Budget Travel Tips For Getting Flights To Europe

TAM Airbus A330-200 in the former livery
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If you’re planning a big trip to Europe sometime in the future, then there are a few tips that you can keep in mind when looking for cheap flights to help you get to Europe without breaking the bank.

There’s a little bit of truth when it comes to the fact that dealing with less room and comforts and other amenities will drastically reduce the price of your flight ticket.

However, it is definitely possible to get reduced price tickets with some of the major airlines, by doing a lot of research and booking well in advance.

Start by loading up a flight comparison site such as Kayak or SkyScanner and the major airlines that fly out of your country. Now you want to spend a couple of hours doing some serious research to find the best possible flight available.

To do this research, note all of the major gateways in Europe. The three big ones are London, Amsterdam and Paris – but you can also check Madrid, Rome, Milan and Frankfurt.

Now you want to check each date with each major airline and the flight comparison sites, and see how the prices compare. Which gateway is going to be the cheapest for when you want to get to Europe? Which airline offers the best price on the dates that will suit your trip?

It is a lot of work and comparison, but doing this can easily save you a couple of hundred dollars or even more.

It is true that booking in advance will generally result in a cheaper priced ticket, so what you could do is call a trusted travel agent, and ask them to book the cheapest COMPLETELY REFUNDABLE ticket to Europe available. Then, if during your search in the coming months you come across a better deal, you can cancel that ticket for a refund and not be out of pocket.

If you do find a great deal on a flight comparison site, before booking also go directly to the airlines website and see if they are offering any special deals of their own.

Also remember, flights are generally cheaper on week days such as Wednesdays compared to the weekend. So if booking online – make sure you check the mid-week flight prices and not just the weekends!

Generally the cheapest fares are of course less direct and less convenient in terms of taking off and landing times. If you’ve got the time though, and your budget is important to you – this is definitely the way to go.

A personal experience of mine is that I flew with Air Asia from Australia to London – and that was extremely cheap yet still relatively comfortable. So don’t disc

ount the budget air lines, you can sometimes get a fantastic deal.

Whatever you end up doing, don’t stress and have fun!

This was a guest post from Tom who runs active backpacker – a website all about backpacking in Europe and beyond, and providing tips and helpful advice.

The Packing List For Backpacking Europe

For me, personally, first thing on the list is always some clean underpants. You can say I’m not a ‘real traveler’ if you like (what IS a real traveler anyway?) – but clean jocks are the first thing to go in! Other then that, I’m pretty easy going with my packing – couple of t-shirts, a pair of jeans and some comfortable shoes. You know, the usual.

English: Slim-fit pants, skinny jeans, pegs, d...
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So what about Europe specifically, what is it that you need to make sure is packed in solid to that big backpack of yours for that upcoming gap year or summer trip away? Well let me run through some things that worked for me, and hopefully you can get some solid advice out of it.

Make sure you have a comfortable pair of pants for those really long trips on the bus or train. If your favorite jeans are tight and uncomfortable for long periods of time, then you won’t want to wear them on the bus for 16 hours, right? So bring along a pair of sweatpants or I even have a pair of fisherman’s pants. Should I get embarrassed wearing my fisherman’s pants around Europe? Probably, but there is more important things to do then be embarrassed all the time!

I also like to bring along the ‘backpacker’s staple item’ known as the money belt. I’m sure you’ve heard of it, and look, I will admit I don’t wear mine ALL OF THE TIME. I find it mildly constricting, and will normally put my valuables in the hostel lockers when I go out for the day. But money belts do prove invaluable for those long trips where it’s possible you might fall asleep and not be watching your bags.
There are a few other items I always bring along, I love having a small torch with me. Sure you could use your mobile phone, but I enjoy having a REAL torch that isn’t reliant on plugging into the wall just to keep it going every night.

I also normally bring along some anti fungal cream – you shouldn’t travel without it in my opinion!

A water bottle (preferably BPA free) is always handy, it’s nice to have a sturdy one that isn’t a plastic one you are reusing over and over again.

You might also like to bring along a journal. It’s nice to note down the things you’ve seen, tips you’ve learnt and all other manner of things that may come to mind. If you make a habit of it, it will pay its dividends!

At the end of the day, Europe is not exactly stuck in the past or a third world country, so forgetting something is not the end of the world – you can always buy it new over there.

So there is a bit of food for thought for packing your backpack, have fun backpacking through Europe!

Tom is the proud editor of Active Backpacker – a site all about backpacking and traveling.

Finding The Best Belfast Accommodations

Capital City Green bus Scania OmniCity
Image by alex drennan via Flickr

Every city in the world has something to offer, each of them are unique in a sense and distinctive for their own reasons. Belfast, the capital city of Northern Ireland is one of those cities that just seem to have a kick in the nostrils. The essence, atmosphere, and vibe of the place is something that is unlike any other city in the world. In recent years, Belfast has seen a tremendous growth in popularity, particularly in the industry of tourism. This would most probably be due to the fact that the city is one of the modern developing cities in the world, where people can find history, culture, and tradition perfectly paired with the modern auras of society.

The city has been target for different kinds of travelers, tourist, vacationers, backpackers, and even people who are looking to move into the city. You cannot blame them because Belfast is simply just a wonderful place to live, with a great essence to experience. In the terms of accommodating the large amounts of people coming into the city, business in Belfast has been growing richer and prosperous, mostly fueled by tourism. Each and every establishment in the city seems like an offer for the tourists, this makes Belfast even a more glorious place to visit because of the numerous amenities and perks that the city offers to whoever wishes to visit.

