Posts Tagged ‘Europe’

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Spend Summer 2011 Touring Europe’s Best Festivals!

March 25, 2011

It’s not like there aren’t already a million things to see in Europe between the museums, monuments, battlegrounds, parks, canals, cafes, castles and tasty locals.

But hey, since you’re already going that far, you may as well throw in a once-in-a-lifetime cultural experience as well. Europe hosts some of the largest, most exciting festivals in the world. Time your trip right and you can take in one of these events:

La Tomatina
Bunol, Spain
August 31, 2011
It might be the world’s largest food fight. Certainly it’s the most well-known and best organized. Feel like a kid again when you spend an hour throwing tomatoes at friends and strangers and rolling around in the pulpy goo.

Notting Hill Carnival
London, England
August 28-29, 2011
Billed as “Europe’s largest street faire”, the Caribbean-flavored carnival includes a parade, DJs, and lots of glitter and sequins. Take a minute to get a photo of the shop with the blue door that was Hugh Grant’s book store in “Notting Hill”.

Festival FringeThe Edinburgh Fringe Festival
Edinburgh, Scotland
August 5 – 29, 2011
Anyone can perform at this open arts festival, including comedians, street performers, and other artists. In 2010, 21,148 performers put on 2,453 different shows for a total of 40,254 performances in 259 venues. So there’s got to be something there you’re going to love, right?

Oktoberfest
Munich, Germany
September 17 – October 3, 2011
Pretzels. Shnitzel. Beer. Music. Yum.

Find more festival ideas and, as always, chat with a TravelCUTS student travel expert before you go. They can help you find student airfares, hostels and rail passes, and they’re just fun to talk to.

See you there!
Lisa

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Book a Contiki Trip and Save $200 on Airfare

March 21, 2011

Exams will be over before you know it, so it’s time to start thinking about how you’ll be spending the summer.

If you’re looking for ways to save, then consider this deal: Book one of Contiki Holiday’s European tours at Travel CUTS by March 31st, 2011 and get a $200 air credit towards your trip.


Visit your local Travel CUTS store or call 800.667.2887 to take advantage of this deal. It’s good for travel through the end of the year, so you could plan to go before you start a semester abroad in the fall, or spend Christmas skiing Europe.

Not sure where you want to go? Read more about Contiki trips and find the one that’s right for you!

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Four Weeks Left to Save: Fly Transat to Europe

March 4, 2011

Maybe you'll use your $75 to stay at the Stahleck hostel in Germany

What can $75 get you? How about 2-3 nights at a hostel, a weekend (or more) of food and beer, a day trip to a castle, a really good pair of walking shoes, or enough postcards and stamps to make your parents think you really miss them.

Well, if you book your flight to Europe with Travel CUTS and Transat before March 31, 2011, you’ll save $75 to spend on one of those things or anything else that comes up. All you need is a valid ISIC card to take advantage of this offer. Visit a Travel CUTS store or call 1.866.246.9762 to save.

The small print: Save $75 off round trip flights to Europe through Transat Holidays, applicable new bookings only Feb 1 – Mar 31, 2011. Travel period Apr 1 – Oct 31, 2011 – no blackout dates apply. Promotion applicable to ISIC card holders and youth under 26 with the IYTC cards, cannot be combined with any other promotion. Applicable on air only, packages and tours. Not applicable on child rates, last minute bookings (bookings must be made a min 21 days prior to departure). Minimum stay of 7 days. Cannot be used on one way.

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Students Save $75 on Transat Europe Flights

February 2, 2011

Maybe you'll use your $75 to stay at the Stahleck hostel in Germany

What can $75 get you? How about 2-3 nights at a hostel, a weekend (or more) of food and beer, a day trip to a castle, a really good pair of walking shoes, or enough postcards and stamps to make your parents think you really miss them.

Well, if you book your flight to Europe with Travel CUTS and Transat before March 31, 2011, you’ll save $75 to spend on one of those things or anything else that comes up. All you need is a valid ISIC card to take advantage of this offer. Visit a Travel CUTS store or call 1.866.246.9762 to save.

The small print: Save $75 off round trip flights to Europe through Transat Holidays, applicable new bookings only Feb 1 – Mar 31, 2011. Travel period Apr 1 – Oct 31, 2011 – no blackout dates apply. Promotion applicable to ISIC card holders and youth under 26 with the IYTC cards, cannot be combined with any other promotion. Applicable on air only, packages and tours. Not applicable on child rates, last minute bookings (bookings must be made a min 21 days prior to departure). Minimum stay of 7 days. Cannot be used on one way.

