As an international student, one of my favourite things to do whilst in London is to plan trips to other places throughout Europe. I’ve always loved traveling and Europe makes it so easy and relatively cheap to get to different parts of the continent.
The first thing to think about is whether or not you need additional visas or paperwork for the places you plan to travel to. This is dependent on your nationality and information can be found online. Moreover, make sure that you always have all of the necessary paperwork and identification to re-enter the UK when you return from traveling.
Once you have chosen a destination and have gotten your paperwork in order you can start to think about transportation. StudentUniverse offers discounted flights to students if you sign up using a student email and has been my go-to site for flights back to New York and around Europe. You can also compare prices using sites like Kayak and Opodo. Usually airlines like Ryanair and EasyJet are relatively cheap. However, these discount airlines typically do not offer amenities, such as free snacks or drinks. Additionally, you will have to pay to check baggage on these airlines, so it pays to travel lightly! If possible, pack your belongings in a carry-on bag and be sure not to have liquids more than 100 ml. If you choose not to fly, you may not face the same restrictions. There are many different train services, such as EuroStar, throughout Europe that can be reasonably priced without as many restrictions. Many countries offer their own train services as well. Be on the lookout for student pricing when booking your tickets – it can save you a lot of money!
After figuring out transportation, it’s time to look for accommodation. Hostel World and Airbnb are both good places to begin looking if you don’t know anyone local where you are going. I’ve had positive experiences with both sites, especially after booking places with good reviews. I prefer these options to many hotels because I’ve been able to get cheaper, nicer accommodation that is more centrally located, which ends up saving money for local transportation.
Finally, enjoy your trip! Europe has so much history to offer and each city and country has its own “thing” that makes it famous. During the past few months I’ve had the opportunity to travel to Edinburgh, Scotland, Reykjavík, Iceland, and Aalborg and Copenhagen, Denmark. It’s so amazing to see how other people live each day and learn about the different cultures that we are surrounded by in London. Traveling has allowed me to experience such a variety of different things and has made me truly appreciate how lucky I am to live in a city as vibrant as London.