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Italy September, 2011

Hilton Head, South...
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Italy September, 2011

We are trying to plan a a two week trip to Italy this Fall. I'm still not sure "tour"/self planned trip. However, is anyone leary of traveling this September since the whole month is 9/11? Never travelled internationally before.

Missouri
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1. Re: Italy September, 2011

I hadn't really thought about the 9/11 connection--I wouldn't be worried at all to travel in September. Make your plans and have a wonderful trip. September is a lovely month to be in Italy.

Olympia, Washington
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2. Re: Italy September, 2011

We are not letting it stop us as we will be in Italy for three weeks this fall, one week in Florence and two in the Umbrian countryside for the harvest festivals. It didn't cross my mind when we made the original plans, and having now contemplated it, it doesn't change our feelings about travel, even through New York. Don't know if that makes you feel better, but it is not bothering us.

You might want to be in smaller towns and cities, or the countryside of Tuscany or Umbria if less crowded places might make you feel more comfortable.

london
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3. Re: Italy September, 2011

if this will be your first travel in Italy I would suggest you take a look at the organized tours there are many different possibilities:

- Perillo Tours - Tauck Tours - Trafalgar Tours - Cosmos Tours - Go Ahead - etc..

the organized tours have pros and cons as everything :

pros - no worries about driving, traveling, where to go, where to stop, etc..

round the clock assistance by a tour director, who provides also information about the country, places visited etc..

city tours guided by local expert in the major cities - some entrance fees included

luggage handling

some meals..

cons - scheduled times, group activities, not much free time for individual activities. sometimes hotels far from city centre, quite average quality included meals

Consider also that september in Italy is high season, therefore evaluate every single detail very well and then enjoy your trip!!!!!

Norwich, United...
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4. Re: Italy September, 2011

Travel agents are only human, and of course they love selling tours and cruises... it's so much simpler to rope the two of you into an eight or ten thousand dollar package, rather than themselves compiling flights and a fortnight's worth of connections and overnight stops!

And your earlier posts suggest that all sorts of fears have been raised to help make that sale...

"Also, our travel agent told us that going on the train was hard with luggage."

(Good, at last, to know from where that one originates!)

"want to go in September and I'm worried it's getting late."

"a little fearful without knowing the language, transfer fees, etc"

Perhaps though they have indeed now run out of spaces for September?

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

The cost aside, it would take some doing to arrange this sort of trip for just two...

odysseys-unlimited.com/tours/…portrait-italy

... but it seems to me that you've still to decide if your visit is to be like that, or a slower exploration of fewer places - so maybe that's where you should begin?

Peter

Hilton Head, South...
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5. Re: Italy September, 2011

Well, that's all good information. So, if we plan our own trip, say through the help of a Triple A agent, would the money spent be cost effective, same as a tour, or more? Anyone know for sure? I'm thinking nice hotels, 3 days Rome, 3 Days Tuscany, 2 days Venice and then either 2 days Capri/Amalfi or Paris....????

pittsburgh
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6. Re: Italy September, 2011

I would suggest you try to figure things out for yourself first then if you can't do it or are overwhelmed hire a travel agent. You will find lots of information on this site about hotels, restaurants, sites and transportation. These are all the things a travel agent does but if you do it yourself you'll save a lot of money which you can spend on your trip.

I would suggest starting with hotels. venere.com is the site I send people to. You can choose by area, star rating or budget. If you wish to be in the city center of Rome you can check the Navona, pantheon or trevi areas. The less expensive areas are the Vatican and termini areas.

Get a good guide book and decide what it is you wish to see in the cities you have listed. Make a list of "must see's", " would like to see's" and "can skip if we don't have the time". This will help you determine how long to stay in each city.

I have never used a travel agent for any of my trips. I have always found that I get more for my money by doing it myself. I can easily arrange my own tours and visit sites I wish to see without the aide of anyone else. Sites like this make it very easy to plan itineraries and book sites that need reservations.

Give the planning a try and if you decide it's just not for you then you can always hire a travel agent.

Donna

Minneapolis...
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7. Re: Italy September, 2011

We will be in Italy for two weeks in September. In fact we leave on 9-11-11 and travel through New York. Didn't intentionally plan it that way but those dates were the only ones that worked and we really wanted to go in September.

Got to figure security will be even tighter than normal.

Hilton Head, South...
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8. Re: Italy September, 2011

I agree security will be tight the whole month of September!

So Cal
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9. Re: Italy September, 2011

We plan our own trips. It's a lot of work but fun too. You get a lot more out of your trip if you educate yourself A LOT about where you are going, what you want to see. Planning the trip yourself requires this education. We book the flight first, then the lodging, then fill in the days with all the activities and sights. Life would be simpler and you might enjoy it more if you narrow down to just two or three cities. If you want a quick smattering of a lot of places, then a tour would be fine. TA is great help for trip planning. Enjoy!

NY
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10. Re: Italy September, 2011

If you are planning this year Sept, then you should be planning and making reservations right now.

You can ask AAA what they can do, but I am pretty sure they will be wanting to book you onto a tour, and not do what is or was called an FIT (foreign indepent tour) where you call the shots and they do a lot of custom and individual hotels and other arrangements, but go ahead and ask.

As others noted, this is a kind of trade off, I am sure you can save money and get better value by doing it yourself, but a tour takes most of the thinking out of it and you go at their pace and when and where they go.