11 August at their Stratford hotel for £199. The following Saturday, after the Olympic Games are over, the room costs £82.

Travelodge prices come down

Saturday 11 August also sees the Men’s 10m platform diving final. And it would appear that the prices at some Travelodge hotels are taking a bit of a dive.  Double rooms at Travelodge Docklands on 11 August are being shown online for £150 – for the past eight weeks, a room here on that night has cost £237. 

A double room at Travelodge’s Excel hotel for 11 August, which was being offered for £299.95 a month ago, is now over £220 cheaper at £79.50.

‘There was always going to be an increase in hotel prices during the Olympics – London will have thousands of extra visitors during this time, so it’s a basic case of supply and demand,’ says Lorna Cowan, Which? Travel editor. ‘But seeing increases of over 400% is ridiculous. With less than a month to go, the majority of people will have booked their accommodation, and will have paid over the odds.’

Which? Travel has been tracking online prices at four UK hotel chains most visited by Which? members – Best Western, Holiday Inn, Premier Inn and Travelodge – since July 2011. Prices listed were checked at the hotel chains’ websites on 27 June 2012 and were the best available rate. Conditions on these may vary.

More on this…

  • To find out the best travel products, companies and services, subscribe to Which? Travel
  • Escaping London and the Olympics? Before you fly off, know your travel rights
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