|Subject: Re: Cheap traveling in Europe 1|
The first thing I would do is join the International Youth Hostels, get a student id card and go hosteling through Europe. That is cheapest and some hostels haave inexpensive tours in their area. The following is some info that might be useful to you. Sandy
To take advantage of many student and youth discounts around the world, you will need international proof of your eligibility. Here are the cards that count: The International Student Travel Confederation (ISTC) card is available to full-time students and is recognized as proof of student status around the world. The card is available at many campus travel agencies. In Los Angeles, try Council Travel Services, 1093 Broxton Ave., Suite 200, Los Angeles 90024, (310)208-3551. The International Youth Card is available to anyone under 26 years of age. It is issued by the Federation of International Youth Travel Organizations (FIYTO). The ISTC has a home page at http://www.istc.org on the Internet. the updated online discount listings cover about 15,000 special deals worldwide. Keep in mind that other transportation services, accommodation facilities and cultural sites may offer a reduction even if it's not posted. It's always wise to just pull out your card and ask.
Y's Way International, 224 East 47th. St., New York, NY 10017; 212-308-2899. They offer safe, clean, comfortable and conveniently located places to stay at rates that are ideal for anyone on a tight budget. Their world-wide network of Y Centers covers 24 countries including Europe, Australia, the Far and Middle East and Mexico. Because of heavy demand, reservations should be made at least 2 months in advance. A reservation fee of $5 per booking is charged for each reservation outside of North America to cover costs. Write for their annual publication: The Y's Way to Visit North America and Worldwide. Write for their free booklet, The Y's Way International, which includes a list of 27 YMCAs that offer low- to moderate-priced accommodations in the US, Canada, Europe and Asia. Send a self-addressed, stamped (65 cents) legal-size envelope with your request. The YWCA and YMCA publish worldwide directories of their affiliates that indicate which have overnight facilities. The organizations share an address but operate separately, so it is necessary to write each for its directory: World Young Women's Christian Assn or World Alliance of young Men's Christian Assn., both at 3y Quai Wilson,, CH-201, Geneva, Switzerland; from the U.S. 41-22-732-3100; send $14.50 for the YWCA directory and $6 for the YMCA directory.
Camping Paris Ouest, is located just north of the Pont de Suresnes, on the Allee du Bord de l'Eau. The Paris campsite offers caravans for rent and a security fence. This public camp site in the Bois de Boulogne, is located between the road and the Seine. Also for security reasons, there is no direct access to the river, but it can been easily seen from the camp site. If you want to sit beside this old river, there is a barge road alongside it and you get to it by leaving the campsite, turning right and following the fence around to the water side. The 'Camping Paris Ouest' campsite is a three-star affair, for the exclusive use of visitors to the Ile-de-France and it is open all year. Maximum stay is one month. No reservations are accepted except for groups.
The World For Free, Box 137, Prince St Station, NYC 10012; fax only, 212-979-8167. This group was composed of young rock musicians who wanted to travel inexpensively. Now there are a couple of hundred members with a variety of back-grounds, mainly in the US and Europe. you pay yearly dues of $25 and receive a directory of other members willing to host travelers. A bonus of membership is that the first 14 pages of World for Free membership directory contains lots of travel tips, including contacts for working as an air courier, ways to get discounts on trains and airplanes, along with a list of other budget travel clubs.
International Youth Hostel Federation (IYHF). Hostels offer inexpensive
lodgings around the world. They provide clean, safe, inexpensive accommodations, often in small, dormitory-type rooms. They offer an excellent atmosphere for solo travelers. Communal kitchens and lounges are ideal settings in which to meet other travelers. Membership is $25 a year, which you can buy from own national hostel association before leaving home or when you arrive at your first hostel abroad. Non-members of Hostelling International are accommodated at many affiliated facilities, but they are usually charged a higher rate, about $3 more per night. For further information on Hostelling International, contact American Youth Hostels, Los Angeles Council, 1434 2nd St., Santa Monica 90401; tel. (310) 393-3413 or P.O. Box 37613, Washington, DC 20013-7613.
IBN, an international booking network started by the International Youth Hostel Federation, links 40 youth hostels in 15 countries. You can contact any participating hostel and make a reservation for a bed at any other hostel in the system. A booking fee equal to $2 is charged. In addition, travelers must pay the overnight fee in local currency at the location where the booking is made.
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