Why pay top dollar for a luxury vacation when it's possible to have it for less? A high-end trip without a premium price tag is possible anywhere in the world, but your approach needs to be tailored to your destination. Here, locals in Sydney, Australia, share tips on making money go further. Book the right accommodation Carly Rea, founder of Splendour Tailored Tours, advises staying at a five-star boutique hotel in a residential neighbourhood, where nightly rates can be half of what they are in the touristy Central Business District. Rea recommended Spicers Potts Point, in Potts Point, an area...
Why pay top dollar for a luxury vacation when it's possible to have it for less? A high-end trip without a premium price tag is possible anywhere in the world, but your approach needs to be tailored to your destination. Here, locals in Sydney, Australia, share tips on making money go further.

Book the right accommodation

Carly Rea, founder of Splendour Tailored Tours, advises staying at a five-star boutique hotel in a residential neighbourhood, where nightly rates can be half of what they are in the touristy Central Business District. Rea recommended Spicers Potts Point, in Potts Point, an area full of homegrown boutiques, cafes and restaurants, and Paramount House Hotel, in Surry Hills.

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Sydney, Australia – April 22, 2018: Terrace houses with cars parked on the sidewalk on Victoria Street, Potts Point, Sydney

Josh Blake, assistant chief concierge at Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, said travellers who want to stay in the heart of town should be aware that several of the luxury hotels in the CBD, including Shangri-La and InterContinental, have club lounges. You pay a fee on top of your room rate; the lounge at the Four Seasons, for example, costs $96 for two people per day. But you get a concierge, a lavish breakfast buffet and a premium open bar. For longer stays, consider a home rental through Contemporary Hotels or Luxico. “You can find a two-bedroom apartment for a week for the same price as a standard hotel room,” Rea said.

Eat like a local

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Sydney, New South Wales, Australia – July 9 , 2017 : Harry's Café de Wheel at Haymarket branch , the best pies must try when visit Sydney.

Rea said that the most affordable food in town is to be found at neighbourhood spots. Bistro Rex, in Potts Point, a vibrant place showcasing seasonal dishes, is an example. She also recommended a meal at one of the city's many inexpensive and delicious Asian-influenced restaurants where diners can bring their own alcohol. The Darlinghurst and Newtown neighbourhoods are full of these. On Bondi Beach, a table at a casual seaside cafe is a less expensive and more authentic way to go than a pricey restaurant, said Blake. He suggested Speedos Cafe that serves organic produce.

Be a savvy sightseer

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Sydney, Australia – October 11, 2015: Manly Fast Ferry boat at Manly wharf ready to pick up passengers and depart to Sydney Cirqular Quay in the summer noon.

Climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge is a mainstay tourist activity, but it costs more than $120 (R1 800) and takes hours. Walking across the bridge is another option. “It's free, the path is uncrowded and you get the same views,” Blake said. Also, skip a pricey private boat rental and enjoy Sydney's skyline from a public ferry or water taxi. A ferry ride, depending on the route, is less than $10, while a 30-minute scenic ride in a taxi around the harbour costs about $70. Blake recommended the ferry from Circular Quay to Manly, a lively suburb with a scenic beach and a thriving surf community

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