Happy Friday, friends! For the next few weeks at the end of the week, we’re gonna continue sharing our top tips for traveling to Europe! In case you missed the earlier posts, you can catch up with the links down below. If you’re planning a trip to Europe, we hope these tips can help you make the most out of your time there! If you know someone who’s planning a vacation abroad, please feel free to share this post with them, too! Have a great weekend!
See the highlights from our trip to Europe!
Check out our top European travel tips!
Part 1: 5 Gear Essentials for the Traveling Photographer
Part 2: 5 Tips for Photographing your Vacation
Part 3: 8 Things to Consider When Packing for Europe
Part 4: 3 Tips for Eating Well in Europe Without Breaking the Bank
Part 5: 5 Money Must-Knows When Traveling Abroad
1. Order House Wine with Meals, Not Water
Unlike the US, in restaurants in most European cities, it’s customary that you’ll have a choice between still and sparkling, so unless you like carbonated water, make sure to specify you want still. But, if you can, choose neither! Bottled water at most European restaurants comes in a one liter glass bottle (enough for two regular-sized glasses at home) and costs anywhere from five to ten Euros. Yikes! If you’re going to be gone for a few weeks, that can REALLY add up. Here’s what we discovered, though: you can get half a liter of wine (enough for 2-3 glasses) for about the same price (or just slightly more). Whaaaat?! How great is that? So, when presented with the choice, we didn’t get both. We sprang for the wine. It’s Europe! Have some fun! You can keep bottled water with you and drink that before and after your meals. So go ahead! Order wine with every meal! When in Europe, right?
2. Have Picnics in the Parks
One of our favorite parts about Paris was our picnic in the park. If you’re going to a European city with a large central park (most of them have one somewhere), we recommend having picnic in between lunch and dinner that’ll kill two meals with one stone. Find a local market, get some bread, cheese, fruit, dessert, and wine, and find a nice plot of grass to just hang out for a few hours and be. Here’s a secret we learned in France, too: most of the grocery store clerks keep a wine bottle opener at the cash register for tourists (like us!). All of you have to do is hold up the bottle and motion like you need help opening it, and they’ll take care of it. As a bonus, if you make a motion like you’re drinking from a cup, they’ll even give you a few plastic ones from their under-the-counter stash. This is the cheapest, most delicious, and most fun way we ate in Europe.
3. Fill-Up Water Bottles Whenever You Can
International flights will serve one meal, two rounds of drinks, and an additional water and coffee run. That’s a lot more than a domestic flight, but when you’re on a plane for 10 hours, two to four small cups of water just doesn’t cut it. We recommend bringing an empty plastic water bottle through the security checkpoint and filling it up at a water fountain just before departure. That way, you’re not held hostage to the first few hours of the flight when there’s no food or beverage service. Just make sure to always dump out the bottle before you pass through security, or they’ll male you throw the entire bottle away!
4. Splurge a Little! You’re in Europe!
As Dave Ramsey loyalists, we live and breathe our budget when we’re at home, so it can be hard for us to step out of that mindset when we’re traveling. But we’re here to say that when you’re on a once-in-a-lifetime type trip, it is OKAY to spend more money than you normally would to experience the rich food and culture all around you! It’s also okay to throw out the calorie counting for a little while and just TASTE LIFE! Spring for the Nutella crepes and eclairs in France! Eat gelato every day in Italy! Whatever that country is known for, give yourself permission to splurge! You won’t regret it!
Love seeing new places? Here are links to our other travel adventures!
International: Ireland • England • France • Spain • Italy • Greece & Turkey • Anniversary Photos: Venice • Italy 2.0 • France 2.0 • Vow Renewal: France • Switzerland • Iceland • Prague • Germany & France
Domestic: Nashville • Denver • Phoenix • Vancouver • Seattle • Vegas • Atlanta • Santa Barbara • Florida • Virginia • New England/New York • Sedona • San Diego • Nantucket • Boston • San Diego • Virginia • Arizona • Charleston • Disney Cruise