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Old 03-19-2009, 04:19 PM   #1
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Default Solo to Italy-Summer '09

Hi everyone! I have decided to take a trip to Italy for 3 weeks this June/July even though it now looks like I will be going solo...mostly because im the only one who saved enough money! A few questions I was hoping to find out about...
1. Im hoping to do mostly Central and northern Europe, although I do want to venture down to Naples and Pompeii...any suggestions about modes of travel? Like, should I do the Eurail or look more into rental car/other train lines/etc?
2. It doesnt seem ideal to have to book hostels ahead of time, but probably is necessary in mid-summer...how long ahead do you think I should book?
3. I have about $3000 (US) to go on...my airfare is from Hawaii so it will probably be like $1400...does $1600 seem too implausible to do italy on? Im not very high maintenance, but i cant figure out if thats too low...

Im excited to finally post and start getting my plans settled! Thanks for any help you all can offer!
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:05 PM   #2
 
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Congratulations on the trip! It sounds a lot like the one I took last summer, my two friends were broke so I went solo.

I'm not sure about alternative forms of transportation because I only used a eurail pass and a couple easyjet flights. Personally I opted for the eurail because I had no idea where I wanted to go so the flexibility worked well for me but if you have a more fixed itinerary it might be cheaper to go with something else. One thing though is that overnight trains are fantastic, you don't have to pay for a hostel and they are usually very comfy. When you go to Pompeii I would suggest booking your ticket a couple days in advance. I tried to go in early August and after 3 days of trying I still never managed to get there which is probubly the only regret of my trip.

I would say that booking a hostel in advance is a good idea but even in high season I found you didn't need much notice as a solo traveler. I never had a problem and was only booking 1-3 days in advance. I would simply book for my next destination once I decided and once I got there I would book the next one. If you go to Rome I would suggest you stay at the camping village roma i think it was called, it was on hostelworld.com and was one of the cheapest in Rome. It was super nice with 3 bed bungalows plus an on site bar/nightclub and 2 pools which were nice in the +40C weather. Plus it is a 5 minute walk from a supermarket which was nice, the one draw back is it a bit of a trek since it was a 45 min subway ride and then a 10 minute bus ride.

For your budget $1600 in 3 weeks would give you about $75 a day. I did Rome on about $50 a day so it is doable but with not many frills. As long as you plan on cooking quite a few meals and limiting some of the sites then you should be good. Personally I really enjoyed making my own walking tour, most hostels will supply you with a map so just catch public transit to the closest place and walk to the rest, you end up seeing a lot of the city, finding some cool little places and you can absorb the vibe of a place.

I hope this helps a little and have a great trip!

P.S. It might of been a total fluke but if you go to the Colosseum I would try going at about 12:30, I think everyone was hiding from the heat so I got in after only about 20 minutes in line. When I came by at 9am there was a line all the way around.
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Old 03-20-2009, 03:39 PM   #3
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Thanks so much! That was definitely helpful and its nice to hear someone else did a similar trek...i feel a little crazy going in the middle of summer but i just cant pass up the chance! I didnt think about the sleeper cars on the trains...thats a good idea. plus i think by the time i buy a lot of separate modes of transport it will come out pretty close to the eurail anyway...plus it is probably best if i avoid driving anyway haha thanks again for the input!!
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Old 03-22-2009, 02:51 AM   #4
 
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No problem. Have a great trip!
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