Planning Tips for European Vacations

Do you have a trip to Europe on your bucket list? Have you been dreaming of exotic cities, load of history and amazing cultures? Europe is a fabulous destination and the choice of tours is really only limited by your imagination. For first time visitors, it’s recommended to select two major capitals and begin your exploration. Follow these recommendations from professional travel agents and travel gurus to jump start your planning. Take that trip off your bucket list and start the process!

The first step is to check the expiration date on your passport. Many European countries require at least ninety days remaining after the departure date on your round trip ticket prior to the passport’s expiration date. Applications for new passports and renewal passports are available at your local post office. Pay special attention to the documentation requirements for applicants under the age of twenty-one. Allow at least two to three months processing time leading up to the busy spring and summer travel months. Upon receipt of your new passport, take a photo and store the image in your phone and email it to a friend or family member. This will lessen the issues for replacement at your local embassy should your passport be lost or stolen while travelling.

Check with your cell phone carrier on the data plan options available in the countries you’ve elected to visit. Know that free public wifi is not nearly as abundant in many smaller European cities as is the case in the United States. One option for data access is to purchase prepaid SIM cards upon arrival in each country. Prior to electing this option, confirm that your cell phone has a removable SIM card.

The next step is to order Euro currency from your local bank branch. Many smaller establishments in Europe do not accept credit cards. It is much more of a consumer cash economy than then United States. While opportunities for currency exchange are available at kiosks in most train stations and airports, the exchange rates in the United States tend to be more favorable and fewer fees are incurred. Allow at least two weeks for delivery of foreign currency at your local bank branch.

After you’ve booked your flights and accommodations, it’s time to begin the packing process. Commit to packing light. You will be lugging your suitcase in and out of airports, train stations and hotels with great frequency. Take advantage of the awesome deals offered by Groupon coupons and select from the great styles available from