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What do you wish you'd known?

18 Jul 2007 ashleightara asked

I'm curious to know what ppl wish they'd known before they went on their trips, and only discovered afterwards...<BR><BR>For example, <BR>Did you miss something in a town you wish you'd known about? <BR>Did you pack something, and never used it?<BR>Did you NEED something you didn't pack and had to go in search of it?<BR><BR>In particular, looking for different advice to what is already available on the board...share you experience so others can learn from you 'mistake'.<BR><BR>Thanks <img src="" alt="Smiler" width="15" height="15"><!--graemlin::)-->
  • 18 Jul 2007 LorneB said


    Excellent question. Hmmmm… I know I will think of something.

  • 20 Jul 2007 Miss Jane said

    Miss Jane

    Hey Guys
    Thought I’d add…

    A little disappointed I didn’t go inside St Peter’s Cathedral in Rome or the Pantheon, I heard they were absolutely fantastic inside and quite beautiful….

    Looking back I think I should have tried to pack a little lighter…It wasn’t terrible but I would have been able to fit in all my purchases so much easier if I had a bit more space……

    Totally glad I did the Tuscan dinner at La Certosa. The food was really yummy and a great price. There was a constant supply of drinks including Wine and Water and the entertainment was alot of fun. Our whole group went and I think everyone really enjoyed it.

    Loved the gondola ride in Venice…I have to admit that at time I was kind freaked we were going to tip over but it was a great experience , got to take lots of great photos and it’s something you just have to try at least once…

    Next time I would pack hand sanitizer for those times when there is just nowhere to wash your hands or at rest stops where you dont want to pay to just use the sink…

    I really have no regrets though it was such a great trip and whatever I didn’t see last time I’ll see next time

  • 24 Jul 2007 cdm115 said


    On my first tour I wished I had packed lighter and not bothered with clothes that wasn’t terribly comfortable. When you’re sitting on a coach all day or running around a city you want to be comfortable.

  • 25 Jul 2007 PH_girl1977 said


    If you’re traveling to Scandinavia especially in the summer and spend time in the country side or in Lapland, bring insect repellant… The mosquitoes love their daily dosage of blood… Pretty much everywhere also in the evenings….

    The weather can be tricky. In the evenings/nights even in the summer the temperatures can fall close to zero degrees especially in Northern Scandinavia.

    If you’re sensitive to light, bring something to cover your eyes in the summer time. The sun doesn’t set at all during the Midsummer…



  • 20 Aug 2007 ashleightara said


    Just bumping up this topic…

    I’m still interested in responses.

  • 20 Aug 2007 Steftacular said


    im glad i brought travel tissues and travel toilet paper with me

    im glad i brought hand wipes with me – i ended up buying more, i used them all the time

    i wish i would have brought more dresses

    i felt stupid having not brought a book with me to read on the bus

    i regret deciding that bringing my laptop was a bad idea

    i should have brought coloring book and crayons

    i wish i made time to see the sacre coeur in paris

    i wish i saw the pope in rome since we were there on a sunday (what was i thinking?!?)

    i wish i would have brought blood circulation socks since my feet were badly swollen most of the trip

    i wish i would have worn my swimsuit when i went to the black sea in bulgaria

    i wish i didnt pay to go into dracula’s castle – its stupid, dont go – or if you do go, dont pay to bring you’re camera in cause they dont check

    i wish i didnt bring as many jeans – walking, mixed with hot weather and sweat dont work well in jeans

    i wish i would have realized sooner that wine makes me tired and i should stick to beer so i dont fall asleep at every optional

    i wish i brought an extra battery for my camera

    im glad i wasnt hungover for the exploring days but im sad that i missed out on some group drinking nights cause i was sleeping

    im glad i saw the catacombs in paris

    im not glad that i missed the group tickets for the eiffle tower so i had to walk up

    i wish i would have brought a pair of heels with me

    im glad i brought my first aid kit and the medicine cabinet

    1 day in amsterdamn and all i did was go to the heineken experience – best choice! but i wanted to see the flower market too

    thats all i can think of for now… too be continued?

  • 22 Aug 2007 johnny said


    -To bring my charger for my phone and camera! grr
    -Not so much clothes
    -A pair of thongs/flip flops
    -Less toiletries each of the hotels had soap and shampoo and I just hoarded it incase the next one didn’t supply.
    -Oh yeah and I got a toothbrush and toothpaste on the plane, I thought that was neat.
    -More memory cards for taking video and pictures
    -Broke the ice with other travelers more sooner. Your with them and they are your family for the duration so have fun together!
    -Learn more of the language.
    -Research the places for whats cool and whats not, also if you need to book prior to visiting places and avoid the queues.
    -I enjoyed getting out of my comfort zone and getting lost, if your the adventurous type I’d recommend it fully!

