A couple weeks ago marked 1 year since I went to Europe for the first time! I love traveling and adventures and experiencing cultures so I, of course, loved every single second. Before I went- people loved giving me “helpful” advice about what to expect in Europe. After I came back, I decided to do a blog post about the advice people had been giving to me and I thought I would re-share that for my 1 Year Europe anniversary!
*This post originally appeared on an old blog I used to have before I switched to this one!*
People give you advice all the time- whether you want it or not. They just think that sharing their little words of wisdom will help you with whatever it is you are doing. When I told people I was going to Europe, they were not shy about telling me their thoughts and experiences. I listened to a lot of what they said. But, now that I have gone, I thought I would share some of the worst things people told me about traveling to London and Paris…
“Don’t stay in hostels. They are so sketchy. Splurge on a nice hotel.”
My questions to this are ‘have you ever been in a hostel?’ and ‘when was the last time you stayed in a hostel.’ Hostels are not what they use to be. Cities all over Europe have hostels and “budget hotels”. Every hostel I stayed in had wifi, a private en suite, and they range from 2-6 beds (because I went with a group, I knew everyone in the room with me). Hostels are normally in a central location so they are close to public transportation, good food, and local hang outs.
My advice- check out the websites and reviews for hostels, do your research, and don’t freak out about them.
“Don’t sleep on the plane. You have to get use to the time difference and if you sleep on the plane, you won’t be able to fall asleep at night. “
When someone told me this I thought okay yeah that makes sense. Then, you realize you are pretty much tired all the time AND chances are you are walking around all day. So, no matter how much you sleep- you are going to be tired.
My advice- Sleep as much as you can. You are in an amazing place and you are going to be so busy all day that you need all the sleep you can get. SLEEP.
“Don’t carry cash on you. You should always use your card because you can cancel it if it gets stolen. “
It is a good idea to carry your debit/credit card with you. If you do- make sure you call your card company ahead of time and tell them you where you will be traveling so your card isn’t declined when you are trying to make a purchase. However, you should definitely bring cash with you. Some places only take cash and your bank will more than likely charge you money to make withdrawals from foreign ATM’s.
My advice- bring cash and keep it in your front pocket or in a crossbody bag so your money is safe from pickpockets.
“Don’t get your hopes up. The Paris Syndrome is totally real.”
For those of you who don’t know- The Paris Syndrome is when you build up a european city in you head and think it is going to be so amazing and then when you get there you become disappointed because it’s just a ‘normal city’. When people told me this, it actually scared me. I have been dreaming of going to Paris my entire life and I couldn’t imagine being sad while being in this city I have always wanted to see. It’s true, it is a city- people live there and work there like anywhere else. But when I got there, I realized nothing anyone said could make me be disappointed in Europe. The history, the food, the culture, the art, the people- you just cant be bummed out when you’re there. It really is incredible, don’t worry.
My advice- get your hopes up. Be excited. You’re seeing new places! You’re going on adventures! It’s going to be an amazing experience! You are going to have so much fun and do not let other people and what they say bring you down!