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1st time traveling

Travel Forums Europe 1st time traveling

1. Posted by phil_h21 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 9y

I'm looking for tips/advice and places to go as i've never been travelling before.
Also how would i go about working abroad and what sort of work there is available to me because i only speak english.
I'm thinking of going to portugal, spain, france, italy and maybe sweden.
I would really be grateful of any info, thanks.

2. Posted by syoda (Budding Member 4 posts) 9y

Many people in these countries speak a little English, but don't count on it. Anywhere you go, try to know the basics- hi my name is, where is this hotel, how much does this cost, i need help, do you speak English, etc. With those, people will be much more friendly and helpful. Try to pack lightly but accordingly and with common sense- if you are going in the middle of the winter bring a coat and warm clothes no matter where you are going, bring at least a light jacket for spring and fall. Bring a journal and camera(with extra batteries) so you can record all of your adventures. Know the location. Blend in with the people, do as they do go where they go-for a more authentic and cultural experience.-don't look like a tourist(you're less likely to get mugged or something).
France is the only one of the options that I have been to that you have mentioned. I loved Paris, the action, the people, the sights. Try to see at least one castle and its architecture. If you are into World War 2 history even a little try to see the Dday beaches, Pont du Hoc, a cemetary, or the WW2 museum. It is very moving to see.
On the issue of working: I have not done it, but this is my advice: Know what your skills are. Example if you have worked in a pizza parlor all your life, know how to speak a few words to be able to speak to the manager/owner and ask to show your skills because you can't neccessarily explain them.
Even by spending a little time in the country--you will pick up the language if you are open to it and not caring whether or not you sound like an idiot. I learned more French in the week I was there than the four years I spent in a classroom. Just try to know the basics.
I hope any of this helps, unfortunately I have not done too much travelling-which is what I am trying to remedy now. Have a great time wherever you go--You'll always remember it. Do what you wouldn't/couldn't do at home(but don't get into trouble-lol).

3. Posted by qin (Budding Member 10 posts) 9y

Don't be panic, it'll be fine.

The only European language I can speak is English and my mother tongue is Chinese. I had no problem travelling around in European countries except in France where people insisted you speaking french.

The highway network in these countries are very good and therefore drving by yourself is a good option if you have no cost concern. But do rent a small compact car as parking can be an issue in crowded cities. And in some old towns (like Avila in Spain), roads are very narrow and steep sometimes.

You need to be extremely careful of thieves in big cities of Spain and Italy. I had my bag being stolen in a McDonald restaurant in Barcelona.

Hotel staff usually can speak English. Even in those home run hostals, staff speak some English. at least

About places to go, here is my opinion.
1. Italy: lake region (COMO, Garda, Maggiore), Verona, Padova, Venezia, Bologna, Firenze,Siena, Pompei, Salemo, Capri island and Rome. I spent 3 weeks there but I had no time to cover south part of Italy.

2. Portugal: Braga, Porto, Aveiro, Bucaco, Coimbra, Sintra, Lisboa, small southern cities with good beaches like Portimao, Albufeira, etc. Two weeks are enough to cover this mild country.

3. Spain: Figueres, Barcelona, Madrid, Valencia, Granada, Cordoba, Sevilla, Malaga (you can skip this one if you are not a fan of picasso), Merida, Toledo, Aranjuez, Guadalupe, Segovia, El Escorial, Avila, Salamanca, Burgos, Leon, Sandiago. Spain is big. I spent 4 weeks there and still, there are some places I had no time to go.

4. France: I've only been to Paris and Niece. Worth of visiting.

It's good if you can work while travelling. Because there are so many small nice places in those countries that can easily take you weeks of time. And people there generally are very kind.

I have no working experience in europe while I saw many foriegn students working in restaurants and hostels as part-time.

Hope these information are helpful.

4. Posted by jaxstar84 (Respected Member 415 posts) 9y

where are you from?
what do you do at home?

more info means we can help you more! ive lived and worked in the netherlands for a year so i can give u a few tips, maybe, but i dunno what kinda work youre after or where youre from!

5. Posted by lagosmm (Budding Member 50 posts) 9y

I'm a university student and had the same interests as you to work abroad. I noticed some of my best options were to work as an au pair (a nanny from home) or work at an English teaching job. I noticed there were a lot of costs to partner with an au pair program and realized I would not make a large enough sum at the end of the work term (tuition fees are not that forgiving.) I am registered for the go abroad newsletter, which gives me updates about opportunities if one would arise that fit my situation:

GoAbroad.com is the comprehensive on-line directory for study abroad programs, language schools, internships, international volunteer positions, international teaching positions, jobs abroad, universities, eco-travel and a whole lot more!

This would probably one of the best places to really start researching working abroad.

Hope this helps a bit.