Tag: Europe Travel

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Airlines Need to Get More Creative When It Comes to The Passenger Experience

April 16, 2015 at 10:35 AM | by | Comments (0)

The airline industry's Passenger Experience Conference took place this week in Germany. The host city, Hamburg, is an excellent place to begin partying at five in the morning, but the tone of the meeting's message was a bit more serious.

During the opening and closing ceremonies, airlines were called upon "to stop their preoccupation with providing airline passengers with packaged entertainment and open up their minds to the wonders of the world above which they are travelling." What does that mean exactly? The wire story from the event being passed around the Internet says it best:

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Some Guy Computed The Perfect European Road-Trip… Do you Agree?

April 13, 2015 at 11:35 AM | by | Comments (0)

How much trust would you put in a computer program calculating the precise route to your European vacation? Well, the dude that crafted Michigan’s perfect road trip and determined the optimal Kerouacian trip around America recently released his map for Europe.

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The Hills Will Be Alive on May 24 for the European Day of Parks

April 1, 2015 at 8:55 AM | by | Comments (0)

Here in the nifty fifty we have all kinds of days and weeks devoted to national parks, but apparently we aren’t the only ones celebrating the great outdoors. Those in Europe get in on the fun as well as European Day of Parks is a thing and it’s coming up next month.

This year things are scheduled to take place on May 24, as they embrace the motto—Nature is our Business. The events and activities depend on the park, but expect lessons on the importance of protected areas to the development—environmental and otherwise—of the region. It sounds like special marketplaces will be set up to show off local products and other green goodies.

Things have been taking place like this since 1999, after the folks over at the EUROPARC Federation thought something like this might be a good idea. So if you’re in the neighborhood towards the end of May be sure to skip a museum and head into a park, show nature some support, and enjoy the day.

[Photo of Krkonoše National Park: EUROPARC / Facebook]

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Would You Fly on a $15 Ryanair Flight from Europe to the U.S.? (Did We Mention It's Ryanair?)

March 18, 2015 at 1:22 PM | by | Comments (4)

A $15 for a flight from Europe to the United States sounds too good to be true. But that's what notoriously cheap Ryanair is hoping to do.

News came out yesterday that the Irish airline got approval to offer such low fares on one-way transcontinental flights from smaller European airports like London Stansted to key cities in the U.S. like New York, Boston and Miami.. Of course, this being Ryanair, an airline that really sticks it to you with baggage fees and onboard fees, will probably charge passengers other ridiculous fees to makeup for the low fare.

We're thinking boarding pass printing fees, carry-on fees (small fees for small carry-ons, big fees for big carry-ons), in-flight entertainment fees, lavatory fees and maybe even fees to recline your seat and take off your shoes. In addition to the existing food and drink fees and fees for different kinds of seats.

But if you're the kind of person who abstains from buying food and drink on a flight and can wear all of your trip outfits on the plane, then this fare might be just what your strained bank account was hoping for.

In the meantime, here are 5 tips to prepare yourself for the next great airfare deal.

Would you fly a $15 flight from Europe to the U.S., knowing that you'll be nickel-and-dimed the all the way through? Sound off in comments below!

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How to Get to Andorra, Europe's Teeny-Tiny Pyrenees Paradise

February 25, 2015 at 2:30 PM | by | Comment (1)

The itty-bitty country of Andorra is carved from the Pyrenees, with its cities all nestled in green valleys surrounded by snow-topped mountain peaks as if ripped from a Ricola commercial. Our routing to Andorra began with a flight to Barcelona, and a trip to Barcelona's bus stations to ask which would be the next bus to Andorra. We advise you to do a little more advance planning than that, and we're here to help.

With no airport and no train system, Andorra is perhaps one of the least accessible countries in Europe. It likes it that way, however; Andorra has been independent since 1278 and, at only 180 square miles, ranks as the sixth smallest European country (the five smaller are Vatican City, Monaco, San Marino, Liechtenstein and Malta).

Its tallest peak (Coma Pedrosa) is nearly 10,000' high, and the population is approximately 85,000 people, which pales in comparison to the nearly 10 million annual tourists who come to Andorra for skiing, duty-free shopping, and the Caldea spa.

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8 New Reasons to Buy a Eurail Pass This Year

February 10, 2015 at 10:17 AM | by | Comments (0)

Eurail, popular with travelers looking to bounce around to multiple countries in Europe, recently announced major additions to its pass plans for 2015.

The biggest news is the addition of four new countries - Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Poland, and Serbia - that can be explored using the rail pass, bringing the total to an impressive 28 countries. That in itself is a reason to pull out a map and start considering possibilities.

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Get Schooled, in Wine, in Bordeaux

Where: 3, cours du XXX juillet , Bordeaux, France, 33000
January 5, 2015 at 3:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

We have to admit: when we planned a trip to Bordeaux last year we expected a fairly conservative, overly touristy wine city. What we found, however, was a hip and happening sort of place where even the wine trade plays it cool at school.

Determined to get right into the wine scene, we booked a two-hour wine workshop at L’Ecole du Vin, run by Bordeaux’s official wine association, the Conseil Interprofessionnel du vin de Bordeaux (from now on known as the CIVB because we don’t want to have to type that out again). We walked into a high-tech, all-white and walnut laboratory of which Louis Pasteur would be proud.

(Check out the pics in the photo gallery below!)

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3 Hours Flat from Amsterdam to Paris on the Thalys Train

December 23, 2014 at 11:41 AM | by | Comments (0)

The Eurostar and the French TGV may take up most of the spotlight of Europe’s high-speed rail network, but there are other options for zooming through the continent’s patchwork of countries, depending on where you go. There is the sleek, white, and German ICE and, if you’re looking to travel between Amsterdam, Brussels, and Paris, the shiny, red Thalys.

Thalys reduces Amsterdam to Paris, a 316-mile, 5-hour drive, to almost three hours flat (ok, 3 hours and 14 minutes) of high-speed comfort. It runs between Amsterdam Central Station and Paris Gare du Nord, giving you the advantage of city center to city center travel too. Stops along the way include Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, Rotterdam, Antwerp, and Brussels.

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This Bar in Ghent Requires Your Right Shoe

Where: Ghent, Belgium
December 18, 2014 at 11:55 AM | by | Comments (0)

A bar is the last place you want to walk around shoeless. Broken glass, spilled beer, and oh-God-what's-on-the-bathroom-floor leave you nervous even in a pair of boots, let alone barefoot.

But a certain bar in Ghent, Belgium asks for a shoe as a glass deposit. That's an easy way to ensure nobody steals your mugs.

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Veggie Thursdays and No Cars? How Ghent is Europe's Greenest City

December 12, 2014 at 1:10 PM | by | Comments (0)

What's the greenest city in the world? Stockholm? Copenhagen? Eh, it's probably Dublin but for different reasons.

Ghent, like many European cities, faces immense pressure to adopt greener policies. Countries like Sweden, which plans to be the first oil-free nation by 2020, lead the way. But just a month ago, the Belgian city made another play into eco-friendliness by accepting the construction of the world's largest bio plant, just another one of the city's major green developments in the past years.

In the midst of its medieval landscape, Ghent embraces the green lifestyle to new, unexpected levels. According to Kermit the Frog, "it's not easy being green," but how is Ghent doing it so well?

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What to Eat in Vienna: 19 Foods That'll Rock Your World

Where: Vienna, Austria
November 19, 2014 at 1:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

Vienna is so much more than Schnitzel.

It's also more than opera, Mozart, Empress Sisi, and Edelweiss on a mountainside. Vienna, Austria is a world capital of good eating, a fact that doesn't get nearly enough play. We'd almost rank it above Paris in terms of excellent culinary adventures, and we simply cannot narrow down our favorite Viennese flavors to a list of 5 or 10 items; nope, we have 19 must-try Vienna food and drinks to share with you.

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Master the Menu at Vienna's Best Restaurants with These 7 Words

Where: Vienna, Austria
November 14, 2014 at 5:46 PM | by | Comments (0)

Vienna, cultural home of fine music, fine art and absolutely fine dining. A menu—excuse us, a Speisekarte—here goes far beyond the Wiener Schnitzel and Sacher Torte known around the world, but oftentimes the best dishes may be lost in translation.

To navigate the culinary scene in Vienna like a local (or at least, an educated beginner), take these terms to heart:

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