Planning first Eurotrip!
Replies: 22 - Last Post: Sep 21, 2013 9:00 PM Last Post By: gawkabout
Sep 19, 2013 4:24 PM
Planning first Eurotrip!So I am travelling to Europe in the summer of 2014 with two friends. We will most likely be going for 30-40 days with a budget of $4000 for daily spending. We have come up with a general itinerary of the cities we want to see and I wanted to see how realistic it was. The trip as of now is:
4. Interlaken (skydiving)
9. Brussels (Tomorrowland)
I was also wondering what the best way to plan each city was. We want to see the important sites but also have time to relax and explore without a schedule. Lastly, how easy is it to meet people at hostels to go out with? We are all about 20 years old.
Sep 19, 2013 8:22 PM
1did you see that post that said 'Itinerary or budget question? Please read this first!"
There are more than 20 currencies that use $. if you have 4000 Hong Kong dollars, that won't get you very far.
Sep 19, 2013 10:13 PM
Sep 19, 2013 10:19 PM
3We want to see the important sites but also have time to relax and explore without a schedule
11 destinations in 40 days--and this doesn't include substantial travel times--won't allow for that.
If travel expenses within Europe need to come out of that budget, assuming those are US or CAD dollars, you'll probably be averaging the "bare-bones" daily budget mentioned in MTL's link. And that won't be much fun.
I'd suggest cutting back on the geography and the number of destinations. And researching travel times and costs.
Sep 19, 2013 10:34 PM
4To visit 11 places, you'll need 10 travelling days. That leaves you 30 days for 11 cities = less than 3 days per city. 2 days for Prague, Munich and Amsterdam could be enough (depending on what you want to see and do) but Paris, Berlin and London can easily fill 4 or 5 days if you want to. With over 10 destinations in 40 days I agree there is little time left for relaxation and exploration outside your schedule.
Travelling costs time and money. The more places you want to visit, the more money it costs and the less time you have to actually see and do something.
Also, where are the non-cities? Europe is very diverse and it will make your trip more diverse if you include some countryside, historical sites, villages, mountains and/or beachside. This can be done as a day trip for one of the listed cities, but then you'll need of course more days in those cities.
Second clementis's advice. Also: Ensure some relaxation time. If you travel continously over 40 days, you'll be exhausted. For instance, somewhere in the middle you could go to a nice beachtown in Spain for a couple of days for some sunbathing, a bit of partying and relaxing.
Sep 19, 2013 11:04 PM
Did you read that link gave you? Pls do. Then convert to EUR and be specific. Is this per person? Do you need to pay travel out of this?
So you want to see things people come to see, e.g. sights.
If you want to see off-the-beaten track sights you need to slow down
Sep 19, 2013 11:32 PM
6@ibs 1221, that´s a great plan and in your youthful enthusiasm it´s good people - like above posters - bring in some realism.
Still this: what do you mean by +important sights+?
Important to whom? The guidebooks and TV-programmes? I didn't know nowadays youngsters are that mainstream.
Why is the Cologne dom more important than the rusty historical remains of the Ruhrgebiet industrial heritage?
Just wonder what you should like, as you indicate in two destinations (practice some skydiving and visiting Tomorrowland).
If you don't like architecture but just visit Gaudi's Sagrada because it's a landmark ... be satisfied with the internet or photobook; good for your budget.
Then it will be much more simple to plan and consequently limit your destinations as already has been stated. And traveling will be much more satisfying, absorbing culture/activities/scenery and not scanning them.
Sep 19, 2013 11:48 PM
7It is said you need the currency Euro in most of the countries on your list, exept Switzerland who has Francs and the UK using Pounds - with your US$ you can only go to a change office but of course you know this.
How quick you move between each city depend the way you will do it (car, train, busses, planes) and how long you will stay in each depend in what you are interested or not. Any "important sites" for example means nothing. Suggest you start with some research first by yourself using books, maps, Internet with the tourism information from each town. You can easy meet people all over Europe as we have some millions living here and more easy to communicate will be if you speak their language - but this you also know for sure.
Sep 20, 2013 12:01 AM
Sep 20, 2013 1:11 AM
9So 7 languages (8 if you include Catalan), 3 currencies, 9 cultures - Europe is nothing like as homogeneous like the US, and while with time you might have a feel for these differences, at the rate you're dipping in and out of places you'll simply go home thinking Old Europe (with a few modern bits after World War 2) is another big developed land mass like home. You're trying to cram too much in, and it sounds like you will struggle to afford it. Cutting out items 4 - 7 inclusive would give you a more sensible and cheaper route and create a bit of time to see Portugal, Spain, France and London (if not the rest of UK)
Sep 20, 2013 3:00 AM
Sep 20, 2013 7:21 AM
11I think its totally doable. Pay for overnight trains, it will save you travel time. And if you like the fast-paced style of travel then don't change your plans. I did have a rough itinerary like yours and changed my plans as I went and I ended up being satisfied with what I did. Just go with the flow and have fun! You may end up taking a city or two off your list as you travel but who cares... you know you will go back :)
I was in Paris for 5 days and felt like it wasn't enough (I had to leave to meet a friend in Switzerland) but now I have it on my bucketlist to return to Paris!
Re. your budget it is doable, on my trip the two of us spent about 7500 USD over 2 months. less than 4000 per person. And we covered a lot of ground like you did - just be smart with where u spend ur money then u will def stay under
Sep 20, 2013 8:20 AM
Sep 20, 2013 9:24 AM
13Like many of the posters above, I think you're probably trying to do too much. Look at a map, and look how far you are traveling by going all the way from Lisbon to Prague, and back to Paris and London. You are covering a lot of territory, which means a lot of extra time on trains or buses, and a lot of extra money.
I think you might be better served to condense the trip a bit geographically, instead of trying to cover such a large expanse of the continent. Without knowing exactly what appeals to you in the cities you have chosen, here's just one idea: it might be better to more slowly make your way through Portugal, Spain, France for about a week each, then hit Amsterdam and London. Or, skip Germany and Prague (for this trip). Those kind of tweaks will allow you to see more things along the way, and will have a chance to see some things outside of the bigger cities you mention.
If you decide to go forward with your itinerary, I think it is possible. Like #11, I think you'll probably want to take advantage of any overnight trains where available. You're likely to get tired, and you're likely to scale back your ambition the next time in Europe. But it is physically doable.
Budget wise, I'm unclear if the $4,000 U.S. is for EACH of you. If that's per person, your budget should be OK. Transportation between cities will eat up a lot, and you won't be able to splurge too often, but it's a decent lower-end budget (but not lowest of the low budget).
Sep 20, 2013 9:28 AM
I totally and completely endorse #13's advice. (Although as a parent, I'd say it's probably better that you find a dirt cheap hostel than sleep on a park bench.)
I also like a previous poster's advice to go with the flow. You might find yourself having a great time in a certain location -- it's OK to chuck your itinerary, and stay a couple of extra days. Not many of us have opportunity to have 40 days in Europe, so take advantage of your flexibility.
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