Please help! Europe trip 2022

Old Dec 31st, 2021, 03:52 PM
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Please help! Europe trip 2022

Iím trying to plan a solo European trip and hit every country I can, if feasible. Thinking of starting in Dublin, and going into into England, then France, (maybe Belgium), Amsterdam, Berlin, Warsaw, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, then Russia (yes I know I need a visa to get in) and if I have time and donít run out of money go from St. Petersburg into Helsinki and fly out of Finland.

The cities listed are the places I want to go for sure, the countries: I donít care what city I end up in.

Iíve heard the Eurail pass would be good since I will be doing multiple countries, but please let me know if this isnít the best way to get around.

Iím also wondering if booking youth hostels in advance is a good idea or to just wing it when I get there since I donít know what cities exactly I might end up in?

Booking in Ireland seems to be difficult. Not sure if this is because of the pandemic or if there is an easier site to go to for booking, Iíve tried anoige.ie

wanting to spread this out for 90 days. Timeline for each country is flexible for me except I would like to stay in Ireland for at least 5 days. Is it doable?
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by travelmountains View Post
Iím trying to plan a solo European trip and hit every country I can, if feasible. Thinking of starting in Dublin, and going into into England, then France, (maybe Belgium), Amsterdam, Berlin, Warsaw, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, then Russia (yes I know I need a visa to get in) and if I have time and donít run out of money go from St. Petersburg into Helsinki and fly out of Finland.

wanting to spread this out for 90 days. Timeline for each country is flexible for me except I would like to stay in Ireland for at least 5 days. Is it doable?
My dear travelmouse, I wonít comment on 11+ countries in 90 days. All I want to say is donít forget weíre in Covid times now, which means tests and different protocols whenever you cross a border.

I myself had planned about two months in specific regions of 3-4 countries, which Iím now reconsidering, weíll probably make it shorter and keep it to two countries, unless something drastically changes for the better.

I believe youíre a young person, with many many years of travel ahead. So choose wisely and monitor the situation, youíll get to live your dream sooner or later, several times over am sure!

Best wishes for a healthy and happy 2022, hope we all get to travel again in the coming yearÖ😊


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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 04:44 PM
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To get the best assistance, it might help readers to understand what your motive/purpose is. What do you want to get out of it? Is it a case of checking places off a list or is it more to get to learn something about these places? It seems, on the face of it, to be the former. Is that correct? 13 countries in 90 days means that you won't experience anything in any depth at all.

In terms of working out whether a Eurail pass is a good purchase, you really need to do some sort of comparison with point to point tickets (purchased in advance if appropriate). With covering a large distance, your travel costs are likely to be high. Buses are often cheaper than trains, but less comfortable in my opinion.

With pre-booking accommodation, a lot depends on when you are travelling (i.e. which months). Out of peak season is likely to be easier, except for those hostels which may close. Have you checked hostelworld?

Lastly, doing this in in a covid world will add complexity as I imagine that regulations will vary for each destination. And language certainly will.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 05:55 PM
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Suggest doing some reading.

This is dated, but should still help with learning how to plan a trip: Rough Guide's "First Time Europe".
This is a good intro to planning a budget trip: Rick Steves' "Europe Through the Back Door".

This is indispensable for train travel, and will explain how to price tickets and passes: https://www.seat61.com/index.html

In normal times your outline is likely doable but rushed (I haven't looked at it in detail): in Covid times it's probably a recipe for a disaster. However... Print off blank calendar pages from the web for the months in question. Fill in where you will sleep each night. Fill in how you will get from city to city, with travel time. For each border crossing research the current requirements and be prepared to keep updating them. Sit back and consider what to cut. No point in worrying about accommodation until you have a reasonably solid itinerary. I used not to bother with advance reservations all the time, these days they are likely required.

Also a good idea to buy a Rail Map of Europe. Looks like the one I usually use is out of stock, but you'll find the relevant links on the seat61 site I linked above.

Last edited by thursdaysd; Dec 31st, 2021 at 06:11 PM.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 08:14 PM
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About the pass you need to check the specific terms for each country. For example in Italy you are required to pay a booking fee on top of the pass. That fee can exceed the cost of the train ride if you'd booked without the pass.Other countries have their own rules.

