Tipping in Europe

Tipping in Europe is not as stressful as it is in North America. While many service industry professionals earn lower wages and depend on tips for a living in countries like the United States, their European counterparts often earn comparatively higher salaries and view themselves as professionals. Service charge is often included in the bill, even if it states “Tip is Not Included” so be careful not to overpay. It is always better to hand cash to the wait staff discreetly but directly. In the event you don’t have local currency or forget, do not worry, the staff are paid and do not need the tips to earn their weekly wage, it is just a nice bonus.Tipping in Europe

 

Bars and cafes

Very little tipping exists or is expected, leave the small change if you wish but not less than €1

Restaurants

Tipping is more common in elegant restaurants or with larger groups. Most Europeans don’t leave more than 10% percent of the total. In some countries like Germany, leaving coins can be considered a little rude, so get the bill, review it for service charge and then state how much you wish to pay.

Taxis

Normally no tipping other than rounding up if you wish. Some locals will tip their cab drivers more if he or she performed a special service, such as helping carry luggage from the cab itself into a hotel. Even in this case, though, the total tip never usually exceeds one or two euro.

Hotel staff

  • Porters: Around €1 euro per bag
  • Housekeeping: around € 3 euros
  • Concierge: €5 for exceptional service
  • Room service: €1 or €2 to the person who delivers the service
  • Doorman: €1 if they help you with luggage or hail a cab

Spa and resort staff

  • Tipping is not expected, but you can leave up to 10 percent of your total bill if you wish.

Tour guides

  • Your guide will appreciate a tip. The smaller your group is, the more you should tip.
  • For example, if you and your partner are taking a private guided tour and your guide provided excellent service, most people would tip them anywhere from €10 per day.
  • On a larger tour €5 per day is fine.

Tipping By Country

  • The Baltic Countries will enjoy 5-10% depending on formality
  • Czech waiters will be happy with 10 – 15%
  • Greece usually like 10% but no less than €2
  • Italians like €1-2 for general service, 10% in restaurants and €5 per day for guides (optional)
  • Scandinavian counties usually include a service charge, but you can add 10% if you wish
  • In Spain a 10% tip in an elegant restaurant is plenty

France

  • Almost all restaurants add a 15% service charge “Service Compris”
  • If it was very good, leaving 3% extra is customary, also leave the small change if you pay in cash
  • If service is not included “Service non compris” a 15% tip is appropriate
  • Hotel porters get €1.50 for each bag and chambermaids 1.50€ a day.
  • Taxi drivers expect 10-15% of the metered fare.
  • Ushers, Cloakroom and bathroom attendant get €1
  • Tour guides and bus drivers generally enjoy €2 per day, depending on your satisfaction

Great Britain and Ireland

  • Although it’s not necessary to tip, it’s always greatly appreciated and will be greeted with that endearing British politeness. Overall 10% for good service is acceptable
  • For taxis you can round up to the nearest pound. For great service, a 10 % tip is a nice gesture.
  • A service charge is often added to restaurant bills, which you are expected to pay, so check first. If nothing is added and you are happy with the service, then 10% is sufficient.
  • Hotel porters usually receive £1-2
  • Room service is discretionary

Germany

  • A tip is called “Trinkgeld” in German or “Drink money”
  • Tips are commonplace in restaurants, bars, for drivers and guides.
  • A general guide is approximately 5-10% is customary if you were satisfied with the service.
  • Drivers enjoy € 1-2 per day
  • Hotel chambermaids can be left € 1-2
  • For Tour guides € 2-3 per day, per person is normal
  • If you didn’t appreciate the service (e.g. slow, snippy or indifferent service) don’t tip.

Turkey

  • Generally, 10% in restaurants, cafes and bars
  • Hotel porters, housekeeping and room service appreciate 5 Turkish Liras
  • Reception often enjoy 20-50TL after checking out
  • Turkish people round up taxi fares
  • Tipping is always done with cash
  • Tour Guides 20 to 30 TL is common

 

Vacations to Europe by Country

We have over 500 tours and cruises to choose from. You can browse by country using the Navigation menu. If you wish to see the different types of vacations we offer you can use the top menu.  We leverage our extensive expertise and contacts to bring you the best vacations to Europe.

Multi Country Vacations to Europe

In Europe you can travel through several countries in one day. Why not plan a vacation to explore several cultures, histories and languages? Our friendly and knowledgeable guides will escort you through their homelands using well planned itineraries.

