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24 day trip to Europe Itinerary/ Daily Costs feedback

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Jun 6th, 2015, 07:11 PM
  #1
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24 day trip to Europe Itinerary/ Daily Costs feedback

Hello,

I'm planning my first trip to Europe in October, and have 80% of my lodging/hotels already booked for my planned itinerary. Below is my itinerary . Depending on time constraints - (I know that this trip is very fast-paced already), I'm looking to squeeze in two potential day trips. One out of Amsterdam, and one out of Stockholm. I'm looking at the possibility of a day trip to Bruges out of Amsterdam, and a day trip to the Archipelago out of Stockholm. Once again, I'm really open to feedback, critique, and improvements.

I'm trying to keep my budget (Excluding transportation and lodging) to $67 USD a day/$1,600. I know this is on the frugal side, but is this doable? If this is too frugal, what would be recommended? Once again, this cost wouldn't be applicable to transportation and lodging. This would be daily spending (Museums/Entertainment, Food, maybe public buses into the city center. I don't plan on souvenirs.) Additionally in Stockholm and Vienna, my breakfast will be included into the lodging costs. I'm aware I will have to watch costs closely in Copenhagen and Stockholm to maintain my budget.

Thanks in advance! Additionally, I'm looking for the most efficient way from CPH - AMS, and from AMS - PRG.

Oct 9th - Arrive - Copenhagen
Oct 10th - Copenhagen
Oct 11th - Copenhagen
Oct 12th - Depart Copenhagen and arrive to Amsterdam
Oct 13th - Amsterdam
Oct 14th - Amsterdam
Oct 15th - Amsterdam - Day trip to Brugges
Oct 16th - Amsterdam
Oct 17th - Depart Amsterdam and arrive to Prague
Oct 18th - Prague
Oct 19th - Prague
Oct 20th - Prague
Oct 21st - Depart Prague and arrive to Vienna
Oct 22nd - Vienna
Oct 23rd - Vienna - Day trip to Salzburg
Oct 24th - Vienna - Day trip to Innsbruck (Leave very early)
Oct 25th - Vienna
Oct 26th - Vienna
Oct 27th - Depart Vienna and arrive to Stockholm
Oct 28th - Stockholm
Oct 29th - Stockholm
Oct 30th - Stockholm
Oct 31st - Stockholm (possible day trip - looking for recommendation)
Nov 1st- Depart back to Austin, TX
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Jun 6th, 2015, 07:53 PM
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Copenhagen and Stockholm are both very expensive. Our first night in Copenhagen we were jet lagged and we're trying to walk a lot to keep from going to takeaway. It was close to dinner time and we went into a department store to use rest room. On the way out, we walked by their little cafe. It smelled good and in we went. We had a burger, a bowl of curried meatballs, a beer and a diet coke ( I knew that was going to cost a lot). We paid the bill and of course we weren't yet all that familiar with the exchange rate. As we walked, I realized that we just had food that cost $65!!!
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Jun 6th, 2015, 08:14 PM
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Bruges takes 3&1/2 to 4 hours from Amsterdam, so 7-8 hours round trip. Way too much for a day trip. Pretty, but not worth that much time for only a few hours, especially when other places just as interesting and beautiful are so much closer.

There are many lovely places closer to Amsterdam that are worthwhile. For example, Delft is just under an hour and is beautiful.

Haarlem is only about 15 minutes from Amsterdam and is just as nice. Google some images and you will see.

It will be hard, if not impossible to stay within your budget in some places. You will have to get some bread and cheese, etc. at markets. This is one time, I am tempted to say, you know, you are planning a fantastic trip. Who knows when you will do it again. Charge a bit if you need to.

Your trip is well paced - nice to see someone not trying to rush everywhere.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 03:10 AM
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Copenhagen and Stockholm, whilst not cheap do not have to be as expensive as some posters make out. If you are in the vicinity of Christiania, check this out:

http://copenhagenstreetfood.dk/en/food-stalls/

Irma City supermarket has a selection of food that can be taken out, salads, drinks etc. Some branches of SuperBrugsen supermarket have a hot and cold food counter where you can buy various things to take out and eat. Top floor at Magasin department store has a restaurant where you can buy 3 open sandwiches and a drink plus a view to the Opera House for a very reasonable price. Lagkagehuset is a bakery chain found all over Copenhagen and their sandwiches etc are very good.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 03:56 AM
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If you go into supermarkets, buy food there and buy some bread, you'll be below your budget everywhere.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 04:20 AM
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I think you have a nice paced itinerary. I do agree that Brugge is too far for a day trip from Amsterdam and that there are lots of places much closer (within an hour) as suggested. If you haven't already found a good deal on a hotel in Amsterdam, you might consider staying in Haarlem instead. It's essentially the same as a subway commute (about 15 min, trains run all the time) into Amsterdam and the hotel prices are considerably less. That might free up some cash. Delft and Gouda make great day trips.

