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Last minute trip to meet up with my son-help!

Last minute trip to meet up with my son-help!

Nov 18th, 2008, 07:44 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Last minute trip to meet up with my son-help!

Details-26 year old son not coming home from where he is working in India for Christmas. He has said that he could probably fly somewhere in Europe or Middle East(Dubai?) for about a week to meet up with the rest of the family(hubs,myself and 23 year old daughter) BEFORE Christmas.He has a ticket using miles from American that we can exchange for a rerouted ticket.

Questions-where would you pick for a quick week's trip around the 8th of December? Where in Europe? Our family has traveled extensively there and both kids lived there during study abroad in college .

Son and hubs have not been to Greece-how would a trip in Dec.be?Daughter and I were just there last year for a driving trip so she isn't too thrilled.

The whole family hasn't been back to England for many years-too expensive or too cold?(We are from Chicago!)

Northern Germany for Christmas markets although hubs and son don't seem to be on board about it?Daughter could look at several grad schools on her list she is applying to.

South of Spain(around Malaga) possibly?Thought of possibly going to Gilbratar or Morocco?

Is there anywhere you have been that you would recommend for one of our last family vacations? I had always wanted to go to Cairo or to Australia as a family but there just isn't enough time for travel there at this point.

I want someplace that we can reconnect as a family for our "holiday celebration" that is easy to get to (read major European cities)and that would provide something for everyone to enjoy...eating,shopping,sightseeing,
history,etc.Husband has some health issues with heart and needing a breathing machine for sleep so don't want a third world country and going back to India to visit him has been overruled-too many days of dal and malaria pills! Thanks everyone! Need to decide ASAP!
dutyfree is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 07:54 AM
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How about Brussels for a few days and Bruges for a few days? Plenty of good food and shopping in Brussels, and Bruges is probably one of my favorite towns in Europe.

Or Amsterdam?
yk is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:03 AM
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Paris-- tons of connecting flights and definitely something for everybody. Rent an aprt.
Viajero2 is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:06 AM
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Michael is online now  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:06 AM
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I found Cairo fascinating and the weather there would obviously be a lot better. I don't understand why a week isn't enough time for Cairo compared to anywhere else. Sure, it is a longer plane trip from the US, but otherwise, don't see the reasoning; it would be shorter from India than some other places in Europe. I imagine it's no more difficult to get to than Morocco (perhaps a bit longer from the US, I went through Rome). It wouldn't be longer than Dubai, but I wouldn't step foot in that country myself for lots of reasons.

No where in Europe is going to be warm in December, so I wouldn't expect anything on that front, and I would not go to Greece as part of a Greek trip that is great is the islands, where I wouldn't go in December. Besides, I think Greece could take more time than Cairo to do things, as you could just spend time in Cairo alone as there is lots to see and do there (or the immediate environs, like Sakkara or Memphis, or even Alexandria).

I don't know what you are thinking of as a third-world country, but I sure wouldn't go to Morrocco if that were a concern. Egypt is definitely not the most efficient place in the world, and pretty third-worldish in areas. Even though I think it is fascinating, I would not go there with medical concerns, you have to be careful about catching certain bacteria and other things in Egypt which can make you sick, in the water and food.

South of Spain sounds okay to me. How about Malta.
Christina is online now  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:12 AM
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budapest? cold, but the baths for winter fun, great sights, lots of music in certain restaurants that i personally find so so entertaining.

dubai with a few days in oman would also be different, warm and defintely can be very luxurious.we realy enjoye dour desert day and woudl have liked to have spent more time there ( in the desert).

lincasanova is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:26 AM
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I think Turkey is supposed to be a big hot spot these days.
kelliebellie is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 08:36 AM
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The ice hotel in Sweden opens that week:

kelliebellie is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 09:36 AM
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What a delightful dilemma. Aren't grown children wonderful!!

Consider Barcelona. It has a relatively mild climate, lots to see and explore (you could do a side trip to Mallorca for beaches if you desire something even warmer), pretty decent shopping and fabulous eating.

After having spent Christmases in Acapulco, Paris, Salzburg, Garmisch, and Istanbul, it's our destination with our grown son this year and we are very excited about it.

Wherever you go, hope it works out wonderfully. Enjoy.
JulieVikmanis is online now  
Nov 18th, 2008, 10:25 AM
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I wouldn't rule out London. Lots of great atmosphere before the holidays. Weather is typically much milder than Chicago all winter. Consider renting an apartment for good family time and saving costs by having breakfast and perhaps a few other meals in. Prepared food from supermarkets or even Harrods or similar can be a good value.
laurie_ann is online now  
Nov 18th, 2008, 10:29 AM
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My temptation would be Dubai, to see it before it financially crashes into oblivion or even further weirdness or whatever. Also, even though your son is young and healthy, is there any consideration of not putting him through some horrifically long plane flight?

You're not going to get any guarantees about weather at this time of year, and the "warm" climates sometimes handle cold spells less well than the places that expect December to be cold.

Why not look at what's most convenient first, involving the fewest plane changes for all of you?

And I hope you don't mind my adding that you seem to be loading an awful lot of pressure for it to be a last family vacation, Christmastime, everybody happy, etc. People are likely to be tired, want some down time, and be relaxed, yes? I think the place matters less than people feeling its a vacation or a lark.
zeppole is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 10:47 AM
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I'm with Zeppole on this - it's not so much a matter of geography as of attitude and intent. The flying is strenuous for both and expensive for you, and you'll need a couple of days to decompress and get a feeling of togetherness going amongst yourselves. That's best done in an apartment in a big city, where you have a semblance of family life, where you make your own breakfast at whatever time you feel like it, and where a quick walk around the block, just for a leg stretch, or a drink at the nearest pub, is as easiliy possible as is an excursion to a museum or such if that appeals.

Considering how he's young and can use miles, whereas you don't want to fly that far and spend that much, London seems to be the place. No shortage of good connections from India or from ORD.

In a travel mag I get I see [email protected] offering an apartment, email or call 011 (from the US) -44-20-7376-7646 - I know nothing more about this place, and there must be a gazillion others.

London weather in winter tends to be mellow, I think you'd be just fine.
DalaiLlama is offline  
Nov 18th, 2008, 07:42 PM
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We had a similar situation. DH and I are in the Seattle area and my son is in Delhi. We just met in October for a fabulous time in Turkey. We met in Istanbul which was an easy, direct flight from Delhi. We all loved it. My trip notes will be posted very soon.
linawood is offline  
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