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Interrailing | Planning

Sometime last year James and I decided we would like to spend a few weeks this summer traveling around Europe. This will be the last summer where we both have several weeks off university together, so we didn't want to miss what might be our last opportunity.  

For the past few months, we have spent several evenings planning and booking trains, hostels and flights ready for our 3 week interrailing trip around Europe. We have decided to spend 3/4 days in each of the 7 cities (which are in 7 different countries), including: 
  • Paris (France)
  • Berlin (Germany)
  • Amsterdam (Holland)
  • Vienna (Austria)
  • Zagreb (Croatia)
  • Prague (Czech Republic)
  • Budapest (Hungary)
We will be staying in hostels in every city apart from Zagreb, where we've treated ourselves to a really nice hotel. The hotel and all the hostels are very central and therefore near the main attractions. Whilst staying in hostels, we will be sharing a room with 6-10 other people, which will definitely be an experience! 

Before we started I don't think we realised how much planning and organising would be involved. Booking the trains at the right times and the hostels for the right nights and in the right places was pretty confusing (although I do get confused pretty easily- I blame the blonde hair). But after making a couple of changes to bookings, I think everything is booked and sorted now. 

Here's a few things we found useful to stay organised:
  • Having a notebook where we have written everything we booked, all the money we spent and planned out where we'll be when, has helped us remain organised. We will be taking this around Europe, so we know all the timings and bookings. (Who doesn't love an excuse to buy a cute Muji notebook anyway?) 
  • Gradually booking everything over several evenings, instead of trying to book everything together. We booked all the travel (including flights, trains and eurostar) before we even looked at accommodation, so we knew exactly what nights we needed to book and when we would arrive. 
  • Keeping track of all the money we have spent, so we know exactly how much it has costed. This includes the money we still need to pay at the hostels, so we have been able to set that money aside.
  • Making lists of everything we need to do/book, including things like sorting out insurance, getting a travel money card and other things which could easily be forgotten. 
One thing we haven't done is book any of the attractions we are hoping to go to. We were planning on booking things like going up the Eiffel Tower and going to the Anne Frank museum, however we never got round to it. After talking to others who have been interrailing, I am now quite happy that we haven't booked anything, as we won't be tied to doing anything at particular times, instead we can go anywhere we fancy, whenever we fancy going.

Have you got anything exciting planned for this summer?

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