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European Delivery
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  #1  
Old 06-04-2011, 11:07 PM
angrypandy angrypandy is offline
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Exclamation Itinerary on a BUDGET!

Hello, I tried doing my best with the search but couldn't really find anything on doing to ED trip on a budget!

I'm planning about a 5 day trip at the end of July. I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions on the cheapest itinerary that involves either France or Italy. By cheapest I mean hotel, parking, food, and everything else involved. Also would it better to drop off the car in France or Italy or drive back up to Munich?

Thanks for the help guys!
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  #2  
Old 06-04-2011, 11:09 PM
angrypandy angrypandy is offline
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Also, would dropping the car off right after the pick up and using trains and public transportation save money significantly??
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  #3  
Old 06-05-2011, 04:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angrypandy View Post
Also, would dropping the car off right after the pick up and using trains and public transportation save money significantly??
Wouldn't that make the idea of doing European Delivery pointless?

If that's the direction you are going, you are a candidate for U.S. delivery, not factory delivery.
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  #4  
Old 06-05-2011, 06:32 AM
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Technic Technic is offline
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Originally Posted by JSpira View Post
Wouldn't that make the idea of doing European Delivery pointless?

If that's the direction you are going, you are a candidate for U.S. delivery, not factory delivery.
That is what the OP meant in the title of this thread... "on a BUDGET".

At some $10 a gallon of gas he will save quite some money using public transportation and still have a great 5-day vacation.

Last edited by Technic; 06-05-2011 at 06:33 AM.
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  #5  
Old 06-05-2011, 06:33 AM
necromancer necromancer is offline
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Might want to look into renting an apartment for the five nights. Do a search. Several websites were you can rent for three plus nights. Grocery store is your food answer and prepare your own meals. Gas is rather expensive. Fuel is twice as expensive if not more. Public transportation might be cheaper but you are in Europe. Finance the fuel for a month or two on your credit card and enjoy. I'm partial to Italy over France. Flying in and out of same airport is almost always least expensive route.

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  #6  
Old 06-05-2011, 06:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Technic View Post
That is what the OP meant in the title of this thread... "on a BUDGET".

At some $10 a gallon of gas he will save quite some money using public transportation and still have a great 5-day vacation.
There's a difference between doing european delivery on a budget - and not doing european delivery.

There are many ways of doing a trip "on a budget" - but not taking advantage of having one's own car and going to places where one wouldn't ordinarily go is just a vacation, not a European Delivery trip.
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  #7  
Old 06-05-2011, 07:03 AM
chrischeung chrischeung is offline
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+1

Middle of the European summer, it's going to be expensive. Paris I hear is cheap in August (hotels) since a lot of businesses are closed for summer.
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  #8  
Old 06-05-2011, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischeung View Post
+1

Middle of the European summer, it's going to be expensive. Paris I hear is cheap in August (hotels) since a lot of businesses are closed for summer.
Excellent point - the OP has picked the high season of travel for his budget trip.
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  #9  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:07 AM
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5 day trip:

First day in Munich, getting used to the jetlag.
Second day: pick up car. Spend that day driving it. Maybe to Salzburg?
Third day drive back and drop off car to be shipped home.
Remainder of third day, 4th and 5th day: good luck getting to Italy or France and then home in such a short amount of time.

I guess if Italy or France were a priority you could drop your car the morning of day 2 immediately after delivery and fly to Paris, spend the rest of your time there, and fly home. That isn't going to be budget though.

Long and short: in 5 days you aren't going to get far from Munich and back again, car or no car. Especially on a budget. If you really only have 5 days I'd make day 2 pickup, evening of day 2 through morning of day 5 somewhere close-ish (Salzburg, Zell am See, etc) and then drop the car on day 5 and fly home morning of day 6. I'm assuming you meant 5 days on the ground and not 5 days wheels down to wheels up?
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  #10  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angrypandy View Post
I'm about 80% sure that I will be going through with the ED! The CA gave me a pick up date of 7/30, which would work decently well for my parents who will be making the trip themselves. The CA told me that I can make the paperwork so that my father can be on the document and he can pick it up. Now I guess the only thing left to do is bug you guys more about how to plan a trip for them. Flights around 7/30 are expensive but ED rocks! The new motto of ED should be:
Get the car you want for much less, and send you parents to a nice European vacation in the process!
Ok so what are your parents interest? Religion, art, music, history, ..etc? Did you get Nav in the vehicle? Traffic in big EU cities is a bit intimidating for people not used to large traffic circles. EU cities are usually layed out like a wheel with spokes not a square grid as in the US. That is why it is much easier to use the Nav -vs- map. It is best to avoid large cities until you are more familiar with the boundaries of the car as again things are smaller and tighter on the streets.