Eastern Europe

We are expert in Eastern European destinations and culture. The history, natural beauty and culture of this region has only recently been open to the West after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Short Stays

We offer short vacations for people with limited time. Enjoy a quick trip to famous cities, with flexible itineraries, first class accommodation, sightseeing and transfers all included.

Independent Vacations to Europe

We offer independent vacations for those returning to a country or for confident travelers who speak enough of the local language. The itineraries include sightseeing, accommodation and transportation.

Health Spa Resorts

Relax and recuperate in a hot spring health spa in Bulgaria, Czechia, Hungary or Slovakia.

River & Coastal Cruises in Europe

Towns that were built in medieval times were built near the coast and on rivers that were the highways of the day. Blue Danube Holidays small ship cruises will help you to discover the heart and soul of these countries.  Discover Europe  aboard a floating hotel.

 

Useful Resources

Who To Tip 

Wonderful Wanderings

 

25 European Travel Tips

The 25 European Travel Tips  is a guide on what to prepare before you leave and also some of the differences you can expect. This is general guide of course, but it will help reduce a lot of the stress while you travel. First we list the top 15 things to sort out before you leave, then we list the Top 10 Differences to expect.

Top 15 Checklist 

  1. Ensure your passport has 6 months validity, dated from the end of your trip.
  2. Check the Visa requirements for the countries you are traveling to. If your tour goes through multiple countries, please check each one as they can differ. You can check your Visa requirements for Europe here: Schengen Visas for Europe. Turkey has extra requirements on top of the Schengen. View them HERE
  3. Print your vouchers and all other travel documents and pack them in your carry on luggage.
  4. Travel insurance is a must for all travelers. We provide a great travel insurance comparison for North American residents. For our other guests we recommend you contact your broker. Review Insurance Options Here
  5. Check if your tour includes airport transfers at the start and end of the tour. If not, and you would like this service, please contact us. Click Here to make an inquiry.
  6. Most group and private tours allow one checked bag per participant and 1 piece of hand luggage. If you plan to take more luggage please check with us beforehand.
  7. For early flight arrivals, your hotel room may not be available until check in time which is often after 2pm. Early check in can be requested, however, it is contingent on the hotel’s occupancy on that day and cannot be confirmed before arriving. The hotel reception will store bags and make available seating areas and in many cases a restaurant for refreshments. If not, the reception desk will be happy to give directions to a local restaurant or café. Getting out on foot is a great way to orient yourself to a new city.
  8. Extra night’s accommodation and city tour packages are also available on request and preplanning them will reduce any unwanted excitement.  
  9. If there are special attractions you want to see on your “leisure days” on a tour, be sure to mention them to us or to your tour director so arrangements can be made.
  10. Check if the hotels you are staying at are in central and relatively safe areas. You want to be able to walk around, either to a gallery, museum, castle or cathedral. You also might just want to get a good coffee.
  11. If WiFi access is important,  check with us beforehand as some tours /cruises offer this as part of the package and others do not.
  12. Advise your bank that you will be overseas, especially if you live in America. Your bank will suspend your credit card, if they see overseas charges that they were not warned about. Then you may have to wait for a replacement. You should also ask if your bank works with a bank where you are going, so that you don’t incur extra fees.
  13. Ensure you have the correct power adapters and batteries (see battery info here). There may not be many power outlets, so be prepared to rotate equipment for charging. 
  14. Research and agree a telecommunications plan with a provider before you go. But be careful, you still need to choose the right plan. We signed up for the wrong plan and ended up with a $600 bill for January 2018. Ask your mobile phone company for a daily maximum plan. We use ‘AT&T International Day Pass’ which you only have to activate once. When you go overseas and turn the phone on it is automatically detected and (at the date of publishing this blog) charged a fixed rate of $10 per day. The cost of USD 10.00 per day is reasonable and means you can budget your costs for calls, texts, internet, hotspot, emails, video and even streaming.
  15. Make both print and digital (phone camera) copies of your travel documents, credit cards and passports. Pack the printed ones in a different part of your luggage, in case you lose your phone and wallet.

Top 10 Differences 

If you want things to be the same, the best place to be is home. Please bear in mind that you are a guest in someone else’s home. Always be respectful, courteous and inquisitive. Here is a list that we have noticed are different:

  1. Most European hotel rooms don’t have things you do want and may have what you don’t want. For example, you may not have facilities for making tea and coffee. Hotels make money by selling you food and refreshments in their bar or restaurant. Your new favorite coffee shop is waiting to be discovered right around the corner where you can sip coffee and watch the locals. Hotel rooms in Europe often have fully stocked mini bars. You can ask to have them removed at check in if you wish. I once phoned reception to ask for an iron and was told that THE iron was being used by another room. Again, they make money with the laundry service. As I was in the same city for a week, I ended up walking to the local supermarket and buying a cheap one. So be prepared with ironless shirts and packing clothes in a manner that will ensure less creasing.

