On my recent weekend trip to Lisbon, Portugal, I met some people at my hostel that claimed to come unprepared when traveling for various reasons. Since traveling in Europe is reasonably priced when visiting nearby countries. I felt that I was a bit more prepared for weekend travel that made my traveling a lot easier and cheaper!
Tip 1: TRAVEL WITH A CARRY-ON.
I can not stress this one enough, I know that we always want to bring our 20 best outfits, however, this is not helpful, especially when coming to Europe. Throughout Europe train stations, locations, and hostels, there are very limited elevators and LOTS of stairs. I usually travel with just a carry on with half the clothes I would originally bring. This has made my traveling so much easier as I do not have to check in a bag, worry about carrying a 50 lb luggage, and going up 5 flights of stairs every time I take the train to the airport.
Tip 2: When traveling for the weekend, the smaller your luggage the better.
As you study abroad, the smaller the luggage the better. By this I mean if possible travel with a small backpack/duffle bag that fits your clothes and travel-size toiletries. This will save time at the airport as you just take out liquids and have them ready to go (don’t forget to put your liquids in a ziplock before you leave your apartment).
Tip 3: Bring your own towel.
Bringing your own towel comes in handy! They sell packable towels that aren’t so bulky and work just as well at stores like Rei. This is better than using hotel towels or having to pay for one at hostels you travel.
Tip 4: Shop around for flights, train tickets.
Do your research ahead of time to get the best ticket prices. Try to look for tickets about a month in advance to avoid paying $200+ for a 2-hour flight. Additionally, work on booking hostels as soon as possible. Important: don’t forget to bring local currency (if it is not euros).
Tip 5: Research the local attractions and purchase tickets.
This is important since you are only there for a weekend, chances are most attractions are all booked up. This is a bummer when you arrive at the location and they tell you the locations has no more open time slots. Trust me, it is better to have set times to center other activities around this attraction. Also, you save your time instead of standing in line just to get tickets.
Enjoy some pictures I took on my weekend trip! :-)