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Heaps of Euro-Questions!
dkristy
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Hi everyone,
I’m sorry if this overlaps other threads but I’ve spent countless hours researching this trip and still have a ton of questions…

After years of talking about it I’ve finally decided to explore Europe with three of my friends. None of us have been before so we’re hoping to see as much as possible and are aiming to be gone for all of August. One of my friends has family in Ireland and another with family in Greece so those are two musts and we’re hoping to see as much as possible in between. The plan is to leave from Toronto and fly into Dublin, then to London, chunnel to Paris, overnight train to Munich, overnight train to Venice, rent a car and drive to Cinque Terre, drive along coast to Florence, drive to Rome, fly to Athens then ferry to three Greek Islands or so before flying out of either Athens or London (we’re still looking for flights). Here’s our “Eurotrip Plan” http://www.eurotrip…..

Our budget is about $5000/each but I’m worried we’re trying to cover too much in too little time. Eurotrip Eurail planner recommends a 3-country France/Germany/Italy 5 day pass but will that allow us to travel through Austria on the way to Venice? Should we also book our overnight trains in advance and would an overnight train require an extra charge on top of our Eurail pass?

Any advice would be appreciated about travel routes, if renting a car is a terrible idea, stay lengths in each city and if for four people we’d be better off getting hotel rooms instead of hostels.

I am leaving from Toronto with $5000 for 33 days
Dublin, London, Paris, Venice, Cinque Terre, Florence, Rome, Mýkonos, Santorini, Athens
Requesting help with Transport, Hostels, Itinerary, Sights
oldlady
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Quote:
Eurotrip Eurail planner recommends a 3-country France/Germany/Italy 5 day pass but will that allow us to travel through Austria on the way to Venice?
You will have to buy a ticket for the Austrian portion of your trip — I assume that’s the
Quote:
* In addition, expect to pay about $12.75 per person in city-to-city tickets.
in the trip planner.
Quote:
if renting a car is a terrible idea,
Renting a car isn’t a terrible idea. It is, however, an expensive one and, IMO, having a car in a some of the huge cities you’ve listed will be an expensive nightmare. I’d seriously look at renting a car for part of the time in Italy to explore some more rural places, but the Rome/Venice/Florence connection is faster and easier by train. You can’t have a car in Venice and you won’t want one in Rome or Florence. You might also enjoy a car in Ireland, although you might not have enough time there to make it worthwhile. I’ve read that Dublin has some of the worst traffic jams on the planet — didn’t notice it when I was there, but I wasn’t driving.
Quote:
I’m worried we’re trying to cover too much in too little time.
I would agree — especially after you figure in the travel time to get to/from and around Greece. Spend some time with ferry schedules to see how much time you’ll actually get to spend on each island. You may have to check-in for the ferry two hours before departure, so check those requirements, too.

dkristy
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Thanks so much for the reply, I hadn’t considered the ferry times in Greece. We may have to cut it down to two islands in order to fully enjoy our time.

As far as overnight trains go, is that an additional charge or will that use up two days on our Eurail? We’re definitely looking at staying in hostels and is it recommended booking them in advance or is it just as cheap to show up the same day.

Also, other than the museums and Guinness Brewery, what else would you recommend in Ireland in the short amount of time we’re there. Is there anywhere near Dublin that would be worth driving out to, or since we’re only there for two full days should we just explore Dublin as much as possible?

Thanks for the help, any information you can provide is helpful!

I am leaving from Toronto with $5000 for 33 days
Dublin, London, Paris, Venice, Cinque Terre, Florence, Rome, Mýkonos, Santorini, Athens
Requesting help with Transport, Hostels, Itinerary, Sights
oldlady
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Most overnight trains only require one day of the pass. The “7:00 PM rule” allows you to use only one day of your pass (arrival day) if a train departs after 19:00 and arrives after midnight. There must be no connections before midnight. There’s usually at least one train that fits this between major cities.

All overnight trains require reservations which aren’t covered by the pass. Expect to pay 10 to 12 euros for a reclining seat (available on some trains), 20 to 30 euros for a berth in a 6 berth couchette and 30 to 40 euros for a berth in a 4 berth couchettes. The various single and double rooms available can get very expensive.

You can spend a reasonable 2 days in Dublin and I wouldn’t try a day trip in that time. If there’s something outside Dublin you must see look for an organized tour or work out the details of a day trip in advance and do it your 1st full day there. There are some decent places to chill in Dublin, like peoples park and any number of pubs, which will be good for jet lag/sleep deprivation recovery. Personally, I’d seriously look at cutting Dublin for a more reasonable rest-of-the-trip.

Given your tight itinerary and the fact you’re traveling in August, I would book hostels in advance. August is the absolute busiest time in Europe as that’s when almost all Europeans go on vacation.

Kayling05
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I posted a response about the itinerary on your eurotrip page. Smile
For your question about hostels vs hotels:
You may want to get a private room in a hostel rather than a hotel room. This gives you all the options of a hostel (social atmosphere, pub crawls, possible free breakfast, most likely free Wifi) that you don’t usually get in hotels.

I am leaving from Atlanta, GA with $1200 for 14 days
London, Salisbury, Cardiff, Manchester, Edinburgh, Inverness, Edinburgh, London
Requesting help with Nightlife, Food, Sights
I am leaving from Rouen with $1500 for 15 days
Venice, Cinque Terre, Pisa, Florence, Rome, Sorrento, Rome
Requesting help with Transport, Hostels, Budget, Itinerary, Sights
I am leaving from busan, SK with $1000 for 13 days
Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Bangkok

2008—Language study abroad in Paris, France
2009—Archaeological field school/dig in Lau, Fiji
2010— Birthday UK trip!
2011— Teaching English in South Korea
2012— ????