Here is a great You Tube Video to help packing: 

  1. A majority of buildings in the old towns of Europe were built centuries ago and do not have elevators. You might have to carry your own bags up the stairs. Packing light will help you in this instance and also allow you space for gifts.
  2. Be patient. On a group tour there will always be the straggler, who has difficulty being on time or there are often elderly people who just don’t move as fast. On one cruise a bunch of like minded travelers formed a group who would enjoy dinner and the daily tours together. We would rotate who would walk with Jim. He was over 70, interesting, great fun and wonderful conversation at dinner, but a little slower on the walks.
  3. Wear comfortable shoes. The Romans were admirable engineers and used cobblestones to build the roads, some of which are still in use today. Many of the roads are narrow and uneven. So, wear sturdy but comfortable shoes that will help with the terrain.
  4. Clothing is important for two reasons. The first is that it protects you from the weather and is vital in your level of comfort. The second is that it communicates who you are in a few seconds to those you are about to meet. Europeans tend to be a little more formal and stylish (similar to the larger and colder cities where you live). So, it won’t hurt to balance style with comfort. Sweatpants and sneakers are comfortable, but you will get the table next to the toilets every time. Layers help with warmth and shawls or wraps will help with the sun or cold and will also help enter religious institutions.
  5. The key when entering Churches, Mosques and Temples is to be discreet. If you have your arms and legs covered, this will help a lot and maybe a shawl for ladies in Mosques. There are numerous people turned away from the Vatican on a daily basis for inappropriate clothing.
  6. Service staff in Europe tend to be paid a lot more than their counterparts in the United States. They view themselves as professionals and don’t need tips to earn a living wage. Of course, they still they still like a 10% tip, but it is bonus, not essential. Because of their professionalism, they are more apt to share their thoughts and not just offer platitudes. Don’t be surprised if a waiter in France advises that you are making a poor choice, just go with it and enjoy the sincerity. She may well be right! Here is a link to our guide on tipping in Europe.
  7. It is common to ask for a double bed and get Twin beds, pushed together. This is normal so if you really want a double bed you will need to ask beforehand.
  8. It is always good to have a little local currency in cash. Go to your bank and get enough to get you through a day or two if you lose your credit cards. Get enough money for food, taxis, tipping and rest rooms (yes, they can cost up to 1 Euro in some places). If you have local currency in notes you can always get change.
  9. A full bathroom with separate shower is not common. Often hotels in Europe will have a shower head over the bath. If you wish a separate shower, please ask at the time of booking. 

We hope that The 25 European Travel Tips is useful and gives you some ideas on things to confirm before you travel, and some differences to be ready for. 

Please contact us if you have any questions or would love to add advice which we can include in our next blog about European Travel.

Other blogs that might be useful:

 

 

Top 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation

Top 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation are listed below are in alphabetical order by mainland tours and the by island cruises. 

Mainland Greece

1. AthensTop 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation

One of the world’s oldest cities, the earliest humans date back over 9, 000 and recorded history started 3,400 years ago. Known as the birthplace of democracy, Athens has much to see. The Parthenon is a 5th century BC temple dedicated to the Greek goddess Athena whom the Athenians believed to be their protector. No visit to Greece is complete without visiting the impressive site, which dominates the skyline of the city. It is an enduring symbol of ancient Greece and Athenian democracy. The National Archaeological Museum houses some of the most important artifacts from a variety of archaeological locations around Greece from prehistory to late antiquity. It is considered one of the great museums of the world and contains the richest collection of artifacts from Greek antiquity worldwide.

Athens Short Tour GR 207
3 Day Tour to Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi GR103
Grand Tour of Greece Tour GR104
The Classical Sites of Greece Tour GR105
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander Tour GR109
Classical Greece Cruise BD901
Greek Island Mini Cruise BD902

2. Delphi Top 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation

185 kms WNW from Athens, 2 hours and 15 minutes by road

A fascinating archaeological site in the valley of Phocis. Delphi was the site of the Delphic oracle, the most important oracle in the classical Greek world. Delphi was revered throughout Greek antiquity as the site of the omphalos stone, the center of the earth and the universe. It has a beautiful temple dedicated to the Greek God Apollo.

