Ah, the classic European trip. Europe is truly one of the best destinations to start your travel adventures. Every single country is so different and unique in their own ways, but yet so close together. Good news: this means traveling to multiple places is incredibly easy. Some of the greatest memories youʼll bring back are actually the screw ups and mistakes you will make along the way, but here are some tips to help you easily adjust into your first big adventure abroad:
SEE ALSO: 4 Incredible Day Trips From Paris
1. Pack your bags, then cut it in half. Versatile clothes are your friend. Plus, youʼll want room for things you buy along the way.
2. Pack a medical bag. (New countries = new germs, new foods, etc.)
3. Bring a water bottle.
4. Budget around 60 Euros/Dollars/Pounds a day.
5. Convert your cash before leaving, preferably at your bank for lower fees. DO NOT CONVERT AT THE AIRPORT, EVER.
6. Call your bank or credit card company and let them know youʼll be out of the country and to which countries. You donʼt want your card being shut off for suspicious activity.
7. Learn a few local phrases (Hello, Goodbye, Excuse Me, Sorry, How much, etc.) There is nothing worse than assuming everyone speaks your native language and the locals appreciate if you try.
8. Make copies of your passport to keep in each bag. I personally always keep my passport locked in my accommodation and bring out a copy just in case.
INVEST IN TRAVEL INSURANCE
9. I personally use World Nomads.
10. Donʼt cram too many countries into a short amount of time. It is very easy and quick to travel to multiple countries, but try to spend a lot of time in each country to really get to know the destination beyond the must see tourist spots.
11. Keep your eye open for scams near touristy locations. Common ones: People asking you to sign a clipboard, someone handing you a rose or bracelet, etc. Do not engage and keep walking.
12. Always carry change. You will have to pay for public bathrooms.
13. On that note, carry tissues and germX.
14. Most restaurants do not split the bill and are offended if you ask to. Bring cash to evenly pay your portion.
15. “Early bird gets the worm.” You have the best chance at avoiding lines and crowds by visiting your “must- see” places as early as possible.
16. Allow yourself to explore. Itʼs great to have a plan, but make time to walk around and youʼll find so many unique spots and places. European countries are easily walkable and finding a hidden gem is always worth skipping the metro.
17. Take a business card from your accommodation. You never know when youʼre phone will die so itʼs best to have an address and contact number on you.
18. Be prepared to represent your country. You are a walking billboard for your country. Donʼt be surprised if people openly ask you about politics and other world events involving your home
Realize: you will get lost, you will make mistakes, youʼll probably get ripped off -But those make the best stories. Stay calm and roll with the punches. Itʼll be a good story later on.
Get excited, you did it! Youʼve taken your first step to a life changing experience. You will never regret hopping on that plane and seeing a whole new part of the world. Traveling through Europe alone, with family, with friends, or with your significant other is something that will enhance your life and open your eyes to new ways of life. Now start packing (LIGHT), the world awaits!
Photos: Hanna Jobes