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    • finrod
    • By finrod 13th Mar 13, 9:56 AM
    • 25 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    finrod
    • #2
    • 13th Mar 13, 9:56 AM
    Hikers: Join a continental Alpine Association
    • #2
    • 13th Mar 13, 9:56 AM
    If you are going on a hiking holiday, you get (up to, and usually 50% off accommodation) in any alpine association's mountain huts. Most associations are federated, giving reciprocal rights. I have an Italian membership, but have used my card in Spain and Austria, to get the same rights and prices as the locals. There may be other more modest membership discounts on food and chairlifts etc.

    NB there are some private huts that do not offer any discounts, but you can often find a route to avoid staying in these - I never have stayed in any.

    You can join the British branch of the Austrian Alpine Club http://aacuk.org.uk/

    Or it's slightly cheaper to join the Club Alpino Italiano (Lugo) http://www.cailugo.it/Default.cfm?lingua=EN

    The Italian option is more complicated, as you have to pay in euros. Although it might not be recommended, I've successfully sent (well-packaged) cash (euros) to them for the past several years. There was a link for cheap (99p) on-line transfers, but it now comes up as an untrusted site.

    Membership usually pays for itself after four-five nights in mountain huts. Standards of accommodation vary as do prices (I've paid as little as six and as much as 13 euros). It's worth familiarising yourself with the rules. Huts are often like hostels (but much friendlier and cosier), and the higher up, generally the more spartan.

    Wardens will generally try to allocate the maximum degree of privacy, so if they can offer you a room to yourselves, they will. Very occasionally they ask a small supplement ( in my case, once only, two euros). Many refuges have some two bedroom rooms. Travelling in September I've very often had a dormitory to myself.

    To conclude, hikers abroad are often very social, and I have enjoyed "adoption" by groups of Spaniards, Italians, Germans and Austrians. This has involved being invited to eat with them, swapping of hints on routes and b & bs; and lifts in their hired coaches. English is widely spoken, but even a basic knowledge of the language will pay unexpected dividends. The best times I've experienced were in populated/crowded refuges rather than empty ones.

    Hope someone out there finds this useful. Mark
    • jackieblack
    • By jackieblack 13th Mar 13, 11:22 AM
    • 7,087 Posts
    • 9,244 Thanks
    jackieblack
    • #3
    • 13th Mar 13, 11:22 AM
    • #3
    • 13th Mar 13, 11:22 AM


    Hi all,




    This thread's specifically for discussing the 50 Overseas Travel Tips checklist. Which have worked best for you, and do you have any extra travel tips 'n' tricks of your own that could help others save cash? If so, just click 'reply' to post,





    Thanks,


    MSE Rose
    Originally posted by MSE Rose
    That link doesn't appear to be working
    2.22kWp Solar PV system installed Oct 2010, Fronius IG20 Inverter,
    south facing (-5 deg), 30 degree pitch, no shading

    Quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur
    (Revera linguam latinam vix cognovi )
  • bailey70
    • #4
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:12 PM
    European-purchased US travel adapters
    • #4
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:12 PM
    I guess this is in some ways a money saving tip... while I agree that buying travel adapters at airports is a waste of money, quite frankly the ones for use in the US that I have got in the past are woefully inadequate and should be avoided at all costs.

    By way of an explanation, these things come with two thin and flimsy metal pins, sometimes they're adjustable so they can be used in other countries, and they are so flimsy that when used with a regular UK wall plug they hang loose in the socket (leaving the metal pins exposed) or just fall out.

    My advice... wait and buy one in the USA. They may not have a plethora of EU approvals stamped on them but they are generally quite solid and sturdy and feature the earth pin which is often missing from some of the cheap adapters you get over here (and that also helps hold the weighty over-engineered UK plug in place).

    Sometimes safety outweighs savings.
  • bailey70
    • #5
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:31 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:31 PM
    Another tip I would like to share involves travel money. If the amounts are small and you're likely to use it again I would argue that changing money back to pounds is actually pointless, if you're a regular traveller the amount you spend will add up.

    Having around US$10 in smallish change can actually be quite use useful when arriving at some US destinations (Orlando for instance) as it means you have something in your pocket to use on the expressway toll booths if you don't want to spend out extra on the PAYG toll devices if you're not intending to make use of the toll roads.

