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independent travel - cheaper or more expensive?

independent travel - cheaper or more expensive?

Old Feb 12th, 2003, 06:39 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,749
It's nice jsmith, that you reinterpreted the original question and answered what pakitty already clearly stated in it. But what pakitty was asking was if anyone had compared prices -- not which was preferable, as she (or he) was already aware of which was preferable. Most of the statements really did have a lot more to do with the question than your comments. Sorry, but that's the way I read it.

And if some one asked the price comparison between cauliflower and cantelope, your opening comments would be most appropriate also, not a discussion of whether cantelope or cauliflower is more healthy, or which one tastes better.
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Old Feb 12th, 2003, 08:18 PM
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Patrick, guess I didn't make myself clear. What I was trying to say was that you can't compare the cost of a trip when you are changing all the parameters. The cost will change significantly when comparing a hotel to a hostel, first class train fare to shanks mare, etc Many of the comments seemed to stress how cheaply they could travel. Fremont says he spent $5000 on a six month tour of Europe. That's less than $30 a day so how can that possibly relate to anything an average traveller would spend.

Pakitty said it was difficult to compare prices. It is.
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Old Feb 13th, 2003, 05:51 AM
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jsmith, I agree with you. Also, I'd like to clarify, the example I gave was undoubtedly extreme, albeit true. I wanted to show an example of how much someone could save if they really wanted to.

First of all, my 6 month trip was many years I go when I was in my 20's, when costs were much lower. Also, I was able to drastically cut costs by finding 'off the books' jobs, pretty much every where I went, that covered the cost of R & B.

I don't travel 'on a shoestring' now, though I still am able to save money by travelling independently. Not always because I'm trying to, simple because that's the way it turns out. Happy travels everyone!
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Old Feb 13th, 2003, 06:02 AM
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OK, yes I agree that those comparisons are meaningless. I guess I was referring to the posts that were addressing things like whether you paid more for a hotel when you book it independently that when you get that same hotel on a tour. I know people who literally copy tours from a package, going to the same cities and staying in the same hotels. That would be the only way to even come close to comparing the prices obviously -- and even then how do you compare the tour bus cost to independent train cost -- but I suppose adding up the individual trains would be the logical comparison, added to the hotels to get the comparison for the package tour -- also allowing for meals.
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Old Feb 13th, 2003, 09:10 AM
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Thanks, Fremont, for explaining how you got 6 months in Europe for $5000 - shouldn't you add your "wages" to the cost.

Maybe the travel industry should price everything on a single person basis and then they could give a discount for multiple persons travelling together. Voila - the single person surcharge is eliminated.
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Old Feb 13th, 2003, 09:54 AM
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jsmith, well, it's difficult for me to explain. I can't really think of it in terms of adding 'wages' (room, food, and a small stipend in each case) to the total of what was my final out of pocket expense.

Yes, I had to put in some time at each job, and have less flexibility in my schedule on the days I was scheduled to work. Yet, I'm talking pouring coffee & passing out pastries for a few hours each morning, or cleaning out chalet rooms for 2 days a week, or checking people into a hostel in Jerusalem a few nights a week.

I got so much more than I put in. I feel it doesn't 'cost' me a penny. I can't put a price on what I received, from what to this day remains the wisest thing I've done in my life (and I've lived a pretty full life with lots of accomplishments).

Like the commercial says, it was priceless.
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Old Feb 13th, 2003, 10:07 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 25
Incidentally, if you're curious about last year's Paris breakdown:
Airfare in Feb from west coast: $425 (tax included)
Centrally located (next to Notre Dame) hotel: $26/night
Coffee & croissant in local bar $3
In bistro or picnic fixings $5-$10
Dinner: A few nice, yet not fancy dinners out: $10-$15. Or a few nights of 'picnic' fixings again: $6-$8

Including a Metro Pass, a few museums, a ballet performance ($18) a pair of shoes ($45), and some gifts for myself and others ($150), I probably spent around $1100 -$1200.

In case you were wondering.

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