Is it possible to aimlessly wander from west to east? Sure but it sounds like a recipe for disaster. Ignoring the obvious need for down days. You'll need to do laundry. Likely want a rest and recover day.

You've mentioned until you run out of money. Have to ask how big of a budget do you have? Bouncing around tends to be more expensive than just parking yourself in one area.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 09:01 PM
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and if I have time and donít run out of money go from St. Petersburg into Helsinki and fly out of Finland.

and what happens if you run out of money in Russia?
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 09:30 PM
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OK -- I may be totally wrong, but you sound young. What is your budget - Do you have access to $18,000-$22,000? 90 Days at a minimum of $200 per day. Now, hostels, simple picnic lunches and modest cafe dinners won't cost you close to $200 . . . but factoring in transatlantic airfare, train and bus tickets (or an expensive rail pass and seat reservations), maybe some intra-Europe flights, museum entries, pubs, public transport in the various cities, laundry, phone/data plans, frequent covid tests -- all add up very quickly. You've listed 13 countries in 90 days and some of those countries/cities are very expensive. You may actually need close to $250 or $300 per day all in or close to $27,000+
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 10:07 PM
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Wow, that sounds way high to me. I don't spend that much, and I don't sleep in hostels or subsist on sandwiches (well, not for dinner).

You can get a "fabulous" dorm bed in central London in May 2022 for under $30/night (on Hostelworld).

Last edited by thursdaysd; Dec 31st, 2021 at 10:12 PM.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 10:11 PM
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Backpackers can survive on US$50 per day in the expensive countries and far less in the cheap ones.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 10:42 PM
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Thank you, thursdaysd & kerouac, for correcting the less-than-helpful budget information. I agree it’s perfectly doable for the amounts you mention.

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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 10:56 PM
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Yes -- $50 per day in hostels and self cooking - no denying that. But that covers pretty much nothing else. He will need transatlantic flights, and maybe a Eurail Pass (The cheapest Eurail Pass would be $420-ish but that only allows 10 days of travel w/i 60 days. He will have to travel a whole lot more than that to hit 13 countries. And He wants to be there 90 days so he'd have to buy two consecutive passes but also a lot of point to point tickets. So let's use $1500 just for traveling around on the Continent, Then there is public transit -- it is still cheap in some places for sure but in London for example he'd be paying at least $11-$15 per day depending on how many zones. Museums are mostly free in London -- but almost everywhere else the costs ad up and fast. And the major sites like the Louvre $20 or Tower of London $40

So He 'might' be able to do it on $100 per day but that would be awfully basic and not when he wants to go places like Finland, and London and Ireland which are not cheap. . . . The days of Europe on $50 per day are pretty much over.
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Old Dec 31st, 2021, 11:38 PM
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London is cheaper by bus. In any case, It gets balanced by cheaper places.

Haven't looked at rail fares lately, but buying point to point ahead of time saves a lot of money. I took the train from Zurich to Como for 10 CHF by buying ahead. Of course, I could have paid a great deal more for a tourist train for part of the route, but I got the exact same scenery for a whole lot less.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 12:26 AM
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For cheap travel look for long distance bus lines which also offer passes that are cheaper than rail passes.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 09:47 AM
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Since I'm not planning travel for myself right now, I looked at planning this trip to see what the travel costs should be. Not knowing where the OP lives, I started from New York, so the long-distance flights would vary, but I could fly New York to London in May for $281 non-stop - flying to Dublin would be $381, so better to start in London. Flying back from St. Petersburg in August would be $428, as opposed to $528 from Helsinki. (It might be cheaper to take a three day cruise/tour from Helsinki to St. P and fly home from Helsinki, because that avoids the cost and hassle of a Russian visa.)

Flying from London to Dublin in May costs $23, and Dublin to Amsterdam is $33. Flying to Paris is about the same price, but the flights go into Orly or somewhere even further afield. Amsterdam and Paris to Berlin are about the same price. I priced the trains at seat61.com, and the prices are the cheapest for advance purchase. Amsterdam to Brussels to Paris to Berlin to Warsaw added up to $143. From Warsaw you're likely stuck on buses, Warsaw to Vilnius to Riga to Tallinn adds up to $45 on Flixbus. The ferry to Helsinki is $30 if you pick the right day and time (mid-week) and Helsinki to St. Petersburg by train starts at $33.

