After being swamped with work for months, it is time for an extended vacation, and what better destination than Europe? Full of historical landmarks and tourist attractions, the European continent has a charm like no other in the world. However, because most European cities are so big, you might get lost while exploring their every nook and cranny.
It is extremely important to have a plan B when this happens to avoid mishaps and save money. Part of the solution is to know how to navigate unfamiliar cities, which we will teach you more about in the guide below. So, stick around for some simple tips and tricks that you can apply on your next trip to Europe!
Tops to Get Around an Unfamiliar City in Europe
1) Accompany Other Travelers
If you are a solo traveler, not knowing your way around European cities might make you stand out more as a foreigner, which will undoubtedly attract pickpocketers and other unscrupulous individuals. Although Europe is known as the most peaceful region in the world, it still does not hurt to keep your wits about you! For this reason, make sure that you inform a relative or a friend of your whereabouts and try to find other tourists to tag along with. Not only will new friendships blossom out of this, but these tourists may end up being more familiar with the area you want to explore than you are.
If you want to get the full European experience, then this tip will surely strike your fancy! Backpacking and hitchhiking are both great ways of exploring unfamiliar areas, and they help you avoid having to ask for help and standing out as a tourist. Nonetheless, keep in mind that if you truly cannot make heads or tails of the area you want to explore, you will end up making your situation much worse if you don’t ask for help! An easy way of avoiding this is to rely on your phone’s GPS to guide your steps. If you are concerned about not getting good reception, you should buy a Europe continent map or find an application that works offline. It all depends on what type of traveler you are. If you think this hack is too advanced for you, don’t worry; you can use the next few methods instead.
3) Book a Tour
Worrying about logistics like picking the right means of transportation and finding your way around winding streets and alleys can pretty much ruin the fun of visiting Europe. To avoid this, we recommend that you contact a travel agency and book a tour in the European city of your choice. This way, you can enjoy all the attractions the area has to offer without feeling too overwhelmed. Just make sure that you choose the right tour provider for your needs and budget. To pick the best package, head over to the websites of at least 3 tour providers and compare the itineraries they offer. After you create a shortlist, eliminate providers based on your budget until you find the one that gives the best value for money.
4) Try BlaBlaCar
Want to get the expertise of the city’s locals without paying a pretty penny? Well, look no further because BlaBlaCar is the best option you can go for! In a nutshell, BlaBlaCar is a car-sharing service that is basically like Uber, except that it is cheaper and the drivers are just average locals trying to find ways to save gas. The great thing about BlaBlaCar is that it enables you to get expert recommendations from the people living in the area, helping you find hidden gems and avoid ever getting lost!
5) Hop on Megabus
If you want to navigate European cities the traditional way, then Megabus is the solution to all your problems. Megabus is a transportation company that operates in the UK, Paris, Amsterdam, and Brussels.
In addition to being extremely cheap, with tickets averaging between £1 and £15, Megabus can be used to move across the afore-mentioned cities. So, if you are planning a multi-destination trip to Europe, this is the best way to save money.
6) Rent a Car
Renting a car is one of the smartest ways of moving around areas you have not been to before. It gives you the freedom to navigate cities at your own pace without having to wait around to catch the bus or rely on locals to get where you want. Just use your phone’s GPS or a detailed paper map to reach your destination! That said, when renting a car, we recommend that you check the provider’s license and credentials to avoid legal issues.
Exploring the narrow alleys of Paris or the foggy streets of London is a great way of spending your vacation. If you really want to take your trip to the next level, you must plan beforehand to decide on the best way to get around the city you plan to visit. Whether you are a seasoned traveler or just a newbie who wants to enjoy the marvels Europe has to offer, the above tips will definitely make your trip worthwhile.