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6 Mistakes by Novice Travelers in Europe

We share six common mistakes that are committed by novice tourists travelers to Europe. If you are thinking of taking a trip to the old continent soon or you have gone through any of these situations, this interests you.

1. Take the Airport Taxi

airport taxis

like almost everything in Europe, taxis are relatively expensive. In Latin America, most taxi rides from the airport to some point within the city hardly exceed $20 dollars. However, in Europe, especially considering that the vast majority of the airports are on the outskirts of the cities, the tariff frequently exceeds ?40 euros, especially in more expensive countries like Holland, Germany, France, Denmark, etc. But these ?40 euros is the price set.

What you need to know is that many times taxi drivers swindle tourists by altering the rate. It happens all over Europe, although some cities have a worse reputation in this area than others, such as Budapest and Prague.

What alternative is there? Use public transport. Practically all European airports are well connected to the city by means of the public transport network, either train or bus. Besides, it’s much more economical. The only possible drawback if we compared it to the taxi is that it can be a bit more delayed. Still, in terms of price, it’s worth it.

If for some reason (e.g., we land after midnight) we can not use public transport, I recommend verifying in advance the approximate rate that we should pay for the taxi trip we plan to make. To do this, we recommend the following page Taxi Calculator.

2. Eat at the First Restaurant you See (especially in the historic center)

restaurant crowded

In January this year, a group of Japanese tourists had to pay more than ?1000 euros for a simple meal in A restaurant in the center of Venice . The worst thing is that this has not been the only case, although perhaps one of the most outrageous.

Unfortunately, in certain cities in Europe, it is common to find bars or restaurants that perform this kind of abusive practices against tourists. Prague, Rome , and Venice are some cities where this type of situation occurs most, according to what we have read and heard.

While we can always file a complaint, it is better to avoid even seeing us in this type of situations, so our recommendation is, first of all, avoid eating around tourist spots (e.g. a famous church, the square Main, etc.) And if we decide to do it, check the menu prices well. On the other hand, look ahead for good places to eat in places like TripAdvisor or Google Maps reviews.

ADDITIONAL POINT : Bear in mind that in certain countries, such as Portugal and Italy, the bread placed on the table is not included in the account, as well as any other non-specified garrison in the menu.

On the other hand, in some places, particularly tourist cafes, waiters will be able to offer us water by taking our order. In our experience, this water is often a “special” water (face) and only a way to take money from novice tourists.

3. Buy Tickets at the Last Minute

passport and tickets

The best time to buy our tickets to Europe is approximately 3 months before the flight date. Buying them one or two weeks early may be too late (unless we have a lot of money). To learn more about how to find cheap flights follow the link below.

For trips within Europe : European low-cost airlines, unlike those in America, are really cheap. However, we should not trust and buy tickets until the last minute, as they are economic and also raise their prices exponentially as the date of flight is approaching, being able to go beyond the cost of the ticket with a traditional airline.

This does not take into account that there are almost hundreds of hidden fees (documented baggage, large hand baggage, seating reserve) that are also gradually increasing.

Similarly, if we travel in train or long distance bus especially during the holiday season, it is better to buy our with a little in advance, because we could see ourselves in the situation of arriving at the station and see that all the seats are Reserved.

4. Do not Hire Travel Insurance

travel insurance

As we mentioned in a previous post, travel insurance is a very important item that many travelers ignore or do not even know exists. EU citizens can be taken care of in public hospitals in other member countries of the Union by submitting their health card.

However, tourists that other countries will have to go to a private hospital in case of illness or accident. While in some countries health care is less expensive than others, having to pay for an emergency treatment is not expected in the initial budget of any trip…

Unless we have travel insurance. If we are insured, we take away several worries from the mind. And we are not only protected in health matters, because most insurance offers assistance also during our flight in case of delay or loss of baggage, lost documents, among many other things.

5. Forget to get electrical adapters

electrical adapters

The electrical outlets used in Europe are different from those of America (North and south). In that continent, they use the type C connection (see image). So it is very important that we get an adaptor before we travel. However, unless we travel to a small town, we will have no problem finding stores that sell universal adapters already in Europe. We only recommend avoiding tourist shops or street vendors, as they tend to handle very high prices.

NOTE: The cell, laptop, and tablet chargers accept different types of voltage and frequency, so it will suffice with the adapter to be able to load our devices. However, other devices such as hair dryers, irons and battery chargers are usually not so versatile, so in addition to the adapter, we will need a voltage and frequency converter .

Virtually every country in Europe manages a voltage (potential difference) of 220 V and a frequency of 50 Hz. If our electrical appliances work with these same values, we will only need a adapter otherwise we should also use a converter. However, we recommend not to buy converters unless it is really indispensable, as they can be costly and generally very heavy.

6. Do not leave the tourist zone


Is related to the second point and it is something that we have already mentioned in our post on how to save during our travels. The tourist areas (either historic center, hotel zone, beach, etc.) are always more expensive.

In addition, many times do not show us the true essence of the place we visited. If we go out for a moment in these areas we will begin to see more local people and we will find better prices. We will also find places less crowded by tourists and more authentic.

The only precaution to be taken in doing this is to make sure that the area we are in is not dangerous. Speaking the local language, at least the most basic phrases (greetings, asking for help, thanking), will make our experience easier.

Have you made any of these? Mistakes by Novice Travelers?

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