Europe Budget Travel Tips

Full of history, great culture and beautiful architecture and natural landscapes, Europe is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world, but it is also one of the most expensive. Finding a cheap flight is a good way to start saving money on your European trip, however once you are there, accommodation, food and transport costs can quickly chew through your budget.

Although Europe can be expensive, there are many ways to save money and travel this great continent even if you are a budget traveller. Here are some tips on how to travel Europe on a budget.

Accommodation

Hostels:
One of the best ways to save money in Europe is to stay in hostels. You may think that hostels are only for 20 something backpackers looking to party, but in truth there are hostel options for all types of travellers. The cheapest hostel rooms are known as dorms, where you get your own bed in a shared room that usually house from 4-10 people, as well as a shared bathroom. Most hostels also offer private rooms, some just as nice as a hotel room but at a much cheaper price.

Camping:
Even cheaper than hostels, camping can be a great option. In Europe there is an excellent amount of convenient camp grounds, often even within major cities. And these camp grounds have excellent facilities such as bathrooms, cooking areas and shuttle buses to take you to the nearest town or city.

Last minute deals, multiple night stays and advanced bookings:
If you want to stay in hotels, there are still plenty of ways to save money. Often hotels will offer last minute deals if they have plenty of rooms available, and give a great discount. Many hotels also offer discounts for booking more than a certain amount of nights, while others offer discounts if you book well in advance. It’s a good idea to look around on hotel sites and see what is available.

Apartments:
If you’re staying in a certain city for a few weeks or more, renting an apartment can be a very affordable option. The longer you stay, the more options there are to save money. For example some apartments can be rented on a weekly basis, while others are monthly. This is also a great option if you are travelling with a few people to share the cost.

Food

Cook your own:
If you are staying in a hostel, camping or renting an apartment, it is likely that you will have kitchen facilities available. Buying your food at a supermarket and cooking it your self will save you a lot of money. This doesn’t mean that you have to eat every meal like this, but even one meal a day will save you a lot of money in the long run.

Eat local:
Eating where the locals eat can be a lot cheaper than eating where the tourists eat, and usually the food will be a lot better too. Often restaurants that are located close to tourist attractions will leave you with a hefty bill, while you may be able to walk a couple of blocks away and find a nice restaurant for half the price! Usually the locals know best.

Street food/take away:
It’s not unusual to find different food carts or eateries located around a city, and they are a great option for saving money on food. For example: For only a couple of dollars you could buy a nice slice of Pizza in Rome, a Crepe in Paris, or a Bratwurst in Berlin.

Transport

Rail pass:
One of the best ways to travel in Europe is on the train, and a great way to save money on train fares is to buy a rail pass. There are many different passes available from single country passes to complete passes that allow you to travel all over the continent. It entirely depends on your trip, but a rail pass can literally save you hundreds of dollars.

Tourist passes:
Many cities in Europe have special tourist passes that you can buy, and they usually give you free use of their public transport systems, and also offer free or discounted entry to attractions and museums in the city.

Walking and cycling:
One of the best ways to see a city is on foot. You will always see more and have a great experience, it gives you lots of exercise and costs you absolutely nothing. Many European cities are also very bicycle friendly, and renting a bike for the day can be a great way to explore a city.

Budget airlines:
There are two great budget airlines in Europe, EasyJet and RyanAir, and together they fly all over Europe to most major destinations, and at excellent prices. This is a great option if you are short on time and want to travel faster or over larger distances.

Lease a car: If you are going to be travelling in Europe for an extended amount of time and want to hire a car, it can often be cheaper to lease a car instead. Many companies such as Peugeot lease cars for a certain amount of months.

Travel in Europe doesn’t have to be as expensive as you might think, and if you use these tips, you are sure to save plenty of money on your trip through Europe.

The Top 5 Travel Blog Sites For You

Researching a holiday used to be one tough experience earlier. Your only sources for information would be the travel agents and travel brochures. With both these sources there were pitfalls, in the form of vested interested in signing you up. However, things have changed dramatically with the advent of digital technology. Travel blog sites containing detailed information offer an excellent way to find out about various tourist destinations. These sites contain practical information collected by the authors of the blog about various things such as the accommodation options, happening places, restaurants and night life in various cities. Another good thing about blogs is that you can always interact with the author, as well as other travelers and get to know unique information about particular travel destinations. Let us take a look at some of the top travel blog sites here.

