Going to Europe need help!!

Nov 23rd, 2009, 09:38 PM
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Going to Europe need help!!

So this coming summer 2010, my cousin and I want to travel to Europe. We have figured finances and think that if we can do 75 US$ apiece which is about 50 euros a day then we can stay for 60 days give or take a few days. Is that a reasonable amount of money a day though? Should we try and stay in hostels or hotels? We figured it would peak season for youth hostel's especially (we're both 21).

Now as of itinerary we figured we could fly in to the UK visit Britain, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland in a little over a week. From them we were going to go to France spend maybe 3 days there make a quick trip to Barcelona 2 days probably. Head to Italy spend 2 weeks traveling down and around Italy ( we were also think maybe once we got to Bari to take a ferry over to Greece for 4 or 5 days and maybe from Greece jump a plane to Egypt we both really want to visit Cairo for a few days) once we get back to northern Italy head up to Austria, Hungary, and Czech Republic take that in for a week 1/2 and then go through Germany to the Netherlands and then back to the states. So does anyone think that this could possibly even be plausible? we were thinking a day for travel between each major country too if that helps at all.

We were also planning on purchasing the Global Eurail pass to make travel easier between countries. We were planning to leave around the 24th of May also.

Any thoughts, ideas, criticisms, or suggestions on any of this?
rbkfox is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 09:58 PM
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That's an awfully low budget, even for hostels. The assumption that $75 will get you 50 Euros is a little optimistic, although it depends on the exchange rate, of course. Figure that in most places in Europe, that Euro (or pound) that you've paid $1.50 or more for will spend the way dollars do at home. It's probably just possible, but figure that your eating is going to be pretty basic (as in cheap and portable stuff from grocery stores), and there's not a lot of wiggle room.

The Eurail pass should help though, since it's prepaid and you don't have to worry about train fares in your daily budget, and you can travel overnight at least occasionally. I would think a plane to Egypt was less than totally practical on a number of counts, as well. If you really can spend 60 days, the number of countries is probably possible (expecially if you leave Egypt out of the equation), but that's a lot of jumping around. I would prioritize what I most wanted to see in each country. It might make a more natural routing if you thought in terms of cities and destinations, rather than countries, per se, as well.
persimmondeb is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 10:00 PM
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And buy yourself a Rough Guide or a Let's Go.
persimmondeb is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 11:44 PM
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Forget the budget - you have listed 14 countries in 6 weeks.

Even IF the budget was reasonable, that is at least 7 countries too many . . . . .
janisj is online now  
Nov 23rd, 2009, 11:48 PM
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Oh - I also had a question . . . You have listed 14 countries, Cyprus not being one of them, yet you tagged this 'Cyprus'??
janisj is online now  
Nov 24th, 2009, 12:02 AM
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Please do less. You'll get more out of it. Unless train travel is the end rather than the means- and I know for some people it is.
sheila is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 05:41 AM
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Hostel. Get a hostel book. Decide to be vegitarian. Internal travel, your itinery is all over the place so you need to buy a load of flights at cheap airlines. Many of these do £1 flights that cost you £35 one way so read the small print. If using the train then you need to understand the map more and work those trains.

I'd try to drop out a few euro countries to save the money, so Spain goes but see if you can keep Czech in.
bilboburgler is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 05:52 AM
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As Janisj said,

>Forget the budget - you have listed 14 countries in 6 weeks.

Even IF the budget was reasonable, that is at least 7 countries too many<

ira is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 06:18 AM
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That might be doable from a budget perspective IF you minimize time in big cities, and spend some time on the Lonely Planet website rather than here. (And check into couchsurfing.) But you are being hopelessly ambitious with the number of countries. You won't have enough time to get a feel for the countries, and the more you move the more expensive the trip (not just because you'll need more transport, but because you won't have time to find the cheaper alternatives in each place).