For people who haven’t been to the city and do not know anything about the place, there is no need to worry. Belfast is like a children’s book, intriguing, informative, fun and yet, very easy to understand. Often because there is just literally so much in the city, that tourist will not have any trouble finding Belfast accommodations like a Belfast bed breakfast even when they do not know the place. Every area in the city has its own hub for tourist, a place where people can find various accommodations for different types of tourist. From extravagant hotels to the simple guesthouses, all of them can easily be found wherever you are planning to stay in the city.

Apartments and rental houses are also vastly available for people who are planning to stay longer in the city, or for those who are seeking for a place to move into the city to experience life in the historic place. There are even places available where people can rent to own, a very suitable option for those who are looking to be part of the local Belfast residents.

Coming to Belfast for your next vacation will be something that you will certainly remember for the rest of your life. The number of things to do and see here are astonishing even to the most versed traveler.

Tunisia – A Wonderful Destination!

Golfe de Tunis et port de Sidi Bou Saïd, Tunisie.
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Summer has come; it’s time to start thinking about your travel destination this year. What you think about visiting Tunisia. This small country in North Africa offers you a real opportunity of enjoyment and fun.

Tunisia is a peaceful country located in North Africa on the southern shore of the Mediterranean Sea. This nice place is known for its sunny weather and it’s charming, sandy beaches. Tunisian people are so friendly and amiable. When it comes to tourism, Tunisia is actually a favorite destination for French, Italian and German tourists. It’s also known as “la destination de sejours pas chers” in French. Hammamet is one of the most beautiful regions in Tunisia. It’s situated in the north eastern cost of the country. This city features a number of popular clubs and parks where you can spend beautiful moments with your family.

Sidi bousaid is another charming place that you can visit. This small region is located in the north near the capital Tunis. This place is widely popular for its traditional buildings with the charming view of sea and mountains.

Sousse is a nice city on the eastern shore of Tunisia. This city is referred to as the Jewel of the coast. This magnificent city holds a number of great clubs and water parks. Moreover, Sousse is known for its beautiful beaches with pure clear water. Sousse is renowned as a cheap travel destination in North Africa, also renowned as “lieu de voyage tunisie pas cher” in French.

If you want to spend some time in a calm and charming place, then consider visiting the island of Djerba. This location is often referred to as the dream island. Djerba holds a great cultural history appeared in its classic villages and nice buildings. Besides that, this island features a number of wonderful parks such as Djerba Explorer Park of crocodiles. Also, in this island, you can find the sunny weather and the sandy beaches. It’s worthy to visit it.

In addition to the places mentioned above, Tunisia contains other charming places in the south where the irresistible attraction of the desert. All you have to do is visit it to discover them!

How to Make a Connecting Flight

Baggage handlers loading a Northwest Airlines ...
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An ideal flight plan is a non-stop ticket to your destination. However, this does not usually happen since airlines stop at other destinations to save costs and maximize their number of passengers. Connecting flights are also cheaper, so many travelers choose them. Listed below are some tips to keep your flight connections as painless as possible.

Check the Schedule

While flying, look at the magazines in the front pocket. They will usually have airport maps and airline routes. You can use this information to determine when you are arriving and where the departure and arriving gates are located. In addition, you should also decide what path you will need to take to get from one area to another.

Listen Closely

Pay attention to any announcements that are made while your plane is taxiing to the gate. If there have been delays or gate changes to your connecting flight, you will likely hear it broadcasted. This usually happens before the passengers start to get up and collect their luggage.

Baggage

Collect all you carry-on hartmann luggage to bring off the plane with you. Look at spinner luggage reviews that feature lightweight, strong bags since you may need to run from one stop to another. Baggage handlers will usually transfer your bags from one plane to the other, so you do not need to worry about visiting the baggage claim. The only time you would have to go to the baggage claim is if you flew internationally and need a connecting flight within your destination country.

After leaving the airplane, you should ask the gate agent to consider your flight. Many agents stand just outside the door when exiting the plane, so ask them for flying information. If there is an impossibly short period between your flight connections, you should contact the airline immediately.

Living Down the Road: Recreational Vehicles

Prevost Marathon Luxury Bus Conversion
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The passion for recreational vehicles was at its highest in mid-90s where people have come to realize that road trips and camping trips are both exciting and challenging. In the past, cars and trucks have become the main modes of transportation for cross-country traveling and backcountry navigation. However, to address more the needed amenities efficiently on long-term trips and travels, vehicle customizations soared to popularity in the mid-90s and this is where recreational vehicles from trucks and buses have transformed to emulate traditional home settings. The art of living down the road has come to be known as RVing and up to this moment it is still practiced and done by many outdoor enthusiasts.

Old-timers living down the road in the past have come across with tougher challenges in everyday living. This includes food preservation, cooking, healthcare needs and even battling with the worst weather conditions. But at this modern age and time, recreational vehicles have become more and more resilient and durable against tough outdoor conditions. These modern recreational vehicles are spruced up with the finest amenities that you would consider them more comfortable rather than the traditional home settings. Amenities like TV and other media systems, refrigerators, a complete kitchen showcase and even an upfront living room are now likely in some luxurious recreational vehicles.

It is for this reason that more and more people have jumped into the craze of owning at least one recreational vehicle. Whatever purpose it may serve – functional mobile setting or road trip companion – a recreational vehicle will definitely offer you a breath of fresh air away from the conventional living conditions. There are many types and forms of recreational vehicles available and the distinction is primarily due to sizes and the amenities involved.

If you are interested in the wide range of recreational vehicles involved, then perhaps you can start exploring some of the smallest types of RVs that have simple design exteriors like pop-up campers, travel trailers and truck campers. Who knows? If you can sustain the enthusiasm, you might as well moved on to bigger RV models, like class A motor homes, class B campervans or even class C motorhomes.