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Europe: Western Cafés, castles, architecture, art, wine, the Euro, gastronomy, let´s meet up, and pub crawls.! Oh oui, backpackers paradise...

Raileurope.com: See Europe by train
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Old 09-14-2005, 08:28 PM   #1
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This is my first trip to Europe with some friends and so far, it's expensive...duh! we're planning amsterdam, munich, venice, rome, paris, milan, barcelona, and madrid. (i know, could we fit anymore into one trip...yes, and of course this may get cut down by half...bummer) anyways, we were wondering how the rest of you guys got around, how the prices were, you know the basics. and if you know a way to make some money that would be great. (loans, grants, scholarships, etc..) i can't wait so lay it all on me! :boxing:

-excited
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Old 09-15-2005, 01:06 AM   #2
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Flying in and then taking the train is typically the easiest way - though you can often find cheap flights within Europe as well. Plenty of people find work at hostels, bars, or teaching english.

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Old 09-15-2005, 07:18 AM   #3
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A few friends of mine have been strapped for cash and have handed out flyers for discos and clubs in Europe...I don't know what the pay is like but it's cash-in-hand which is good if you're only in town for a couple of days.

One mistake I made in Germany while taking the train to avoid...I bought my ticket on the train (didn't have time beforehand) but sat in first-class without realizing it...mucho expensive ! Make sure you get on the economy (i.e. steerage) cars.

Hope you have a great time!

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Old 09-15-2005, 09:35 AM   #4
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Eurolines is a bus company that runs through Europe. It's usually pretty cheap, but sometimes the train price is about the same. You can check their prices online.

A lot of the cities you're going to are very touristy, so if you're going in the summer, expect lots of crowds and things being overpriced. Of course you can do things cheaper, by shopping around (get out of the really touristy areas to eat/ drink, buy groceries instead of eating out, don't buy souvinirs in the really touristy areas, etc).

Staying in hostels can be a lot cheaper, especially if you book ahead. If you have a semi firm itinerary in place, you can get things booked, so you're not looking for a room at the last minute and paying much dinero. It's a cheap deposit and you have a guaranteed room.

Flying from city to city can be cheap on flights like ryanair.com, germanwings.com, wizzair.com, etc. There are a lot of low budget airlines, so make sure to shop those for inter-Europe travel.

Getting there doesn't have to be as expensive as you might think, even if you're flying in the summer. Don't eliminate flying into places like Dublin or London. You can usually get a cheap flight to the mainland from either city (if you do hit London, easyjet.com is based in England, so it's another cheap flight site).

Search!! Don't just settle. Good sites are sidestep.com, aerlingus.com, studentuniverse.com, etc. I found that booking about four months in advance was ideal.

Make sure you have an atm/debit card. You get the most current exchange rates, you don't have to deal with much cash, and they're just so handy. Plus, if you have online banking, you can track your spending and purchases.

Good luck.
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Old 09-19-2005, 08:57 AM   #5
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I would say that a Eurail pass is the easiest and most comfortable way to get around (in most places). The best way I know to save money, besides finding some side job, would be to cook you're own food. This drastically lowers the bill especially when you're with a group of people. If you're into partying a good strategy to save on drinks is pick up some beer or alcohol from a store and getting tipsy before you go out. Drinks at the bar tend to be expensive.
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