Cheap Afternoon Tea in London

Is there anything more quintessentially British than afternoon tea? Since Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, came up with the idea in 1840, England has become renowned the world over for this elegantly rich three-course meal.

Featuring crustless finger sandwiches, scones topped with clotted cream and jam, cakes, pastries, and a whole lot of tea, there are an incredible array of afternoon teas in London to savor.

If the Savoy and the Ritz are out of your price range, though, we've come up with a list dedicated to the city's best budget-friendly options. From a posh palace in Kensington to an under-the-radar art gallery in Marylebone, these central London spots all offer excellent value for money.

So relax and have a cuppa.

01 of 08

The Fan Museum, Greenwich

The Fan Museum, Greenwich
Courtesy of The Fan Museum
12 Crooms Hill, London SE10 8ER, UK
Phone +44 20 8305 1441

The best value for afternoon tea in town is served at the Fan Museum in Greenwich. For just nine pounds, you can indulge in scones topped with cream and jam, a selection of cakes, and tea or coffee—all served in the beautiful Orangery. The light-flooded building is decorated with detailed murals and overlooks a secret Japanese-style garden.​​

02 of 08

The Wallace Restaurant Afternoon Tea

Hertford House is the home of The Wallace Collection, a national museum of French 18th century cultu
David Williams/Getty Images
Hertford House, Manchester Square, London W1U 3BN, UK
Phone +44 20 7563 9505

The Wallace Restaurant sits at the heart of The Wallace Collection, an unsung art gallery on Manchester Square that houses works by Rembrandt and Diego Velázquez. Tea is served in a covered courtyard so you can expect plenty of natural light. Dining here feels very indulgent because of the beautiful setting—it's hard to believe that the afternoon tea is available for less than 20 pounds.

03 of 08

The Orangery at Kensington Palace

Tea at the Orangery
Heather Cowper/Flickr/CC BY 2.0
Kensington Palace Gardens, London W8 4PX, UK
Phone +44 20 3166 6114

For a traditional afternoon tea in regal surroundings, you'll be hard pushed to beat the Orangery at Kensington Palace. The English Afternoon Tea features classic dishes, including scones with clotted cream and jam, as well as sandwiches filled with Coronation chicken and egg mayonnaise. Even if you add a glass of champagne to this 34-pound affair, you'll still pay less than at London's more obvious afternoon tea spots. It's truly a meal fit for a royal.

04 of 08

The Tea Terrace London Afternoon Tea

House of Fraser in London
Tory Ho/Getty Images
On the Ground Floor of House of Fraser department store, 318 Oxford Street, London W1C 1HF, UK
Phone +44 1483 493353

The Tea Terrace is on the top floor of House of Fraser, an Oxford Street department store. With vintage-style crockery and powder blue and pink décor, it feels like a delightfully quirky English tea room. In a city that adores coffee these days, it's lovely to find an eclectic spot that serves a great choice of the nation's favorite beverage: English Breakfast, Egyptian Mint, Citrus Camomile, Pai Mu Tan, and more. Even if you opt for the Celebration Afternoon Tea—which comes with a lovely glass of Prosecco—you won't spend more than 30 pounds.

Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08

Crusting Pipe Covent Garden

Covent Garden market
Tom Bonaventure/Getty Images
Jubilee Market Hall, 30 Tavistock Court, London WC2E 8RD, UK
Phone +44 20 7836 1415

Located in Convent Garden's piazza, the Crusting Pipe is best known as a wine bar with outdoor seating—from which you can enjoy opera singers and classical musicians performing in the courtyard. There's more to the Crusting Pipe than wine and live music, though. The venue serves a traditional afternoon tea and offers options that include a British cheese selection and vintage Port.

06 of 08

Bond Street Kitchen

Bond Street Kitchen, London
Bond Street Kitchen
63 New Bond Street, London W1S 1RQ, UK
Phone +44 20 7629 0273

Inside Fenwick of Bond Street, one of London's department stores, is Bond Street Kitchen. Nestled within the ladies' designer clothes department on the second floor, this glamorous restaurant and bar serves afternoon tea for 16 pounds. It comes with a selection of cakes and scones, but you can add a glass of champagne for an additional charge.

07 of 08

Bea's of Bloomsbury

Bea's of Bloomsbury
Melanie Seasons/Flickr/CC BY ND 2.0
72 Russell Square, London WC1B 5BA, UK
Phone +44 20 7278 7949

With three different locations, Bea's of Bloomsbury is a café loved by sweet-toothed Londoners and is an absolute must if you're looking for an afternoon sugar rush. At 30 pounds a person, the tea is exceptionally well-priced and beautifully presented; it comes with a selection of sandwiches, a mini brioche, a scone, and five sweet treats. Bea's also offers gluten-free and vegetarian afternoon teas for those with dietary restrictions. Haven't had your fill of sugar?The cakes are a crowd-pleaser, so be sure to pick up a red velvet cupcake while you're there.

08 of 08

Strand Palace Hotel

Indian afternoon tea at the Strand Palace Hotel.
Courtesy of the Strand Palace Hotel
372 Strand, London WC2R 0JJ, UK
Phone +44 20 7379 4737

Just opposite the Savoy Hotel, the Strand Palace Hotel serves an afternoon tea for roughly half the price of its glitzy neighbor. For 25 pounds, you get to enjoy 13 different types of loose leaf teas—including white peony with rosebuds and organic Chinese sencha—in addition to the usual fare of scones, finger sandwiches, and cakes. Add on bottomless Prosecco or champagne for an additional price.

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Cheap Afternoon Tea in London