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How to Stay in a Hostel: Tips for the Uninitiated

July 13, 2010
How about staying in a boat/hostel for a few nights? Try the Eastern Comfort hostel in Berlin.

How about staying in a boat/hostel for a few nights? Try the Eastern Comfort hostel in Berlin.

If you’re headed out of town for a short-term stay, say two weeks or less, a hostel is an ideal place to crash. There are plenty of other travellers to socialize with, generally clean restrooms, a kitchen for preparing your own cheap meals, and sometimes they offer perks like television, free Internet access, laundry or sightseeing discounts.

In a large city you’ll likely have a dozen or more hostels to choose from, ranging from huge hotel-like structures with their own bars and restaurants, to the smaller, mom-and-pop places that may not offer as many amenities, or even hot water. In smaller locations, say deep in the Australian outback or in out-of-the-way South American villages, your choices will be more limited, but not necessarily less comfortable. One of the nicest hostels I’ve ever come across is the Prarie Hotel in Parachilna, South Australia; population: 7.

Your best bet for finding a good hostel is to ask other backpackers for recommendations. If you don’t have time though, go through Hostelling International, as they only give their seal of approval to places that meet their standards. (Although those standards do seem to vary here and there.)

You need to have a HI card to get a discounted price, but if you’re going to be traveling for more than three weeks during a year, it will pay for itself in discounts. You can pick one up at any Travel CUTS shop, or online. The HI website has a list of hostels by city, so you can get addresses and plan ahead. There are other discount cards for other chains, like VIP Backpackers, so you do have options.

When packing for your hostel stay, there are a few essentials:

  • Plastic bags, both big and small, are perfect for packing any shower items that might drip or leak, as well as dirty clothes, muddy shoes or snacks.
  • Flip flops make great shower shoes (as in going to and from, or during if the floor’s too creepy).
  • Most hostels give you bed linens, or let you rent them for a few dollars, but it can’t hurt to bring along a simple sheet. Check your local thrift store and get something you won’t mind throwing out before you return home. You can sew the sides of the sheet together to make a sleeping bag out of it, or leave it in tact to use at the beach, out camping, or on a bus or train ride.
  • A small flashlight is ideal for late-night trips to the bathroom. Try to find one of those small things that attaches to a keychain.
  • Finally, a clothesline is compact and can be hung just about anywhere so that you can handwash and dry clothes.

When choosing a place to stay, also remember that you have the right to look a hostel over and see a room before you hand over any money. If you walk into a place that feels sketchy or makes you uncomfortable, walk back out and look for something else.

The hostel culture is perfect for travelers who can eat, sleep, and shower anywhere. But even if you’re not sure that sounds like you, give it a try for a few nights. It’s laid-back, friendly, and you’ll meet people and have experiences that you’ll remember forever. You’ll probably get some great stories out of it too, so share the best, and worst, of what you find.

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Sail Away to the Greek Isles

June 16, 2010

As the weather gets better and the skies get bluer I start to think about beaches and boats and lakes and oceans. I hate feeling landlocked this time of year, so when it’s time to plan a summer adventure I start to look to different coasts and islands.

One of the best ways to enjoy the life aquatic? Island hopping in Greece. Just look at this view:

How could a trip to any place that looks like that be anything other than awesome? Topdeck offers tours for 18-35 year olds to Greece and other destinations in Europe, and they’ll make sure you see all the hot spots. To get a feel for the Topdeck treatment, have a look at this little video they put together:

Ready to go? Pick a tour and book now.

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Europe in Two Weeks or Less

June 15, 2010

Yes, it’s June already, but that doesn’t mean that it’s too late to plan a summer getaway.

If you’re looking for a great student travel deal to Europe, Travel CUTS can hook you up with trips to Paris, Istanbul, Rome, Amsterdam and anywhere else you want to see the sights and have some European fun.

You won’t get to see everything, but you’d be amazed at just how many memories you can make in a short amount of time.

Check out Travel CUTS’ Top 5 European Snapshots to see if one of them is right for you. An agent can help you find other tours if you’re looking for something different, or they can work with you to put together a trip of your own with hostels, train and bus passes and airport transfers.