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153 replies
beehotch
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Why in the world would a hostel prohibit the use of a sleeping bag?

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quote:
Why in the world would a hostel prohibit the use of a sleeping bag?

They can carry bedbugs from one hostel to the next….

beehotch
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quote:They can carry bedbugs from one hostel to the next….

What about sleep sheets? They can’t carry bedbugs?

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are "bedbugs" really a problem in hostels?? i’ve heard there is some sort of spray you can buy to spray on your sheets to keep away bugs. is it worth buying?

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so yeah… just loaded up my pack with what i thought was the bare minimum – the thing is bursting at the seams! time to reload…

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I’m sure sleepsheets can also carry bedbugs, but I think they have more places to hide in a sleeping bag.

Besides, a majority of the hostels supply sleepsheets now as well and prefer (or demand) that you do not use your own. I don’t even bother taking one anymore.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the bedbugs, they aren’t a huge problem. You’ll encounter them somewhere but you can’t really see them or feel them, you’ll just wake up one morning and have a couple marks that are smaller then mosquito bites. It’s no big deal.

I don’t think that spraying that spray will help too much, these things sit in the wood panels and under matresses, etc… at the hostel and they’ll bite you if they are hungry. There’s not much you can do about it except maybe try to avoid the really dodgy hostels.

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I love this thread, I LOVE this thread, I REALLY LOVE this thread!!!
Thank you, I SOOO need this list!
And, Rivers Cuomo…haha, love that too!!!

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treybad
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What about cigarettes/tobacco products, are you allowed to take this with you too Europe?

Also, for a trip in June, how warm can the weather get in Europe? ie South France, Italy, Spain, Monaco ?? Louisiana boy here so kinda use to the very warm humidity, was just curious how miserable can it get this time of year over there……. so that we can pack the right stuff……

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Treybad,
For your smokes, check the customs information for the country you will be arriving in. I have seen many places only allow one carton.
Cigs are very expensive in Europe, especially now since the U.S. dollar has dropped so low. Be prepared to get hit up by so many people begging for a free smoke. Check out the packages. In many countries, 40% of the front of the carton and 60% of the back must have a warning. Get the locals to translate them for you. Many have gross pictures showing lips, throats and lungs with cancer growths.
Don’t bring cigs to night clubs, bars or smoking train cars, just INHALE it’s FREE! I am sorry to hear that you are a smoker, join a quit smoking class and bring the patch or nicotine gum, you will save tons of cash and spend it on activities instead. If you continue to smoke, keep track of all the prices in local currency of cigs (and number of cigs per pack as they vary in Europe) as you travel and post them from an internet cafe in Europe. I will start a new topic for you on prices of cigs. As for weather, look it up on the web, www.weather.com or do a search, you can get the highs and lows for each city in June. I have been in Europe over the past 9 years and weather is never consistent. Last year we had rain storms and HAIL in Nice. It was too chilly for the beach. Expect cooler weather in the North, like Amsterdam and in the Alps. When you log on to the internet in Europe, check out the weather forecast of your next city. If you don’t have reservations to direct your trip, be flexible and avoid any bad weather. I have worn shorts for my entire tour, but bring a lightweight waterproof jacket, small umbrella, sweatshirt or buy a souvenir sweatshirt in Europe. NO bulky jackets, layer up when it gets cooler. I brought one pair of pants, 2 shorts, and polo shirts + jacket and umbrella.

treybad
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Thanks for the tips
I am not a smoker, but an occasionaly chewing tobacco….
My cousin however smokes….

thanks again
trey

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I’m with all those who think this list is OVERKILL. Especially, the toilet items. Also, in case you didn’t know this, if you lose your passport, the US embassy will get you a temporary one in a matter of hours, even if you have next-to zero identification. It happened to me. All I had was a danish drivers license.

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Hey, First timer here with a few questions on what to pack.
First off I’m hoping to camp AND hostel in Europe in the period from June 22nd to…. whenever my money runs out, hoping to stay until early August, i really need to know about which tent and sleeping bag to take, there will be two of us sharing the tent with two big bags, is a three-man tent suitable?
Another question is about booking hostels, i’m not really planning to book any, except perhaps my first hostel in Paris, is this a bad idea, can I get into bother in Europe by not having bookings…?
I want to start making a list for my pack soon (yes i know June is far away) so I’ve only really thought about this briefly but are digital cameras useless? Am I better off with old school film-using ones? I realize that a)my media card in the camera can fill up and its expensive to buy another over there, and b)they take alot of charging up, anyone got any tips?
One last thing im not sure if i should pack is a pot and a gas stove(without the gas cannister obviously) or should i just eat bread and butter over there instead of hulking around cooking equipment?
Cheers

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This thread was so useful, especially the part where it says if you have all the items on the list, you´re overpacking.

