Planning a trip to Europe? How to travel Europe on a budget is likely to be your biggest concern. Europe is anything but cheap but it is possible to keep those costs down. Learning how to travel on a budget is a way of making adventure travel a big part of your life.
So get your discount flight sorted (I suggest checking Skyscanner or a similar discount site) and follow these tips to help you survive on a budget around Europe…
Take The Bus
An Interrail ticket is the ideal way to travel around Europe (and the UK), providing access to 31 different countries, but if you’re on a budget it’s still quite pricey.
What about taking the bus?
This isn’t some crappy option. Flixbus, for example comes with WiFi, electical outlets and comfy seats. Another options is Megabus in the UK with links to Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam. Or try Busabout where you can hop-on, hop-off tours linking the more popular cities in Europe.
Plan ahead and you’ll be amazed at some of the deals available. Megabus tickets start from £1 when you’re booking at least one month ahead.
Travel Light And Use Budget Airlines
If you can get your packing down to a carry-on bag, budget flights can be the way to go. Again you need to plan ahead and be warned the costs start to escalate if you’re paying for hold bags or reserving seats.
But if you’re flexible and organised budget airlines are a good way to get around. My favorites for low prices are Ryanair and Easyjet, but it’s often best to book via Skyscanner to make sure you get the best deal.
Stay In Hostels
Hostels have improved massively over the last decade and are definitely the way to go when travelling on a budget. It still won’t be cheap staying in popular cities but compared to staying in hotels it’s a no-brainer.
Even major cities such as Berlin, Amsterdam and London have campsites. You may be located a little further out from tourist attractions, but transport links in cities are good and you’ll save big-time on accommodation costs.
If you’re an outdoor lover, national parks and mountain areas in Europe including the UK, all have terrific camping sites to chose from. In peak summer months, it’s best to be organised and book in advance.
Seek Out Free Attractions
It always amazes me how much fun you can have in cities without spending any money. Visiting parks, museums, or just wandering around soaking up the architecture can all be done for free.
There will always be one or two “must-see” paid attractions but you can keep your costs down by spending the rest of your time exploring. Just make sure you have some comfy shoes or sandals!
Hire A Bike
Some of the most fun I’ve had in cities has been exploring on two wheels. In Amsterdam you’re a total loser if you haven’t got a bike!
Hiring a bike is an affordable and fun way to get about. It’s also a good way to fit in some exercise on your travels.
Explore The Outdoors
Limit yourself to cities in Europe and you’re missing out big time! Exploring the outdoors on your own two feet is free and in Europe you’re spoilt for choice if you’re a nature lover.
Head to the Alps, the English Lake District or the mountains of Scotland. I’ve even traveled on a budget in Norway, (a country renowned for high prices), by sticking to camping and hiking.
Eating On A Budget
Eating out is really expensive in most parts of Europe. So a big plus when you’re staying in hostels, is being able to prepare your own food.
Most hostels provide a decent sized kitchen and it’s always possible to find a supermarket for supplies.
Visit Cheaper Countries
Countries such as the Czech Republic are steeped in history and have a much lower cost of living. The capital Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.
You can travel at a fraction of the cost of neighboring Austria. If you’re planning an extended stay in Europe, keep your costs down by mixing in trips to cheaper venues.
Wherever you’re heading it’s always best to set a daily budget and stick to it. There’s nothing worse that running out of money on your trip. Plan and budget wisely and it’s possible to travel Europe on a budget without blowing all you money.