So total to/from New York is $1016, or less than $12/day. Leaving aside the long haul flights, it adds up to $307. Of course, that is the absolutely lowest price, and requires booking ahead, but certainly $1,500 seems way high, although it is still only $17/day.

Now, if the OP wants the flexibility of a rail pass, a four day in one month pass for an under-28 traveler is $210, and would cover Amsterdam to Warsaw, provided he did that section in a month.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 10:38 AM
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It seems all the prices flying around this thread are either way high or way low. So figure it will be in the middle somewhere. But, OP, you have a computer, do some research and you can figure out more correctly what it will we. But do know, as with most things in life, whatever you come up with it would be safest to assume you need at least 25-50% MORE. Unless you want to run out of money in Russia.

But you did get a few good pointers: buses (long distance) are almost always cheaper than trains and do go most places. I traveled from Estonia to Latvia to Lithuania by bus. Each trip was really cheap (like about $20 or less) and totally comfortable. You can do that in other countries as well. Forget the pass, waste of money as explained above.

There are decent hostels in city centers but many are in suburbs meaning not insignificant cost of local metros and buses.

If this were precovid I'd say 13 countries in 90 days for a 'smorgasbord" trip was a fine idea for someones first trip to Europe. You won't remember much but overall you'll remember you had this awesome trip. However, it's not precovid so you could run in numerous disasters and spend a huge chuck of your time (and money) in various quarantines or even be denied entry to countries, etc.It really could be a f**king mess. For that reason I'd probably slash the number of countries drastically. You could still have fun. My 'normal' trips sometimes involved 4-6 countries (over 6 or so weeks), I've been to Italy 13 times. But the trip I was planning for post covid was going to be just Italy. Point being there is more to see in each country (especially the one that are 'full' of sites, etc.) than you think.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 10:45 AM
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@isabel - so which of my figures do you think are way low? Have you checked them? Seems you agree about the buses in the Baltics, and the pass for the train section should validate the point-to-point tickets, assuming seat61 is over-optimistic.

However, I entirely agree that planning a trip like this, unless Covid significantly retreats, may well turn out to be a really bad idea.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 11:01 AM
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I agree that you should check the prices for everything and then add at least 30% to that due to the imponderables, both good and bad.

Long distance buses are definitely the cheapest way to get around Europe if you book them in advance and are young enough to be able to withstand the night buses which save you a night of accommodations. Back in the old days, I took plenty of overnight trains (most of which no longer exist due to high speed trains) and survived with no problem, even though it seems insane now to have taken trains like Rome > Amsterdam, Copenhagen > Narvik or Paris > Lisbon.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 11:33 AM
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I have read that night trains are poised to make a comeback, as flights fall into disfavor. (See, for instance, Austrian Railways Nightjet services.) I, too, took a bunch of them in years gone by, these days I might want more privacy (I usually booked couchettes).
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 12:03 PM
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Yes, they will make a weak comeback, but i just hope that it will not be only symbolic.
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Old Jan 1st, 2022, 12:21 PM
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When in 2022 are you hoping to go? It seems almost impossible to develop a realistic approach to this trip given that COVID has really changed the landscape of travel. Who knows if and when it will be easy and feasible to travel the way you’d like? Each country right now has so many rules and regulations that it’s pretty difficult to imagine a multi-country trip. Perhaps you can give us an idea of when you hope to go and, even then, a lot of our suggestions would be hypothetical as we don’t know when travel will be more open. Right now, it’s important to understand the testing requirements, where and when you can test, and what each country requires for entry to stores, restaurants, hotels, transportation, etc.

Travel to one country is much easier to plan right now. I suspect in a few months, we’ll have a better idea of how things will be in the spring. But as we saw this past year, travel opened up a lot last spring, but then the Delta variant hit followed by Omicron, and travel restrictions started to increase again. Who knows what this year will being?

And, I just checked the anoige.ie website and found that the Irish Youth hostel association is currently shut down due to COVID. It anticipates opening up in the spring but no reservations are being taken right now.

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