I packed my bag and more than half my stuff was still outside, so I had to scratch some things off the list, then repacked, not enough space, scratched some more, and ended up with 1/4 of the list. I couldn´t lift the pack. I tossed away more than half my stuff during my trip, including done chapters of my guidebook.

I used a digital camera, showtimestafford, and it was great. I took a portable drive, which I would use as mp3 player and to place my pics there. I haven´t heard of a lot of people doing this, but it worked for me as I wasn´t buying films (to find later on only 1/3 of the pics are any good), nor worrying about the memory cards.

I didn´t book either, only twice or three times on very busy cities like Amsterdam, and then found out there was room in other hostels.

As for the cooking things, talk to Kahunna, I believe he has a lot of experience on camping, and I don´t think he was taking any of that stuff. Seems like too much to carry if I´m gonna camp only once in a while.

Don´t pack things you might need, take only what you know for sure you´re gonna be using more than often.

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Thanks for the great tips, I bought a 128mb memeory card and it holds almost 400 pics, two of them should do me fine. Also I am thinking of getting a good jukebox mp3 player, so that would help in storing pics. Im glad about not having to book hosteks everywhere, that would drive me mad trying to keep on the schedule!
Cheers again, Joe

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Forget about the schedule, not being able to say "ah, fuck it, I’ll go to Siena because I feel like going" because you didn’t book a place or because you already made reservations and cancelation has a fee… Some people rather have everything written down, what they’ll see, where they’ll go, don’t work for me. Plus, I got free acomodations in Manchester, Cork, Murcia, Granada, Dublin and Malmo from people I met on my trip (and I wasn’t planning on going to 3 of those places initially). None knows what might happen.

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I’m planning on going to Eastern Europe, after Italy, this summer. I tend to wear skirts/dresses during the summer here in NJ, so I was planning on brining 1 pair of pants & some of my vast array of skirts & dresses, plus many layerable items. They tend to be compact & light, but is this a bad idea? Also, I need to get a pack yet, but have read many different things about them & am not sure what brands are good. I don’t want to spend too much (around $100) and don’t want to have a really heavy pack either. I’m a 5’5" female, any recommendations?

micahj123
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Its hard to find a really good durable pack for less than $100. Mt favorite pack wouls have to be the continental journey by Eagle creek. They make a womens fit for that pack I do believe. It will cost ya about $170 though

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Ok, I have a few questions. I know they have been addressed (sort of) above but what is the opinion on electronics, specifically camera’s (digital) and mp3 players (ipods).

I have a few questions:
1. how safe is it to bring this stuff, lets say you want to go out and enjoy some local "entertainment". I don’t know about some of you but carrying an ipod and a camera with me would be a very bad idea, would locking it into a hostel safe be secure?

2. Some people have been mentioning about running out of space on their memory devices. There some really good options for backing up your pics elsewhere giving you a fresh blank memory device.

-you can carry like someone said, a usb enabled flash memory stick (sometimes called thumb,pen or key drives) and connect them to the camera or upload the picks to a computer and then download them onto the drive. One advantage of this is these drive are usually a lot cheaper then the memory you buy for your camera. Oh yeah, ipods can also be used as file storage devices, so that should leave you lots of room for pics and your tunes in one device.

-also, like above if you have access to a computer with internet (it is not needed for above for those who might be wondering) you can upload your pics into an email message and send it wherever your hearts content. I suggest creating a hotmail(250 mbs) or gmail (1 gig,wow-for those who don’t know, that is 4 times the size of hotmail) just for the pics and sending it to yourself, so unless you fill it(which would take a while for most) you can access your pics whenever you want. You can also have one of your friends or your folks log into the account and download the pics to a computer at home, then they are really safe. Plus, the added bonus is they can see what you have been up to(moms would love it). There are also alot of online photo services popping up, they might be worth checking out too.

In spite of writing all that, there is still some questions that have to be asked. What is the availability of computers with internet access? Are internet cafe’s readily available in most major cities? Are they crazy expensive?

3. Since these are electronic devices, how easy is it to charge things? do the trains have plugs? or can you charge things in the hostels or hotels? Unfortunately i don’t really have any tips for batteries, and they can be really expensive to replace.

If anyone has any questions about this stuff, feel free to email me. I can’t help you with the actual europe stuff cause I haven’t gone yet, obviously. 3 months Smile

I also have one other really good tip ya:
If you are tired of looking at your pics afterword and wondering, where the hell did I take that cause the name is like pic000123.jpg. You can go into the camera settings and change the default image name to something a little less cryptic.
ie. Italy-Rome.jpg. It will then start numbering them in that order Italy-Rome0001.jpg, Italy-Rome0002.jpg…so on.

