Europe’s greatest hits: 10 countries, 11 flights, 30 nights, all for under £1300
By Yannick Boeck-Chenevier
Imagine this: 30 days and 30 nights – 10 of Europe’s best, most famous and most fun cities. All flights and all accommodation coming in for just under a cool £1300. Impossible? Nope. Not at all. In fact, it’s pretty easy. How? Because Europe, you’re a gem
Lately, though, Europe’s been given a hard time of it. There’s been a lot of chat about the fragile state of Europe fueled by Brexit, the EU’s 60th anniversary and contentious elections in core countries. Well, we think it’s high time we remembered what makes all of us, the people of Europe and our individual countries, so great.
That’s why we’re celebrating the launch of KAYAK’s Love Letters. Our brand new campaign is to highlight why we Europeans love Europe so!
And what better way to remember what all the fuss is about than taking yourself on a journey across Europe itself and seeing for yourself.
After all, how many amazing relationships have been forged, romances sparked, and smiles and memories created on trips around Europe? Countless.
So, coming back to that journey we’ve been yapping on about. Let’s hand over to our staff writer, Yannick, who’ll share how he planned his perfect summer:
I come from a multicultural family that instilled a love of travel in me. When I was wee, my parents wowed me with tales of how they used to interrail all throughout Europe in their youth, and all the good times they had with their friends hopping on and off the train in various countries across the continent.
But Interrailing has become a thing of the past; a unique way to see Europe for a very specific kind of traveller, one for whom the journey is more interesting than the destination.
For most of us though, flying is where it’s at. Not just flying. Flying CHEAPLY. The move to low-cost carriers operating routes all across Europe has allowed the modern traveller to experience much more in a city while taking a lot less time to get there.
This means you can fully enjoy partying it up in Riga or Amsterdam and then relax on the beach in Malta or Barcelona the very next day with minimum stress.
11 flights, 10 cities, 30 days for under £1300 – Where does one even start?
So how does one start their modern Eurotrip? When planning out the ideal itinerary, you should pick the places you most want to visit in and then figure in which order you should see them. And how does one do that on the cheap?
Using tools like Kayak Explore and Kayak Routes, you can pick your point of origin, and see where you can fly to directly and at what price. Boom! That’s how quick and easy it is to figure out the first leg of your Eurotrip.
From there, you can check the next cheapest destination on your list (or get inspired) for your second leg, and so forth until you’ve come up the perfect route, one that also matches your budget.
I tasked myself with visiting ten destinations over 30 days without spending a cent over £1300 on flights and accommodation. Using the multi-city flight search tool, it’s super easy to book a multi-leg journey with eleven direct flights to ten top European destinations costing you under £700.
Let’s be realistic here. Most low-cost carriers only fly out of major destinations so you want to book your first leg out of your closest major city. For me, that’s London. To create a well balanced, easy to plan and book itinerary, flying counter-clockwise made sense – heading firstly to Dublin then Porto, on to Barcelona, then Paris, then Rome and so on and so on until I had circled back home a full month later.
This is just one example of an itinerary that can be put together and was chosen purely because it’s how I’m spending my summer holidays (Jealous much?). Ten great destinations where the total sum of all the flights came in under £600. That left me with roughly £23 a day for accommodation according to my £1300 budget.
Part 2 – Where do I lay my weary head?
Of course, if you want to hack this trip like a pro while looking for your next destination you should be planning where you are sleeping at the same time you’re booking your flights. On the Hotels page, you can easily find numerous accommodation options in each city for under £20 a night. All right, they ain’t going to be palatial lodgings but with some cities offerings a bed in a hostel for under a tenner a night you can mix and match and still treat yourself here and there.
When searching for hotels, there are three major things to take into consideration: Quality, Location and Price. Thanks to the filter options found on the right side of KAYAK’s Hotels page, you can filter results by hotel star ratings and reviews (I typically filtered by ‘good or excellent’) and slide the price down to your nightly budget range. From there, you can find the best location by taking a look at the Heatmap of the city which shows you the hottest spots according to your interests. Filter by nightlife, sightseeing, food, etc. to find the most popular areas of the city, and which hotels are right in the vicinity.
I wanted to enjoy each destination fully, so staying 1-2 full days in each location was a necessity, and luckily, not a difficulty since my elementary school math has not failed me yet: 30 days/10 destinations = 3 days at each location.
And that was it. A hassle-free way to book an exceptional Eurotrip on a tight budget. No long train hauls included.
Note: These rates are based on search queries made on KAYAK.co.uk on July 18th, 2017. The prices are quoted in GBP. Flight prices are based on results for a return economy flight search. Hotel prices are for double occupancy and include taxes and fees. Prices are subject to change, may vary, or no longer be available.