5 Quick Tips To Consider When Planning A Trip To Europe

Europe is a continent that is easy to travel year round, but even with that easy, it doesn’t mean that all of Europe is best experienced year round.  Here are a few tips I’ve learned during my current trip in Europe that will help you consider a few extra factors when planning your trip.

Travel in Europe

1.  Europe does some Spring cleaning too

Many cities want their buildings to look squeaky-clean when the high season (summer) comes.  Sure, why not?  But this means that before the summer, they must scaffold the buildings to be able to repair or clean them (in addition to the common long term projects).  Spring is the best time to do this since it is not too cold and it is still not high season.

This means that most of your pictures of the most beautiful sights will have the not so good-looking scaffold in it too.  Well, this is part of the price of traveling in a cheaper shoulder season.

Travel in Europe

2.  There are many ways to get to the same place

One of the great things about traveling through Europe is the ease of traveling around.  No matter from which city to which city you hop, chances are that there is more than one way to get there – trains, budget airline, car share, car, hitch hiking, buses, etc.

Still, as you know, Europe is big! If you travel overland, it is good that you understand the amount of time it takes to go from point A to point B. I wrote this post where I share all my tips to travel Europe by train with Eurail passes.

Travel in Europe

3.  Weather is a big factor in your experience, as well as seasons

There is no point in going island hopping in Croatia during early spring or winter.  It’s simply too cold and you wont enjoy the beautiful beaches.  Same thing applies to all other outdoor activities in their respective season and country.

In order to enjoy the most of the things you want to do, make sure you go in the appropriate season.

Also, many cities in Europe are like open-air museums.  Try to avoid them during the rainy season, or else you will feel really disappointed and blame the city for it – saying that it sucks!

Travel in Europe

4.  North vs. South, East vs. West – all different budgets

Where you go in Europe has a big effect in your budget.  As a general rule, northern countries tend to be more expensive than the southern countries.  Same thing applies to Western Europe being generally more expensive than Eastern Europe.

Of course, it is more complicated than this, but it is just a general rule.

Also, many cities in Europe are highly underrated (especially in Eastern Europe.  Like Budapest, Bratislava, and others.)  Going there will probably give you a great experience for much less.

5.  Great festivals year round are a pro and con for travelers 

Europe is well known for its countless festivals.  This is good since you can plan your trip to coincide with several of these festivals, but at the same time, it can be an inconvenience if you’re not interested in such festivals.  Finding accommodation can be a harder task, prices go up, and the city will be ridiculously full of tourist.

Always check the city’s calendar of activities to know when to be there or when to avoid it.

What other tips do you recommend?

LET ME HELP YOU TRAVEL MORE BY GETTING ADDITIONAL TIPS AND INSPIRATION VIA THE MONTHLY NEWSLETTER.

Plus, receive a short e-book with 15 Beginner Tips and Tricks to Start Travel Hacking!​

33 thoughts on “5 Quick Tips To Consider When Planning A Trip To Europe”

    1. Yes, working in the construction business gave me the notion of the possibility of this happening, but now that I’ve raveled most of Europe during late spring/early summer, I’ve seen it first hand.

  1. Yes, that’s a very good point about the scaffolding! When I went to Milan, the entire front side of the Cathedral was covered by a picture of what it should look like. It didn’t stop them charging extortionate prices to have a coffee in the square though! I was not impressed.

    1. Oh, they do that thing with the picture with most important buildings in touristy areas. They do that to make it seem less ugly and “distracting”. Actually, what you mentioned is one of my critiques towards sites, museums, and amusement parks that charge a full fee while having considerable parts closed or under renovation. They should reduce the fee respectively.

  2. Great advice, Norbert. Couldn’t agree more with the point about the budget – Northern Europe is so much more expensive (especially Scandinavia) than Southern Europe, and Western Europe much more expensive than the Eastern European countries, but we found Portugal to be quite an exception – much cheaper than the rest of Western Europe.

    1. Thanks Dani! Oh yes, I just passed through Scandinavia and it was SO expensive!! You know, you’re right about Portugal. My expenses there were slightly lower than in the rest of Western Europe.

