Hi, I am planning a honeymoon for October 2010 in Germany and Italy. We would like to go for 10 days and visit 4 cities: Rome, Florence, Munich, and Nuremberg. I'm trying to get an idea of what the cost would be.
What is a ballpark figure for cost for this type of trip, between flights, train, food, hotel, etc, assuming middle of the road hotels and accommodations and eating?
Thanks for any help.
Romantic honeymoon, staying at budget hotels and eating out in cheap restaurants? I would say that 150-300 EUR per day for the two of you would be realistic, plus the costs of flights.
The 150 EUR per day would be at the bottom end, cheapest possible private pensions and budget hotels, most food from the supermarket or from road-side snack stalls, limited sightseeing (=spending most of your time in bed).
BTW, taking travelling time by train into account I would strongly suggest that you rethink your initiary. With only 10 days I would recommend the classic Italy initiary - 4 days Rome, 4 days Florence and 2 days Venice.
Or if you are set on doing both Italy and Germany go Munich, Salzburg, Venice and Florence. If you are coming from outside of Europe fly into Munich and out of Venice and take the night train from Munich to Florence. This will save you considerable travelling time, plus Venice and Salzburg are more manageable on a tight initiary.
[ Edit: Edited on 03-Nov-2009, at 12:05 by t_maia ]
10 days is very tight to try to do the itinerary you've outlined, unless you plan to just see the cities from the outside and not see the interior of any points of interest. Then you could technically do 3 days of Rome, 2 days of Florence, overnight train to Munich, 2.5 days of Munich and 2.5 days of Nuremberg, although I don't know if you should, because you'll end up quite frazzled and honeymoon should be enjoyed at a leisurely pace.
If you don't mind leaving Nuremberg out, then you could have 3.5 days of Rome, 2.5 days of Florence, overnight train to Munich, and 4 days for Munich and places nearby for day trips, such as Salzburg (regular train service, journey about 1.5 hours each way) or Fussen (to see King Ludwig's fairytale castle).
Budget to mid-range accommodation would be around €80-€100 per night on average for two, although be aware that in Munich, you may or may not run into Oktoberfest period where accommodation would be very pricey (most likely not though - I've just checked the dates, it starts on 17 Sept 2010 and ends on 3 Oct 2010 - but I don't know if the hoteliers will extend the rate for the month, so just something to bear in mind).
Food (no fancy restaurants but a couple of main meals a day will add up quickly), day transport (although this may be minimal as European cities are very walkable), sightseeing (some entrance fees) - I'd set aside about another €80-€100 per day for two persons. Good thing on sightseeing in Rome and Florence is many sights, especially churches and cathedrals, are free to visit. So that'll help on the budgeting end of things.
Of course, you'll need to account separately for the cost of flights from where you are. The cost of the night train could be offset by the money set aside for a hotel that night and perhaps with a little supplementary charge so it shouldn't change the budget too much.
Hope this is helpful to certain extent.
Food (no fancy restaurants but a couple of main meals a day will add up quickly)
That is correct - even if you buy all your food from the supermarket and eat nothing but self-made sandwiches and pasta you cooked yourself you should plan on having around 15-20 EUR per day for food for the 2 of you.
If you are eating out in cheap restaurants (places similar to Pizza Hut in price and level of romance) for dinner and lunch expect to be paying around 15 EUR per person. Add in breakfast at the hotel or in a cafe on the street and you need to plan on at least 35 EUR per day and person - so 70 EUR minimum per day for the two of you. Just for food.
For eating out in a romantic restaurant with real crispy white table cloth, candlelight, good wine, tinkling china and murmured conversation you need to plan on paying around 30-45 EUR per person if you want drinks, salad and dessert on top of the main course.
As for train ticket prices: If you follow my suggestion with Munich- day trip to Salzburg-night train from Munich to Florence-train to Venice and can make use of the special offers available you should be spending around 200 EUR for the two of you on point-to-point tickets. For this make sure you buy the "Europa-Spezial" special discounted fare for the night train from Munich to Florence 90 days in advance from www.bahn.de. This special ticket is only 39 EUR per person while the regular fare is something like 100-130 EUR.
Re eating and tipping in Italy:
Do not be tempted to go into restaurants that have menus in multiple languages. I repeat, do not go in. Especially if they're near tourist sights. Even if the prices seem cheap. For the same price in another restaurant nearby (usually on small branching streets/lanes) that has only Italian menu and plenty of Italians eating in, you will get food of far better quality.
So that's usually what I do when looking for places to eat in Italy - no multiple language menus on display, Italians eating in there, and of course prices that match my budget. Then again, I'm a rather adventurous eater, so I sometimes take chances with what I order, since the waiting staff don't always speak English. (Once, in a tiny restaurant, my friends and I were given a mini English-Italian dictionary to help us figure out the menu - it was an excellent meal dinner with 3 courses and wine costing us about €25 each. Unfortunately I can't remember the name though.)
Usually a cover charge (coperto) per person would have been added to the bill, along with a percentage for service charge as well so you don't need to give additional tips although if the service has been satisfactory, you can leave €1-€2 or round up the bill appropriately.
It has been a while since I was last in Germany so perhaps t_maia can tell you more about those.