    On the same basis having a few Euros stashed away can be handy for buying the odd snack if you're driving or transiting through Europe and is better than having to dish out the debit card because you don't have the right currency to hand.
    • sarahemmm
    • By sarahemmm 13th Mar 13, 3:45 PM
    • 96 Posts
    • 83 Thanks
    sarahemmm
    • #6
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:45 PM
    Satnav
    • #6
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:45 PM
    Wildly enthusiastic about Navfree, I went off to install it, but Google Play says it cannot be downloaded in the UK
    • jackieblack
    • By jackieblack 13th Mar 13, 3:48 PM
    • 7,087 Posts
    • 9,244 Thanks
    jackieblack
    • #7
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:48 PM
    • #7
    • 13th Mar 13, 3:48 PM
    That link doesn't appear to be working
    Originally posted by jackieblack
    Works now, thank you
    2.22kWp Solar PV system installed Oct 2010, Fronius IG20 Inverter,
    south facing (-5 deg), 30 degree pitch, no shading

    Quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur
    (Revera linguam latinam vix cognovi )
    • AngelinaV
    • By AngelinaV 13th Mar 13, 7:03 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    AngelinaV
    • #8
    • 13th Mar 13, 7:03 PM
    Hiring a Car for Spain
    • #8
    • 13th Mar 13, 7:03 PM
    [/FONT]

    I would like to add that when hiring a car through an Agent for use in Spain, don't add the excess insurance to the original booking because when you go to pick up the car in Spain from the car hire companies you will have to pay again as they say it is the Brokers who are getting the money and nothing to do with them so you will have to pay twice! I have been caught once and I have rented through various companies and hear the same story - the tourist saying that they have already paid all insurances - and the companies refusing to release the car until they have either been paid a daily rate or had a lump sum blocked on your card. If you are going for a short break it is advisable to pay the daily rate, as otherwise, any damage would result in you losing the lump sum which can be at least Euros300 depending on the size of the car!


    Don't be caught!
    • zagfles
    • By zagfles 13th Mar 13, 7:39 PM
    • 12,240 Posts
    • 10,172 Thanks
    zagfles
    • #9
    • 13th Mar 13, 7:39 PM
    • #9
    • 13th Mar 13, 7:39 PM
    [/FONT]

    I would like to add that when hiring a car through an Agent for use in Spain, don't add the excess insurance to the original booking because when you go to pick up the car in Spain from the car hire companies you will have to pay again as they say it is the Brokers who are getting the money and nothing to do with them so you will have to pay twice! I have been caught once and I have rented through various companies and hear the same story - the tourist saying that they have already paid all insurances - and the companies refusing to release the car until they have either been paid a daily rate or had a lump sum blocked on your card. If you are going for a short break it is advisable to pay the daily rate, as otherwise, any damage would result in you losing the lump sum which can be at least Euros300 depending on the size of the car!


    Don't be caught!
    Originally posted by AngelinaV
    You don't have to pay twice, if you've already paid the broker you are covered, it's just they'd charge your card and the broker would pay you. But better value is usualy a separate excess insurance from the likes of insurance4carhire.

    Buying excess insurance when you pick the car up is generally a rip-off, that's why they give you the hard sell on it, and try to con you into believing the excess insurance you've already bought doesn't cover you. But they will reserve the excess on your card so make sure your credit limit is sufficient.
    • Roger1
    • By Roger1 14th Mar 13, 8:57 AM
    • 1,286 Posts
    • 561 Thanks
    Roger1
    Wildly enthusiastic about Navfree, I went off to install it, but Google Play says it cannot be downloaded in the UK
    Originally posted by sarahemmm
    Strange. I was able to download UK/Ireland, Switzerland and South Africa to my Android phone. They even added a UK postcode finder.
  • algerry
    Free app turns phone into sat nav for 30 countries
    Navfree:

    I have now managed to download Navfree together with the terms of use. However I cannot activate the "accept" button because it is obscured by an advert for an audio book. Help please somebody!
    Last edited by algerry; 16-03-2013 at 6:55 PM. Reason: update
  • Oliver10
    Home Exchange?
    One thing missing from the list is the option to exchange homes with a couple/family at the location you are going to. For the cost of travelling there (see the tips for cheap travel listed here) you get to stay in a proper home in a local community.

    We have done this and exchanged cars at both ends as well (inform your insurance company ......and the house insurers), so local travel has been taken care of as well.

