If you’re planning a trip to Europe on a student budget, check out these 8 tips on how to keep your stuff safe, and how to get the most out of your EuroTrip! I am currently in Bremen, Germany on an internship, but have visited a few places in Europe during my stay. I have found the tips below to be the most important to consider when travelling to Europe, and I wish I found a blog post like this before I came to Europe!
1. Bring a lock.
A nice big masterlock. If you’re staying in hostels while travelling, it is important to bring a lock just to give you a sense of comfort and safety. The hostels I have stayed at have been very safe, and I’ve always felt that even if I left my things unlocked, they would be fine, and I’d return to find them untouched at the end of a day out. I think everyone staying in hostels have the same mindset: we’re all broke students, so you don’t steal my stuff, and I won’t steal yours. In the long run though, it does help to know that your stuff won’t be rifled through or messed with while you’re out of your room.
2. Put money in separate places.
I have never had money stolen from me while travelling, but I’ve heard a few stories from people who have. If you are travelling with a large amount of money (enough for a few days), it will help to hide it in a few different places: $50 in your camera bag, $50 in your backpack, $50 in your wallet, etc. This way, if any of your money does get stolen, at least you know your whole life savings haven’t been swept away.
3. Invest in a microfiber towel.
I wish I thought of this before I came over to Europe! Towels are essential to bring as most hostels don’t have them. In some hostels you can rent them anywhere from 2-6EUR, but that can add up, and for me at least, it’s a little gross to think someone else has already used the same towel. Towels take up WAY too much space in a backpack, so microfiber towels will really help save you space. They arguably work better than normal towels anyway! The ones that I have seen other travellers use are something like this.
If you can avoid it, don’t bring your laptop. With modern technology, I have been able to do a lot of work from my phone and iPad while travelling using online apps, and file sharing software like Dropbox. Laptops and bigger devices take up a lot of precious packing space and realistically, how often will you use them?
5. A trick to getting around: Maps.
Load Maps on your phone before you leave wifi. As long as you don’t close the app, the map will stay open with your directions so you don’t get lost! Alternatively, you can download maps.me. This app is awesome, and you don’t need wifi to use it. It’s perfect for getting around in places that don’t have strong wifi!
It helps a lot to have some sort of rough outline of what you will be doing for each day. It’s okay to stray from your original plan if something different comes up, but having an idea of what you want to get accomplished for the day will help to save time. I use the calendar app on my phone to plan my days. It gives me an easy overview of each day and week, and I can set reminders for any important tours or reservations that I have booked.
7. Bring a portable charger.
For travellers like me, the iPhone is the main source of direction. I check out TripAdvisor reviews on my phone, plan my days, take notes, and use Maps ALL THE TIME. I know I wouldn’t be completely lost without my phone, but not having it would definitely make things difficult. The portable charger I use is this one, from Jackery. If you bring a portable charger and throw it in your bag every day (make sure it’s charged!), you’ll avoid the risk of being stuck somewhere without navigation, or a way to contact someone if there is an emergency.
8. Don’t forget outlet adaptors.
This is so important!! Without adaptors, you won’t be able to charge anything in Europe. The best adaptor I’ve seen so far is this one from Heys.ca. This guy is perfect for EuroTravel and is an adaptor for over 150 countries! This way, you literally just buy one adaptor, and you’ll save yourself a lot of space (and money)!
I hope you found these tips helpful! Enjoy Europe!! Also, if you have a chance to visit Prague in Europe, DO IT!! My favourite city so far. Check it out how to do one day in Prague on a student budget here.