You will find Copenhagen and Stockholm the most expensive. I think I ate hotdogs the whole week I was in Copenhagen, I know I didn't have a real sit down dinner. Supermarkets do have lots of decent stuff that you can use to make a meal, in all your locations, not just Scandinavia. A lot of supermarkets also have cafeteria style restaurants in them that are pretty reasonable. I know there is one in Amsterdam (and also Haarlem). If planning on them for dinner though be aware they close early (for dinner that is, like around 6 or 7 most nights).

Sodas are expensive in most of Europe (comparatively speaking). Carry a water bottle that you refill. If you don't like the taste of the tap water then buy large sized water in supermarkets to keep in your room to refill your carry around bottle.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 03:50 PM
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Thanks for the advice on Bruges being too far away for a planned day trip. I'll definitely take that into consideration! ParisWat, you say I'll be below budget everywhere. As in, the $67 a day is enough, or too little?

Additionally, does anyone have any advice on a day trip out of Stockholm? I'm thinking a cruise through the Archipelago. I contemplated a cruise to Helsinki, but I would have to add another full day to Sweden for that, and I would have to remove a day from Vienna. That would only leave me two days in Vienna. Which would work better, any tips? Is Helsinki worth a day trip?
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Jun 7th, 2015, 04:46 PM
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>>I'm trying to keep my budget (Excluding transportation and lodging) to $67 USD a day/$1,600. I know this is on the frugal side, but is this doable?<<

It is possible but very difficult. Almost every museum/site will cost between $10 and $20

A few examples:

Rijksmuseum = €17.50/$20
Van Gogh museum = €17.00/$19
Swedish History Museum = 100 SEK/$12
Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna = €14/$16

And some other attractions cost more

So if you actually want to see/do things I think your budget is way too low.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 05:23 PM
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I think your budget will be very difficult, esp in Scandinavia. Just google the main sights you want to see (Vasa, Skansen, boat trip to Drottingholm) and I think you will find they may take the majority of your budget for the day.

Even if you eat mostly from supermarkets and don't drink any alcohol I think you will run out of money before the end of the trip. (Student guides list about 50 euros per day as the absolute minimum for living - and that's not Scandinavia). (In Sweden and Denmark a Big Mac - no fries or drink - runs about $5 - more than double the US. Other costs will be similar.)
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Jun 7th, 2015, 05:36 PM
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Hi,

Thank you for the feedback regarding my budget. Money isn't that big of an issue going on this trip (I'm really willing to go up to 80-90 USD, or allocate $2,000 for the trip), but I really would prefer to keep it on the cheaper side. (I will be doing the drinking in Prague, where it's cheaper to do!)

All the blogs/backpacking/websites I've read list average cost per day around 50 euros minimum, but these websites seem to include the lodging into the daily average cost. I thought excluding lodging and if I were to get city cards, that this $67 would be manageable on a daily budget.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 05:53 PM
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Totally depends what you want to do. Will you be satisfied eating mostly picnics w/ maybe 4 or 5 real meals a week, and mostly visiting free/inexpensive sites (very few but there are some), not going to many/any cultural events (concerts, theatre, art galleries, etc), and going inside few tourist attractions/museums?

It will vary a lot country to country - but local transport (I'm not talking about your inter-city travel), restaurant meals, drinks (soft drinks can cost more than alcohol - small and no refills), and admissions charge do add up quickly.

If you eliminate several days in Scandinavia it will help a LOT.
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Jun 7th, 2015, 10:26 PM
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Vienna can be expensive. Skip the classic touristy "Wiener Frühstuck" breakfast of coffee, a roll, and orange juice that can cost as much as €10-15 and will likely leave you hungry an hour later; instead, pickup a fresh sandwich and carton of juice at the grocery for half the cost. Ditto for overpriced Schnitzel; unless you are a connoisseur, whether it's veal, pork, or chicken, it all tastes like a flat pounded chicken nugget. This site might be helpful for eating on a budget. http://www.viennawurstelstand.com/in...s-in-vienna-1/

Plan your museum visits carefully; there are combination tickets that can save you a few Euros here and there.

