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Traveling w/ 2 kids

Del Mar, California
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Traveling w/ 2 kids

Hi! We want to take a trip this summer to Europe for a month. We were thinking about flying into France, driving to Italy, taking the train to Germany and then flying to Ireland and home from Ireland.

I would truly love and appreciate any advice or tips for this trip.

My mom is 67, the kids will be 13 & 6 so I'm a bit nervous about the driving. I've never driven outside the USA!! :)

We want to explore and see as much as possible but clearly not break the bank.

In advance, I thank you for your help!!


San Jose, California
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1. Re: Traveling w/ 2 kids

You are looking at 4 countries in 4 weeks - therefore only allotting 1 week per country. That is really not a lot of time, especially since several days will be eaten up by travel time.

Where are you traveling in Italy that you feel you need the car? If you are just hitting the larger cities (Rome, Florence, Venice, Milan), then there really is no need for a car. You will also need to take into account the rental companies that will allow you to rent in one country and drop in another, and any associated drop fees. And since there will be 5 of you, you will need to rent a larger car to accommodate all as well as luggage.

However, DO pack light despite the fact that you are going for a month. 1 bag per person and no more - especially since you will be taking the train. Hopefully, each person can pull their own luggage?

I would start by making a list of all the important sites you want to see and then see if you can make it fit into your timeframe - comfortably. Just giving each city or site a day is certainly not worth it and I can guarantee your mom and children will be exhausted. Checking in and out of hotels on a daily basis is also not worth it and time consuming - eating into your actual touring time.

These are just some of the things I would initially start to consider. Personally, I would cut it down to just 2 countries.

Munich, Germany
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for Munich, Bali
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2. Re: Traveling w/ 2 kids

When exactly?? dates are important.

Exact Points of Interest/destinations will help on providing info

e.g. Train Italy to Germany - tells nothing. You should also know that the Italians (rail) www.trenitalia.com do not co-operate with german rail www.bahn.de so through ticketing requiring changes can be an issue; although for instance German rail www.bahn.de operate 5 direct Intercity services daily from Munich to Verona. Booked in advance (up to 92days) the fares can be had for as little as €39 single. Note due to the Italians non-co-operation they (childishly) pretend the german services don't exist so if you tried to use ww.trenitalia.com to find a solution from Italy they will not show these services.

Hoteliers in certain popular summer destination areas during the summer peak (mid July to end of August) will only accept bookings for a minimum of 1 week. Cities generally ok.

As mentioned above to pick up in one country and drop off in another will incur a premium. In addition some Hire car companies have restrictions on which models of vehicles can be driven into Italy let alone dropped off.

e.g. with Hertz 1 weeks rental of a family car (pick up and return in Paris) such as a Peugeot 5008 would cost €438.

To drop the same car off in Rome 1 weeks rental costs €743

If only interested in city areas alos consider using budget airlines.

www.easyjet.com have a number of routes around Europe. Booked in advance really cheap fares. You must remember to book your hold luggage (extra charge) at time of booking.

www.vueling.com (spanish airline) also has good Spain/Paris/Italy links

Del Mar, California
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3. Re: Traveling w/ 2 kids

Thank you both so much! We have narrowed it down to Germany, Italy, and Ireland. Still working out the other bits and your information will/has helped us greatly thank you!!

U.S. expats
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for Windsor, London, Dry Tortugas National Park
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4. Re: Traveling w/ 2 kids

Fly between countries, as has been recommended above. Train between cities--there are steep fines for driving in ZTLs--Limited Traffic Zones.

For accommodations,


Personally I would do two countries, at a slower pace. You could spend four weeks in either Germany or Italy and not run out of things to see and do.

5. Re: Traveling w/ 2 kids

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