Just wondering if $4500cdn is a good budget. My itinerary is:
Netherlands - 1 week
France - 2 weeks
Spain - 2 weeks
Italy - 4 weeks
Greece - 2 weeks
Albania, Montenegro, Croatia, Hungary, Czech Republic - 5 weeks
I plan on staying at hostels and eating cheap. However I am planning on doing the major tourist activities and sights in each country (museums, castles, monuments, etc).
Thanks for the help.
[ Edit: Edited on Nov 4, 2007, at 7:37 AM by redleaves ]
I backpacked through Europe on 1000$/month when the CA$ was a lot lower. And I did fine. I think 4500$ is enough, no worries. It is especially cheap to travel in Eastern Europe, you'll love it as everything is super cheap!
If you travel on regular trains ie. slow trains is cheaper. You can travel by bus in Eastern Europe, supposed to be safer as well. Look for cheap and safe hostels that include breakfast. The Netherlands will probably be the most expensive destination.
If you pick up a copy of Lonely Planet Europe from a bookstore or library, it will tell you about hostel prices, museums etc... very useful.
Sorry, I don't think your 4500 CDN are a good budget. At the current exchange rate 4500 CDN convert to 3250 EUR.
Your 5 weeks in Albania, Montenegro, Croatia, Hungary, Czech Republic alone are going to cost you around 1200 EUR (1660 CDN).
You also intend to travel for 11 weeks (77 days) through Western Europe. Recommended minimum budget for Western Europe is 45 EUR per day and person. 45 x 77 makes 3465 EUR. That plus the 1200 EUR above makes 4665 EUR - not nearly enough.
To break down the cost for Western Europe (per day and person):
Hostel: 15-25 EUR, more expensive in bigger cities.
Food: 5 EUR is a good average if you buy everything in supermarkets, drink tap water, cook your own noodles with tomato sauce and make your own cheese sandwiches. If you buy a snack at a streetstall every other day budget at least 10 EUR.
Entry fees to sights: 5-15 EUR.
Getting around in a city with public transport: 4 EUR
In addition to the above comes the cost of getting from A to B.
BTW, from 2008 on your combined stay in the Netherlands, France, Spain, Italy, Greece, Hungary and Czech Republic will be limited to a total of 90 days within a 180 day period (ie 12 weeks), because Hungary and the Czech Republic will be joining the Schengen area.
Thanks for the advice! Just a note the budget of $4500 cdn does not include airfare or railway passes.
Looking for suggested itinerary for eastern europe, places to see in Montenegro, and Croatia.
Well, if the above budget does not include any cost of transport (like railpasses) then it is very close, but doable as you planned initially. I calculated the daily budget including transport from A +B, but without airfare.
What you should note though is that a railpass is not always the best deal. I suggest you start out in Greece, buy the Balkan Flexipass there and get a CityStar ticket to Germany in Hungary, Slovenia or Croatia. From Germany go to the Netherlands or France, then Spain and Italy. This will save you ton of money compared to Eurail.
I'll dig up the exact info on how to buy the tickets so that you get the cheapest deal when you can give me a more detailed schedule than above. The downside to the creative-ticketing method I intend to work out for you is that you need to have some sort of plan about what you want to see. You need to have a set of places, like going Palermo-Naples-Rome-Florence-Venice for Italy. The route of travel and some dates will be fixed, so you'll loose some flexibilty but with your budget beggars can't be choosers.
BTW, when do you plan to go? Will you be willing to travel with a tent?
I'll be going in July - September 2008. I know it's the high season but that is the best time for me to go. My itinerary so far:
France - Paris (4 days), Normandy (2 days)
Spain - Madrid (3 days), Toledo (1 day or should I take a day trip from Madrid?), Seville (3 days), Granada (2 days), Barcelona (3 days)
France - Nice (3 days)
Italy - Cinque Terre (3 days), Florence (3 days with day trip to Pisa), Venice (2 days), Rome (4 days with Vatican City), Naples (3 days), Bari (If taking ferry to Greece. Don't know yet if I want to fly or take the ferry)
Greece - Athens (4 days), Santorini (3 days), Mykonos or Rhodes (3 days)
Eastern Europe is looking something like this. I still have to do more research on these countries. Still trying to find the best way to get from Greece to Montenegro.
Montenegro - Kotor (2 days), Bar (2 days), Budva (2 days)
Maybe Bosnia for a few days
Croatia - Zagreb (1 day), Split (3 days), Dubrovnik (3 days)
Hungary - Budapest (3 days)
Czech Republic - Prague (3 days)
[ Edit: Edited on Nov 13, 2007, at 7:35 AM by redleaves ]
Do you have your flights booked yet? Could you maybe fly into Frankfurt, Germany or Amsterdam? Bc the best deal for rail travel through France is by buying a carefully constructed international ticket from either Germany, Netherlands or Spain. In your case Germany or the Netherlands would be best, as it would cover the return trip from Spain through France.
As for the order Italy-Greece-Croatia I would like to suggest going Greece-Croatia-Italy as it is cheaper that way. There are some very good train travel deals available for people coming from Croatia and Slovenia and going to Italy. These are cheeper than taking the Italy-Greece ferry. (With your budget every Euro counts.)
i think its probably do-able.
a couple of things to cut costs...
for accom, check out craigslist or couchsurfing.com... we got a double room in amsterdam for 35 euros a night at a private house... easily 30 euros cheaper than the closest hotel/hostel...
travel-wise, check out the eurolines bus passes... you can save on accom by taking night bus rides, although that can be a little uncomfortable, i guess it depends what is more important to you...
aso, maybe check out currency rates to determine your length of stay in each place... eastern europe should be where you spend most of your time if you want it to be cheap... youll find your dollar will stretch much further in places like krakow in poland etc
hope these helped!