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Question

the Big Chill 46 Camping tour ask any questions

21 Jan 2012 ExplorerJeff asked

ExplorerJeff

As i have recently completed the Big Chill 46 Camping Tour, if there is anyone looking at or is booked on this tour that would like some advise on anything regarding this tour please ask any questions you may have. I will be happy to pass on any advise to help you out.

  • 30 Jan 2012 WorldTraveller said

    WorldTraveller

    Hey, i am looking into doing this tour in the middle of next year and would really love any advice that you may have about the Big Chill Tour. Like how the days were broken up, things to pack/not pack, any must see sights or optionals and overall how the trip was, etc.
    Thank you very much, i would appreciate any advice :)

  • 30 Jan 2012 GJ said

    GJ

    Hey mate just a question on how much spending money i would need on this trip.

  • 31 Jan 2012 Gracey said

    Gracey

    You are awesome Explorer Jeff! What a nice thing to do! I’m off on the 26th June. I have one question – I have a camera that I have to charge by plugging it in. I’ve heard that there is only a couple of power points on the bus. Am I going to have trouble charging my camera? It’s the only thing I really need electricity for.
    Thank you heaps!

  • 11 Feb 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi GJ ,each person will have different spending amounts some spend more while other spend less so its a bit hard to answer the question completely but to give you a good idea if you can budget for say $100.00 Euros a day you will have plenty unless your a big spender in which case you’ll need more. some days you will spend more than other. About $8000.00 AUD is about $4500.00-$5000.00 Euro depending on the exchange rate. Hope that helps.

  • 11 Feb 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi Gracey, on the coach there are 4 power point on the coach between about 40 of yous and add your tour manager, driver and on-road cook so its gets a bit hard at time but our tour group put in a few euros each and at our first service stop in france we brought a few power boards with four plugs so we ended up with 10 power points instead. suggest it to your tour group as it worked quiet well for us for the whole tour. otherwise you’ll have to wait until you reach a campsite to charge up cameras etc..

  • 11 Feb 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi world traveller, this is a MUST do tour if you love camping and travelling for longer periods.

    Each day holds a totally different experience as you move from city to city and country to country, new languages to be learn’t, new cultures to be experinced, new foods to be tasted its a total mind blowing trip.

    Each day starts with a group breakfast then of for your days out in each city/country, you will usually do a city walking tour with a local guide in the morning (in major city like paris etc), then usually you will get free time for the rest of the day and meet up with the rest of your tour group in the late afternoon then its back to the campsite for a group dinner and most evening are free time unless your doing a optional excusion.

    Everyone in the touring group takes turns at helping out in differnent areas like helping unload.load to coach, helping with the preparing of break and dinner and wishing up.

    Each day will be different it could be a coach travel day, or a day out in the city/country your in. if you in a city for a night it goes very quickly so try to soak up as much as you can where if you in a city for several nights you can sort take it at your own pace. The break up of each day will diff from other some days you can just chill others you might go hard touring around a major city or might be doing option excursion but as mention above the usually day is breakfast then head out for the day (unless its a coach travel day where you’ll be on the coach for most of the day but you do stop at alot of places along the way), walking tour (in major cities), then free time for you to explore then meet back up and back to campsite for dinner and usually evenings are free time (unless your doing an optional excusion)

    Travel days are between 5-6hrs up to long 10 hr travel days with service/rest stops every 2-3 hrs and stops are usually for 45min to an hour.

    Pack enough clothes to last atleast a week and pack all your essentials, any medications you need, swimmers, sleeping bag, quick dry towel, camera, spare camera battires and memory cards, a good set of going out clothes, warm clothes as it start to get coldin the later part of the tour in the north. i may have forgotten some thing but if you need help i have a list i could forward onto you if you like,just provide you email adrress and i can forward it onto you. Don’t forget all your important documents aswell and photocopy them and leave a copy at home aswell as a spare in your luggage.

    With regards to all the must see sights your itinerary cover pretty much all the major one so if you take a look at the contiki itinerary and see all the ones name you would of cover the major one and your contiki manager can also give you local know of other must see sights aswell, i could name all of them but there are too many to name and most are in the contiki itienrary anyway.

    Optional excursion i did all except 3 (vienna and barcelona) but i was satisfied with all of them so i would say if you have the funds try and experience pretty all of then, roughly $800.00 for all optional extras.

    Tour was totally amzaing as a whole and it help that i had a great touring party we all got along soooo well, but all the places that we visited, cultures experienced, food tried etc was totally worth every cent spent. i would totally recommend that you try this tour for the value for money and what you’ll get out of it not to mention all the new friends you will make.

    i hope this has help you in some way and if you have any other questions feel free to drop another question and ill be happy to try and answer it for you.

