I had always known that I wanted to go to Europe but I had put off going for quite a few years because either I didn't want to take the time off work or I really couldn't justify spending the money it would take to get there...if you are currently in the same boat where you are debating this then STOP DEBATING and GO! Going to Europe was one of the best decisions that I have ever made and I do not regret any of the money that I spent on the trip nor do I regret the time I missed at work. If this is something you want to do and you have the resources to do it and still survive when you get back, then please seriously consider going.
Originally I had planned to go with several friends on a trip to Europe, but that plan fell through and I was still determined to go to Europe even if it meant going by myself. I knew that I wanted to go on a tour and go to as many places in Europe that I could in a short period of time. I also knew that I would feel more comfortable going by myself if I were on tour with people in my age group who were there to see the sites and explore the cities while also having a good time. I did a lot of research on all the different tour companies out there and the specific tours they offered and in the end I decided that Contiki would be the best company for me to use.
Contiki is a company that isn't as widely known in the United States as it is in other countries such as Australia and New Zealand, but if you are between the ages of 18 and 35 it is a great company to utilize for your trip. Because of the specific age range, Contiki is able to target and mold its trips to the people going on the trip as they understand what it is that 18-35's are wanting to do when they are travelling around the world. Contiki not only offers a wide variety of trips to Europe, but they also go to Australia, New Zealand, United States, Canada, Mexico, Russia & the Baltic, Asia, and Egypt so more than likely they have a trip that is right for you. The trips that Contiki have range from a short speciality trip (like Amsterdam for Easter or Munich for Oktoberfest) to a 40 day camping trip around Europe. Another great thing about Contiki is they have different levels of trips so you can go on a superior trip that is generally more expensive per day and you stay in hotels or you can go on a budget trip where you may be camping or staying in hostels.
The best thing to me about Contiki when I was planning my trip is that they can take care of everything. Not only do they plan out most of your days, but they provide you with transportation, arrange your hotels, depending on the tour have most of you breakfasts and dinners taken care of, can book flights and arrange for extra nights stay in certain locations, and provide you with an array of optional activities to enhance your trip. And above all of this, you have a tour manager who is with you to help make your time the best it can be and provide you with valuable information to make sure you get around each place you visit smoothly. With all of this you could expect to pay a ton of money, but looking back, the cost per day is incredibly cheap and knowing that I hardly had anything to worry about when I was in Europe was absolutely priceless.
All in all for the 12 day tour and my flights I paid $2500 which I think is great. Yes, I know there are cheaper ways to get around Europe, especially if you backpack or plan it by yourself, but being a single traveler it was worth it to have someone else take care of everything for me and really not have to have a headache trying to plan every little detail out.
So again, if you are in the 18-35 age range definitely check out contiki as I highly, highly recommend them.
From their website:
"With Contiki, you get an up-close look at the places you’ve always dreamed of visiting and can leave the trip details to us. Contiki saves you the time and money in planning by providing trips which include comfortable accommodations, a majority of meals, expert insight to the local hotspots and exciting optional excursions to create a truly unforgettable experience. Our trips don’t take you on a typical journey; they give you new perspective. That way, you not only see the world, you get to interact with it."
So check out their website and all the different trip's they have to offer: