7-Step Guide to Planning Your First Solo Euro-Trip

We all know that planning a trip can be daunting and putting together your first euro-trip, especially with multiple destinations involved, can be extremely stressful and time-consuming. Furthermore, as a female African traveler, there are myths around traveling solo or fears around safety coupled with inadequate online resources to guide you when trying to map out your first solo adventure. That is why we have put together this guide to help you successfully plan your first solo euro-trip experience.

Destination: Marmaris, Turkey; Photocredit: Turkey Home

7-Step Guide to Planning Your First Solo Euro-Trip

  1. Narrow Down the Geographic Location in Europe: To get you started, the first thing you should do is decide where you’d want to visit in Europe.  If you are not sure, then we suggest a quick google search for the map of Europe. After which you narrow down your destination choices either based on a destination of interest or a region of interest or popular tourists location or safest countries in Europe. This should help you narrow down what countries to visit.
  2. Select the Destination(s) to Visit: Based on your selection above, select the countries you’d want to visit. This decision made is based on distance between countries, transportation mode between countries, budget, and the duration of your trip. For example, you can decide on 3 countries if you have a short travel duration or 5 countries if you have a longer travel duration. Here are some of our favorite mapped out optimal routes for you: For the Scandinavian/Nordic region: “Iceland – Finland – Denmark”; For Eastern Europe: “Czech Republic – Austria – Slovenia – Croatia – Bosnia – Serbia”.

    Destination: Amsterdam, Netherlands; Photocredit: Tatiania Pechenina

  3. Select Cities to Visit: Once you have narrowed down the countries, then select cities you’d want to explore. Again, to make the most of your euro trip experience, choose city combinations along optimal routes based on duration of travel and distance between cities. For example, you may decide that you want to explore 3-4 cities in one country and 2 cities in another country. You have a variety of combinations to play with. We typically advice at least 4 days per destination, so you can really immerse yourself in the experience.
  4. Select Transportation Options: Once you have narrowed down the cities based on the optimal routes, then the next step is to determine the best mode of transport, which factors in mainly distance, travel time, and budget. Once you have determined the best option(s) (flight, ferry, train, car or bus) for your trip, proceed to book/reserve. Sometimes, it is better to take a train or bus in Europe not only because it may be cheaper but also because the views and landscape in Europe are so gorgeous, it makes the land trip worth it.
    Destination: Positano, Italy; Photocredit: Onder Turkmen
  5. Choose Accommodation Option: Once you have decided the cities to visit, narrow down your accommodation option(s) in each city, keeping in mind your budget and accommodation preference. If you are on a long euro-trip, we suggest a mix and match experience of accommodation such as hostels, couch surfing, hotels, and AirBnB. This allows you to make the most of your experience without breaking the bank. For new travelers, we suggest hostels and hotels for your first solo euro-trip experience.
  6. Choose Destination Experiences: Once you have decided the country, city and accommodation, then select the kind of activities you’d want to engage in while on your trip. Again we suggest a mix and match of destination activities, which would range from free walking tours and/or solo city walking within the cities to curated tours by locals and/or paid tours by local tour operators. The free walking tour is a great way to meet new friends while on your trip; they will easily become your in-city travel buddies.

    Destination: Croatia; Photocredit: Adam Bertalan

  7. Prepare For Your Trip: Once you have finalized trip planning, make sure you have a PDF copy of your itinerary and reservation details, either printed or on your phone. Also, ensure you have the proper travel outfit for the weather at the destination(s). Don’t forget to hold adequate amount of money for the duration of your trip; you don’t want to get stranded. Finally, don’t be nervous. You have concluded the planning process, which is the hardest part. So, go out, explore and you’d be amazed what you will learn about yourself outside of your comfort zone.
*optimal route definition: distance, time and budget have been calculated to provide the best value for your money and travel experience.

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