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Graduate students going to Europe for 1st time - Our Honeymoon. HELP!

Graduate students going to Europe for 1st time - Our Honeymoon. HELP!

Apr 5th, 2014, 04:36 PM
  #41  
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Michael you're awesome! well actually most of you are. Is it horrible that I just wanted someone to tell me what to do? I think we just want to see a few interesting places, but most of just kind of wander about and hang out. Anything to get out of our scrubs.

In regards to car, what is CDW? could you explain that part to me. I don't really understand.
whynotnow is offline  
Apr 5th, 2014, 04:51 PM
  #42  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
I just checked back into this thread. Sorry you were offended. It wasn't my intention and I wasn't being sarcastic. I was just pointing out the obvious. There are things more important in life than planning a trip and that social media is no substitute for a guidebook No one will or has yet to give you an itinerary (unless you want to go to Lille) or recommendations for pubs or sights etc.

Other people suggested you postpone the trip but it looks like you have chosen what I presented as option B: Going in June and winging it. I suggest you quit being stressed out about this. There is nothing wrong with winging your trip. Just be sure to book your hotels.

Someone else suggested to you to buy a Michelin guidebook. That is a good idea.

I am glad you didn't take it personally. (Hope you were being honest about that!) This is actually not a nice community and people are mainly retirees who just like to here themselves talk whether it is helpful or not (and work to get other people banned for pointing that out). I hope you don't waste a lot of money listening to them -- and I am confident you won't. As you already know Airbnb is a perfectly reasonable way to book a trip like this and it will save you a lot of money.

I am sure you will enjoy your trip if you stop stressing about it now and accept the fact that other things in your life truly are more important than overplanning this trip and listening to a lot of pointless brainstorming. The guidebook is what you need. Just make sure you book the major cities for hotels.
sandralist is offline  
Apr 5th, 2014, 04:54 PM
  #43  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
Oh -- and no need to apologize for insulting me needelssly. I get it that you are stressed. Your grad studies are really what is important. All else is twaddle.
sandralist is offline  
Apr 5th, 2014, 05:47 PM
  #44  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,475
CDW=CollisionDamageWaiver

Every rental has liability insurance, but you can waive damage that would occur to your rental in many countries and have your credit card carry it, or if you have an American Express card, buy separate insurance for a relatively low fee.
Michael is online now  
Apr 5th, 2014, 05:48 PM
  #45  
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Sandralist, I appreciate the information. Also, the issue is not with WHAT you're saying but with HOW you're saying it. I might be wrong, but I am sure that you've heard that before, right? There's just no reason to be dismissive, passive aggressive, or plain pretentious. Without being to fluffy, life is about how we communicate and we relate to one another, no? even if it's just on the internet. For example, in your most recent comments you were dismissive to the individuals who you referred to as "retirees" on this board... so what if many of them are retirees? they might have a lot of experience traveling and for better or worse I still appreciate hearing it. Either way, carry on.
whynotnow is offline  
Apr 5th, 2014, 06:13 PM
  #46  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,808
For what it is worth, I went ALL the way back to see what the heck offended you about Sandralist's post and for a psychologist, you need to read a bit better. Just MY opinion. Geez--if that was passive aggressive and all your other banter, what will you label mine. And this is with a big LOL.
When you ask for advice, and don't have even a guide book's background, forgive me.
now, this
Different people recommended Honfleur in Normandy. Don't know too much about it. I just want to go to some pretty towns that have interesting history, maybe some activities.

If you go to a guide book or wiki, and look up Honfleur, you will immediately fall in love with it and WANT to go. So just another indorsement of a place.
Oh, and I'm a "retiree" and felt no dismissal. I have been to Europe for over 50 years, grew up with parents who lived in Paris and other places, and feel just fine about it all.
I am thrilled that you and your fiancé are having this great trip, and a lovely length of time, but don't bite the hands that are giving you good advice--as you say, the internet communication can be "difficult" so give everyone a bit of space if they don't tell you in your chosen "tone''.
Gretchen is offline  
Apr 5th, 2014, 09:35 PM
  #47  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 63,215
>>(and work to get other people banned for pointing that out).<<

Uh - no. No one on Fodors can 'get anyone banned'. Only the editors can do that - either when one is a spammer/advertiser, OR when one engages in personal attacks and breaks the posting rules/guidelines. (no prize for guessing which category fits here)