Consider the weather for your day trips to Salzburg and Innsbruck. October can be lovely and autumnal-like, or wet, gray, and miserable.
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Jun 8th, 2015, 05:21 PM
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Thank you. Unfortunately, I cannot eliminate any days in any part of Scandinavia. My flight departs out of Stockholm back to the US, and I'm bound by that departure. I don't plan on having any sit down meals to be completely honest -- Maybe one or two nice sit down meals a week (Although, in Copenhagen this won't be a viable option -- I plan on hotdogs and lunch buffet.) I plan on getting the city card for Amsterdam and Stockholm to curb costs and save as much as possible. Additionally, I plan on walking as much as possible. This shouldn't be an issue in Vienna to hit all the sightseeing spots by walking, as well as Copenhagen and Prague (Minus a potential day trip to the bones cathedral.)

I guess my next step is to plan what I want to do day-by-day and see the projected costs per day based on the activity. I'm still trying to play with dates to take advantage of the days with free museums, etc.

On a side note, is a peacoat too much to bring in October? I keep reading various things on traveling in October.

Thanks!
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Jun 8th, 2015, 05:49 PM
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What is a generous amount in Portugal and Spain is a pittance in Scandinavia - like comparing costs in NYC to those in smallville.

Suggest you google the sights you want to see to find out the entrance costs

Just a few samples:

Vasa Museum: $16
Skansen Museum: $20
Visit to drottingholm Castle in the archipelago: $24 (including boat)

As you can see, visiting the Vasa and Skansen in one day will cost about $36 just for the entrances.
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Jun 8th, 2015, 07:44 PM
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Checking out your costs ahead of time is the way to go. This is what we did for our first trip to Europe which was 13 weeks. I had no idea what to expect with regards to all the entrance fees, transportation costs etc. I wrote down the costs of everything we wanted to see in each city and came up with a very realistic budget. Don't forget a MISC category: new batteries, laundry costs etc. Things like that do add up so just plan a little bit for that.
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Jun 9th, 2015, 03:43 AM
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<<(Although, in Copenhagen this won't be a viable option -- I plan on hotdogs and lunch buffet.)>> Why is it not a viable option? To eat hotdogs for the duration of the stay in Denmark is not necessary & pretty unhealthy. You can eat open sandwiches etc from bakeries, you can eat street food from Paper Island (I already gave you the link), you can buy hot dishes from some supermarkets.

http://www.visitcopenhagen.com/copen...enhagen-budget

I've eaten here, it's not gourmet by any means but is affordable, they have an evening buffet for DKK79 and they are in a nice part of town.

http://www.samosrestaurant.dk/

The restaurant on the top floor of Magasin is inexpensive and the department store is open until about 10pm.

You can rent a bike too, so getting out of the central area means you can find less expensive places to eat. If you go to Bakken for instance (maybe too far by bike), there are loads of inexpensive places to eat within the amusement park.
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Jun 9th, 2015, 08:13 AM
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A couple of personal opinions on Copenhagen, the ossuary outside of Prague, and sightseeing in general. The bottom line is that a lot of research goes a long way.

Our teenage son and I spent a whirlwind three days in Copenhagen as a last-minute getaway last spring, the plan being to keep the budget low. Aside from the anticipated and absurdly overpriced Smorbord at Louisiana Museum of Art, we managed the food costs through research and enthusiasm--why not have decadently inexpensive, well-reviewed, and delicious Vietnamese fare in Copenhagen?

As for sightseeing, take the "Must See" with a grain of salt, and conduct your research well. Do what interests YOU. We were told by friends that the ossuary at Kutna Hora is a "Must See." On a trip to Prague we spent a day visiting the ossuary and to be honest, were not moved by our visit. The church is full of bone constructions made by a monk who perhaps went a little mad when cataloging the deceased and created art-like chandeliers made from every bone in the human body, and is overly touristy. If you find that interesting, then make the effort to visit. If beautiful cemeteries and Mucha-mosaics are more your style, stay in Prague and spend a half day at Vysehrad. If you're into beer, then do a pub crawl and eat the great street food afterwards. And so forth.

Living in Vienna, we have hosted friends and family for three years now, and never have we run them through the "Must Sees." There is no point slogging through the Old Masters at the art history museum (and frittering away €15) or the endless gilded rooms of the palaces if that doesn't interest you. Are you into snow globes? They were invented in Vienna; and the to-this-day family-run museum could make for an interesting couple of hours. And so on.

Research is key. Investigate what interests you, and plan for that. As michele_d wrote, having a sense of the "known" costs makes planning the rest of your holiday run smoothly.
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Jun 9th, 2015, 08:25 AM
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For some great info on European trains check these sites - very helpful sites to help plan the rail part - www.seat61.com; www. budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com.

Bruges is a long day trip from Amsterdam - about 3 hours or so each way - either leave early or just go and stay in Bruges which is best savored IME at night after the day-tripping hoards have gone and the canals and old wooden drawbridges are wondrously illuminated.
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