Also First time trip to Europe

Jan 26th, 2003, 08:12 PM
  #1  
Smalls
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Also First time trip to Europe

Okay, I'm a first time goer to europe and need some advice. A group of us (8) are taking a class through our college this summer. We will be in London for a month but only have class mon-thur thus we are free to travel on the weekends (we can also double up on classes to give us even longer "weekends"). What day trips do ya'll recommend doing from London during the week. And as far as the weekends go (we have 4), what countries should we hit? We arrive on a thursday and classes start the next week, so we were thinking of hopping on a train to Edinburgh as to not waste a weekend. Also, I think that Paris (should we fly or take the train?) is one that is on the top of the list for all of us, but we are really up in the air as far as other trips go. Rome would be great, but is that too much?? Any place in particular that really sticks out in your mind? also, should we do the B&B thing or hostels? Rick Steve's books were recomended to me and I bought a couple and he seems to give good advice. Also, how should we carry our money? traveller's checks was our prof's suggestion, but i've had friends tell me credit card and debit cards using the aTm machines is the way to go. Or should one do a little of everything? I'm sure there is so much more that i'm missing here so any help would be much appreciated.
 
Jan 26th, 2003, 08:42 PM
  #2  
themis
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my advise is to fly from London, it is the capital of low cost airlines and it will definitely be worth looking into that. easyjet.com and ryanair.com can take you anuwhere in Europe and if you book ahead, then you can get much cheaper prices than trains. Edinburgh yes, Paris yes, i would suggest definitely Barcelona (only 2h flight, can be done in 3 days), Rome is a bit further, but also amazing. All these destinations are served by the low cost airlines, look in their websites, you can book from there nice and easy.
As for the money, have a bit of everything is your answer, i usually dont carry trav.cheques, since credit cards are everywhere accepted and ATM's are all over the place. enjoy
 
Jan 26th, 2003, 08:46 PM
  #3  
xxx
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I am glad to see that they taught some grammar concerning beginning sentences with capital letters. From your first post, Bill gave you some good advice which I attached in case you missed. Concerning money, forget about travelers checks. Use ATMs and credit cards.

Author: Bill ([email protected])
Date: 01/26/2003, 09:00 am
Message:
Here are a couple of itineraries for your long-weekend trips. You could of course spend all of them in the British Isles. I favor rail travel, but I see that people make good cases for renting cars.

1) Ireland
Get a cheap roundtrip flight. I would probably rent a car.

2) Scotland
Probably do it by rail. See Edinborough. Then your choice of west or east scotland (or both). I enjoyed the rail trip in west Scotand all the way up to the end, then a ferry to Isle of Skye. Rail or car in the east (I did not visit there).

3) Wales and s.w. England. Maybe rail out to Bath and then a rental car.

4) Get a cheap roundtrip to Munich, and make your base there, or nearby, as others suggest. You could, of course, rent a car to see sights. I took a day bus tour to Neuschwanstein that made stops at Linderhof and another place (Oberammergau, I think). From Munich, take the train down to Salzburg, Austria and spend the night. See Salzburg and return to Munich for return flight.

5) Paris
You could spend one trip seeing the sights in and around Paris, as others would recommend.

For your longest trip (you suggested that you might have 5 or 6 day break), I will suggest the following:
Fly to Paris. Spend two nights in Paris & see the major sites. Rail to Luxembourg (I enjoyed the trip, especially along the river (Moselle, I think)). A night in Lux., some sites to see there, not the frienliest people, in my experience.

From Luxembourg, I went to Frankfurt and spent a night or two (not recommended for you) then headed to Arnhem, Holland. The rail trip was quite scenic along Rhine. On the way to Arnhem, I stopped in Cologne to visit the great Gothic church that is practically next door to the Hauptbanhof.

Arnhem seemed to have some nightlife, quite a few young people about having a good time. My visit there (for the 101st Airborne memorial) was ruined by illness (food poisoning, I think, from something I got at the Koln Hbf.

Then on to Amsterdam. Rail back to Paris for the return flight. You might be interested in adding a stop Belgium.

 
Jan 26th, 2003, 11:35 PM
  #4  
jen
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Hi Smalls,
I'm assuming you're under 25 if you're taking a college class.
Forget about renting a car if you're on a budget; you'll get a rental surcharge because of your age. Check out the budget airlines themis mentions and remember that generally the prices are cheapest if you book far in advance. You might want to check out the list of cities served by easyjet and ryanair and then decide where you want to go(...how about Athens??). Definitely go to the Netherlands, but book cheap lodging in advance. You can rent bikes in Amsterdam and have a blast! Forget about traveller's checks. Hostels can be bare-bones and grungy, or they can be simple and delightful - but you'll probably meet lots of other young travellers from different countries and they are generally a very good source of information, so I'd try them on one of your first trips so you know if you're 'hostel types' or not. Enjoy!
 
Jan 27th, 2003, 07:47 AM
  #5  
rex
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,194
While it is true that a surcharge will apply to drivers under 25 years of age - - 15 $USD per day for a rental with www.its-cars-hotels.com for example - - it COULD still be a viable way to see certain destinations in England or Wales. Just a thought. Cars with automatic transmission available for young drivers there too.

Best wishes,

Rex
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