Hello travel friends!
So I am going to Amsterdam tomorrow and I have somehow managed to plan all of this with in the last month! Tickets and everything. I know, it’s been hectic. But! I thought I would share my tips so you can plan a trip too. Everyone needs a getaway, especially for a fair price.
Here’s what my amazing friends and I did:
- use skyscanner.com to scan for cheap flights!
Seriously…I got my ticket for $650 and that’s including travel insurance and a checked bag..and it’s legit! The trick is to constantly keep looking at it. Also, if you are purchasing and it feels sketchy, then find another option! The first tickets we were looking at asked for our bank info and social security number. We ended up backing out of that and looking again a couple days later. Also, make sure once you buy the tickets to get a confirmation email and that the money is taken out of your bank account!
- use an incognito browser window when searching for flights
The internet tracks you! So if you are constantly looking up flights, it’ll boost them up just cause they know you are looking at them. If a price you were just looking at suddenly goes up, exit out of that, refresh the page and start over in an incognito window! It should go back to the lower price.
- search on specific days!
We found the cheapest tickets when looking late at night and during the weekdays! Also, we made sure to look for flights that take off/land between Tuesday-Thursday. Everyone is always flying during the weekends so those tickets are always more expensive. That’s another thing, if you are looking at tickets, try to have a flexible schedule and pick the best days that are the cheapest.
- plan to have a day of travel
The downside to cheap flights is you are most likely not flying straight there. My flight to Amsterdam has a 4-hour layover in Philadelphia and on the way back I have a 1-hour layover in London. Plus with the time change I am leaving on Wednesday morning and not getting there until Thursday, but it’s worth it to me for the price!
- pack a prepared carry-on
Just a general travel tip! When traveling abroad, especially with layovers, I always make sure to pack a spare set of everything in my carry-on. A pair of pajamas, set of jeans, extra underwear, etc. Just in case your luggage gets lost you will have some stuff with you! The last time I traveled to Europe my friend’s luggage got lost and luckily she got it back a couple days after we landed, but it’s always good to be prepared! Plus you don’t want the stress of having to find things you need in another country.
- Amsterdam travel pass
I thought I would include a link to a travel pass I bought for Amsterdam, only $55. This lets me use any of the trains or buses when I am there. Don’t have to worry about travel! For other cities, just look up what type of passes they have and buy ahead of time.
- Pick one place you really want to go to
With last minute trips, you can get so caught up with trying to get everything done that you forget to plan places to go. I am all for a whimsical trip without any plan, plus you can always figure it out when you get there, but just for fun. Be sure to pick 1 or 2 places you really want to go to! That way you don’t really have to have a plan, you just know that if you at least make it to that place, you will have had a good trip! The rest of the time, just explore 🙂
- Get euros once you are there
Depending on the city and the exchange rate, it might be easier to just get money once you are there. One less thing to worry about right now and there is money exchange places all over in the transportation areas in other major European cities. (Another travel tip: call your bank and let them know you are traveling! Your card won’t get blocked and you don’t have to worry about calling them to fix it.)
- Airbnb is your friend
Last minute trips means it might be hard to find a place to stay! Luckily I have a friend in Amsterdam that I am staying with, but for the last night we are staying at an Airbnb. Most everyone in Europe (depending on the area) is super nice and accommodating! Plus there are a ton of places listed, so you should be able to find something. Just be sure to look at the reviews – look at cleanliness – and message the host if you have any questions. Also, if it’s really last minute and you want to save even more check out hostels! Super cheap and you can sleep with other fellow travelers!
There is so many more tips I can share, but I will save that for when I get back! And I will do a general travel tips post.
Shout out to my amazing friends for helping me plan this!
Let me know what you thought of these tips! And I will see you all when I get back from Amsterdam 🙂