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    Default Travel tips - 3 weeks in europe

    I'm leaving in two weeks and I've only ever travelled overseas to fiji with family when I was younger. I'm on my own this time so I need to be prepared! What did you forget that you really needed? What did you find out when you got there that would have helped in advance? How'd you carry your money? How did you use a phone/the internet?
    I'm going to london, paris, berlin, dusseldorf, cologne, amsterdam and brussels, and I'm so excited I'm going to jump out of my skin Any advice for things to do would be much appreciated also - just in case I've missed anything!

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    FearlessLeader is offline Winner 2013 - Most Memorable Thread
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    Default Re: Travel tips - 3 weeks in europe

    Yay! How exciting gosh I haven't been in Europe for so long I'm really not sure about money/phone/internet stuff. What sorts of places will you be staying at? Lots of places have safes in the rooms you can put extra cash/cards/passports in.
    Um... A good money saving tip is to buy lunches/dinners from a supermarket instead of a cafe. You can get pre-made sandwiches, salads, etc and a piece of fruit and a yogurt. If you don't have breakfast included with your accomodation, try to find somewhere close by to eat and go there every morning. It saves having to think about where to go and when you're on your own it's nice to have somewhere somewhat familiar to go each day.
    A little travel washing line can be a godsend. As can a travel hairdryer. You can use a hairdryer to dry out not-quite dry clothes and shoes. And speaking of shoes, take good waterproof ones. Low leather boots would be perfect- it will be cold and probably wet and you'll be walking lots.
    Oh and lots of things in Europe close early in winter, so check opening hours. Me and a friend couldn't get into London zoo at 3pm because it was one hour before sunset!


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    I don't know what accommodation you're planning on, but in the cheaper hotels the bathrooms may be communal and very, very basic (or a bit icky). I found it invaluable to take a toiletries bag with a hook on it so you can hang it from the shower head and have easy access to shampoo/soap etc.

    For phone, you can get international roaming on your mobile. For internet, there are internet cafes everywhere, and most hotels have computers for net use in the lobby (or somewhere to connect your laptop).

    For money - I mainly used my eftpos card/visa debit.

    Have fun! I LOVE Europe.

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    Witwicky is offline A closed mouth gathers no foot.
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    I travelled to Europe in June...nowadays everywhere has free wifi (there are security concerns with this, but we still used it, especially at our place of accommodation). We hired apartments/houses most of the time instead of staying in hotels because it turned out to be much cheaper. They all had wifi.

    I carried money in a travel bag under my clothes (one of those flat ones that stay close to the body). We bought a cheapo mobile phone while over there to stay in touch with other family members who were in Europe at the time (otherwise we probably wouldn't have bothered with it).

    Make sure you carry some loose change around with you, a lot of the toilets cost money to use and they won't accept big notes. I was in a predicament in Italy where I was busting and only had a 20 euro note on me...I was almost tempted to hand the whole thing over

    If you have an iPhone, check out what apps you can download now that don't need the internet to work over there. I downloaded a couple of translator apps and some lonely planet ones, they were all helpful. Be careful of using your phone on the metro, as phone theft is common on busy trains. There were signs everywhere about it and a few people warned us.

    Don't forget your phone adaptor


    Also, we pre-bought tickets for sights wherever possible...the queues were ridiculous...although you are travelling in the off-season so it won't be as bad. Because you are travelling then, I would suggest taking a little travel raincoat.

    I agree with FL - getting food from supermarkets and stalls is way cheaper...especially markets.
    Last edited by Witwicky; 02-11-2012 at 16:04.

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    Hi there, wow, 3 weeks in Europe. How wonderful! Are you on a tour? If so, then you won't have to worry too much about lugging bggage around, but less is always more! Pack your bag, then take half of it out. (My last 3 week trip in Europe was with our 2 kids and we did carry on baggage only). Lugging heavy bags around is no fun! As for money, you will need some cash, but try not to carry too much cash- check with your bank to see if they can offer you a no fees 'debit' credit card, which you put your own money on and use it as a credit card with no fees. Use a money pouch that fits over your skin and keep your cash and cards in there, as well as passport (if on tour, the company should look after passport for you). As for your phone, take it into a shop before you go (eg Optus or whatever your phone company is with) and ask for the cheapest option for use when overseas. They may be able to give you free global texts or something like that, otherwise it will be super expensive international rates and you will get a shocking surpise when the bill arrives, so make sure you know exactly how much it costs to access internet from your phone. If they can't offer this, consider using internet cafes only as they are very cheap. Have a great time. I'm jealous lol.

