European Travel

European Travel

Oo la la, Europe! My favorite thing to talk about! 

Europe is full of surprises, and it's the most beautiful place in the world to get lost in, in my opinion. Traveling abroad can also be overwhelming, especially if it is your first visit! After quite a few trips there here are some of my recommendations for your visit!

01. Extended Stay - I know I know, if you are going to travel across the pond you will want to visit multiple places, I know I know. But hear me out, this is general advice for any place, stay as long as possible. At minimum I suggest 4 nights. That is the only way you will get accumulated into the culture and truly feel like you are a part of the city. Plan it out years in advance - year 1 = go to as many places as possible, year 2 = visit your favorite place from year 1 for an extended period. Rise and repeat. 

02. Respect the Culture - When traveling, do your research on the culture and language, especially when visiting foreign countries. Always know how to say hello, thank you, sorry, bye, and help in the native language, at minimum. Understanding how countries interact with each other is one thing, but acclimating to it is another. Do your research and try your best - and you will have a better trip because of it. For example, the French don't rush and eat like Americans do. They sit down in a nice cafe, sip wine, and relax. The entire experience can last up to 2.5 hours! Plan accordingly and enjoy the ride. Assuming cultures always do what you do will lead to a terrible experience. 

03. Don't Overpack - I am still learning this one. Stick to staples. What I mean by that is stick to outfits that can interchange! Don't pack an outfit for each day. If you are going for eight days, pack four interchangeable outfits! Try to stick to one - two pairs of shoes, too! There will be places you can shop in your destination if something goes wrong! Zara and Mango are your best friends. One trip, I didn't pack enough undies - guess what, they sell undies in Europe too (imagine that). The less you pack, the more you can purchase souvenirs and antiques! I go into more detail on how to travel and purchase antiques in Europe on my Privee account... Less clothes = more antiques. 

04. Local currency - Make sure you do the proper research on what the currency is where you are traveling. England uses pounds, France uses Euros, etc. Make sure you have a debit/credit card that doesn't have international fees, we use Captial one 360 (debit) and Capital one Venture (credit). Also, it is important you carry cash while you are traveling in Europe as many vendors either don't accept cards, charge extra for cards, or they will give you a discount when using cash. It's also safer to use cash at the small street vendors. So how do you get cash? Remember each currency has its own value against the dollar, one dollar doesn't technically equal one euro. When getting cash, bypass the exchange rates in the airport! They are inflated and will rob you blind. Instead, find a local bank and ATM after you leave the airport. The exchange rates will be much, much better!

05. Tickets in Advance - There's nothing worse than getting to the Louvre and waiting in a 3-hour line to get inside. Your travel time is precious! Do yourself a favor and do the leg work prior to your trip. Map out exactly where you want to go and see if you can purchase tickets in advance. Many cities have travel passes that will get you into multiple different destinations for one price and one ticket. Going in with a plan will allow you to feel like you are in control of your time - and being a control freak like I am, it's extremely helpful! 



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