If there’s one thing that every person should do at least once in their lifetime, it is visiting Europe. Forget the fact that travelling is life-changing and quite an eye opener; going to Europe is something else. It caters to all tastes, and no matter how different your preferences are, you’re going to enjoy your time there.
Art and history aficionados will feel at home in Europe, and adventurers and backpackers will love it just the same. Between the majestic scenery, incredible culture, and nice people, it will definitely be the trip of a lifetime.
However, before you go, you need to be well-prepared, so you can make the most out of your trip.
While getting ready for your visit to Europe, you need to conduct a lot of research. It can and, most definitely, will be quite overwhelming to get there without having a specific itinerary in mind.
There’s so much to see and each city is even more stunning than the last, so you need to have a clear plan in mind so that you can enjoy your time there rather than stress out about your many choices. Some time on the internet will help you figure out the places that should be at the top of your list and the budget you’d need to visit them.
Set a budget
Speaking of budgets, you really need to set one before you embark on this journey. Europe is fascinating on all levels, and the shopping alone is surreal. The last thing you want is to come back from your trip indebted, which will happen if you are not extremely careful. So, set a clear budget, and put aside some money for emergencies only. That way, you’ll know your limitations and plan accordingly.
While we are on the topic of money, you should do yourself a favor and get some currency before you travel because it might be more expensive there. While the difference is marginal, it does matter when you’re converting large sums. If you want to change from USD to GBP or Euros, it helps that you do some research to find out the exchange rates. This is important because it might be cheaper depending on location, and you definitely should save whenever you can on such a trip.
Check visa requirements
Contrary to popular belief, not all European countries are included in the Schengen area, and you need to keep that in mind. Once you’ve settled on your itinerary, research each country along your trip, and make sure you don’t need any visas to get in. Some Eastern European countries, for example, require completely different visa processes than the average Schengen country, and you don’t want to get stuck in the airport because you forgot to look up the entry requirements.
Going to new countries was quite challenging before the internet, but now, you have a lot of applications and solutions to help you make the most out of your trip. It goes without saying that you should download Google Maps to help you with navigation and finding your way around town.
You should also download a dedicated translation app if you’re going to a country like France or Germany and expect to stumble upon locals that don’t know much English. There are even applications to help you locate the nearest restaurants serving specific kinds of meals like kosher or vegan. Therefore, do your homework, and download any apps you might need.
You should know that Europe has the world’s best transportation network between countries. You can easily visit half a dozen countries in a span of two weeks, spending enough time in each. The last thing you need is overpacking, as it will make things much more complicated for you.
Since you’re going to Europe, it’s a safe assumption that you plan on visiting quite a few countries. So, you need to pack light and dispose of anything you won’t need because taking trains and planes between countries with heavy luggage definitely isn’t fun.
Stay in hostels
Europe has some of the best hostels in the world, and it would be wise to stay in them. You’d be saving a lot of money, not to mention meeting the locals and exploring their culture. It definitely beats staying in the pricey 4-star hotels.
Your time in Europe will be more memorable than you could possibly imagine. Yet, to make the most of your trip, you need to carefully plan it. Europe is huge, and spontaneity isn’t exactly the way to go about your trip there.