First time to Europe-family of 5

Old Nov 9th, 2015, 08:21 PM
  #41  
 
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I'd definitely allot an extra couple of days to London. You don't know how jetlag will affect all of you and if it takes one or more of you to recover, your time in London won't be remembered very fondly (or at all )
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 02:35 AM
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A long shot but you could drive the 4 plus hours to Toronto airport, pay in our worthless Canadian dollars and fly direct to London and likely back from Rome.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 03:04 AM
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I will say up front that Rome is not among my favorite places, but I have been there.
For a comparatively short time I still say you can have a more enjoyable trip, both sight-wise and energy wise with two cities and day trips from them to reach outto see more of the country.
Rome is of course interesting, but it is spread out--and a long way to get there, even flying--takes time in and out of airports, etc.
Think of cathedral towns around London, and almost innumeralble places around Paris for day trips--or even Normandy or the Loire for a few days overnight.
There was a marvelous post here for a list of aparthotels in Paris--would be great for your family.
You are taking your family at a wonderful time of life--and you will plant the seeds of "return to Europe" in them. You don't have to see it all now.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 03:05 AM
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http://www.cityzenbooking.com/en/r-3-85-paris.aspx
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 03:44 AM
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Of the three cities you mention, the kids might prefer London and Rome to London and Paris, which apart from the Eiffel Tower may not thrill them so much.

I don't know many kids who can resist the lure of the Colosseum.

this is when involving the kids in the decision should pay dividends.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 03:52 AM
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I will mention one of our approaches to planning our trip--we said "we'll do some things YOU want to do and we'll do some things WE want to do". Our list was "cathedrals"--the kids' list was "shopping". It wasn't long before "cathedrals" were also on their lists. But we did do a lot of sports store shopping also!!
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:15 AM
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Looking at airfare this morning and need to know -which airport in London is the best to fly into? We can also fly out of Pittsburgh, PA and it looks like I can get a flight for half of what I would pay out of Cleveland.

Pittsburgh to LHR (Heathrow) $553.90 Icelandair Part operated by JetBlue Airways

Cleveland to LHR $1017.50 LOT Polish Airlines Part operated by United Airlines

Pittsburgh to LGW (Gatwick Airport) $553.90 Icelandair
Cleveland to LGW $1017.50 LOT Polish Airlines

Both the same prices-saving us over $2300! So I think we will fly out of Pittsburgh! But which is the best airport in London to fly into?
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:21 AM
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Well I am asking the question of airports, which would be the best flying out of Rome? Again, we can fly either into Pittsburgh or Cleveland.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:23 AM
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Which is best to fly into? Depends on you define best.

Gatwick is like 30 miles South of London.

Heathrow is about 17 miles Westish from London.

Flying into the cheapest airport is still cheapest when you factor in your ground transportation, so why not fly into Gatwick?
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:30 AM
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FCO is generally the less expensive Rome airport to fly in and out of if you're flying a legacy carrier.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:43 AM
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Best airport is which you can get the cheapest/most convenient flights into/out of.

Have you checked the flights on Icelandair? Doesn't this require a fairly long stopover (sometimes 10 or 11 hours) in Iceland versus no change of planes for other airlines?
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 04:55 AM
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That's enough time to get out and get some fresh air and grab a bite to eat and maybe a shower before continuing with your flight.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 05:01 AM
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Unfortunately, we would have 2 stops.

1st in Boston with a 2hr 26 min layover -we could get dinner
2nd in Iceland with a 1hr 15 min layover-not too long at all.

As much as I don't want 2 stops If we could add $2300 to our budget, we might be able to stay longer!
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 05:18 AM
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I'm confused about your airfare quotes. Are you looking at buying two separate one way tickets? Not always, but often a roundtrip is cheaper even when it is an open jaw like you are looking at.

If you have any flexibility at all in dates, take a look at ITASoftware and use their flexible dates and stays option. You can't buy tickets there, but you can get an idea of prices and then buy elsewhere. Typically, but not always, buying directly from the airline itself is your best bet as far a lowest prices.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 05:39 AM
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Weird. ITA Matrix is showing the best fare for June as $1730 for a PIT-LHR, LGW-PIT (Air Canada, single connection in YYZ) and $1763 for a CLE--LHR, LGW-CLE (Air Canada, single connection in YYZ, AC Rouge on return).
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 05:47 AM
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We belong to AAA, so I just used their site for an idea of price. The date is June 14th, one way from Pittsburgh to LGW.
Leaving Pit at 5:25 Pm on the 14th
Arriving LGW 11:45 am on the 15th
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 05:47 AM
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PIT-FCO the cheapest I see is $1524 on United/SAS (stops in EWR and OSL).

Fare Construction (can be useful to travel agents):
PIT UA X/NYC SK X/OSL SK ROM 462.50VHUSEUE SK X/CPH SK X/CHI AA PIT 432.50WHUSEUE NUC 895.00 END ROE 1.00 XT 5.50YC 7.00XY 5.00XA 35.40US 11.20AY 6.20ZN 2.20EX 8.10HB 18.20IT 0.80MJ 2.90VT 16.10ZO 496.00YQ 13.50XF PIT4.50 EWR4.50 ORD4.50

I only include that because it is United out and American in, which strikes me as odd but whatever.


CLE-FCO, the cheapest I see is $1882 (American with a single connection in Charlotte)
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 06:01 AM
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For anyone else that's interested:

YYZ-LGW June 14th non-stop
FCO-YYZ June 30th non-stop

$869 Canadian
$670 US
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 06:05 AM
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<i>We belong to AAA, so I just used their site for an idea of price. The date is June 14th, one way from Pittsburgh to LGW.
Leaving Pit at 5:25 Pm on the 14th
Arriving LGW 11:45 am on the 15th</i>

Why one way? Were you looking at flying into London and out of Rome?

ITA Matrix shows me a PIT-LHR (connection in CLT) and FCO-PIT (connection in CLT) on American for $1790.

For one way trips, I do see the Iceland air $599 flight from PIT-LHR and the $1129 SAS flight from FCO-PIT (connection in ARN, ORD).

Looks like it's cheapest to book the American flight.

Going to kayak, I see some different things.

http://www.kayak.com/flights/PIT-LON...-06-25/6adults

Aer Lingus has a $1378 fare but it's two connections.

The cheapest single connection fare shown on kayak is $1831 on American and it is bookable.
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Old Nov 10th, 2015, 06:09 AM
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<i>For anyone else that's interested:

YYZ-LGW June 14th non-stop
FCO-YYZ June 30th non-stop

$869 Canadian
$670 US</i>

Very nice but I didn't realize that the op was willing to fly out of YYZ. Only the OP can decide if getting in and out of Canada is worth any perceived savings.
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