Antiquity to Byzantium BD904
3 Day Tour to Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi GR103
Grand Tour of Greece Tour GR104
The Classical Sites of Greece Tour GR105
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander Tour GR109

3. Epidaurus

126 kms SW from Athens, 1 hour and 40 minutes by road

A UNESCO World Heritage site, Epidaurus is famed for its almost perfectly preserved, 14,000-seat amphitheater with its legendary acoustics built in the 4th century BC. According to Greek mythology Epidaurus was also the birthplace of Apollo’s son, Asclepius, who was the god of healing. As a result it became one of the most important centers of healing in the ancient world and by the 4th century BC, people traveled great distances to seek medical and mystical cures at the Asclepius sanctuary. The archaeological site of Epidaurus also includes a sanctuary of Egyptian gods, a sports stadium, Odeon and bath complex.

3 Day Tour to Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi – GR103
Grand Tour of Greece – Tour GR104
The Classical Sites of Greece – Tour GR105
Antiquity to Byzantium BD904
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander – Tour GR109

4. Kalambaka  – Meteora MonasteriesTop 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation

593 kms north of Athens, 45 minutes by plane, 5 hours by road

A rare geological phenomenon, a quirk of nature as it were, created these looming rocks which thrust skywards from the plain of Thessaly. Their summits, totally isolated from the rest of the world, were a refuge for many hermits from as early as the 11th century. Three centuries later the first monasteries were established. Most of the monasteries were built or renovated in the 16th century. Presently six are in use and are filled with ecclesiastical treasures, wonderful wall paintings, rich libraries with precious manuscripts, and exquisite icons. The area is also great for hikers and rock-climbers.

Grand Tour of Greece – Tour GR104
The Classical Sites of Greece – Tour GR105
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander – Tour GR109

5. Mycenae

120 kms WSW from Athens, 1 hour and 30 minutes by road

An imposing site filled with rich legend and history. Mycenae was once a mighty kingdom of Ancient Greece and its ruler, Agamemnon was considered one of the greatest. It was here that Agamemnon’s brother’s wife, Helen, was abducted by the Trojan prince Paris and the famous Trojan War had its origins. Today one can see tombs, an acropolis, a citadel and the famous lion gate.

3 Day Tour to Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi – GR103
Grand Tour of Greece – Tour GR104
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander – Tour GR109
Antiquity to Byzantium BD904
The Classical Sites of Greece – Tour GR105

6. OlympiaTop 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation

264 kms W of Athens, 3 hours and 49 minutes by road

Where the first Olympic games took place from 776 BC to 393 AD in honor of the god Zeus. The athletic games tested competitors from all of the Greek city states to win the olive branch. You can see the ancient stadium, the temples of Zeus and Hera, the Palaestra (wrestling school) and the workshop of the sculptor, painter and architect, Phidias.

Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander – Tour GR109
Antiquity to Byzantium BD904
The Classical Sites of Greece – Tour GR105
3 Day Tour to Mycenae, Olympia and Delphi – GR103
Grand Tour of Greece – Tour GR104

7. Thermopylae

198 kms NW of Athens, 2 hours and 6 minutes by road

The Battle of Thermopylae was fought in 480 BC at the narrow coastal pass of Thermopylae. Over 7,000 Greeks fought the Persian Empire led by Xerxes I. The Greeks led by the Spartan King Leonidas, lost but managed to delay the Persian seven days. The battle is a historical example of patriotism, training and the use of terrain as a force multiplier and is a symbol of courage.

The Classical Sites of Greece – Tour GR105
Northern Greece: The Land of Alexander – Tour GR109
Grand Tour of Greece – Tour GR104

The Greek Islands

8. Crete

330 kms SSE of Athens, 50 minutes by plane, 9 hours by ferry

Knossos is the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete and probably the ceremonial and political center of the Minoan civilization and culture. The famous palace appears as a maze of workrooms, living spaces, and storerooms. Detailed images of Cretan life in the late Bronze Age are provided by images on the walls of this palace. It is a very rich site that gives the visitor a great insight on what life must’ve been like there thousands of years ago.

