Preparing To Travel To Europe ? Four Important To-Dos

You have your tickets, your hotel or vacation rental reservations, passports are up to date, and you are ready to go. Not yet! Here are four important things to add to your preparation list:

1. Prepare Your Bank

Exchanging money in Europe is usually easiest and least expensive through an automated teller machines in Europe. Be careful to withdraw using your bank ATM card rather than your credit card. If you use your credit card for withdrawing cash, you may find yourself taking out a high interest loan.

Must dos with your bank:

  • Check to see what charges your bank imposes for use of your bank card for currency exchange; there are a few that impose stunningly high charges, so know ahead and prepare or be shocked when you see your statement.
  • Change your PIN to four numbers, some automated tellers, such as those in Italy, accept only four number PINs, not letters (i.e. there are no letters printed on the keypad, so if you think of your PIN in terms of letters, there may be some mental gymnastics when you are coping with a lot of other things, too).
  • Advise your bank that you will be traveling in Europe so when their fraud detection software notes transactions in multiple countries in a short period of time, it doesn't block them waiting for you to respond to a phone call to your home.
  • If you have a withdrawal limit on your card, ensure it is adequate for your travel needs. If you have to make a lot of small withdrawals, you can rack up lots of little per-transaction service and exchange charges.

2. Safeguard Your Documents

Photocopy your passports and airline tickets and stick them in a few places in case something gets lost and you need to recover. Ensure some of those places are in your carry-ons.

A high tech way to keep track of your passport info and other important documents in case of loss is to scan them in and email the scanned document to yourself at an email address you can access from anywhere. For example, one of our guests in an apartment in Florence found herself locked out of her apartment, so she went to a nearby internet point, retrieved the electronic copy of her apartment information from her email and made the call to be let back in.

3. Buy a Good Map

If you are visiting only major cities, your guide books and the inexpensive maps you can obtain at tourist offices will be all you need. But, if you are driving, you need a good, detailed regional map.

If you wait till you get to the region you are visiting, I guarantee that you will waste time looking for your map and the only one you will be able to find for your region will be in Swedish. A map of the whole country is not detailed enough for driving, get a regional map.

4. Buy a New Guidebook

Be sure to take recently published guidebooks with you. Sights open and close, hours change, phone numbers change, and they move things around in museums. You will experience frustration and lose time if you take an old guidebook; take my word for it.

To avoid having to carry a whole book, pull out and take just the pages for the places you will visit. You can do this for the trip and for the day.

Don't count on finding a good guidebook when you arrive. I find the English language guides published in non-English countries are often hard to read and filled with stuffy direct translations from the original language.

Pat Byrne is the president of Excellent Europe (http://www.ExcellentEurope.com) a company that selects exceptional vacation rentals in Italy. She is also the author of the Kids Europe Italy Discovery Journal (http://www.KidsEurope.com) a resource book, journal, and guide just for kids traveling in Italy that has over 500 ideas for free and fun activities in Italy.

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

KTOO

Skagway Assembly wrestles with vacation rentals, RV's, parking
KTOO
“As you all know, we are having a housing crisis — both long-term and seasonal and we are working hard for solutions,” Skagway Mayor Monica Carlson said. Local lodge owner Kathy Hosford of Dyea said during citizen testimony she thought Airbnb was ...


CNN

Finding a luxury vacation rental might be easier than you thought
CNN
Think private villas, butler service, personal chefs, heli-skiing, day trips on a yacht and other bucket-list travel jaunts. Clearly aimed at those who want to splash out on their vacation without the confinement of a hotel suite, Beyond by Airbnb will ...

and more »

PR Web (press release)

TurnKey Vacation Rentals Acquires Gilbert Avriette Vacation Rentals in Strategic Market Expansion
Markets Insider
AUSTIN, Texas and PALM DESERT, Calif., April 23, 2018 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- TurnKey Vacation Rentals, Inc. today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Gilbert Avriette Vacation Rentals, expanding its presence in the Coachella ...
TurnKey Vacation Rentals Acquires Gilbert Avriette Vacation ...PR Web (press release)

all 1 news articles »

Finger Lakes Times

WRITE ON: Acting on vacation rentals
Finger Lakes Times
Watkins Glen trustees are considering how to get a handle on a nearly out-of-control village boom in converting single-family homes to short-term vacation rentals as well as construction of new vacation rental units. Trustees will meet in early May ...