Rail passes aren't always cheaper. Try railsaver.com/default.asp and look at seat61.com. For cheap airfares, whichbudget.com.
thursdaysd is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 08:44 AM
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Did I read that wrong? Britain, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland in a little over a week?
scatcat is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 09:22 AM
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The OP is allowing 2 weeks for Italy, however, which I'm guessing means that s/he is either more interested in Italy, or just more familiar with the stuff s/he would like to see there.

It is a lot of countries, but really not undoable, especially since that's closer to 8 weeks than 6. A less exhausting intinerary might be to--fly into London, explore England and Scotland, take a ferry to Northern Ireland, explore Ireland, take a ferry to France. Wander through the south of France to Spain and then back across to Italy. Take Ferry to Greece. Make your way back to Italy. Make a loop through Switzerland, Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, and then back through the Netherlands and into France, and either fly out of CDG or go back to London. It won't be in-depth, and will involve a lot of time on trains and ferries, but it will give them a taste of a lot of different places. I'm still thinking Egypt is better saved for another trip.
persimmondeb is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 09:32 AM
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Are you doing a research project on European train stations? If so, excellent plan. The budget is problematic, though. Do you play an instrument, or juggle or mime? You may need to get very resourceful.

You could camp. Europe has some lovely campgrounds.

Seriously, I would plan for a shorter period of time and cut way back on the number of places, concentrating on the cheaper destinations. Every time you move, it costs money. Many hostels will eat up your entire daily budget, given the exchange rate. Panhandling at Santa Croce isn't much of a vacation.
StCirq is offline  
Nov 24th, 2009, 09:41 AM
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Yes, you are young and you can do it. I don't know that the railpass is going to be such a good deal for you. In lots of places doing a second-class coach fare is pretty cheap.

Cities are going to be way more expensive, but with that said, you can get some decent deals using hostels. I'll give you a perfect example, my daughter just spent (in February) 10 days in Paris. The total cost was under $900. That included transit passes, museum passes, food, St. Christopher's hostel, trips to Versaille, Chartes, going to the Moulin Rouge and Follies and hitting literally every tourist spot imaginable (except Disney). Paris is one of the most expensive cities and she was stunned by how much cheaper things were outside of the city.

CouchSurfing is a great way to save money.

Go for it, you are only young once!!!!
daveesl is offline  
Nov 28th, 2009, 07:12 PM
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Will join the chorus of folks saying your itinerary is way too ambitious -- unless you want to spend your precious vacation time riding the train and playing "city-tag-you're-it."

Would recommend starting with no more than two cities per week (preferably all within reasonable reach of each other) and researching the sights you really want to see in each. You can (and likely may) then prune things down to fewer cities as needed. Some cities, such as Paris, London, and Rome, can very easily occupy a week's worth of your time or more in themselves.

But hey, it's your trip. And yes, with the budget you're using, would think couch-surfing will be a wise move.
bachslunch is offline  
Nov 28th, 2009, 09:02 PM
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My son is currently couchsurfing through Europe on a less-than-shoestring budget. Some insights I've gained from his tales to date:

1. While it's certainly cheap, it does involve a fair amount of effort. You will need to start several months before you go, using the couchsurfing.org site, fill out a complete profile, post photos, and get friends to write up references for you.

2. It's not fast. You have to write to many people to find someone who will put you up when you plan to be there - you have to connect, and they have to be willing. You generally are NOT going to be able to set this up months in advance. More like a week or two in advance.

3. Once you get there, you can't treat your host like a hotel. You're expected to hang out some, be good company, help with chores a bit, etc., since this person is putting you up gratis - they may not ask, but you should act as a houseguest, not a hotel customer. If you treat your hosts like desk clerks, you'll get the kind of references on the site that will make it difficult to line up couches for your next leg.

That said, my son is having a ball doing this. He ends up spending a week or so in each place, often split between two or three hosts, and is getting to know a lot of people in many countries.
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