Be it social, be it financial be it….well…. something else, here are a few of our top tips for a trip to Blackpool from a locals perspective……
Don’t buy anything that says ‘tourist offer’
Let’s face it, why would anyone want to exclude the permanent residents of the town in favour of the tourists? (Ok, in the summer there’s a lot more tourists but still…..) It just doesn’t make sense to alienate locals and most likely only done because locals would be aware it’s a bad deal and wouldn’t buy anyway.
A good example which springs to mind is the ‘jump the queue’ / discount entry / discount drinks wrist bands you can get during the summer on the streets. Invariably, they go around targeting tourists on a night/day out with promises of speedy entry and discounts….. generally for places that have no queue, charge on the door when places round the corner are free entry and are mega expensive for drinks anyway.
With bars and pubs, like anywhere, do your research and shop around before you shell out a fiver for a wristband that will save you very little (if anything) and could mean you spend more time going to places you wouldn’t pick ordinarily just to use the wristband.
Shop around for those ‘tourist essentials’
Ok… we use the word ‘essentials’ here with tongue very firmly in cheek….. what we mean is things like rock, fudge, models of the tower and even tea towels!!
The price of these ‘tourist mainstays’ can vary drastically and really add up! It’s tempting to just buy gifts to take home straight away to get it out of the way or just just buy that candy dummy from which ever shop you’re passing but RESIST!!!
Candy dummies can vary by as much as 100% and rock can be confusing by the different sizes and combinations, ’10 bars for £2′ isn’t always better than ‘1 bar for 50p’….. just keep eyes open and its pretty quick to identify the cheaper places, this is especially true for Doughnuts btw!!!
The best deals for most ‘touristy’ items are to be had just slightly off the main tourist drag though beware, this isn’t always true for instance, cheapest rock we’ve found to be at ‘Rock King’ not far south of the tower and this is compared to a factory shop on a side street. We also found tea towels to be £1 more expensive for 3 in Bonny Street market compared to the promenade…… crazy! Like everything, preparation is key (keep an eye on our social and web site for our hints which we’ll update as the summer progresses) and haggling is a good tactic.
Buy a Blackpool football shirt……
….or perhaps a polo shirt? …. hat? ….scarf?? ….. something tangerine anyway. We find going out through tourist areas is a lot easier if people can distinguish you as local…. and there’s no reason they wouldn’t believe you’re local, locals do do tourist days of course 🙂 you may even get a surprise locals discounts you weren’t expecting 🙂
Wearing Blackpool colour has a number of benefits, street sellers (rag mags, charity wrist bands etc) tend to steer clear of you, games stalls tend to leave you to your own devices and don’t hassle (in fact, we recently went on a ‘tourist day’ on a games stall as because they knew we were local, our girls ‘won’ a prize without winning the game!) and even the professional beggars aren’t as forward as they might otherwise be. Often we get locals discounts we didn’t even know about.
The football season comes to a close just as the summer season gets into full swing so often the club is selling off shirts and other merchandise at a discounted price…. take a look on the club website to see what offers they have available.
Buy a tram / bus pass.
Most Blackpool attractions are located along or just off the promenade so given the trams run all the way from Fleetwood to the St Annes border, tram is a great way of getting from A to B.
Blackpool transport is an arm of the local council. The Council has a bit of a monopoly on public transport, they own all the modern trams and we’d guess at 95% of the buses in town so getting a travel pass for your time in the town is a great idea. The passes are able to be used on all trams and buses run by Blackpool Transport so even if you want to visit attractions a bit ‘off the beaten track’ you can. (Lytham St Annes for example)
There are a number of combinations of ticket you can buy, check them out on the Blackpool Transport website here.
Look beyond the front
‘Blackpool more than just a front’ was a slogan the Council used to advertise the town many years ago to attract businesses to the town. It’s fair to say the same applies for tourist attractions too, whilst the majority are located on the promenade, both the Zoo and the fabulous Stanley Park and Model village are located a couple of miles in from the front.
We’d also suggest having a trip to Lytham and St Annes. Lytham has a wonderful large green along the front with exquisite bars and restaurants. St Annes has a beautiful traditional pier, a square full of shops, a mini ride on train round a pitch and putt course plus some wonderful ponds and a fab paddling/splash pool water play area (take your own trunks and towels!!).
Besides attractions, going a little away from the main tourist drag also allows you to pay lower prices – bars, cafes, and even souvenirs… all tend to drop in price if you move away from the prom (except rock… was cant find anywhere cheaper than ‘Rock King’ on the prom tbh).
So there you have it, just a few of our tips for your trip to Blackpool.
Whats your top tips?
You might also find our other BLOG ‘thing a local wouldn’t do in Blackpool’ a good read, it has some further tips we’ve not covered here.
As ever, thanks for reading. We are on most social media channels so if you haven’t already, please give us a follow to get the latest BLOGS (VLOGS on Youtube) and our views from the seaside.