Then when you move on just change the name. Will make it great when looking at them 2 months later.

All camera’s are different, so just check your manual or play around with it to figure out how to do this. Also, try it once before you go, just to be sure if you change the name you don’t erase the previous pics (just a little exclaimer for me so you don’t msg me in like 5 months from now cause your pics are gone)

Oh, and one more thing, sometimes camera and flash memory sometimes needs software to be installed on the computer you are using and that might not be possible at some internet cafe’s? If that is the case, and you can install the software, make sure you bring the cd or have a copy of the drives or install files saved somewhere on the internet where you can access them. Your email picture account would work. Just tryin to cover all the bases so someone doesn’t get over there and gets screwed.

If you made it to the end of this congrats.

fristalee
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I’ve heard rumors about the voltage being different in Europe, and I was just wondering if we need to bring those power adaptors/converter things in order to use our normal North American electric items (i.e. chargers, blow driers, etc.)? Thanks!

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Yes, you need an adapter, they are cheap and small, bring two. Costs about 2.50.

http://www.thedigita…

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fristalee, the voltage is different as someone else has pointed else, but no adapter or converter will save your hair dryer! I took mine with me when I studied in England and used the converter and it still got fried. I’m talking sparks and singed fingers here. You can buy one pretty cheap once you get there if you need to and it’s one less thing to pack on the flight over. I did take a hair straightener and used it w/ a converter and it was fine. It was great actually, it was SUPER hot because of the higher voltage and straightened my really thick hair in about 30 seconds. Smile

Just a side note – most electronics have built in converters (laptops, camera chargers, etc.) so you will only need an adapter for those types of things.

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Thanks for all the tips!
Keep on travelling!

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On American’s packing more –
We have larger houses on average than the rest of the developed world, and a higher income/lower cost of living than pretty much anyplace in the world. So we have more stuff and don’t have to get rid of it.

And most people don’t have experience doing this sort of travel. Just the car trips with your parents growing up. And if you could afford much plane travel with your parents, they could afford decent hotels, taxis, rental cars and people to carry the bags for you.

On what to pack-
I’ve heard lots of guidebooks advice on packing certain things – for example that sarongs are useful for women. I took a sarong on my first european trip, and the next year the &quotashmina" shawl the next year. Barely wore them, and when I did griped about how awkward they were to stay on, and I couldn’t take big steps. I also never wear white button down shirts, much less ones out of "travel" fabric that feels icky.

Wear generally what you feel comfortable wearing normally – with the caveat that you will be washing everything by hand and it needs to dry quickly overnight/look unwrinkled/not show dirt easily. If you want to wear wet jeans all day, you might have to. Also consider the new styles that sometimes have thinner material.

I bought ordinary nylon knit shirts from Walmart/Target, and found that although they dry quickly when handwashed, they tend to absorb the smell of sweat quickly. Since then I’ve tended towards silk stuff – like silk broadcloth button down, in colors I actually like. My experience is that silk naturally absorbs/wicks sweat away and the sweat on your body will dry 2-3 times faster than cotton. I’ve only done the high-tech T-shirts for being active at home, not travelling, but they also work well at wicking sweat and not making you hot.

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I am American and your packing list is much larger then mine. I just got back from a 6 week tour and my pack didnt have alot of the stuff on your list. BTW I had an amazing time and cannot wait to return!

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Wow that is one hell of a lot of stuff.

I use a 55-litre backpack and anything that doesn’t fit is just too much. Packing this essentials is done like this:

Put everything you want to take on one side of a large surface (desk, bed). Now take out everything you absolutely must take and put it in a pile on the other side of the surface. Take what’s left over of the original pile and put it back in your closets.
Now take from your second pile those items that you cannot live without, and place them in a line on the other side again, in order of importance. Once you have done so, take your backpack and – in order of importance – start putting things in. Stop when it’s full, don’t overstuff it. You’re bound to pick up some things along the way.

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Here is a list that will do:
2-t-shirts
1-light jacket
1- pair of jeans
1-shorts
money , tickets ect.

and im on my way!

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Canuck, you might want to add deodorant, a toothbrush, and a bar of soap to that list. Otherwise, there’ll be little mystery as to why all those other travellers keep their distance. And don’t forget underwear.

Grin.

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lol, Thats why I started by say "will do" its not perfect , but Its possible to go backpacking with just that.

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First timer here, leaving Monday! Do I seriously need a pocket knife? Why?

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No need for a pocketknife. Some people like them / find them handy / find them cool. If you take one, put it in your checked luggage; if you try to take it carry-on you’ll probably lose it. Or, do what I did and buy one in Switzerland as a really cool souvenir (I even had it engraved with my initials Smile).

