I live in Jakarta Indonesia. The trip to Europe was designed not to use tour assistance, so all arragement matters must be done alone. Visiting many countries with many means of transportation certainly requires a lot of effort and energy, so it might not be suitable for families carrying small children or seniors. The ability to read maps is also important because you have to find your own way.
Especially for people who have never traveled alone to countries such as Britain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, and others, perhaps most people are skeptical: how can you walk without a tour guide? For those of you who like to travel and travel but do not want to bother, join the tour is a safe choice. As for people who like adventure and freedom, the road itself is not a big difficulty.
If you ask, why not take a tour? can it be cheaper? Try reading the first paragraph above, is my total cost more expensive than taking a tour with the same number of cities and days? In addition, of course there are reasons to go it alone:
It could be cheaper
Flexible: free at what time you wake up in the morning, and when you want to sleep at night. Taking a tour is usually tiring because the hotel checkin is night at 10, the next day I wake up at 6 am, have breakfast and walk again. It’s not possible to go on a tour with this kind of cycling experience.
Walk only to the place we like. Tours can take people to boring museums.
Sleep always at the hotel. Taking a tour means you have to be ready to sleep at night on a walking bus.
This is a common secret: most parents or seniors take part in a tour, sometimes it is not suitable for young people.
But, walking alone also has its own problems:
There are not as many places visited as going on tour. Usually we spend a long time in one place. The tour bus will take you to many places in one day. Just set foot on a tourist spot, photos, and was told to leave again.
Choosing a hotel can be a problem, from quality to location, all have to be booked (and paid for) long before arriving in Europe
Must read city maps, subway / metro, and learn to take a city bus.
Getting lost should be seen as a walk too, don’t scold each other.
Patiently queuing for favorite tourist spots, pay more for tickets than group tickets.
Why is there a travel agent that offers cheap prices?
If you often read advertisements in the newspaper, you might find that the price of tour packages to Europe varies, from cheap to quite expensive, even though the number of days and cities visited is almost the same. Equally offering for example 12 days to 6 countries with a number of cities for example 10, prices can vary up to USD 500 between travel agents.
All you need to look at if you really intend to go on tour (the term group tour) is the details of each city, not the number of cities. If you read the details every day in the brochure, whether the entrance ticket to the tourist attractions are included, or must pay for yourself, or just simply “passing” (meaning there is a tour guide on the bus that screams, “look to the left, that’s Trafalgar Square ! “:)).
Apart from that what really determines the price is transportation and hotel costs. If you join a group tour, you will definitely always use a tour bus both within the city and moving between cities. Anyway, at least you are trapped in a bus for a total of 3-4 hours a day, and in one day can visit 2 to 3 cities at once. Arriving, getting off the bus, taking photos, leaving again … that’s the principle. The feet are not tired, the hotels used are generally 3 or 4 stars, but the location may not be in the city center (because they always have a tour bus and check in late at night). One more thing is the itinerary must-visit from the tour / travel, usually taken to shopping places such as gemstones, honey, or other places (which bring commissions for the tour) that we should not want to buy in normal conditions.
Whereas if you want to walk alone without a tour, minus the many roads up to the pebble feet, plus the hotel will of course be chosen near the city center, even if you can even have a balcony see the Eiffel tower right .. (much more expensive), and travel between cities using fast trains (more convenient but also more expensive). Those are some things that distinguish prices, depending on your preferences.
Tips from Me
Booking airplane tickets to Europe at least 3 months before the date of departure. Flight tickets will be cheaper if purchased in advance.
Use a credit card that offers a reasonable foreign exchange rate. And you should use up to 2 types of credit cards only for online transactions so as not to confuse validation time.
Want cheap, do not go during summer (June-September). Hotel prices can double the normal price
Apply for the required visa. As an Indonesian citizen, you need a Schengen Visa to enter Europe, except the UK. UK visas must be administered separately. Specifically for Switzerland, more visas are needed (if I’m not mistaken, November 2008 Switzerland will accept it)