Tips on travelling through Europe on a Budget

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Travel Features >> Tips on travelling through Europe on a Budget

Tips on travelling through Europe on a Budget

June 23, 2011

Travelling through Europe, exploring fabled cities like Paris, Rome and Athens has been on your mind for as long as you can remember. Soaring airfares and high hotel costs have deterred you from taking that European holiday you always dreamed of. But hold on – it’s not impossible. Below we give you some tips and advice on how to beat the price line and enjoy Europe to its fullest without breaking the bank! Read on to find out how:

Plan your holiday dates wisely:
Summer maybe the ideal time to visit Europe but that’s when everyone holidays and airlines and hotels make hay while the sun shines (literally!). Be a little flexible in your vacation dates and see how your cost comes plummeting down. Make that trip in late spring or even winter – granted it may be a little chilly, but think about bargain prices at hotels and the peace and quiet without being run over by tourist crowds. More interaction with the locals will give you an enhanced experience of the destination!

Train travel across Europe versus Flights:
Taking flights is expensive business. Cut down costs by buying a Rail Pass that allows you to travel cross continent across Europe. Besides being economical, there is a certain charm about train travel. The countryside in Europe is beautiful and travelling by train gives you a chance to take in the visual beauty as you chug along from one vibrant town to another. To be really smart, take a night train – you may not be able to see any countryside but the upside is that you will save on a hotel night’s cost!

Eat like a local:
Restaurant bills are bound to burn a hole on your pocket in Europe. Most hotels in Europe offer you free continental breakfast. Don’t pass it up! Fortify yourself with freshly baked croissants, orange juice and a cup of steaming coffee before you set out. Keep lunch light: a sandwich, salad or baguette on the go at a local street vendors cart will keep you going. Remember each time you sit at a restaurant you will pay for the service and the tips expected are heavy, besides the time spent. Of course that doesn’t mean that you skip the experience of a fine meal at a good restaurant – just budget for it by eating sensibly at other meals!

When in Italy, if you are having a cup of coffee, remember that if you stand and have the coffee it will cost you less than if you sit a table and get served!

Smart ways of getting around within a city:
Depending on how many days you will be spending in a city, buy a metro pass. In most cases the metro pass will also allow to use the bus service. Check on this. The metro/bus pass is a much cheaper option to taxi travel which is phenomenally expensive! If you like walking then explore the city on foot. If you have the stamina, there is no better way to experience a city!

Check for freebies
Granted that museum entrances are expensive in Europe, but let’s let you into a secret. There are some days when entrances are free. Here are some pointers: In Paris the Notre Dame and the Louvre are free on the first Sunday every month, so plan your visit to these places accordingly. In Rome visit the Forum, St Peter’s Basilica and the Spanish Steps – no entrance fees required here.

Try and find out about free walking tours in the city you are visiting. These walking tours are a great way of getting an insight into the city and are free except for a nominal tip for the guide at the end of your tour.

More information on places to visit in Europe

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