Attention all Forum Users.
We’re working on a brand new shiny tool to make your experience as simple as possible.
Which means the community forums is now read only whilst we work on a new & improved ‘My Contiki’ space.


dec 30 - january 7 London to Paris + 2

20 Sep 2008 Sam488 said

Hey i am going on the dec 30 - jan 7 just wondering who else is going on this tour.
  • Read the responses 143 responses so far
  • 28 Oct 2008 Heather said


    December 28 is a Sunday, not Monday so what does that mean for Boxing Day closures?? (what is Boxing Day…we don’t have that in the US)

  • 28 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    boxing day is the day after christmas basically it is an excuse not to go to work – you normally have to go visit other family that you don;t get to see on christmas day or just keep on partying it is the 26th – which is the day i fly out. and unless it is on a weekend the holiday is normally on the same day it is so this year it should be the firday. But if you guys don’t have boxing day then i guess it could be different again in europe. Weird i thought that everyone had boxing day – it is in the middle of our summer break but still it ment that the adults got an extra day off and now i get over time to work it.

    But i am not sure what that means for the closures here we have MASSIVE sales so big that people are lining up the night before to get the best deals it is scary.

  • 28 Oct 2008 Heather said


    Maybe boxing day is different in Europe since Rikki said it was Monday the 28th (though Monday is not the 28th so that’s why I got confused). Now I’m worried because I arrive on Monday the 29th and if the metro is closed, I will have to pay a taki a lot to get from Heathrow to the hotel. In the US, the day after Thanksgiving is the big shopping day with all the sales- people do shopping for Christmas. The day after Christmas has sales too but not as many.

    As far as tipping the TM and driver, there is a whole article I read about it. I wouldn’t have thought to tip them. It will depend on how good the tour is is guess. We tip a lot here and I read they tip a lot in Europe, you even tip the person in the bathroom!

  • 28 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    What tippong to go to the bathroom? that is weird here in australia we don’t tip i work in a bar and the only tips we get pretty much are the loose change people don’t want 5cents or whatever but then the minimum i get paid is $18 an hour and from what i see on tv people in america get paid alot less so i guess that must be to make up for it.

    where did you get the article on tipping because i would like to read it if possible so i can make sure i dont insult somebody by not tipping right.

    as for the boxing day thing it is very much like your day after thanksgiving and i have read on wiki – – which i know cannot be relied upon but does seem to get the basics right that boxing day is the 26th of december and the holiday is only moved for weekends and when i checked my calander the 26th is a friday so therefore unless something weird happens in europe we should all miss the public holiday and your right the 28th is a sunday so i am not sure what rikki is looking at?

    Also boxing day is an important sporting day for us because of the boxing day cricket test. my bf’s whole family all come over and sit at his house and watch it together – i find it super boring but the boys all seem to love it

  • 29 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    hey is it just me or has rikki’s post disappeared

  • 29 Oct 2008 Heather said


    It is gone! How strange…maybe he/she was mad that I said the date was wrong. I didn’t know you could delete a post from here.

    Anyway, sounds like your football is more like rugby- from what I have seen it’s pretty rough. I will definitely check out that link- I want all the info I can get before I go. I don’t want to be one of those bad American tourists everyone seems to hate. In our country, bartenders (pour beer/make drinks) make a low amount of money but get tips which make up for it. When I go out, I tip a dollar or 2 when I get a drink. At my job, I do get paid holiday and sick and full medical/dental benefits so it’s not too bad. It’s been nice because I have been able to save at least half my paycheck since I started working (a little over a year now) and it’s basically paying for my trip to Europe so it will defintiely be worth it. People might think it’s lame but living at home has it’s benefits!

  • 29 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    Living at home deff has its benifits i almost moved out but the guy i was moving out with found another guy and moved in with him instead but like 2 days later the girl i am going on the contiki tour asked me to go. I decided it had to be fate so i am still at home and it is driving me crazy but i am so excited about this holiday it is making up for it.

    Also another awsome thing is the sales that i was telling you about they are on until around new year so we will be able to get some great stuff on the super cheap at least while we are in london! YAY i love shopping.

