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Planning an Italy Trip

Detroit
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Planning an Italy Trip

I have started to plan a Honeymoon to Italy for May 2011. I have been doing research and have considered planning it myself. I have also found websites that help you plan every step of it like Europeandestinations.com. I'm trying to decide if I should use a website like this, plan everything individually including hotels or if I should contact a travel agent. Any advise from past experience would help. Thanks

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Melbourne, Australia
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1. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

I would recommend planning it yourself. I recently returned from a glorious month in Italy, and used the internet to research and book accommodation before leaving. I used website such as Tripadvisor and Venere to read reviews and then based my decisions on what other travellers wrote. I was more than happy with the apartments and Band B's we stayed in, and the planning was half the fun!!

San Diego
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for San Diego
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2. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

Europeandestinations doesn't exactly plan the trip for you. They just allow you to book everything in one place(airfare,hotels etc). You still have to do the research to decide which hotel you want and which cities you'd like to visit and what to do in each city.

I usually enjoy doing the research myself and booking things separately because that way I have more hotel/B&B options than just what that one web site offers you.

I have found that unless a travel agent is very knowledgeable about a particular country, they cannot give you better advice than what you will find here by asking questions of local people and travelers who have been there often.

I read hotel reviews on this site and I compare them with the reviews on

www.venere.com which is a site used quite often in Europe.

north carolina
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3. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

I endorse the above opinions.

It seems clear from your posting that you are not afraid to do the planning yourself (and you certainly should not be) and it sounds like you might find the planning immensely enjoyable, as many of us do.

I think a great many of our fellow travelers on T/A have at some point taken on the pleasure of planning for the first time, and many of us did so on the first trip. It is extremely rare that you hear from anyone on these forums who regrets it.

I have only a couple of suggestions now, but you will find a cornucopia of assistance in T/A as you go along.

1. begin now to learn just a little Italian, it's easy, and will do a lot to enrich the trip;

2. Italian train and bus service is far better, cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable than any train or bus service you ever find in USA, so plan to use it.

3. My experience has been that the Italian web sites for accommodations are almost without fail, good, fair, helpful representations of what they actually have to offer. So plan to rely on them.

New York City, New...
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4. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

I would also suggest that if you use booking sites to get prices for hotels, then go directly to the hotel's website and email them ask them if they will match the price of a third party booking site you found (if the prices on their websites show the rooms to be higher than the booking site); I have found that they do meet the price and I've even gotten lower prices than what they post on their website when I have emailed them directly - probably because of length of time I stay (which is usually at least 6 nights) and they offer a bit of a break - it also gives you an opportunity to ask for particular requests, i.e., not having a room near the elevator, wanting a room on a higher floor, one with a view, balcony/terrace, whatever.

Munich, Germany
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for Munich, Bali
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5. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

........ and first and foremost have a read and look at what YOU would like to see or do - not a "knowledgeable travel agent" or "a writer of guides" or even well meaning TA members. You can get great advice from members but when it comes to destinations some maybe shall we say "a little more enthusiastic than others".

Find a nice balance and don't try to rush around too much -- you'll end up eating more often in Train restaurant cars than a nice restaurant.

Detroit
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6. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

Thanks for everyone's help! I am definatly leaning toward planning the Italy trip on my own. I think my biggest concern was not as much planning places to stay but planning any tours that we may want to go on while in Italy. Is there any good tour websites that offer a wide range of tours to go on while in different cities?

Montreal
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7. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

There is at least one Web site that lists tours in many places in Italy, but I won't name it, because the tours are carried out by (unnamed) local tour operators who range from very good to very bad. Do a search for >tours< in any city forum, and you will find opinions on many tours.

The hotel site to look at is www.venere.com

The train site is www.trenitalia.com

But your first step should be to look at a number of guiebooks, buy one that suits your interests and budget and *read* it. Then you can put together an itinerary and ask in the forum for opinions.

Sydney, Australia
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8. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

Good on you for thinking of doing it yourself. Its very easy if you plan ahead & do some simple research into each destination you want to travel.

The most important aspect for you is to narrow down your interests - pick what really matters to you & your partner.

Reading about the weather in May can also give you a good insight into what is the best places to visit at this time of the year.

I always read up first - buy a Lonely Planet Book & see what place takes your interest.

Regarding giving advice on an itinerary its important to know your interests. ? There is no point giving you plans to hit the beach - when you may dislike water etc.etc.

Congratulations too on your future wedding !

9. Re: Planning an Italy Trip

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