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DPChallenge Forums >> Out and About >> Housing,Warnings, and Tips for Europe
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01/02/2006 04:18:15 PM · #1
My friends and I are leaving for Europe this summer and are seeking advice or information you might be able to offer.

Any place in the world has danger spots, includng Europe, so we are hoping to hear which spots to avoid and any tips on how to keep us and our stuff safe.

We're also looking at average prices of student hostels and housings so that we can plan our financial status.

Any other tips or advice you can offer about traveling to Europe, especially about traveling with a digital camera, are graciously accepted.

Thanks,
Justin and Friends
01/02/2006 04:24:41 PM · #2
Justin,

My daughter spent a semester over there and I will ask her to post any advice she might have for you. Sounds like fun!
01/02/2006 04:30:16 PM · #3
Europe is a big place (was there cycling the Rhine last year)...best advice is buy a Lonely Planet or Rough Guide. Never felt in danger the whole three months we were there!
01/02/2006 04:33:42 PM · #4
I'm not the one on DPC that has travelled the most, but I've taken my cameragear to Rome Italy, Paris France, London England, Frankfurt, Germany and all over Iceland.

I have been looking for suspicious people everywhere, as I was told in the beginning of every trip that I would surely get robbed.

well I still have my camera and havn't seen any suspicious people yet...

just don't go out at night anywhere with your camera, unless you are with a group of people.

and for a cheap stay in London the

Jesmond Dene Hotel
27 Argyle Street
Kings Cross
London
WC1H 8EP
Email: info@jesmonddenehotel.co.uk

very cheap.. me and my sister stayed there for 4 nights english breakfast included, and it was £180 or $315 for 2 pers. 4 nights with breakfast.

the hotel is small, their pictures online do not show how it really is, but the food was good, and the room was clean, no bugs :) but it's a cheap hotel so don't expect much.

but the staff is a family that lives there, so your room is safe, I left all my stuff there exept camera and went on a daytrip to Paris, the room had been cleaned when I got back and more than £1000 that I left in one of the drawers was still there untouched
01/02/2006 04:36:51 PM · #5
In london watch out for gangs of young men 16-25 following you in sports cloths like thisif you do get followed always stay where there is alot of people around I have being followed b4 but got away from them when I went into a busy store.

EDIT***Oh btw stay out of soho in london I went there at night and got offerd class a drugs in 30 seconds needless to say 1 second later i was not in soho (i was flying home j/k)

Message edited by author 2006-01-02 17:45:53.
01/02/2006 04:41:43 PM · #6
Any city in Europe is much the same as any city in USA, there are safe areas and there are unsafe areas. For the most part you will be able to feel which is which. I get that uncomfortable raising of alertness when I think I've strayed off the safe parts. I've been all over Europe even into the more dodgy areas and never really had a problem.

One thing I would recommend though is getting a simple bag to carry you camera in, something like a really old tatty rucksac/napsac. Don't take a bag that is obviously a camera bag.

Good luck, and just enjoy yourself.


01/02/2006 05:13:05 PM · #7
ok thanks guys!! if anyone has more info that would be great
01/02/2006 05:31:30 PM · #8
She says,

"My advice is to make sure don't have an obvious camera bag (as was stated earlier). For your important papers (like passport) use one of the "under the clothes" type belts...but make sure you wear it under the waist band of your pants - not up under the shirt - because they know where to look. There is a system of hostels that gives you something like stay x# of nights and get one free. Hostelling International is the name. She stayed in the one in Cologne Germany (which she says is a must visit place and is the best hostel in Europe.) She paid something between 12-17 euros per night (and it's cheaper if you have your own bed sheets.

She said to make sure you check the different classes on the trains to match your budget. There are a lot of places in Europe that are free on Sunday as well.

Her best cities were:
fun - Cologne
educational - Berlin

She has visited Germany, Luxembourg, France, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland, Netherlands, and Spain.

If you have any specific question, pm me and I'll pass the questions along.
01/02/2006 05:40:06 PM · #9
I don't know where it is, but the US government (and I'm sure other countries) post travel advisories for certain places.

Here's some sites to get you started. I haven't look at them in ages, so I'm not vouching for them, but I did bookmark them a long time ago :)

Reidsguides
1000 travel Tips
Art of travel
Geographia
Aneki <-- not sure if this a travel site or an informative site... but take a look
Embassies <-- always good to know where your embassy is! Especially if you want to go to high risk places, which your not, but still handy...
US Gov travel stuff <-- hey, I did find it! At least I think they'll have travel advisories there
global volunteer network <-- and depending on how much time and stuff, there are always tons of these organizations if you're looking for something to do.

Cheers and have a safe trip. Alwasy keep your passport on you, even if you are going to the bathroom. I have friends who got their money and passport stolen at a hostel while they were showering. Keep a xerox copy of it somehwere else, just in case (like your toiletry bag)
01/02/2006 06:22:46 PM · #10
Check out //www.lonelyplanet.com for the "Cliff Notes" version. And if you happen to get down to Malta, give me a shout.
01/02/2006 06:39:52 PM · #11
There is a really nice Youth Hostel that I've stayed in several times while visiting London. //www.yha.org.uk/hostel/hostelpages/173.html Although it's a hostel, you can pay a little extra and have your own room (I went with 3 others and we had a room with 2 bunkbeds). Also breakfast is included.

Oh BTW, a general point - I was walking around NYC last week, and whenever I wasn't actually shooting, but wanted my camera to hand, I just hid it underneath my coat. I think just use common sense and you'll be fine and have a great time!
01/02/2006 07:28:46 PM · #12
Look into a EuroRail pass and research the cost.... seems to be way cheaper if bought elsewhere.
They come in lots of different types and are a fantastic deal for getting around.
Youth hostels are great, as are some small B&B's..... look for off the beaten track places.
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