  • 23 Aug 2007 Curtis71 said


    Next time I would pack hand sanitizer for those times when there is just nowhere to wash your hands or at rest stops where you dont want to pay to just use the sink…

    Absolutely… I did not know about Purell until some other girl on my tour pulled it out. Fantastic product and it would probably help prevent you from getting sick on tour.

    Also: I wish I had know about the Amsterdam tram system – you have to tell the tram attendant which stop you’re visiting, otherwise they will cancel the maximum amount from your tram pass.

    Bring more shorts and fewer long trousers.

  • 24 Aug 2007 Hipjaz, the canuck from the T-Dot said


    wait, sorry to go off topic but how did you not know about Purell?? remember SARS?? stocks in Purell practically went up after it

  • 24 Aug 2007 Curtis71 said

    Originally posted by Hipjaz, the canuck from the T-Dot:
    wait, sorry to go off topic but how did you not know about Purell?? remember SARS?? stocks in Purell practically went up after it

    Not all Ontarians live in Toronto.

  • 24 Aug 2007 ptooma said


    Wish I read more travelogues. There’s a wealth of info on what not to miss!!!

    - Vic

  • 25 Aug 2007 Rob said


    I can sencond that Vic. I live in Ontario, and am from the farm!!

  • 25 Aug 2007 JOJO1983 said



    Just adding to Miss Janeo about the Tuscan Dinner. The one dinner i wish i didnt do was that one. The food was **** and I felt really sick afterwards (not due to eating too much). The service was terrible and there was no atmosphere in the restaurant.

    The French dinner was nice and the Greek Dinner was awesome.

    I wish i had brought more dressy clothes and also more summery clothes. More high heels. People told me everyone wears flats… Not true! Although it is hard to walk the cobbled streets in heels.

    I wish i hadnt have bought wine in the Beaujolais, just due to the fact I now have to carry it. Or drink it!

    And also wish i had brought an Ipod!

    Hope this helps

  • 3 Sep 2007 Curtis71 said

    Originally posted by Chandles:
    I wish that I had known I not only need to convert Voltage (from Canada 110 to European 240) but also Wattage so that I didn’t blow my converter trying to use my hair straightener on the first day and have to go out and buy a new one which took me another 4 days to find.

    “Wattage” is not something that is “converted.” A voltage transformer is rated to be able to move up to a certain amount of current without melting down. If you exceed that amount, then it will die. Your transformer did not have a high enough current rating, that’s all. It doesn’t have anything to do with stepping down the voltage or “converting wattage.”

  • 4 Sep 2007 Miranda said


    i wish i brought more dressy clothes

    i wish i researched the countries better as when we were off on our own we struggled sometimes

  • 5 Sep 2007 princessjkw said


    people only want to party and drink.
    add another $2,000 to your trip total b/c while some meals are included you will want to do the excursions and you will want snacks and other food. Also the money will help pay for the fun touristy things that aren’t part of excursions. So bring more money than you think.

  • 6 Sep 2007 Adam1384 said


    I wish i packed less ****

    I wish took a footy to kick around at the campsites while we were doing nothing

    I wish i went to bed in amsterdam

    I wish i brought more duty free alcohol on the ferry and drank it before going out to the camp bars

    i wish i took a travel pillow for sleep on the bus

  • 6 Sep 2007 Hipjaz, the canuck from the T-Dot said


    SARS was talked about nationally especially in Ontario for months,but enough about that…

  • 6 Sep 2007 knights988 said


    isn’t there a limit to the amount of duty free alcohol buy on the ferry and take into france???

  • 9 Sep 2007 *nikki_adelaide* said


    IM GLAD I…

    -stayed at the royal national hotel great for before and after the tour

    -had a travel pillow

    -took my sleeping bag as i was going to take a sheet only and even tho it was summer i would have gotten too cold

    -took only 3 pairs of shoes as i bought about 4 whilst away

    -sent a package home from amsterdam, it worked out to be heaps cheaper than what the excess luggage would have been

    -kept going, even though i got sick from day 3, i didnt miss one day to rest and recover, you only have 1 day to explore the city

    - took 2 quick dry towels

    - did all the optionals, if youve got the money, do it all, you’re only there once (possibly) so do it, sure some turned out to be a bit crap…but at least you can say you did it.

    - went to the moulin rouge instead of the nouvell eve, it was only about 30 euros more and from reports was waaaay better than the nouvell eve, it was really easy to organise by yourself (as contiki dont offer it on the concept tours)


    - thought to take half bottles of stuff thinking i should take just enoguh to last me(eg shampoo, hand sanitizer etc) you end up sharing all your stuff with your tour mates and end up having to buy more anyway, so take full bottles of everything

    - didnt go to the doctor as soon as i got sick, i didnt end up seeing a doctor until day 20…i should have gone on about day 5 and got some antibiotics and be done with it! ive been home for over 1 month now and am still sick with the cough

    - didnt have something to wear to and from the showers, all my new clothes always got wet

    - didnt take the time out to learn some common phrases, people should really learn the basics, mor ethan just hello goodbye thank you etc

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