    I know what you mean about the american steryotype that everyone seems to get labled with i notice it all the time but many people seem to almost encorage that steryotype and try and force people to live with it. I am pleased that their are some people out there that are trying to change it because the ignorant ones really bug me over hear we are just to laid back to be bothered being annoying.

    Also i think rikki is now on a different tour i found them by accident on the same tour that starts a few days before us so maybe they were telling us the wrong info for our tour cauwse their tour starts on the 26th

  • 30 Oct 2008 Heather said


    I agree it definitely sounds like staying at home and going on the trip was meant to be. Things seem to be working out for me too so I’m taking it as a sign that it was fate as well. For hte sales, I read in one of the books I got that in January there is a big sale in Paris. Not sure what time of the month and at what stores but it sounds like it will be big so we could try to get deals there too. I love shopping too!! lol

    I don’t know why America is so different than the rest of the world- like why we don’t use the metric system or celcius (for temperature). It will definitley be an adjustment over there but I’m hoping it won’t be that bad. I noticed that Rikki must be on another tour also, hope he/she got the dates figured out! I counted this morning, 58 days until I am in London!!

  • 30 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    YAY 58 DAYS i am sooooooooo Excited. Yeah i never got why you guys use the imperial system my maths lecturer said there was some reason he just couldn’t remember it when we asked lol.

    cool about the shops in paris – if europe is anything like australia the sales last till australia day (the 26th of january) or about the end of the month it is just all the really good stuff goes on boxing day but there is still other stuff left over poeople line up from like 2 or 3 in the morning then crush each other trying to walk over eachother to get “the best” Bargins it is insane!

    oh and my boyfriend said have a dig at the fact that your football boys have to wear all that padding lol?? and our football is like the public school version of Rugby all the privet schools that have heaps of money play rugby and us public school kids play League it is like the dirtier harder realer version of rugby

    EUROPE HERE WE COME!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 31 Oct 2008 Heather said


    Tell your boyfriend it’s safety first for our football players!! lol I guess us crazy Americans just have to be different, who knows. Your sales last so much longer than ours…maybe I should move to Australia or Europe! When I worked at the mall while I was in collee, our store opened at 5am for the day after Thanksgiving sale. It was maddness, people getting there super early like you said. I wonder if Europe clothes and style is similar to outher countries like ours??

  • 31 Oct 2008 Sam488 said


    i hope so i know australia is a bit behind fashion wise but i hope that i can bring back some stuff that no one else has YAY and be diferent from everyone else.

    Safety schmaftey we go to the football to hear the crack of jawbone on shoulder and the smash of two faces together for us that is wat the football is all about.

    God you people are lucky 5am he he over hear everyone has to wait till like 9 to be able to get in.

    Speaking of shoppping i have to get my dad a birthday present while i am over there cause its his birthday while i am away so it has to be super super awesome and i have no idea what to get him?? there should be plenty of stuff over there to get him. Is anyone else doing souviners for people back home cause i am wondering what to do cause if you buy this person something then you have to buy this person something and then it all just blows out of perportion??

  • 4 Nov 2008 Heather said


    I’m not sure how American fashion compares to European fashion, especially since I’m not in a big city like New York. I’m hoping to find some good things.

    As far as souviners, I will be getting a few, probably just my parents and brother and me of course. I will be sending postcards to a bunch of other people though. This might sounds bad but I worked hard to save my money and with the exchange rate not that great, I would rather buy more stuff for me than everyone else because like you said, when you get one thing for somebody, you have to get something for another and so on.

  • 4 Nov 2008 Sam488 said


    oh good now i don’t feel so bad cause i feel the same way i have worked hard to save this money and i want to enjoy it. I want to bring a few little things home for my close family and you gave me that idea about post cards i totally forgot about those that is a great idea.

    oh new york would hard fashion there is so different from everywhere else but hey you could end up with something kooki and different

  • 5 Nov 2008 Heather said


    When it comes to buying things, one thing I have heard a lot of people say is that if you see something you really like, just get it. You don’t want to get home nad wish you would have gotten it, ya know? After our tour, I will be back in Paris on the next tour so I wil have some time to think about things if I need to but everywhere else that will not be the case. This trip is costing a lot of money but I figure why not spend a little more if I find something I really like.