    You get to stay in a community instead of a soulless hotel and in fact get to know their neighbours better that the people you have swapped with!

    There are many sites to sign up to for exchanges but viewing of properties available at different locations is freely available on the site before signing up.

    So, for the cost of getting there and the usual day to day living expenses you can explore a completely different part of the world.

    It is better to be flexible about where you want to go and timing as as there may not be availability at your chosen location at the time you would like.

    But it is still worth a look.

    Oliver10
    • Raksha
    • By Raksha 19th Mar 13, 10:57 AM
    • 4,519 Posts
    • 6,095 Thanks
    Raksha
    Take photo copies of all passports, either keep a copy of every person in the groups documents in everyone's luggage, or keep a copy of somebody elses in your luggage, on arrival, take the copies with you as proof of ID, rather than take the originals out with you where they can get lost.
    Put one change of clothing for another party member In another persons luggage, the if your luggage goes missing, you have one change of clothes at least. Same goes for any medicines
    Please forgive me if my comments seem abrupt or my questions have obvious answers, I have a mental health condition which affects my ability to see things as others might.
  • pthompson
    Sending luggage via courier
    I'd normally bring plenty of wine, oil and cheese back from our annual trip by car to south Italy, but this year we're going by plane (for the first time in 20 years), so am thinking about sending the goodies by courier instead.

    On a more general note,
    has anyone considered the relative costs of sending their luggage via courier rather than as checked-in baggage?

    Thanks, Paul.
    • torbrex
    • By torbrex 28th Apr 13, 6:19 PM
    • 67,660 Posts
    • 124,659 Thanks
    torbrex
    Don't get stung by extra luggage fees on the way back
    Best way to avoid overloading your luggage on the way home is to take old clothes with you, wear them once more then throw them away, this has the advantage of freeing up extra space in your luggage as well as not having to carry dirty laundry home.
    • shrimper1
    • By shrimper1 28th Apr 13, 8:29 PM
    • 479 Posts
    • 383 Thanks
    shrimper1
    If you hire a car abroad get a chain to put the key on, they give you only one and will charge you about £120 if you loose it and it will save alot of time and frustration. My one reaches from a belt loop to the ignition to save keep undoing it
  • Bob the Saver
    My top 10 tips for travelling in no specific order.

    1. Book direct with Airlines not through travel agents.
    2. Carry the right cards and as many back-ups as possible.
    3. Travel as light as possible with as few expensive items as possible.
    4. Email document back-ups to your own email.
    5. Carry photos + Jpegs of your bag in case it goes walkabout.
    6. Make sure you are insured (+EHIC where needed)
    7. Take unlocked PAYG phone to use local sims.
    8. Take minimum of shoes, they are heavy and bulky.
    9. Take plastic bags to pack wet/dirty clothes in when moving on.
    10a Check all bookings/passports/dates etc 3 times at least well in advance)
    10b. Travel only with the right person(s)
    10c. Don't be afraid to tell touts/conmen to F off.
    10d Rough guides etc are big and heavy, only take the pages you need.
    10e. Have a plan B in case a flight/ferry of whatever is delayed.
    19f. Always arrive VERY early for flights.
    10g. Never let on you know Bob the Saver
    Last edited by Bob the Saver; 30-04-2013 at 8:03 AM.
    • Backbiter
    • By Backbiter 29th Apr 13, 11:17 PM
    • 1,210 Posts
    • 626 Thanks
    Backbiter
    Take photo copies of all passports, either keep a copy of every person in the groups documents in everyone's luggage, or keep a copy of somebody elses in your luggage, on arrival, take the copies with you as proof of ID, rather than take the originals out with you where they can get lost.
    Originally posted by Raksha
    I recommend scanning your passports and emailing scans to yourself so they can be accessed anywhere in the world if you lose the originals.

    You can also easily convert the scans to pdfs which can be stored on your Kindle. This can be done with any travel documents (car hire, hotel confirmations etc)
  • Bob the Saver

    You can also easily convert the scans to pdfs which can be stored on your Kindle.)
    Originally posted by Backbiter
    Kindle, phone, MP3 player, camera etc.
    • Roger1
    • By Roger1 30th Apr 13, 10:49 AM
    • 1,286 Posts
    • 561 Thanks
    Roger1
    My top 10 tips ...
    Originally posted by Bob the Saver
    Looks like your top 16 to me!
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