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    Ooo I didn't even think about a hair dryer. And thank you A for the tip about buying lunch from a supermarket - I didn't think of that either! We're staying in like 4 star hotels, so we're not exactly roughing it lol but breakfast isn't included and is pretty expensive. I'm pretty sure there's free internet at all of them but I'd be taking my phone, and DH keeps saying that even having it on and receiving anything costs something... hmm.

    For money I think I'm going to just use my visa debit card, and take out a small amount of cash in each city when I get there, enough that would be covered by insurance. We're only in each city for a couple of days so the fees shouldn't be too bad.

    Thanks everyone for the help

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    Quote Originally Posted by Witwicky View Post
    I travelled to Europe in June...nowadays everywhere has free wifi (there are security concerns with this, but we still used it, especially at our place of accommodation). We hired apartments/houses most of the time instead of staying in hotels because it turned out to be much cheaper. They all had wifi.

    I carried money in a travel bag under my clothes (one of those flat ones that stay close to the body). We bought a cheapo mobile phone while over there to stay in touch with other family members who were in Europe at the time (otherwise we probably wouldn't have bothered with it).

    Make sure you carry some loose change around with you, a lot of the toilets cost money to use and they won't accept big notes. I was in a predicament in Italy where I was busting and only had a 20 euro note on me...I was almost tempted to hand the whole thing over

    If you have an iPhone, check out what apps you can download now that don't need the internet to work over there. I downloaded a couple of translator apps and some lonely planet ones, they were all helpful. Be careful of using your phone on the metro, as phone theft is common on busy trains. There were signs everywhere about it and a few people warned us.

    Don't forget your phone adaptor


    Also, we pre-bought tickets for sights wherever possible...the queues were ridiculous...although you are travelling in the off-season so it won't be as bad. Because you are travelling then, I would suggest taking a little travel raincoat.

    I agree with FL - getting food from supermarkets and stalls is way cheaper...especially markets.
    Must get myself one of those travel bags.
    Phone adaptor, thank you for reminding me! There's so many little things to do before I leave I'm stressing out and forgetting everything.

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    Default Travel tips - 3 weeks in europe

    How exciting!!
    For money you have those travel money belts so you don't have all your money sticking out of your purse. If your using your cards ask about fees, and which ATMs to use at your bank before you leave.
    Lots of hotels have free wi-fi, or at least a designated area.

    Europe is very wet at the moment, and cold, (it will be colder then an Aussie winter in the next few weeks, they're forecasting snowfall in some areas in the next week) so remember to pack warm and waterproof!
    If your hiring a car make sure it has all the winter equipment.

    Also in very tourist-y places like London, your hotel will often have discounts on entry fees to places, and you can actually buy tickets at your hotel, which saves you waiting hours!

    Hope you have a wonderful time!

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    Quote Originally Posted by littleriv View Post
    Hi there, wow, 3 weeks in Europe. How wonderful! Are you on a tour? If so, then you won't have to worry too much about lugging bggage around, but less is always more! Pack your bag, then take half of it out. (My last 3 week trip in Europe was with our 2 kids and we did carry on baggage only). Lugging heavy bags around is no fun! As for money, you will need some cash, but try not to carry too much cash- check with your bank to see if they can offer you a no fees 'debit' credit card, which you put your own money on and use it as a credit card with no fees. Use a money pouch that fits over your skin and keep your cash and cards in there, as well as passport (if on tour, the company should look after passport for you). As for your phone, take it into a shop before you go (eg Optus or whatever your phone company is with) and ask for the cheapest option for use when overseas. They may be able to give you free global texts or something like that, otherwise it will be super expensive international rates and you will get a shocking surpise when the bill arrives, so make sure you know exactly how much it costs to access internet from your phone. If they can't offer this, consider using internet cafes only as they are very cheap. Have a great time. I'm jealous lol.
    No not on tour, a friend and I are going ourselves, we each have 1 suitcase and 1 carry bag but luckily I booked all of our hotels very close to either the city's main train station or within walking distance of one a few stops away. Thanks, I'll ask about the texts thing - that's all I'd really need to keep in touch with friends in Germany, and then I was thinking of just using Skype with the hotel's internet to talk to DH and the kids at home.


 

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