  • 5 Nov 2008 Sam488 said


    yeah i totally agree i don’t want to get home and regret getting something but at the same time i don’t want to come home and be like why did i buy all this s*&t so i guess you just have to be selective and ask yourself if you really want it and if i do im not going to stop myself just cause it costs a little bit too much.

    At least over hear (not sure for you guys) our dollar is a little stronger against the euro agian YAY!

  • 6 Nov 2008 Heather said


    Ya I didn’t think about the other side of it- buying too much crap. Since I have gotten older I’m pretty good about not buying useless things so hopefully I won’t have that problem. Plus with limited luggage room I can’t have that problem!

    Our dollar isn’t equal to the Euro- it’s under but since I have booked my trip it has gotten a little better. Hopefully it will keep going up and only get better till we go. The closer it gets to equal means the less it will cost me over there and I’m all about saving money when I can.

  • 6 Nov 2008 Sam488 said


    yeah for us it is struggeling to stay at 50cents to the euro but when i started saving for this trip it was up around 75 cents so my trip went up about $3000 YAY it just means that i have to borrow more money off my parents and if thats what it takes so that i can enjoy my holiday then i will do it

    i am hoping that the limited space will stop the crap buying i normally don’t buy crap but this is my first big holiday ever and my first holiday without my parents so i will have to see how i go

  • 7 Nov 2008 Heather said


    I still have to figure out how to bring my money but I’m going to bring more than I think I will need so I don’t run out. Pople say to just use credit cards but mine will charge me 1%-3% of the trasnaction amount, EACH transaction while I’m in Europe so I don’t wnat to use them if I don’t have to. I think it’s total crap that they can do that because they say Visa is everywhere you want to be. Well I want to be in Europe and not get charged up the ass in fees! lol So I stil have to figure that part out. How are you bringing your money?? I was also thinking about getting travelers checks and cashing them every few days to have cash on hand (I know lots of places don’t accept them, that’s why I would get cash from them) but everyone says not to use them and that it’s hard to find places to cash them. But they are safer if it gets lost or stolen. Oh I don’t know!!

  • 7 Nov 2008 Sam488 said


    i am using a travelex debit card there is a one off charge at the begining and they don’t charge you if you use it like an atm card and only charges you $2.20 to withdrawl from an atm. THis is the american site i am getting the visa not the mastercard because we are visiting two countries with different currency it is a risk because it is not a locked in rate but it could also be a bonus who know plus then all i need is the one debit card (in Australia they give you a spare) and if you run out of money your parents can just refill it online for you

    my travel agent lady person told me not to use traavelers cheques due to the charges and just exchange a little bit of money before you leave before so you have cash. Also if you are flying in from anywhere else (we have to go to singapore first) make sure you have some cash for that country because you may want a drink or something while you are waiting for your transfer.

    Then just use your visa debt in emergencies – i only have a debit not credit so i will be leaving mine at home as it does me no good

  • 9 Nov 2008 Heather said


    That website is very helpful, thanks!!! I’m going to look into it more. It sucks having to pay a fee every time I use it but I would take out the max amount each visit to the ATM to hopefully limit the number of times I have to find one. I think I will just get it in Euros and bring extra cash for London. I don’t remember seeing a Visa on there except in US dollars but maybe the Australian site is different than the US one. I heard that some places in London will take Eruo but I’ll have the other currency too. I’m bringing my credit cards too but I hope I don’t run out of money and have to use them!

We are no longer accepting new responses to this discussion thread.

More Discussions

Related Discussions

Discussions Details

Last response over 8 years

This comment was posted about over 9 years ago. It has been discussed 141 times.

10 people are following this discussion.

  • Default_avatar
  • Default_avatar
  • Heather
  • Default_avatar
  • Simone
  • Sam488
  • Default_avatar
  • Melanie
  • Default_avatar
  • Default_avatar



Visas? Money? Where to go? Chat to us about travel.