One blog site that has caught the imagination of worldwide travelers is “where are you now”. This online source- wayn.com has got over 14 million members and offers an excellent online platform to meet and discuss travel options from people belonging to over 190 countries. You can find plenty of useful travel reviews, with accompanying photographs to guide you on this travel blog.

If you like to be pampered in the lap of luxury while you travel, then you can visit aluxurytravelblog.com, which offers exhaustive information on luxury travel options. You can find out where you can rub shoulders with the rich and famous. The author, Paul Johnson offers up to date travel information covering both accommodation options and luxury accessories.

If it is city breaks that you are looking for then one of the best online sources to visit would be gridskipper.com. One great thing about this blog is its easy navigability. You can find lots of information on the happening cities in the world on this site. You can also find detailed roadmaps to various attractions in different cities. The site also boasts of excellent photographs.

For travelers who are on the lookout for practical advice then look no further than travel-rants.com. You can find the author of the blog, Darren Cronian share travel industry secrets in a humorous way on this site. The author offers practical advice on how to deal with various types of cons that are unique to the travel industry in quite some detail.

Just in case you have some clarifications to be made about travel related issues, then you could always visit perrinpost.com. This travel blog site is from American Conde Nast Traveler and offers excellent advice to travelers. In fact, this is one of the most popular interactive travel blogs going around nowadays. All that you need to do is to post in your queries and get objective advice.

Best Travel Destinations – Exciting and Affordable Places to Explore

Traveling is the passion of some people while some people have to travel forcefully. There are various travel destinations in this world and you can choose any one of it for a perfect vacation for yourself with your family or friends. You will also like to go for best travel destinations that can make your trip a memorable one and you can enjoy every moment of your vacation with your family.

Nothing is cheap today. Wherever you go, you will have to pay higher bills. Some travel destinations are really very expensive as they are some best travel destinations of the world. Yet, one should be aware of the fact that all expensive things are not the best. Although, there may be some expensive travel destinations in this world but it is not at all important that they are best travel destinations. It is quite possible that there are destinations which are better than these expensive destinations and can provide you much to explore.

Paris, New York and London are few well known destinations of the world. These are famous all over the place and everyone wants to explore these amazing cities at least once in their life time. But there are few travel destinations which are getting overcrowded and thus, tourists try to neglect such places and look for a better place for their vacation.

It is always better to look for cheap and best place that is also less crowded. You can enjoy the cultural heritage, natural beauty, excellent infrastructure and amazing landmarks of such places. It is surely a great experience exploring such best destinations of the world that too at such cheap budget.

Some of the well known and best destinations of the world are South America, Egypt, Bulgaria, Mexico, Poland, Laos and India. These are some places which are not just famous for their amazing landmarks and excellent infrastructure but are also blessed with natural beauty that can win any heart. Tourists from all over the world visit these destinations in the hope of returning with great memories.

South America is an excellent place today and is getting popular day by day. It has many countries that are cheap and are flooded with scenic beauty and excellent places to explore. Food is just amazing out there while people are friendly in South America. Egypt is also one of the best travel destinations of this globe and is famous for its Pyramids. Apart from Pyramids, there is also a well known Nile river which is a must watch, if you are planning to explore this amazing country.

Mexico contains some fascinating beaches which can be found nowhere else. It is also having a pleasantly relaxed pace which is just superb and is nowhere in the north of the border. India is a great place to explore. It is rich in culture, architecture, natural beauty and friendly people. The most exciting thing about India is that it is cheap to explore and is one of the best travel destinations of the world.

Cuba Hotel Awards – A Way Through Excellence

Looking for more than good-value hotels in Cuba? Discover a selection of Cuba hotels that have received several prizes and awards, granted by international tour operators and tourism specialists. These leading facilities could be a fine choice for your perfect Cuba holiday or vacation if you trust well-known experts’ criteria.

One of the most prestigious lists of the best hotels worldwide is The Gold List of Condé Nast Traveler. This annual list includes a selection of the hotels around the world that have the best service, rooms, food, ambiance and design, location and leisure facilities. The Saratoga hotel, an Old Havana hotel, received a high rating in the readers’ travel awards 2006 survey, since it was at 24 in the hot list 2006 of the 60 best new hotels in the world within the category “Best for Ambiance/Design”. You can find this distinguished facility in a prime location opposite the Capitol at Havana City. Art lovers will appreciate the Cuban art in all the public spaces of the property and the “mélange” of colonial and contemporary styles at bedrooms and lounges.

