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I'm looking for a cheap hotel somewhere near the tube.


And super close to the British Museum, easily walkable to the National Gallery/Portrait Gallery and on the right tube line for the V&A/Science Museum/NH Museum.
Honestly, central hotels are only a bit more expensive than ones out in the wilds of south London and much more convenient for everything. If you really can’t do the extra money you’re better off on Airbnb.

My parents are ex-Londoners, they know the score.
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Council Estate Socialist
Actually, London is so well connected you don't need to be by a tube at all.

Somewhere like Greenwich would make a great base for a few days exploring.

You have the DLR which is quick and easy to places that have a tube connection as well as trains straight into central London.

You also can take a short walk to the Naval colleges, churches and museums by the river and use the clipper service along the river to central London for a smidgen more in cost than the train/tube. Really nice and historically interesting walks along the river from there too, some markets, the foot tunnel, the cutty sark etc.

You can access all that Central London has to offer easily then retreat and enjoy the accessible by foot stuff in the Greenwich area.