The tastes and interests on this forum vary widely. I like to stay in five star hotels on occasion but I also like to camp and anything in between. We usually mix up our class level of accomodations to enjoy the varied experience.

You have to give us some parameters - rather than just on the cheap.
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  #11  
Old 06-05-2011, 10:48 AM
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sno_duc sno_duc is offline
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Last summer my brother inlaw / sister inlaw (wifes sister) joined us for a two week european vaction (non ED alas).
For them a trip to europe was a stretch, so we were on a budget.
Priceline is your friend!! Example Munich Marriot for $75 a night.
We spent two night in Venice, stayed on the mainland and rode the bus in to Venice proper. Public transportion and being willing to stay in outlying areas = $75 vs $200+ a night.

As other have already mentioned with only 5 days you are limited to number of stops and duration at each stop. Might consider spending all 5 nights in München and do day trips to Fussen, Salzburg, etc.
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  #12  
Old 06-05-2011, 02:11 PM
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Here is an obvious solution (and it makes use of the car and your connections here at the 'Fest). Rent the apartment from John Lance and stay in St. Gilgen, outside of Salzburg. You can drive to Salzburg for a day trip, go to Berchtesgarten, drive around the lakes, go to the salt mines, etc. (If you want to do more driving, it is an easy trip to the GrossGlockner.) All for less than 100 EUR per night for the apartment. The local manager will give you a list of suggested restaurants in the area at various price points. No train tickets, etc. -- just a tankful of gas or two depending on how much driving. Here is the link.

You'll have an Austrian vacation that is both incredibly reasonably priced (as you are outside of any major city) and the envy of sophisticated travelers.
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  #13  
Old 06-05-2011, 03:15 PM
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5 day trip is tough unless you go to Salzburg andf Berchesgaden. Another option. Pick up the car in Munich and drop it off right away. Then take the train to Rome or Paris and fly out of that city.
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  #14  
Old 06-05-2011, 07:05 PM
fishskis fishskis is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrischeung View Post
+1

Middle of the European summer, it's going to be expensive. Paris I hear is cheap in August (hotels) since a lot of businesses are closed for summer.
Paris is cheaper in August, yes, but far from cheap. Especially with the dollar over 1.4, Paris is expensive, and August is not the ideal time to visit.

To do a European Delivery and not use your car does not make sense to me; the savings you get by not having to rent a car or use trains is significant. Multiple persons traveling by train will cost more than driving, even with the high gas prices.

In general, stay in small towns, where hotels are generally very affordable, and use priceline in cities. Try to be in cities on weekends, when often hotel rates will be much cheaper (for non-tourist-centric cities).

But to really get good advice, as one poster said, BE SPECIFIC: What do you like, and what, specifically is your desired budget for hotels and food. One persons "very expensive" is another person's "reasonably priced". Where do you want to go, and what types of places do you want to got to...cities, towns, tourist meccas? Figure out the answers to these questions, then people here can be more helpful.
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:35 PM
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What is your idea of budget? You may find it hard to meet some US price points. It seems cost has been an overriding concern throughout all of your posts. Can you really afford a BMW, and is this trip for you or your parents? What are your parents interests? Are they paying, or are you?
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Old 06-05-2011, 09:25 PM
bigjae1976 bigjae1976 is offline
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I'm doing a trip on a budget, driving through the Stelvio Pass and the Top Gear route and finishing at the 'ring.