The Best of Turkey and Greece – Tour TR704
Classical Greece Cruise BD901
Greek Island Hopping to Mykonos Santorini Paros Crete and Rhodes – Tour GR204
Idyllic Aegean – 8 Days GR409
Eclectic Aegean – 8 Days GR410

9. Delos

189 kms SWS from Athens, 6 hours by ferry

Five kilometers from Mykonos is the sacred island of Delos, which according to legend, was the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. Today the island is uninhabited but has a vast archaeological site whose superb monuments draw thousands of visitors in pilgrimage to what was, for a thousand years after the 9th century BC, the political and religious center of the Aegean.

Greek Island Mini Cruise BD902
Jewels of the Cyclades BD903
Classical Greece Cruise BD901

10. Mykonos

185 kms SWS from Athens, 5 hours by ferry

A picturesque Cycladic island in the Aegean that is world-famous and for good reason. It is surrounded by the crystal blue waters of the Aegean and dotted with countless beaches. The island’s capital, Hora, with its colorful harbour, has beautiful whitewashed buildings with blue windows and colorful balconies, labyrinth streets filled with excellent restaurants, great shopping, quaint palm-tree courtyards and bars and clubs. In fact, during the summer the island is a partygoer paradise with world class DJs spinning at mega clubs at night and on several beaches during the day.

Classical Greece Cruise BD901
Mini Cruise on the Greek Islands BD902
Jewels of the Cyclades BD903
Island Hopping to Mykonos, Santorini and Paros – GR201
Two Greek Islands Mykonos and Santorini – Tour GR203
Greek Island Hopping to Mykonos Santorini Paros Crete and Rhodes – Tour GR204
4 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey –  Cruise GR407
3 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey – Cruise GR408
Idyllic Aegean – 8 Days GR409
Eclectic Aegean – 8 Days GR410
16 Day Tour of Turkey and Greece – Tour TR711

11. Naxos

214 Kms SW from Athens, 6 hours by road and ferry

You will find the usual tourist attractions (great beaches and bars) but also mountains, and fertile fields and valleys with fruit and olive trees. . A great place to take a break from the high life and enjoy beautiful old churches, monasteries, Venetian castles and homes.  

Greek Island Hopping to Paros and Naxos – Tour GR202

12. Paros

220 Kms SE from Athens, 6 hours by ferry

There is something for everyone: beautiful beaches, sports activities, trendy bars, tasty food, wineries, traditional architecture, paths for hiking and traditional villages. See the Panagia Ekatontapiliani, a Byzantine church from the 4th century A.D. The north coast’s Kolimbithres is a beach where naturally sculpted rocks form multiple swimming coves.

Jewels of the Cyclades BD903
Greece Island Hopping to Mykonos, Santorini and Paros – GR201
Two Greek Island Hops Paros and Naxos – Tour GR202
Greek Island Hopping to Mykonos Santorini Paros Crete and Rhodes – Tour GR204

13. Rhodes

606 kms WSW from Athens, 1 hour by plane, 20 hours by ferry

One of the most fascinating and beautiful islands in all of the Mediterranean, Rhodes is a perfect destination for tourists looking for it all – sun, sea, history, food, culture etc. Historically, Rhodes was famous for one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Colossus of Rhodes as well as the medieval Old Town of the City of Rhodes, which has been declared a World Heritage Site thanks to the impressive buildings built by the Knights of the Order St. John. The city is very atmospheric with an imposing fortress, churches and cobblestone streets. Another gem of the island is Lindos. It is here that you will find an ancient acropolis with spectacular views of the sea and beach below.

Idyllic Aegean – 8 Days GR409
Eclectic Aegean – 8 Days GR410
16 Day Tour of Turkey and Greece – Tour TR711
Greek Island Hopping to Mykonos Santorini Paros Crete and Rhodes – Tour GR204
4 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey –  Cruise GR407
3 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey – Cruise GR408

14. Santorini

298 kms SE of Athens, 40 min by plane, 9 hours by ferry

Legend has it that it was this island that was once home to the city of Atlantis before a volcanic explosion caused most of the island to sink to the bottom of the sea. Today one can visit the ancient archaeological site of Akrotiri (dating back to the 4th millennium BC) or walk around the atmospheric cities hanging on the side of the island’s cliffs and enjoy the famous whitewashed houses and the spectacular views of the sea, especially beautiful at sunset.

The Best of Turkey and Greece – Tour TR704
Classical Greece Cruise BD901
Greek Island Mini Cruise BD902
Jewels of the Cyclades BD903
Greece Island Hopping to Mykonos, Santorini and Paros – GR201
Two Greek Island Hops from Mykonos and Santorini – Tour GR203
Greek Island Hopping to Mykonos Santorini Paros Crete and Rhodes – Tour GR204
4 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey –  Cruise GR407
3 Nights Greek Island Cruise with Turkey – Cruise GR408
Idyllic Aegean – 8 Days GR409
Eclectic Aegean – 8 Days GR410
16 Day Tour of Turkey and Greece – Tour TR711

15. Skopelos

286 Kms N from Athens, 7 hours by road and ferry

A Greek island in the western Aegean Sea. It is the greenest where the green pines and the thick forests meets the deep blue of the sea and the sky, creating an image of incomparable natural beauty. It is where Mamma Mia! was filmed and you can see the locations such as the chapel of Agios Ioannis. The great thing is that the island has not lost its rustic charm.

Two Islands Mamma Mia! – Tour GR205
Four Islands Mamma Mia! – Tour GR206

 

We hope you enjoyed the Top 15 Destinations on a Greek Vacation. To find our more, please Contact Us

 

 

 

 

 

Europe Travel Tours Now Offers Britain & Ireland

Europe Travel Tours Now Offers Britain & Ireland. On offer are a selection of guided tours. We can also organize independent tours, groups or a simply private driver. Contact us at reservations@europetraveltours.net

England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland – Great Britain

The south is mostly rolling hills after the forests, the highlands of Scotland are mountain ridges and deep valleys that were created by glaciersEurope Travel Tours Now Offers Britain & Ireland in the last ice age. Invaders have landed on Britain’s shores many times since the dawn of history. The Celts came from Europe and pushed the first Britons (the Picts) into Scotland. They were followed by the Romans, Anglo-Saxons from Germany, the Vikings from Scandinavia and the Normans from France. The British then built the world’s largest empire which closed after WWII and most of its colonies became independent nations. 

The capital, London was founded by the Romans in the first century and when the Welsh Henry Tudor defeated Richard III in the War of the Roses he was the last king to win the throne in battle. The British have a strong preservation ethic and have some of the most outstanding architecture, museums, castles, history and monuments to experience. Transport and tourist services are very well organized and the country is a joy to visit.

 

The Republic of Ireland – Eire

Known as the Emerald Isle filled with rolling green hills it also has rugged, rocky landscapes and peat bogs formed by glaciers 15,000 years ago. The southwest has cliffs that plunge hundreds of feet into the Atlantic Ocean.  The Celts landed from Europe around 2700 years ago and the Vikings followed 1000 years later. In 1170, Norman Vikings who had taken control of England invaded Ireland and made it an English territory. Britain changed to the Protestant religion in the 1600’s  while most Irish remained Catholic. In 1948, Ireland became an independent country, while six mainly Protestant counties in the northeast remained

in Britain. Ireland is a nation of storytellers, writers, musicians and dancer. They are most welcoming hosts.

 

Please click on the links and take a look at our tours of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

 

Tours of Britain & Ireland:

 

Best of Britain – 9 nights/ 10 days –  England, Scotland and Wales  – A great introduction tour GB100

 

Highlights of Britain – 14 nights/ 15 days – England, Scotland and Wales – in depth tour GB101

 

The Heart of England and Wales – 7 nights/ 8 days – London, Stonehenge, Bath, Stratford-Upon-Avon and Windsor Castle – Tour GB102

 

Great British Cities  – 7 nights/ 8 days – Edinburgh, Glamis Castle, St Andrews, York, Stratford-upon-Avon, London – Tour GB103

 

Scottish Dream – 7 nights/ 8 days – From Glasgow, Loch Ness, St Andrews, Culloden, Blair Athol Distillery and Edinburgh – Tour GB104

 

Taste of Scotland and Ireland – 9 nights/ 10 days – Trace Scots-Irish roots – Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Dublin, Kerry – Tour GB105

 

A Taste of Britain – 7 Nights/ 8 Days – An introduction to England and Scotland – Tour GB106

 

An Irish Odyssey –  11 Nights journey around the Emerald Isle– Tour IE100

 

The Jewels of Ireland –13 Nights/ 14 Days on this Epic Tour of Ireland –  Tour IE101

 

An Irish Adventure – 7 Nights/ 8 Days The  major Irish highlights in just over a week – IE102

We hope that this message:Europe Travel Tours Now Offers Britain & Ireland has something for you. If you would like something else, please Contact Us

A Guide to European Hotel Taxes

In A Guide to European Hotel Taxes we want to show that there are tourist taxes that the hotel charges. How much depends on where you are. When planning your vacation to Europe, remember to factor in  the city tourism tax into your budget. These taxes are collected by the hotels and vary by region, hotel size and category.

In order to help you plan we have summarized the taxes by country below. These prices were accurate in March 2019. Check with the hotel directly for current prices.

Austria

Austrian taxes ranges from €0.15 to 3.02% of the hotel cost per person per night in Vienna and Salzburg.

Belgium

Taxes vary by city and rise from €2 per person per night in Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent. Brussels varies by borough, hotel size and category. The Novotel is €7.50 per room, per night.

Bulgaria

Tourist taxes range from 0.2 to 3 Bulgarian (BGN) Lev to around 3 Lev

Croatia

The tax can be up to 10 kn (Kuna) per person per night depending on the category of the accommodation and season

The Czech Republic

The nightly tax can be is €0.50 

France

Hotel taxes are €0.20 to €4 per person, per night and Paris charges an extra 10% on top of the tax

Germany

Taxes can vary from €0.50 to €5 per person, per night or 5% of the room bill depending on the location (Munich has none) and type of accommodation.

Hungary

Charges are 4% of the price of your room per night

Italy

Taxes varies from city to city, and the hotel’s star rating: In Rome you can pay €3 – €7 per person per day for up to 10 days of your stay

The Netherlands

Charges different in each city, and  the hotel’s star rating. Amsterdam has a 5% tax

Portugal

The taxes also vary by city. Lisbon is €1 per and Porto’s is €2, whereas the Algarve is €1.50 per person per night.

Romania

Charges are 1% of the total value of the accommodation for each night

Slovenia

Fares ranges from €0.60 to €3.13 per person, per night but varies on location and hotel grade.

Spain

This varies from no tax in Madrid to €2.50 per person per night in 5 star hotels

Switzerland

Charges are 2.5CHF (Swiss Francs) per person per night

On a European River Cruise all local taxes are included in your total.

Here are some tour links to explore:

Vacations to Europe by Country

We have over 500 tours and cruises to choose from. You can browse by country using the Navigation menu. If you wish to see the different types of vacations we offer you can use the top menu.  We leverage our extensive expertise and contacts to bring you the best vacations to Europe.

Multi Country Vacations to Europe

In Europe you can travel through several countries in one day. Why not plan a vacation to explore several cultures, histories and languages? Our friendly and knowledgeable guides will escort you through their homelands using well planned itineraries.

Eastern Europe

We are expert in Eastern European destinations and culture. The history, natural beauty and culture of this region has only recently been open to the West after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Short Stays

We offer short vacations for people with limited time. Enjoy a quick trip to famous cities, with flexible itineraries, first class accommodation, sightseeing and transfers all included.

Independent Vacations to Europe

We offer independent vacations for those returning to a country or for confident travelers who speak enough of the local language. The itineraries include sightseeing, accommodation and transportation.

Health Spa Resorts

Relax and recuperate in a hot spring health spa in Bulgaria, Czechia, Hungary or Slovakia.

River & Coastal Cruises in Europe

Towns that were built in medieval times were built near the coast and on rivers that were the highways of the day. Blue Danube Holidays small ship cruises will help you to discover the heart and soul of these countries.  Discover Europe  aboard a floating hotel.

History, Nature and Music

 Other articles to check out:

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Traveling to Europe and want to know what Visa’s you’ll need?

Traveling to Europe and want to know what Visa’s you’ll need? If you don’t know, you had better do some research early as Visas can take up to three months to obtain. There are three types of authorized entry toTraveling to Europe and want to know what Visa’s you’ll need?Europe for International Vacationers:

1. Schengen Visa

2. ETIAS Visa Waiver.

3. Direct Visa application

1. Schengen Visa

The EU established one border for the whole of Europe, to reduce the number of visas needed. A Schengen visa is a short stay visa that allows the holder to enter and freely move within the Schengen area of 26 counties. These are Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.     

Who must apply?  

The following nationals do not require a Schengen Visa. United States of America, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Albania, Andorra, Antigua & Bermuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominica, El Salvador, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Georgia, Grenada, Guatemala, Vatican City State, Honduras, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Nicaragua, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Samoa, San Marino, Seychelles, Serbia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, St Kitts & Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent & The Grenadines, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela.

In 2021 people from these countries will need to complete an ETAIS application (see below). If your country does not appear above, then you will need a Schengen Visa.

How do I get a Schengen Visa?

