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A few questions to past travellers...

21 Oct 2009 Explorer1098237 said

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Hi, I have been browsing the forums but still have a couple of questions that I was hoping that someone might be able to answer!

1. Should I take eyemask, earplugs etc or will I most likely get these on the plane over? I am flying V Australia so if anyone has been on them before I'd love to know what you thought?

2. I'm staying at the Royal National for a few days before and after my trip and doing triple share. I was wondering if it is usually safe to leave your stuff in your room while you go out for the day? Do most people do that?

3. I know most people say they wish they brought high heels but I am not really a high heel person so I was just going to take some nice boots that I could wear out with a dress? would this be considered dressy enough for moulin rouge for example? Also would something like skechers be good for the day time? I hate the look of propper sports shoes with jeans! I normally wear flimsy little ballet flats here everyday, even during the winter. But they would be no use in a european winter would they?

4. I am vegetarian and a bit fussy with eating so I was wondering if with optional dinners, is possible to go to the same restaurant as everyone else but order something off the menu and not get the set meal and wine etc?

5. Does anyone actually take swimmers on a winter tour?

6. Has anyone noticed how the clothes in your suitcase smell a bit funny after even a week? any tips for dealing with this over a month!?

7. Is it easier to just buy a travel hairdryer in london somewhere rather than bringing one from Aus and trying to understand all the wattage/voltage shananigans?

Sorry for all the questions, if you can answer just one that would be great, thanks!!
  • 21 Oct 2009 Sinead said

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    Hi there,

    I’ve travelled with Contiki twice before, I flew from Europe to Australia for a tour there, and I also did a European tour which started from the Royal National in London so let me see if I can tell you anythingSmiler<!--graemlin::)-->

    - When I flew from Ireland to Australia with Quantas, as far as I remember there were sleeping masks, little pillows and blankets provided. I can’t remember whether there were earplugs so might be worth bringing them if you think you’ll need them.

    - People left their main luggage in the room when we were out for the day, but I wouldn’t leave anything valuable in the room when you go out like passports, cameras etc, especially if you’re sharing with strangers, and besides your room-mates you never know who else might be in the room when you’re not there. I took my valuables with me and left the rest of my luggage in the room with a lock on the bag, and so far so good!

    -For shoes,forget the ballet flats! Think about comfort and warmth, it’s cold in this part of the world in winter!! You don’t need heels if you don’t want them, Boots are fine for the Moulin Rouge, that’s exactly what I wore, and I wore sporty Sketchers
    during the day. Just make sure they’re comfortable enough to walk in, you’ll be walking a lot! And bring warm socksSmiler<!--graemlin::)-->

    -I have a special diet, I’m allergic to everything and I never had any problems with Contiki. Tell your tour manager at the welcome meeting, or when they come around to take your details, and they’ll let the restaraunts know that you need a different meal. Most places are very accommodating, I only had one or two incidents where they didn’t have anything available for me, but they were the exception. It’s a good idea to pick up some snacks as you go along just in case that happens, but it probably won’t!

    - If anyone is thinking of swimming in Europe in winter they need their head checked haha! Unless it’s for an indoor pool…

    -Yeah I’ve noticed that smell thing and I’ve never been able to get around it. I tried little scented sachets the last time I travelled and it didn’t work because I think it’s the lack of air when the clothes are stuffed in the bag so much. I just try to leave the case open if I can for a while, and take the clothes out for a while. To be honest every time I’ve returned from travelling I’ve thrown most of my clothes away, it’s just one of those things!

    -And last but not least sure you could easily buy a travel hairdryer in London, but you’ll still need to make sure it comes with a European adapter, because the voltage in Ireland and England is one way, and then it changes again in mainland Europe. So either buy one with a European adapter in London, or bring one from Aus but buy a European adapter for it when you get to london, or back home of you can get them there.

    Hope some of that helped, you’ll have a great time and don’t worry, there’s usually no problems that can’t be sorted out as you go!

    Sinead (Dublin)

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