Forbes

Vacasa: Where Tech Meets Vacation Rentals
Forbes
Looking for a rental home or planning on renting out your beachhouse this summer? Tired of playing roulette with Airbnb? Take a look at Vacasa, which has been called “a tech vacation rental company.” Vacasa is all about service and hires local ...

and more »

West Hawaii Today

Council committee to hear vacation rental bill - West Hawaii Today
West Hawaii Today
HILO — It's now the public's turn to weigh in on the vacation rental issue. A measure first broached publicly in November, which then made its way through the Board of Ethics to clear a conflict of interest concern, will be discussed next week by the ...
Council committee to hear vacation rental billHawaii Tribune Herald

all 1 news articles »

Daytona Beach News-Journal

Short-term rental lawsuit against Daytona advances
Daytona Beach News-Journal
DAYTONA BEACH — The legal tussle between the city and 22 property owners over short-term vacation rentals will continue to move through the courts. At a brief hearing Monday afternoon, Circuit Court Judge Leah Case shot down the city's attempt to get ...


The city of $1,000 parking tickets? South Lake Tahoe divided on ...
The Record-Courier
It's been four months since South Lake Tahoe implemented stricter rules and steeper fines for its vacation home rental industry. While some residents say it's provided relief by sending a clear message to renters on the rules, others point to the ...

and more »

KTOO

Annual flood of tourists may be eroding Homer's long-term rental ...
KTOO
Finding a place to live Homer can be a challenge. The growing tourism industry makes it more difficult for year-round Homer residents to find long-term housing. With just a handful of hotels in town, visitors have been relying on vacation rental ...
Homer's annual flood of tourists may be eroding its long-term rental marketAlaska Public Radio Network

all 1 news articles »

Sun Sentinel

Unique vacation rentals in Florida include tree houses, hangars, huts and yurts
Sun Sentinel
Whether you're a Floridian in search of a more adventurous kind of staycation, or a tourist looking to skip the theme parks and resorts in favor of tiny houses or shipping containers, the Internet offers plenty of weird and wonderful options in the ...

and more »
Google News

Why are Townhouse Rentals are the Way to Go when Visiting Walt Disney World

The first words that come to mind when people think... Read More

Advantages of Bahamas Packages

For many people, the Bahamas is a dream vacation site,... Read More

Orlando Vacation Homes - Comparing Homes to Hotels

When staying in Orlando, you really do have a lot... Read More

Privately-Owned Vacation Property Offers Outstanding Value to Renters

In November, 2004, my wife Terry and I visited Paris... Read More

What You Need to Know About Costa Rica

More than one million tourists visit Costa Rica each year.... Read More

Vacation Destinations

Many times, when we plan a vacation, we know where... Read More

Andalucia, a Wonderful Holiday Destination

The Costa del Sol has long been one of the... Read More

Lodging and Entertainment Deals in Orlando Florida

Disney Area Lodging DealsThe Orlando area communities of Lake Buena... Read More

Love the Outdoors? Consider a Gatlinburg Cabin Rental

Love the outdoors, looking for adventure, a romantic getaway, or... Read More

The Inn at Woodstock Hill: Classic New England Atmosphere in Beautiful Northeastern Connecticut

Many vacation spots purport to offer true relaxation, but upon... Read More

Staying In A Vacation Cabin Rental

Did you know that staying in a vacation cabin rental... Read More

You Have To Love The Location, Say These Owners Of Orlando Florida Villas

It has been said that in real estate there are... Read More

Consider A Private Kauai Vacation Rental For Your Next Getaway

There are many wonderful resorts with tons of activity in... Read More

Cheap Family Vacations

The real secret to cheap family vacations is to be... Read More

Disney World Lodging Options in Orlando Florida and Nearby Cities

At the heart of Central Florida lies one of the... Read More

Choosing a Maui Condo Rental Agent

Choosing a condo in Maui is definitely a great investment.... Read More

Travel Journals ? Preserve Your Travel Experiences

Traveling is a great way to escape the rat race... Read More

Owners Dont be Scammed!

Scam artists pose as potential renters everyday on many different... Read More

Learn From My Personal Experience About Bahamas Vacation Rentals

Bahamas house rental or a hotel? Vacation rentals are becoming... Read More

Living and Retiring in Bolivia

A beautiful and inexpensive place without a tourist in sight.... Read More

Finding the Right Home Rental in Lake Tahoe

There are a few patterns to consider when looking for... Read More

Pigeon Forge Cabin Rentals

Cabin rental in Pigeon Forge are one of the city's... Read More

Heres How: How To Get The Perfect Florida Condominium Rental

The typical scenario goes something like this: your casual mention... Read More

An Overview of the Gatlinburg Cabins

Originally founded in the early 1800s as White Oaks, Gatlinburg... Read More

How to Plan a Cheap Vacation in the Bahamas

A trip to the Bahamas does not have to also... Read More