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Taking a european vacation by yourself

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by BillySixty, Dec 19, 2006.

  1. BillySixty

    BillySixty Member

    Has anyone done this? True, it may sound a little pathetic but something I've always wanted to do.

    I don't think I can afford anything more than a week-long trip, so I'm probably limited to London/Paris or Italy or something like that. Is it better to find a tour group or go my own way? I'd probably want to do a group thing, just because I know if I don't have any plans I'll probably wind up sleeping until noon and/or standing in line for the stupidest stuff.

    Any help/insight/advice/words of warning that anyone can offer would be appreciated.
  2. KJIM

    KJIM Well-Known Member

    With one exception, every trip I've taken overseas has been solo. I got sick of all my friends saying, "one day we should go to ..." and then never committing.

    I went by myself. The tour groups didn't do much for me, and you can always do day tours in cities. Suggestions: stay in hostels, where there's bound to be USA residents left and right. In Frankfurt, one person who bunked in my room lived from about 400 miles from me. In my experience, people in hostels are always up for sightseeing, eating and partying, so if you do want company there's usually someone ready to go. (It's also cheap enough to tour extensively on a sportswriter's salary.)
  3. ballscribe

    ballscribe Active Member

    Highly recommend the solo route. You won't sleep until noon. You'll be up early every morning to see what the day will bring. And you can't help but meet interesting people (and work on some meeting non-Americans; you can do that at home) unless you want to talk to yourself all day. You'll find that many of the world's people have learned another language and can communicate with you in yours, and give a unique perspective.

    Always good, though, to let someone know where you'll be that day, perhaps someone at the hostel. So if something untoward happens to you, someone can help retrace your steps. :)
  4. Baloo

    Baloo Member

    Definitely go, you'll have a blast, but if you meet a man named Alex who tells you of a Slovak hostel that is filled with American-loving women that are easy to get into bed, DON'T BELIEVE HIM!!!
  5. bigpern23

    bigpern23 Well-Known Member

    Look, kids, Big Ben!
  6. FishHack76

    FishHack76 Active Member

    Dad, I think he's gonna pork her.
    He's not gonna pork her, Russ.
    I think he's gonna.
    He may pork her, finish your breakfast.
  7. A cheap way to visit Europe, and elsewhere, at least when it comes to lodging is couchsurfing.com and hospitalityclub.org.

    I'm a member of both and have hosted travelers from China, Romania, Peru and Nepal and Sweden.

    As for going solo to Europe, go for it, man. Just don't sleep late every day. Airlines in Europe are deregulating with ferocity and, as such, lots of super-cheap flights so you could always fly into Frankfurt and then connect anywhere in Europe via Condor, Air Berlin and others, or go from London via easyjet or Ryanair.
  8. Norman Stansfield

    Norman Stansfield Active Member

    Get a chick, you loser.
  9. Norman Stansfield

    Norman Stansfield Active Member

  10. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    how old are you? if you're under 65 don't do it in a tourgroup. those are for old farts. as KJIM said, you can always go on a day long tour in a city. if you'll be in europe for the first time ever and it'll fulfill a dream and you anticipate being so un-excited and unmotivated that you'd let yourself sleep through the day, well, you may have larger issues to worry about.
  11. Dyno

    Dyno Well-Known Member

    I've been to London twice by myself (and to lots of places in the US) and I highly recommend it. I agree that you won't end up sleeping 'til noon. I'm a late sleeper in general, but on all of my solo trips, I'm up earlier and probably pack way more into a day than I do when traveling with other people. I'm not particularly social and I'm fine with hanging out by myself all the time, so I don't usually meet or talk to other travelers. If that's your thing, though, it's really easy to meet people. My best friend, who also frequently travels on her own, has made friends and had lots of interesting experiences from chatting with the person at the next table or her seatmate on the train.

    London can be extremely expensive, but it is doable on a budget if you do your homework. And it's perfect if you're concerned about going to a place where you don't speak the language. I advise you to check out the forums for London/Paris/Rome and the Budget Travel forum on flyertalk.com. There's lots of good advice to be found there.
  12. I second all the advice you've received. I don't solo travel on every foreign trip I make, but I've done it a couple of times and enjoyed it thoroughly. You're not tied to anybody else's schedule or whims, so you can do exactly what you want, when you want.

    London is perfect for the solo traveler. Make sure you stop at a pub (or two, or three) -- you can meet a lot of interesting people there, not to mention drink a lot of very good beer.

    It's a very good city to simply "hang out" in. Vienna is similar.
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