coldwarspy - Thanks, I'll bring it up next time he calls me. Would you mind if I added you to my friends?
tway - Oh, being in a car long hours doesn't bother any of us - we're used to long road trips. Me and my friend Josh are REALLY excited. The other two, well, they might be just as excited and just aren't showing it. However, I trimmed down the list of cities/countries last night, when me and Utrecht were going back and forth. I just got an e-mail from one of the guys, too; he's wanting to do three weeks now, after I pointed out to him that we had to get rid of Spain because we couldn't possibly do everything in the time we had allotted. We're also discussing flying from Germany to the UK, renting a car there, then taking three-five days to drive around; fly back to Germany, hit up within-easy-driving-distance destinations for another four or so days; and then flying to Italy for the remainder of the trip. This obviously depends on what the cheapest way is going to be, and we can't accurately calculate that until our trip is closer. Our preference is driving, because A) no boats/trains/planes to possibly miss; B) we can go by our own schedule; C) we won't have to transfer our luggage from plane to hotel to train to bus to train to plane to hotel or whatever, we can just leave it in the car unless we're at a hotel.
Dutch-Dimi - You're coming to the states? Let me know if you're gonna be coming through Texas. You said that I'm probably more used to being a car for a long amount of time, which isn't very true. I almost went crazy when I drove the nine hours from here to New Orleans, Louisiana in a night. My tip? Stop every hour, or at least every other hour. Find somewhere you can walk around. Hungry? Walk around a mall to get to the food court. Need a drink? Pick a grocery store, not a gas station. Legs numb? Find a lake, park, etc. etc., get out of the car, lock it, stretch, and take a walk. Every time (other then going to New Orleans) I've been in charge of driving on a road trip, I made us stop, even though we may not have needed to. The only reason I didn't do that on the way to New Orleans was because it was night time, I was alone, and I had an almost one-year-old daughter waiting for me to come home safely. It burned me out quick. I did it on the way home, and had no problems. We'll be doing that in Europe, though with four of us, I'm sure we'll have an actual reason to stop. And we'll be taking turns driving, as well. I'm rambling, which I really didn't mean to do, lol. But anyway, my answer to Tway is a response to you, as well - I just didn't say it here because I didn't want to repeat myself.
[ Edit: Edited on Apr 8, 2008, at 6:48 AM by KiaraG ]
Sounds like you guys are good to go!
I'm still unconvinced about the car trip, but keep an open mind and a flexible itinerary and you can take things day by day. Just as an example, we drove from Rome to Venice, got stuck in traffic and behind an accident, and we spent all day--and I mean all day, over 8 hours--just driving. The train would have been a much better option. Plus the toll costs in Italy were astronomical--that trip alone cost us about 50 Euro. And don't leave your luggage in the car if you don't absolutely have to! If you have small bags and they all fit in the trunk, and no one sees you opening the trunk, you might be OK.
I guess if you really prefer driving in a car and looking out the window, you have the perfect trip for you. If you're actually planning to stop and visit and get a feel of the place and the people, you might have to sacrifice a few things. But the best part is you can go back!
My tip? Stop every hour, or at least every other hour. Find somewhere you can walk around. Hungry? Walk around a mall to get to the food court. Need a drink? Pick a grocery store, not a gas station. Legs numb? Find a lake, park, etc. etc., get out of the car, lock it, stretch, and take a walk.
Hi again. Great that you don't mind a bit of driving, and if you are with more people, a night of driving will save you some time and cost of accommodation although I don't recommend it doing it too much.
The thing is, although Europe has many gas stations (like in the US probably, only drove in Canada), you won't find too many big supermarkets, parks etc. along the major highways. That is, straight away. Of course, driving a little further will get you there eventually.
O, and regarding costs, Dutch Dimi has a point: you might want to leave the car in for example the Netherlands, fly to Scotland and back from London. Easyjet and Ryanair have cheap deals from Amsterdam and a few other places in the holland to both. Might even be cheaper if you rent a car in the UK.
And don't be fooled by the amount of money you have to pay in France along the toll roads, although split by 4 it is not that bad.
Another obvious one maybe: look out for speed traps! Some countries are worse than others, but speeding tickets are getting more and more expensive, especially in countries like Switzerland
lol... i cant think of anything worse...
are you going to stop in any countries to look at anything or just tke pics of the countryside out the car window?? i hope you guys are healthy and strong because ur muscle wastage from sitting in the car for 2 or 3 weeks straight is gonna be a killer...
if you wanna cover that distance, fly... ive been in europe for almost 2 years and i havent even covered that kinda distance...take it easy..