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LOL! Thanks for the response… Im definately not a pocket knife kinda girl, so that helps me out!

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FREEE CHECKLIST THAT WILL GET YOU BY!
-3 pairs of underwear
-3 pairs of socks
-80 pounds of porno
-1 t-shirt
-1 hoody
-1 pair of pants
-"How to make fun of other nationalities handbook"
-1 large and unnessasary box
-wrist watch
– ankle watch
-long socks ( make sure you pull them up tight)
-Pack of beef jerkey
– Hand cuffs

AND YOU’RE ON YOUR WAY!!!!

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Back to the top for 2006

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going to be going to Europe for two months soon, the lists are great thanks, but what size back pack do you guys recomend that i buy, 3000cc -> 5500ccand do uou guys have any brand recomendations, or cautions. thank you for your help

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The new site:

http://www.eurotrek….

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I don’t understand anyone who would have to bring fifty million different pairs of clothes for an average sized eurotrip. Granted, I haven’t gone yet, but I am gonna be over there three weeks and was only really planning on a pair of jeans and one extra shirt (besides the one on my back . But then again, I’ve camped alot and don’t mind wearing the same clothes for long periods of time as long as they don’t stink or look all funky.

But hey, to each his own. In the worst case scenario, I’m sure they sell black pocket-tees in Sweden

I am traveling for 51 days
Bath, Haltwhistle, London, Füssen, Freiburg, Stuttgart, Speyer, Nördlingen, Salzburg, Hallstatt, Salzburg, Rome, Ostia Antica, Athens, Delphi, Athens
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hey good idea about cutting old towel in half! thanks

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i agree..jeans are great…one pair is enough..i lived in mine..all thru heat of june in europe

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bump

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sorry about the stupid question but is bedding needed? or with the hostels provide that?

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Here are a few lessons that I learned after my last backpacking trip:

If you are going to any of the warmer regions (like Italy/Spain) you might want to pack a few extra t-shirts. When I went I sweat like a pig, and wished I had an extra shirt or two.

Also, this may be obvious (although it wasn’t to me, until I was over there) but don’t bring white clothes (like t-shirts, or pants), because they are going to get dirty and nasty looking really quickly.

Furthermore in my oppinion, you shouldn’t bring clothes that you wouldn’t be comfortable wearing back at home. For example: I followed the suggestions on here and brought those cargo pant/short things (something that I would never wear in America) thinking that they’d save me room/ whatever, but they lived in the bottom of my bag for my whole trip (huge waste of space). Similarly, the suggestion to bring a pair of cross-trainers, didn’t really work for me (Besides working out, I would generally never wear a pair of cross-trainers). Instead I brought a pair of Pumas. They were really comfy and at the time (2004)pretty popular amongst the locals. Basically my point is: you can look good and still be comfortable(not saying there’s anything wrong with cross-trainers, or Cargo/converter pants… If you wear them at home, then by all means wear them there. They are just not for me, and I wont be packing them this year).

Lastly, zip-lock freezer bags are awesome! They have so many different uses. For example: You might want to bring one to store your passport/money belt in while you are taking a shower (maybe I am just super paranoid, but I felt more comfortable knowing I could see my passport/money at all times).

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quote:
sorry about the stupid question but is bedding needed? or with the hostels provide that?

Hostels provide that. In fact, some don’t allow you to use your own bedding.

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Eurotrip Points: 505
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we have bought two pairs of BINOCULARS this time..small but pretty good..we are both short sighted and we are driving and sailing lol
(funny we both went out separately and ended up going to the same store and buying the same binoculars for each other..!)
why two when we are travelling together? i hate adjusting the lens!!!
ive put down a COMPASS on my list too…just in case we end up somewhere lost in croatia back roads lol
currency converter isnt necessary but i will write down the rates and take a small CALCULATOR
i like a good MAP…get ur bearings as u travel and its nice to bring it home with all the scribblings
i love JEANS //yes take long time to dry but look good for any occasion and take the beating well
i take a spare PASSPORT pic just in case..dont want a horrible one for the next few years if i happen to lose my passport and have to get it in a hurry lol

sparks
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Eurotripper
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Eurotrip Points: 505
Member: 4004
Joined: 01/03/2007
User offline. Last seen 7 years 50 weeks ago.

PEDOMETER
id love to see how far i have walked…didnt take one last time and really missed it
useless but good fun

deus_ex_machina
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New Member
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Eurotrip Points: 11
Member: 4593
Joined: 01/03/2007
User offline. Last seen 7 years 50 weeks ago.

If your only luggage is your backpack, and that can fit as a carry on, aren’t knives against airport regulations? I mean if you had a pocket knife in your carry-on, wouldn’t they like.. murder you?