Traveling to Europe for a holiday requires a lot of planning. Forgetting even one small detail could ruin your entire trip. Therefore, we have put together 10 simple steps for you to follow to ensure that your European holiday will be a memorable one.
1. Decide where you want to go
This is the easiest part of your preparations. There are so many places to go and things to see in Europe, the selection process can seem overwhelming for most people. If you plan on going to see huge tourist attractions, you may want to go during a time of year when they are less crowded.
2. Prepare all of your documents
Check to make sure your passport is valid. Find out if you need a visa to enter the countries that you want to visit. This information can be found easily online. If you do need to renew your passport, do not buy any plane tickets or book any hotel rooms until you receive your new passport. You should also wait until you have your visas before committing to any travel plans. It usually takes several weeks to renew a passport. Most governments cannot give you an exact date the renewal process will be complete. However, if you are in a hurry to get your passport and visa, there are companies that can expedite your passport and visa for a fee. Do not forget that all children need passports.
3. Book your plane tickets
If you already have a valid passport and your visa, you can begin to make your travel plans. The earlier you buy plane tickets, the cheaper they will be. Booking a flight 6 months in advance can save you as much as 50 percent on plane tickets for some airlines. Check out low cost airlines like easyJet, Ryanair and also, flight comparison websites like cheapflights.co.uk, Expedia, Momondo etc. to get the best deal always have low rates. Most airlines offer discounts if you are willing to fly at night and on a weekday. Generally, the more layovers you are willing to accept, the less your ticket will be.
4. Make a creative flight itinerary
There is no longer any need for you to hire a travel agent. There are many travel websites that are easy to use. These are especially useful if you plan on visiting many cities. The flight search engines that these websites contain make booking your flights for the lowest price very simple.
5. Make a list of what you need to bring
Along with your travel documents, you should take a few minutes to figure out what essentials that you will need to take with you. Simple items such as batteries can be expensive in European countries, so you might want to bring a few packs in case you need them. You might also need adapters for your electronic items.
6. Book your hotel
If you care about saving money, you should take the time to do some research on which hotels are offering the lowest rates for the best rooms. Once again, there are websites designed for this sort of thing.
Taxis can be expensive, so decide how you want to get around before you get to your destination. If you want to travel by train, there are some train passes like Eurail pass, RailEurope pass that must be bought in advance. Renting a car is also an option. However, an International Driving Permit might be required.
You will not be able to fill your prescriptions in a European country, so if you will need medication during your trip, be sure to bring enough with you to last your entire trip.
Credit cards offer a good exchange rate for people who travel. However, find out if your bank charges a currency conversion fee for each transaction.
10. Loose ends
If you own animals, you need to hire someone to feed them and make sure they are ok. You may also need to hire someone to cut your lawn. Make sure the Post Office holds all of your mail.
If you follow all of these steps, you should not have any issues. Thinking ahead is the key to having a successful holiday. So get packed, book your trip and create some memories that will last a lifetime.