By far and away, my biggest cost if fuel. So if you want to save money...don't drive. I've found mostly $40-$50 hotels. I don't plan to eat huge, expensive meals, and don't want to spend any money on trinkets and other junk.
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Old 06-06-2011, 12:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angrypandy View Post
Hello, I tried doing my best with the search but couldn't really find anything on doing to ED trip on a budget!

I'm planning about a 5 day trip at the end of July. I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions on the cheapest itinerary that involves either France or Italy. By cheapest I mean hotel, parking, food, and everything else involved. Also would it better to drop off the car in France or Italy or drive back up to Munich?

Thanks for the help guys!
A few tips...

- As others have said, 5 days is really short for a trip from Munich to Italy or France.

- To save money, try to spend the nights in small villages and look for Bed & Breakfasts/Gasthaus. The cheapest places will usually not have an internet site, so you will probably be just winging it the whole time. Don't worry about that though..during my ED trip, my wife and I made a last minute trip to Lake Como and stayed in a really nice/cheap place.

- Try camping. It is safe and usually pretty!

- For food, skip eating a meal in a restaurant and do picnics. Go to a grocery store each morning and pack up fresh produce. More than once I have had lunch on the banks of Bodensee with nothing more than a can of coke, couple rolls, some butter, and cheese and ham. Fond memories actually...

- Avoid big cities. Well maybe tour them in the day, but spend the night outside the city.
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  #18  
Old 06-06-2011, 05:54 AM
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You'll probably find most of those budget travel tips you're actually after in some backpackers' guide, i.e. Lonely Planet books.
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  #19  
Old 06-06-2011, 06:16 AM
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There are a few variables here that you need to clarify:
1) Is France/Italy more important than the budget or vice versa?
2) How many people are in your group?
3) How much homework are you willing to do to keep the budget down?

The reason for those questions:
1) If truly on a budget, forget France/Italy as the more destinations you pick, the more expensive it will be (in general). If you stay in one area (in this case Munich since you have to pick up there) for your 5 days, you can rent a vacation apartment, stock up on groceries to eat at "home" (thus avoiding good chunk of restaurant expenses), reduce fuel/ticket expenses, etc.
2) If you are by yourself, you'll probably be ahead using train or budget air for long distance travel versus driving. Once you add a second person, that usually tips the balance in favor of a car, especially considering you don't have rental expenses involved. If your talking local/regional travel, you can usually get group tickets at bargain prices which will be cheaper than driving.
3) Search "FeWo" for german vacation apartments - find something just outside of Munich or even further south in Garmisch-Partenkirchen or Berchtesgaden. Use that as a base for your 4-5 days. Otherwise, consider what Ron suggested that many of cheapest FeWo's and gasthauses are available only through phone or local tourism offices so you'll have to travel go by the seat of your pants (the way I normally prefer to travel).

If this is your first visit to Germany/Europe, I'd strongly suggest picking an itinerary focused around Munich and southern Bavaria, regardless of budget. Especially considering your budget preference, your best bet is a FeWo as base camp in southern Bavaria, use the car sparingly (1 to 2 tankfuls will cover nearly all of southern Bavaria for 5 days), and do light breakfast/dinner in your FeWo and splurge a bit on lunch out on the town.
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  #20  
Old 06-06-2011, 06:39 AM
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Do you have any miles or points to claim hotel and plane ticket? That would set you on the right parth for budget travel. Consider Etap, Ibis or Forumla 1 hotel, they are really cheap while the service and comfort are not my cup of tea. Others are right - driving can get you to many places that can be tough to reach and Summer is a high season. If you want to do an ED for the primary purpose of saving money, you should use miles for ticket, arriving in the morning and leave at the afternoon. Just subject yourself 18 hours of air travel.

Parking is always expensive in European cities just like any cities in the world. You can choose a hotel near the city limit or out of city limit for cheap or free parking but then you need a car to go everywhere. BTW, what is budget to you? Some have higher threshold, some have lower. Any 1XX EUR/ night is budget to me. How many are traveling with you? In and out of Germany will get you a cheaper plane ticket, In Germany and out in France will be more. Drop off in Italy requires to pay a driver to bring the car back to Germany - more money.
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