  3. You’re making some good points there. I think as far as budgets and high season are concerned, things like AirBnB and such can be a really good option to get in touch with local people, living like a local and saving money as opposed to staying in a nice hotel.

    1. Good suggestion, Christina! AirBnB is a really good option to reduce costs and spend time with local people and like a local. I’m actually thinking about using AirBnB to rent a room somewhere in Europe after I finish my Eurail trip. 🙂

  4. Thank you for the tips Norbert, really helpful. Me and my family are planning for a vacation this summer and I will surely follow the advice that you’ve shared with us here.

  5. Great tips! Europe is relatively so close to Israel, yet that just makes it feel like it will always be there and I can leave it off for another time. However, there are places there I would love to visit, so I hope it doesn’t take me a long time to get there. I also read there are buses or trains to natural parks and surrounding, so that one could possibly get there without renting a car. Did you get to experience this kind of public transportation?

    1. It’s true is is so close to Israel… but you should go!! Regarding the buses and trains to national parks… I know that in many cases, if they are relatively close to a major city, you can easily hop on one and hop off at the nearest stop, but not sure if they take you in the actually park or right at the entrance. I’ve been traveling Europe by train and buses, but haven’t tried going to a national park, yet… next weekend I will do so, in the Alps in Italy, so I can let you know how it goes with the train! 😉

      1. Oh, I dream of the Alps in Italy! Can’t wait to hear about your experiences. Would also love hearing about cheap places to stay in the Alps that are accessible to public transportation (are there hostels there?), and which city is the best to have as a base to launch this trip. And most of all, have tons of fun and take tons of photos! 🙂

        1. Oh, I went hiking on the Alps in Italy a few days ago. It was amazing! The trail I took started in the small city of Novate Mezzola and went up the mountains, passing through small villages. There are hostels in the area, but you won’t find many of them online. You can either take your chance by going there and booking at the moment, or you can take the train to Chiasso or Milan, where for sure you can book online. So far I’ve used Milan as my base, since it is close to the Alps and also close to the hiking trails by the beach. The best of both worlds! 🙂

        1. Oh… I’ve been told that YES! You can do it! The biggest glaciers you can walk on are in the Alps, not he northern part of Italy. But, I’ve been told it’s a bit dangerous. Supposedly, the best place to walk on glaciers (in Europe) is Iceland. 🙂

  6. These are great tips. I’ve done quite a bit of Europe travel and there are a lot of great ways to get around. I’ve run into that same scaffolding issue a few times, but you’re right, that seems to be the trade off for traveling in the off season.
    I was just in Norway and Sweden and was shocked at the price difference. I had heard it was more expensive, but it was pretty outrageous when I’ve been living in Taiwan!
    I like to use Ryan Air when I’m over there. It’s not the best quality of flight, but it’s definitely worth the price. I’ve gotten flights for 0$, just had to pay the taxes. Just make sure you know which airport you’re being sent to, as it’s often pretty far from the city center, or not the main airport. i found that out when I flew into Romania and there was one taxi and no one spoke English. It took us quite a while to get into the city.
    I’m loving reading about all your travel. Good luck with it all.

    1. Oh, it’s true what you say about the budget airlines flying to airports that are far from the center. This is something that we should check before booking, because who knows, that overland transportation (taxi) could end up costing more than the actual flight!

      Thanks for reading the blog! Hope to keep seeing you around! 🙂

  7. Bill Olson here

    I’m keeping these suggestions when I can finally go to Europe. I haven’t been there but it has been my dream to take the continent by storm.

    1. Bill, do take the continent by storm! Make a plan and work hard on it so you can visit Europe in the near future! If you need any tips or help, feel free to let me know. 🙂

  8. we’re visiting eastern europe for the first time at the end of june and so curious to see how our spending compares to all of the times we’ve visited western europe! hoping your rule of thumb is true… 🙂

    1. Hi –

      Sorry for the late reply, but usually Eastern Europe is considerably cheaper than Western Europe. It all depends on how you travel too. How did it go for you in the end?

  9. travelling in europe is always amazed you but its not an easy thing if you don’t plan it prior. Do check the locations and these tips are amazing one. All tips should follow if you are planning to come in europe. Boun Viaggio!!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *