Start Your Plan

So You Have Made The Decision To Go To Europe. So Where Do You Start?

The nice problem with planing a trip to Europe is that there is so much to see and do. Most of us only have two weeks to go there so while you would like to see as much as possible, it probably isn’t possible. Never make the mistake of trying to see too much as it will only lead to frustration and fatigue. Some tours rush you into and out of sites so quickly you never get a chance to soak in the moment and create a lasting memory of Europe. Plan on taking more time at locations to see more of the area. You’ll regret not taking the time to see something when you were so near and not knowing if you’ll ever be back again.

1. Who’s Going To Get it Done?

It was only a short time ago when someone went to Europe everything was done by a travel agent. Their knowledge of places abroad would allow them to book you in the good hotels, lowest cost airline tickets, the right tours, etc. They became your personal travel consultant and would literally book everything. Not anymore, with the internet you can not only book everything but, attain information about the places you plan to visit so you’ll know what and what not to do.

Use a Travel Agent…

Travel agents can save you a lot of time searching online. A good travel agent will get to know your personal likes and dislikes, as well as your  travel limitations. They can be especially helpful finding good rates for flights and other services, based on the best times to travel for value and weather. They have access to information that the average web surfer does not. A good agent will monitor sales and the fluctuation in prices knowing the right time to purchase and save you money.

Book Everything Yourself Online…

With the expansion of the internet more and more people have become accustom to booking domestics flights and other services online. While it can sometimes be a little time consuming, it can also be fun and rewarding. Aggregate web sites can search for hundreds of rooms, flights and more at the press of a keyboard. Searching for these services can be a little more difficult when traveling to another country. Some foreign web sites, for local information, are not in english or poorly translated to english, making them hard to navigate.

Use Both Services…

Many seasoned travelers still use agents for booking flights because they can find better rates through their reservation system. They can monitor more closely the fluctuation in prices allowing them to suggest better travel times. Some web sites allow you to enter your travel destination and they will notify you when rates go down for that travel. You can read reviews from actual travelers at web sites on rooms, attractions, dinning and more. These can be very helpful when you are determining where to eat, sleep an travel.

1. Choose on Your Destinations.

Go to our ➾ Choose Your Destinations page and for some suggestions to Europe’s most sought after destinations.  

2. Who’s Going To Do All The Leg Work? 

There are air tickets to buy, hotel rooms to reserve, transportation to get around once you’re there, where and what to eat, see and do. 

3. Determine Your Traveling Style.

 Who you are and what you are makes a big difference on where you can go and what you can do. Are you a youth or senior traveler? Traveling solo or a family with children? Accessible travel for the physically challenged or friendly travel for the LGTBQ traveler. Go to our ➾ Determine Your Traveling Style page.

4. How Much Can You Spend?

Money is always an issue for just about everyone of us so you’ll need to know what you can spend by setting a budget. Go to our ➾ Budget Your Money page and view typical costs for traveling throughout Europe. 

5. When Can You Go and For How Long?

Choosing the best time can be a little complicated for many as there are jobs, careers, family matters and the time of year to take into consideration. Go the our Organize Time page to view our recommendations for the amount of time one should adequately spend in each region or city. 

6. What Are Your Interests

We all have our personal likes and dislikes. Culture, Food, Nature, History, are just a few areas that may interest you. Go to our » What To See & Do page and find activities you like for destinations you want to visit. 

7. Create an Agenda

Once you have narrowed down what you want to do and see, it’s time to work an agenda into  your time frame. To help determine how many days you need to spend in what locations,  go to our Agenda page for some guidance. 

8. Booking Your Trip

If you have decided to take this on alone go to ourBooking Online page and use the listed resources to book your trip.

9. Be Prepare with What You’ll Need

Be prepared well in advance, to have everything you’ll need for the trip. Have a checklist for clothing, accessories, passport, documents, tickets, electronics, money, etc. You will find help for these at our ➾ What You Need page and ➾ Packing page.

 Plan Well in Advance…Make a To Do List…

Planning a well thought out agenda will only make for a incredible experience. Give yourself ample time to prepare and put everything together. You’ll find it’s fun to plan and see it all fall into place.  

I Year…
  • Once you’ve chosen where you are going you now need to decide what time of year to go is best.
  • Once you have established a date start checking periodically for sales on airfares and know which routes give you the best benefits. If you plan to use airline miles for free tickets you’ll need to book those much farther in advance than 60 days.
  • Start making a check list of everything you’ll need to have for the trip. Tickets, passes, documents and what you plan to pack.
  • Set your tentative agenda for what countries and cities you are going to visit and how much time you will spend at each.
6 Months…
  • Passport and Visa’s are completed and you have them in your physical possession
  • Check the web sites for high volume attractions with limited access for availability and ticketing.
  • Check tour services with special access to attractions as they sell out quicker than regular tours.
  • Attain driving permits for use in countries that have a requirement.
3 Months…
  • Train tickets should be coming available for ticketing 6 weeks prior to the dates for travel.
  • Start to purchase museum and transportation passes or tickets.
  • Make sure you have all your pending medical and dental treatments completed.
  • Keep monitoring airfares they will come down from their initial price and should hit their lowest price 60-50 days prior to departure.
  • Shop and purchase necessary travel insurance.
  • Make personal arrangements for pet boarding and have medical requirements like exams, immunizations,etc.  completed.
1 Month…
  • Finalize your checklist for everything you plan to take.
  • Make sure medical prescriptions are filled for the duration of your trip.
  • Pre pack everything you plan to take.  Make sure it fits into the baggage you’re taking and that you can easliy transport it.
  • Double check all electronics and make sure they are in good working order. Reload fresh batteries in devices with replaceable batteries.
1 Week…
  • Finalize your checklist for everything you plan to take.
  • Make sure medical prescriptions are filled for the duration of your trip.
  • Pre pack everything you plan to take.  Make sure it fits into the baggage you’re taking and that you can easily transport it.
  • Double check all electronics and make sure they are in good working order. Reload fresh batteries in devices with replaceable batteries.
Day Prior to Departure…
  • Check in online if possible and print your boarding pass.
  • Call family, friends or neighbors that you’re departing if you have ask them to watch your home provide them with the house keys, make sure the keys work in your door lock. Leave them an itinerary so they can contact you in an emergency.
  • Make sure lights you have connected to timers work at night.
  • Email copies you made of your documents to yourself so you ‘ll have them on your mobile device.
Day of Departure…
  • If you are leaving your home unattended, shut off water at the main valve and turn the dial on your hot water heater to vacation.
  • Double check your final checklist and make sure you have everything.
  • Airlines request that you check in at the airport 2 hours before and international flight departs.