Friday, May 6, 2011

Rollin' Rollin' Rollin'

Now I have the rest of the silly song in my head.

Like I eluded to before, I am taking this post to talk about the dynamics of this trip versus the last one. Now, I don't know if I can call myself a seasoned traveller, but I recently noticed that I have been on a plane at least once a year for the last 5 years. This is crazy to me because 1) I HATE PLANES and 2) it seems that I never go ANYWHERE. But that's not true.

2006) Vegas
2007) Disneyland, Vegas
2008) Santa Barbara/Disneyland
2009) Europe
2010) Hawaii
2011) Europe

That's one random list. Please don't take these trips to mean that I am made of money, because I guarantee that 4 of those flights were either paid for by a friend/work or standby. I am an uber frugal traveller. I bring my own food (at least, as much as I reasonably can) I eat only bread and coffee all day (in France it's worth it) and have stayed in my share of fleabag hotels (right on the parking lot at Disneyland, too). Our first time to Europe was financed by an inheritance, this time around it's mostly financed by a tax return. Both trips have required a strict budget: $100 bucks or around 70 euros a day for two people after rooms and transportation. This part is non-negotiable. If I want to pay my rent when we come back, we can't spend more than that.

So, some changes we're making this time around.

1) Beer journal. Belgian beers are my favorite beers, and I fully plan on trying a bunch. Yeah, this seems like we'll be breaking the $100/day rule real quick. But for the most part, we're staying in places where we have a kitchen or at least a continental breakfast. Bagels in my purse say what? We even have a plan for the journal: each beer gets a numbered sticky note and a photo so we can keep track. We tried so many delicious wines in France (the bottles were SO CHEAP) and didn't keep track of a single one.

2) Two cameras. I'm bringing my baby over. This means we'll have to buy more memory, but it's worth it. I'll also be covering up the brand name with electrical tape.

3) NO OVERNIGHT BUSES. It's not worth the carsickness.

4) Railpass. The trick for figuring out railpasses is calculating how much each point to point ticket will cost. If it's more than $40/day, then the pass is worth it. Some of our travel days are less, but there's at least 2 long haul days (Cochem to Munich, Rothenburg to Brussels) that will make the pass worth the cost up front. We also bought a second class twin saver, which cuts the price by a third.

5) I will have sugary snacks for Jeff at all times. He is NOT going unconscious this time around.

I feel like we're going into this experience a little wiser. We will not be bringing a portable DVD player with us, we will be prepared to wash our clothes in sinks, I will bring a better jacket. Right now, I'm loving how well we're planning for this one, even if some days are hectic travel days and some are going to be spent riding bikes to the North Sea. Oh yeah, I'm doing that.


Saptilladerky said...

You seem to have all your bases covered! I can't wait to see your pictures and hear the stories. The way you talk about it, it sounds like it would be quite an adventure to, well, be on one of your adventures!

sgcorrie said...

I'm just SO EXCITED!

Jennifer Quilter said...
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Faith McKay said...

Good planning! I love planning, it helps calm me when I'm waiting for something big like this. I love the beer journal idea! And yes, sugary snacks--good plan. I can't wait to see your photos when you get back! said...

I love love love reading people's travel posts. Enjoy Europe!

Caity said...

Oh my gosh that is so exciting! :D