One minute we’re being told Belfast is The Most Affordable City For Students.

Now Belfast has been abruptly accused of being in the ‘Top 10 Most Expensive Destinations in the UK for a Bank Holiday Break.’

But something doesn’t quite add up.

The survey conducted by TripAdvisor’s TripIndex takes into account costs for two people. These include; a four-star hotel for three nights, a visit to four highly rated attractions, lunch each day, a taxi to and from dinner each day, plus the cost of dinner itself and money spent on attractions. It works out an average per day spent on each before adding up the alleged ‘total’ bill over a Bank Holiday break.

But we want to know how exactly they have worked out these staggering costs. What with frequent meal-deals, free attractions and some of the most deeply competitive offers available, we are at a loss as to where exactly this survey has frequented in order to drum up such massive costs. Yes you might be on ‘holiday’ but we certainly wouldn’t fork out £62 (on average per day!) on attractions in Belfast – and we live here full-time.

Firstly, with ease we were able to find a hotel cheaper than the quoted £112.98 per day. Namely the centrally-located four-star state-of-the-art Apple Apartments on Donegall Quay in the heart of the city-centre totted up to just £306 for two adults altogether on booking.com.

Attraction-wise, we are confused as to why the copious amount of free attractions, including all of the luscious parks and museums, are not mentioned within the survey. Most notably a day out enjoying the Ulster Museum could be followed by a day chilling in the scenic Botanic Gardens or wandering around Queen’s area, or you could take a hike up the Cave Hill and enjoy the view overlooking the H&W cranes on a clear, sunny day. Or why not visit Belfast Castle – or enjoy the sunshine and atmosphere at the popular Lady Dixon Park?

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Art galleries at the Mac are also free to be explored, as is the infamous Linen Hall Library, Belfast City Hall and Stormont.

Meanwhile, even for the ‘most expensive’ attraction-wise options available, an adult ticket to Titanic Belfast is £15.50 and provides hours of fun entertainment. Plus it also offers family discounts, as well as special student, children and senior prices.

Tickets to the Grand Opera House or the Lyric Theatre might be some of the more extravagant expenditures – but well worth it money-wise. They both offer extremely competitive prices, particularly for matinee performances.

Overall we struggle to understand how someone could blast through an alleged £62 spend per day on attractions alone.

Plus – with Belfast home to particularly accessible bus-routes and with a host of the best attractions and restaurants walking distance from the central hotels the £11 taxi bill per day is equally confusing.

Whilst most of us like to splash out on at least one extravagant meal on holiday, it is hard to conceive of a world where we spend £66.29 a day on just dinner alone.

Add that to the alleged £20 per day on lunch and we will point you to the closest Boojum – where for change of a tenner you get a big enough feed to fill you for the rest of the day – never-mind spending nearly 70 quid on dinner.

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