With the continent’s high prices and unfavorable exchange rates, a vacation to Europe might seem out of reach. Here at Flight Centre we want you to get the most out of your hard earned Rand. So, before you scrap your dream vacation, check out our Top 5 Tips for Travelling Europe on a Budget. These savvy tips and tricks from our European travel experts will help you to relax and enjoy your holiday without worrying about your wallet.
Tip #1 –Manage your Meals
At first, this might seem like an odd concept, but this tip will save you loads of money in the long run. On average, a meal in Europe will cost you anywhere from €20- 50. Do the math and on a week-long vacation eating three squares a day, dining out can really clean out your pocket book. Instead of opting for expensive restaurant fare, make use of the local bakery and deli for a few meals a day. Sit and enjoy a coffee and an oven-fresh pastry while watching the city wake up or make your own gourmet sandwiches and enjoy a tasty picnic lunch in a nearby park. This is a great way to get a taste of Europe’s finest foods at a fraction of the price!
Tip #2 – Location, Location, Location
When choosing where to stay, location is definitely key and while the ‘just out of town’ option might seem like a good idea, paying for travel to the main attractions in the heart of the city can really add up. Start by doing research well in advance. Sign up for discount sites like Groupon which are great for finding deals at top hotels. As well, hostels can be a fantastic option. With better rates, prime locations and family friendly rooms, booking a hostel can be a great way to save. Before you book make sure read review sites to avoid disappointment upon arrival.
Tip #3 – Planes, Trains and Automobiles
There are a lot of options for getting around Europe, but before paying top dollar, look into some of the continent’s low cost carriers. For cheap flights within Europe try booking with Ryanair, or pre-paying for a 10-pack of Eurorail tickets in advance. Planning out your destinations ahead of time, is a great cost-saving trick especially on inter-country travel. If you’re sticking to a major hub or cities within one country, than be sure to look into public transport. Most European’s get around this way as it is efficient and cost effective with convenient routes.
Tip #4 – Consider a Package
Do a little digging and you’ll discover there are loads of companies selling tickets and passes that give you access to all the cool sights at incredible savings. Rather than pay full price for entry to attractions, use the relationships they have built with thousands of museums, attractions and even restaurants to save you money and even skip the lines! This is great if you are going to many attractions in one city.
Tip #5 – Money isn’t everything.
While it is important to have a budget and to stick to it, there are some things you don’t want to miss. First and foremost look into costs and make a realistic budget from the start. There’s nothing worse than discovering you might not have enough money as your trip winds down. As well, by checking out city guides, you can plan your “must see” list and try and find some deals in advance. Last but not least, have an “I’VE GOT TO DO THAT!” reserve fund. That way, if you want to seize that once in a lifetime opportunity you didn’t budget for, you won’t have to miss out!
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