Where to stay when you’re travelling in the UK

If you have friends or relations who live in other parts of the UK, this gives you a perfect opportunity to travel independently, particularly when you’re travelling alone for the first time. They can normally meet you at your station or airport, and this gives you one less thing to worry about.

As you grow older and more confident, you may want to find your own place to stay. Unfortunately, there are many age-restrictions on accommodation for young people. Many places don’t allow young people under 18 to stay without an adult (sometimes an adult aged at least 21). Always check the conditions before you book anything! And don’t despair – if you’re too young to travel by yourself or with your friends, see if you can persuade an adult relation to come with you. They might enjoy the adventure as well.

Accommodation AIMED specifically At teenagers

Some companies however have decided to make an effort to attract teenagers, particularly those celebrating the end of exams, such as GCSEs. If you like the idea of being among large groups of teenagers, this might be an option for you. Newquay Surf Lodge in Cornwall, for example, offers budget accommodation for anyone over 15.

other Budget accommodation

YHA youth hostels offer simple accommodation in England and Wales designed for independent travellers. They are often in beautiful places around the country, though there are also a number of city hostels as well – you can see all the different choices here. Despite the name, however, you must be over 18 to stay in a YHA hostel by yourself.  If you are 16 or 17 you can stay with YHA as long as you are travelling with another person of the same age or an adult.

The Scottish Youth Hostelling Association requires all children to be accompanied by someone 18 or over, and children under 16 to be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Another budget option is to stay in student accommodation out of university term time. Many universities now make their rooms available to the public and it can give you a taste of student life as well as a place to stay. Try the websites of individual universities or book through University Rooms. Again, check the small print; if you’re under 18, you may have to be accompanied by an adult or your may not be allowed to book at all.

Camping is the traditional low-cost accommodation option, but, again, many regular campsites don’t allow under-18s to stay without adults. See what you can find on pitchup. Some festival campsites are more flexible, or you might be able to go on an organised camping trip – see our page on “Travel Ideas for the UK” .

Accessible accommodation

Open Britain is a website run by the charity Tourism for All UK and provides a searchable directory of accommodation across the UK, as well as some other useful resources for travellers with disabilities.

You might also be interested in our pages on:

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Using different forms of transport in the UK
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Travel ideas for the UK