  • 13 Apr 2012 rugbychick_13 said

    Default_avatar

    Hi Explorer Jeff! Thanks so much for all the info!! It’s super helpful! I’m really hoping to do this trip soon. Is there any chance I could get that list of what to pack? My email’s piafrank.89@gmail.com =) What time of year did you go? I want to go on the last tour possible in order to get to Oktoberfest but I’m a bit worried about it getting too cold? Did you ever have trouble finding places to do laundry or places to upload pictures on the internet? You said you did almost all the optionals…that’s what I’m planning on doing as well but I’m a bit worried I won’t have any free time left? Also, do you have any idea if there are any restrictions as to the size/weight of your sleeping bag? I’ve got a swag that I bought in Australia last year that I’m hoping to take. Sorry for all the questions but I’m just so excited =) Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  • 19 Apr 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi rugby chick 13 i will most definietly be able to pass on the list of what to pack, ill email it to you as soon as i get a chance. i actually did the very last tour of the summer season last year which left london late august and returned to london early october, this time of year in UK/europe is late summer. yes the last couple of tour of the summer will hit munich during oktoberfest. with the weather it is still really hot for the first 3/4 of the tour but its not until you reach the last part (usually from swiss alps – amsterdam that it will get cold but usually only at night but as long as you pack a small amount of warm clothes you should be fine. Laundry facilites are quite good on tour as alot of campsite that you stay at have washing machines/dryers so usually every 3-5 days you’ll have the chance to do some washing. with uploading photo unless you have a laptop there are only several campsites that have computer access but pretty much every campsite has WI-FI. The optional extras are usually well organised into your days in each city so you still have plenty of free time to yourself to get around and check out the site throughout europe, they are usually conducted first thing in the morning or in the evening but a few are also done during the day. with your sleeping bag it usually goes onto the coach with you and you store it above your seat so no restriction with size or weight but with your luggage make sure it is no larger than a large suitcase that carries 70 litre and there is weight restrictions of 20 kg per passenger so make sure you don’t go over that as cost to store excess luggage is quite expensive about $200 pounds for the 6 week you will be away.

    Don’t be sorry for all the question as i am a massive lover of travel its great for me to be able to help with advise and question about travel in general but in particular this tour its a totally amazing experience that will remain with you for the rest of your life once you have done it. Im very happy for you that your EXCITED as i was the same when i booked mine.

    You are very welcome to keep asking any question you may have that will help you make this trip a little less stressful organising.

    Ill email you the list of what to pack but this list will obvouisly change slightly for you.

  • 22 Apr 2012 WorldTraveller said

    WorldTraveller

    Thank you so much for your adivce, if i have any more questions, i know where to come =)

  • 22 Apr 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    hi world traveller your very welcome, if you have any other questions doesn’t matter how large or small please ask away as ill be more than happy to answer them.

  • 28 May 2012 Geet said

    Default_avatar

    Hi Jeff, Thanks for all the advice. You are awesome!! I have a few questions about the camping trip. Are there any lockers on the camping site that we can use to keep money/valuables? I know this might seem to be a silly question for a lot of people but I am a fitness junkie and I would like to run almost everyday.. does the camping site have gym/fitness facilities? (prolly not!!). If not, are the sites situated in such that I can go out for a run? I prefer running early in the morning, what time does the tour usually start? Thanks!!

  • 28 May 2012 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi, no unfortuntly there are no lockers at the campsite but it is usually very safe n you can padlock your tent but its not advisable as it will show that you have valuables in your tent, we didnt have any issue during our tour but a bit of advise hide your valuables well within your luggage. No gym facilites but plently of space to go running, each morning is different with departure time as it depends on what’s happening that day but starts could be as early as 6am anywhere up to 9am. Hope thats help. Happy travels. Jeff

  • 23 Jan 2013 Cait said

    Cait

    Hi Jeff,

    I’m looking at This same tour, and I’m just curious as to how you liked the camping?
    Was it annoying to set up + pack up everyday? Was it cold? Did everyone get sick of each other due to the long duration?
    Any advice would be much appreciated :)

    Caitlin

  • 23 Jan 2013 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi Caitlin,

    I loved it, it was a great experience to be about to have had the opportunity to camp in around 20+ place throughout Europe and I love camping so for me it was really enjoyable. Setting up and pulling down the tents are quiet easy and quick so it was no real issue for me and your tent buddy is there to help you set up and pull down the tent anyway so between to two of you’s it’s easy, for the 1 night stops its a bit annoying but there are plenty of 2 and 3 day stops in between so its not too bad. As with the weather it depends when in summer your traveling, my tour was the very last departure for the summer season so for the first 3/4 of the tour it’s was still very hot and warm but the last 1/4 it started to get a little cold but nothing too bad, just make sure you do pack some warm clothes in case it does grt cold but the main part of your suitcase will be summer clothing. No well for my tour 85% of the group were from Australia and NZ so pretty much everyone got along really well and with the long trips you get to bond with your travel buddy’s and make some great friends along the way which I still see and talk to quiet regularly.