If you look further examples of hotel excellence then you should consider theWorld Travel Awards, voted by travel agents worldwide. They were established in 1993 to acknowledge, reward and celebrate the achievements in all sectors of the global travel industry. These awards are regarded as the “Oscars” of the tourism industry by The Wall Street Journal. Cuba hotels winners at 2007 and 2008 were Hotel Nacional de Cuba as Cuba’s Leading Hotel and Sandals Royal Hicacos Resort & Spa was the Leading Resort. A classy Cuban hotel at the Cuban capitol city and a gorgeous beach resort in one of the best beaches of the island and of the Caribbean, these are the choices of tens of thousands of travel experts, such as travel agents and other travel professionals.

Also Thomas Cook, one of the most important tour operators in the world, recently accorded its Marque of Excellence Award to hotel Paradisus Rio de Oro Resort & Spa, a hotel which received several important prizes in 2008. For those seeking blissful vacations, here you will find a piece of your own paradise. This elegant hotel, located right alongside Playa Esmeralda beach in the province of Holguin, has received for the fifth time the Marque of Excellence Award (2002, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008) due to the quality ratings granted by clients. Since it is a 5-star Ultra All-Inclusive hotel that was conceived for adults over 18 years, it is more suitable for romantic getaways, weddings, honeymoons, events and vacations with group of friends.

Plus, Trip Advisor, the largest travel destinations and tips guide in the Web, granted this hotel in Cuba two Travelers Choice 2008 Awards (The Best All-Inclusive in the World and the Most Romantic Hotel in Latin America and the Caribbean). These popular distinctions in the tourist industry represent the views of millions of travelers that have selected this hotel for its outstanding service.

Moreover, Paradisus Río de Oro hotel received the Gold Medal 2008 Award accorded by clients of First Choice, the leading British wholesale company. Also in 2006, the Paradisus Rio de Oro was awarded the Travelers’ Choice Prize in the category of Most Outstanding Hidden Jewels of the Caribbean. Want a better reason to go there in your next Cuba vacations?

If you prefer more responsible and ecologic hotels then you should try Brisas Guardalavaca. This Cuba hotel has won the important award “Green Planet Award” presented by the European Tour Operator Kuoni. This distinction is given to the hotels contracted by this tour operator with relevant results in terms of Environmental Care. This facility has also received the National Basic Environmental Award presented by the Ministry of Technology and Environment in Cuba. So if your catchphrase is “a better and a greener world is possible” then you should consider Brisas Guardalavaca in the top of your Cuba hotels choices.

Also for environment enthusiasts there is a fine resort at Varadero beach, the Iberostar Tainos hotel, which has won an Environmental Hotel Award in 2004/05. Singles, couples and families will appreciate the good four-star value of this recently built hotel, set on a beautiful stretch of beach surrounded by tropical gardens.

Other Cuba hotels have won international distinctions like Meliá Las Antillas, which was awarded the Primo Neckermann Reisen 2008 Award thanks to the rankings given by clients of the important German tour operator Neckermann, part of Thomas Cook group. This property ranked among the 100 best and most popular hotels in the world in 2008! So if you want to experience a truly unforgettable holiday you should look after this offer, an All-Inclusive Superior 4-star resort especially recommended for weddings, honeymoons, tourist groups and circuits.

Also the magnificent hotel Paradisus Princesa del Mar was granted the Marque of Excellence Award 2007 by leading tour operator Thomas Cook, in recognition of the hotel’s high service standards and quality of its accommodations. What’s important about this award is that clients are the ones who assess the hotels by responding to Thomas Cook’s satisfaction polls, which measure the service, facilities and quality of the accommodations. It is conceived for adults aged 18 and over and it is highly recommended for those who want to spend some time in romantic environments with extraordinary scenic views and total privacy.

Deciding for any holiday is not an easy thing and planning where to stay is sometimes one of the most stressful parts of planning a vacation. So be a wise traveler and follow the expert’s opinion on your next retreats in Cuba.