How much does it really cost?
I remember the first time I left the country. The night before I was so anxious I didn’t sleep. I was equally as excited as I was afraid of what was to come in the next two weeks. Of all things I never expected it to turn me into a travel fiend. I want others to experience that feeling and realize that it is possible. The first country I visited was Ireland. It was safe, relatively inexpensive, full of friendly locals and a great place to ease into traveling abroad.
I consider myself a frugal person but the one thing I will spend my money on is travel. I personally like to purchase my flights and everything else separately over time. It relieves the pressure financially when I can spread out the cost.
So how much does it really cost to fly to Europe for a 2 week vacation? It will always vary depend on the time of year you’re visiting, when you purchase tickets, where you are flying into and the airline you fly with. For me, I typically book months in advance. I’ve found one way flights to Europe typically average $600.00. That is on the lower end so I can expect at least one stopover (I also am in Los Angeles) and a late flight. I’ve gotten lucky and found a flights on Wow Airlines for $399. The airline doesn’t include free snacks, drinks or luggage are not included but you can’t beat that deal!
First things first
The initial flight. I like to use Skyscanner because it searches over multiple airlines and provides me the best pricing. Secondly, I will use the app Hopper. It gives me push notifications for updates on the current flight tickets and advises when it’s the best time to purchase.
One of the factors in pricing is the season you’re planning your visit. Peak travel time is June, July and August and the ticket prices will be much higher than the rest of the months. I tend to vacation outside of those months. In addition to the low pricing, the city I visit is usually less crowded with tourists.
A warm bed and shower
Hostelworld is one of my favorite sites to find lodging. I’ve been fortunate enough to book for an average of $20/night. For a private rooms, I’ve averaged $40/night. The best part of Hostelworld is you only pay 15% at the time of booking and the rest when you arrive.
Bonus save if you book a hostel with included breakfast. If not, it’s very likely that they will have a kitchen. For those on a tight budget, I recommend visiting the local grocery store and making yourself food everyday. This will cut half the cost of going out.
Or Dining Out?
I typically budget $50 a day for food and that includes a light breakfast, 2 full meals and a snack. This is usually where I splurge on trips so it’s definitely possible to spend less.
Pricing varies but if you’re looking to indulge in the countries attractions (tours, museums, etc) I would typically book and pay beforehand.
Going with the Bare Minimum
*Note that this is an approximate estimate and an average of what I have spent on the basics. If this seems like an overwhelming amount, keep in mind that the expenses can be stretched out over the planning time.
Book a flight..
and just go.