    If you want a really good taste of Europe this would be a tour to definitely consider especially for the price and what you get to see.its definitely well worth the money.

    Hope this helps. Happy travels

    Jeff

  • 26 Jan 2013 Explorer1304041 said

    Default_avatar

    Hey ExplorerJeff!

    Thanks so much for the awesome advic and tips!

    Just wondering if you still had the list or the email would you be able to email it to me also of the packing list?

    Also, how did your tour group get on/bond during the tour? I’m sure I’ll be fine but I’m pretty shy and I’m not the party type so I’m a bit worried about that lol! Was there anybody on your tour that didn’t drink alcohol or party etc and still everyone got along well?

    Thanks heaps! :)

  • 26 Jan 2013 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi there, yes I most certainly do have a copy if you give us your email address I can forward on a copy for you but give us a day or so as I will need to go through my Australian email to find it as I’m currently using my UK email address as I’m living in London at present.

    We had a great travel group there was about 40 of us on the coach and pretty much everyone was from Australia or NZ and only a few from other parts of the world. You don’t need to worry as I was sort of shy at first but as you get to know everyone you all become good friends and because your traveling together for 46 days you can do different things with different people so you don’t get sick of the same people after a long 46 day tour.

    Well pretty much everyone drank alcohol on tour and everyone had at least a few night outs partying even if they didn’t like partying much as its a good way to experience different cultures and nightlife but in general there is bound to be others in the same boat as you and you don’t have to go out partying you can always either do your own things like check out different cities at night with your fellow travellers that don’t want to party either or just hang out at the campsite. But you must have at least a few nights out partying just to get the total European and Contiki full experience as your paying a lot of money to go to Europe you might as well enjoy to the max.

    It didn’t really matter weather you party or drank alcohol everyone still got along really well on our tour apart from a few people but if you can stand someone or they are annoying just don’t be around them.

    But don’t worry about things like that as your paying a lot of money to go on holiday so enjoy it and the experience and I can guarantee you will make heaps of new friends by the end of the tour.

    If you would like the packing list please pass on your email address and I will forward on a copy to you.

    Enjoy the tour and experience, it is honestly going to be the best time of your life.

    Happy travels

    Jeff

  • 26 Jan 2013 Ailen said

    Ailen

    Hi Jeff! I want to know if you can send me that list too.. My email is ailuvalerio_108@hotmail.com ,
    Also, were there on your trip people who didn’t speak english? Because I speak spanish (I’m from Argentina), and I don’t speak perfectly english, so i want to know if it is normal to have any partner who speaks another language.
    Thank youuu

  • 26 Jan 2013 Explorer1304041 said

    Default_avatar

    Hey Jeff, thanks for replying so fast! If you find the packing list it’s f.smith.biz@gmail.com, cheers :) Also I forgot to ask about the wifi, is there any free wifi at the campsites, or is it just the typical mcdonalds and starbucks haha thanks :)

  • 26 Jan 2013 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi guys, yeah not a problem I will forward on the packing list to your email address soon.

    With regards to the WIFI question, there is free WIFI at all the campsites that Contiki use but unfortuntantly the signal strength at some of them aren’t great so you may have some problems connecting to it at some campsites and at some of the bigger campsites there are computer facilities aswell.

    With regards to the Language question, we had only one person on our tour that couldn’t speak English and we ended up teaching him how to speak English over the course of the tour and he could speak it by the end of the trip but everyone else could speak English. With regards to speaking the language of each country you visit your tour manager will give you all a quick lesson on the basics before you arrive in each country, basic include hello, good bye, how much, where’s the toilet etc but most European countries can communicate in English quiet well so you shouldn’t have too much of an issue with the language. But if you know another language it’s an added bonus for you.

  • 26 Jan 2013 ExplorerJeff said

    ExplorerJeff

    Hi guys for those of you that wanted a copy of my packing list, I have just sent a copy to your email address that you provided. I hope it helps.

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