. . . So you did that all by yourself . . .
janisj is online now  
Apr 5th, 2014, 10:28 PM
  #48  
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Gretchen, on a serious note. I didn't offend me, although I did think it was unnecessary for her/him to take a sarcastic tone, especially making note about being in grad school. It's very passive aggressive and just unnecessary. Again, not what she was saying but how she was saying it.
whynotnow is offline  
Apr 6th, 2014, 04:28 AM
  #49  
 
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You didn't take offense? Really? LOL Great psychology!! ;o)
Gretchen is offline  
Apr 6th, 2014, 06:29 AM
  #50  
 
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Whynotnow,
I just began reading this thread and had to smile -- when I finished up grad school in 2006, I made a very similar trip, with my husband, doing the following:

-Amsterdam – 4 nights/ Train to:
-Bruges – 2 nights/
Train to Lille to pickup car for 7 days.
-Rouen-1 night/
-Honfleur-2 night
-Bayeux-2 nights
-Le Mont St. Michel-1 night
-Dinan (Brittany)-1 night
-Rennes-1 night (drop off car)
-Paris-4 nights

I wouldn't necessarily do all those stops at this point; for instance, I would skip Rouen (not enough time there) and add it to Honfleur, which is a beautiful town, as others have said.

I agree that you should place Paris at the end of the trip -- makes much more sense logistically. You can also easily do Versailles as a day trip.

Renting the car at Lille was a good idea and relatively easy, although it took us a little while to locate the rental agency.

I'll look to see if I have my trip report on the board; if it is, I'll top it for you.

Paule
progol is offline  
Apr 6th, 2014, 06:32 AM
  #51  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Found the trip report:

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-heat-wave.cfm

The photo links are inactive at this point, but you can read the report and see if it gives you any ideas.
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Apr 6th, 2014, 12:29 PM
  #52  
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Thanks Progol! great info. Btw congrats on the MSW, some of the best folks that I work with are the social workers at our hospital.
whynotnow is offline  
Apr 6th, 2014, 01:27 PM
  #53  
 
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And. I return the appreciative comment and say that many of the psych fellows I have worked with are terrific! I'm in NYC, too; what hospital do you work in?

If you want, I'd be happy to exchange emails if you want any more specific info.

My email is: [email protected]

Paule
progol is offline  
Apr 7th, 2014, 09:23 AM
  #54  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 75,889
Day 1 - 2 Travel NYC to Amsterdam
Day 2 - 4 Amsterdam
Day 4 - 6 Bruges/Antwerp
Day 7 - 11 Paris
Day 12 - 18 Cities throughout France
Day 20 - 21 Versailles (he really wants to be there on a specific date for an event
Day 22 - Paris to New York

What do you all think?>

I think it looks really nice - good balance between big cities and smaller towns like those in France - Ideally you may want to ad a day to Amsterdam and perhaps do one of the many sweet day trips from there - like to Zaanse Schans - about a 30 minute train ride (to Koog Zaandijk - then short walk) - experience a different Holland - would only take a half day or so.

https://www.google.com/search?q=zaan...=1600&bih=1075

Glad you can keep a even keel - any forum like this is bound to have posters and comments you may not like - but IME of years on Fodor's most are just trying to be helpful and could say the same thing they did in a kinder gentler way. Yup don't thor w the baby out with the bathwater!

Consider Chartres as one of the French cities you want to explore - the great cathedral is the main thing - steps from the train station. Could be a day trip from Paris and or Versailles.

https://www.google.com/search?q=char...=1600&bih=1075
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 7th, 2014, 01:47 PM
  #55  
 
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Day 2 - 4 Amsterdam
Day 4 - 6 Bruges/Antwerp>

Are you doing Antwerp as a few-hour stop en route to Bruges - this is very very possible since you have to change trains in Antwerp's grand Central Station anyway and the station is right near the heart of town.

Gent is another neat old town, closer to Bruges, to explore - some like it even more than Bruges but to me nothing can compare with Bruges - at least north of the Alps!
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 7th, 2014, 02:27 PM
  #56  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 1,086
Stokebailey, you have not been hearing about the issues for various reasons.

Many people are simply unaware of the issues. They have really only started becoming more of an issue in the last couple of years.

Bear in mind that Airbnb is only 6 years old. While other third party rental sites like VRBO, etc. have been along much longer, it is Airbnb which has caused the market to explode exponentially. They alone now take a booking every 2 SECONDS. As a result, the problems have also increased exponentially. You can find plenty of articles/links with a simple Google search. https://www.google.ca/#q=airbnb+illegal

The bottom line is simple. You MAY be renting a property which is not legally rentable. What that means to you the tourist is that you MAY find yourself turfed out on the street with little or no notice. The riks might be low but the hassle if it happens will be high. So it is a question of risk vs. reward.

For me, the more important factor is are you renting a place where the neighbours do not object to you being there. I know if I LIVED in an apartment and had total strangers arriving next door constantly I would not be happy. So I see there as being a moral issue as well as the legal issues.

What you can be sure of is the issues are becoming more and more common with more and more cities beginning to question the whole idea.
dulciusexasperis is offline  
Apr 8th, 2014, 07:07 AM
  #57  
 
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Posts: 75,889
If the things that dulciusasperis calims are common were than airbnb would get so many bad reviews - but here on Fodor's it is generally applauded by those who have used it - Europe is not New York City.

How many folks in Europe - the subject of this board, have been chucked out of their digs?

Making a mountain out of a Manhattan mole hill!
PalenQ is offline  
Apr 8th, 2014, 10:31 AM
  #58  
 
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PalenQ, how much research into the issues affecting Airbnb have you done? Any?

Before you decide what is a mountain or a mole hill, do your research. You will find that it is becoming more and more of an issue. I cannot emphasize enough that it is increasing EXPONENTIALLY. Google for 'airbnb illegal' and add a city name such as London, Paris, Barcelona, Berlin or any other you care to and you will find plenty of links.
https://www.google.ca/#q=airbnb+illegal+london

Airbnb do NOT screen to determine if a rental is legal or not when they list it. That is up to the person planning to rent a place to find out for themselves. What Airbnb says is that is up to the owner who is listing a property to comply with local laws and regulations. In other words, they wash their hands of the issue. They make money from listings, not from making sure that what is listed is a legal rental.

The issue is not what happened last year, it is what will happen this year or next year. It doesn't take much research to find that problems are set to ramp up dramatically.

Fodor's may 'applaud' them but Fodor's don't have people staying next door to them. The moral issues of renting short term in a RESIDENTIAL building exist even when the rental is legal. Do you applaud people who don't care whether someone living next door to a short term rental is happy about it or not?

If you live in an apartment building, I'd like to see how you would like having total strangers moving in and out every few days or weeks. Put yourself in THEIR shoes.

My warning to anyone planning to use Airbnb is to make sure it is a legal rental. Do you suggest that they not bother making sure it is a legal rental PalenQ? Are you suggesting that whether it is legal or not shouldn't matter?
dulciusexasperis is offline  
Apr 8th, 2014, 10:31 AM
  #59  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 1,086
PalenQ, how much research into the issues affecting Airbnb have you done? Any?

Before you decide what is a mountain or a mole hill, do your research. You will find that it is becoming more and more of an issue. I cannot emphasize enough that it is increasing EXPONENTIALLY. Google for 'airbnb illegal' and add a city name such as London, Paris, Barcelona, Berlin or any other you care to and you will find plenty of links.
https://www.google.ca/#q=airbnb+illegal+london

Airbnb do NOT screen to determine if a rental is legal or not when they list it. That is up to the person planning to rent a place to find out for themselves. What Airbnb says is that is up to the owner who is listing a property to comply with local laws and regulations. In other words, they wash their hands of the issue. They make money from listings, not from making sure that what is listed is a legal rental.

The issue is not what happened last year, it is what will happen this year or next year. It doesn't take much research to find that problems are set to ramp up dramatically.

Fodor's may 'applaud' them but Fodor's don't have people staying next door to them. The moral issues of renting short term in a RESIDENTIAL building exist even when the rental is legal. Do you applaud people who don't care whether someone living next door to a short term rental is happy about it or not?

If you live in an apartment building, I'd like to see how you would like having total strangers moving in and out every few days or weeks. Put yourself in THEIR shoes.

My warning to anyone planning to use Airbnb is to make sure it is a legal rental. Do you suggest that they not bother making sure it is a legal rental PalenQ? Are you suggesting that whether it is legal or not shouldn't matter?
dulciusexasperis is offline  
Apr 8th, 2014, 10:41 AM
  #60  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 75,889
OK throw the baby out with the bathwater! If something is illegal let the local municipality close it down. In my town I know any complaints like you make would be taken seriously and if illegal the place would be shut.

Do you ask if a restaurant has a legal license to operate before going in - do you demand taxi drivers produced proof of being legit - you are putting a lot on the shoulders of the average traveler.

I agree with your points overall.
PalenQ is offline  

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