You must lodge your application for a Schengen Visa at the Consulate of the country that you intend to visit. If you intend to visit more than one Schengen State, choose the country where you will spend the longest time. If you are visiting multiple counties choose the country where you intend to spend the most time. When visitng several countries for an equal time period, choose the country where you will first arrive. You can check where the consulates are in your country by looking here.

https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/borders-and-visas/visa-policy/how_to_apply_en

The current cost for a Schengen Visa is €60 per person, €35 for children under the age of 12 years.

The application can be lodged up to 3 months prior to travel. We recommend getting your application in well before final payment of your tour. A decision is usually made within 15 days however, in individual cases it may take up to 30 days and exceptionally 60 days.   

For up to date information about the Schengen Visa please read here.

https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/borders-and-visas/visa-policy/schengen_visa_en

2. ETIAS Visa Waiver

The  European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) Waiver Form is a digital system (similar to the USA’s ESTA) that allows entry and keep track of visitors from countries who do not need a visa to the Schengen Zone. Travelers who fill out the ETIAS Waiver form authorize the EU to carry out pre-travel screening for security and migration risks of visa-exempt visitors. It was designed to save time and improve security.

Toward the end of 2021, non-Schengen visa travelers will have to complete an online application before visiting 22 of the Schengen countries which include:

Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

The online application takes around 10 minutes and includes passport, background and basic personal information such as drug use, terrorism, criminal history etc. The fee is €7  (approximately US$8) and is valid for three years.3

3. Applying Direct Per Country for a Visa

Some European countries are not currently operating under the Schengen agreement. These European countries are mostly in the Balkans and include Albania, Belarus, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Kosovo, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Turkey,  Ukraine and the United Kingdom. There are so many vastly different nations in Europe. The individual nation requirements change regularly and are unique to each country. Therefore, it is best that you contact these countries directly to see what type of Visa requirements they have to gain entry.

Below is a list of European nations websites to find out directly whether or not you need a Visa and how to apply:

Albania – https://al.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/additional-resources/emergency-preparedness/
Austria – https://www.bmeia.gv.at/en/travel-stay/entry-and-residence-in-austria/entry-and-visa/
Belgium – https://dofi.ibz.be/sites/dvzoe/FR/Pages/home.aspx
Bosnia and Herzegovina – http://msb.gov.ba/inf_za_strance/default.aspx?id=14555&langTag=en
Bulgaria – https://www.mfa.bg/en/services-travel/consular-services/travel-bulgaria/visa-application-forms
Croatia – http://www.mvep.hr/en/consular-information/visas/visa-requirements-overview/
Czech Republic – https://www.mzv.cz/jnp/en/information_for_aliens/visa_form/index.html
Denmark – https://www.visaselfservice.um.dk/Trunk/VisaPortal/templates/page.aspx?id=86&epslanguage=EN
Estonia – https://vm.ee/en/taxonomy/term/41
Finland – https://um.fi/visa-to-visit-finland
France – www.france-visas.gouv.fr
Germany – https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/en/einreiseundaufenthalt/visabestimmungen-node
Greece – http://www.mfa.gr/en/visas/
Hungary – https://konzuliszolgalat.kormany.hu/visa-application-forms
Ireland – http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/Visit+Tourist
Italy – http://vistoperitalia.esteri.it/home/en
Latvia – https://www.mfa.gov.lv/en/usa/consular-information/visa-requirements-for-latvia-entry-into-schengen-zone
Liechtenstein – http://www.llv.li/#/12341/visum     (let Google translate the page)
Lithuania – http://keliauk.urm.lt/index.php/index-home-page/first/visas   (let Google translate the page)
Luxembourg – https://guichet.public.lu/en/citoyens/immigration.html
Montenegro – https://www.visit-montenegro.com/tourism/visas-and-montenegro-embassy/visas-for-foreign-citizens/
Netherlands – https://www.netherlandsandyou.nl/travel-and-residence/visas-for-the-netherlands
North Macedonia – http://www.mfa.gov.mk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=223&Itemid=663&lang=en
Norway – https://www.udi.no/en/
Poland – https://www.msz.gov.pl/en/travel_to_poland/visa/visa
Portugal – https://www.vistos.mne.pt/en/short-stay-visas-schengen/general-information/application-forms
Romania – https://www.mae.ro/en/node/2035
Russia – https://visa.kdmid.ru/PetitionChoice.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
Serbia – http://www.mfa.gov.rs/en/consular-affairs/entry-serbia/visa-requirements
Slovakia – https://www.mzv.sk/web/en
Slovenia  – http://www.mzz.gov.si/en/entry_and_residence/
Spain – http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consulados/WASHINGTON/en/InformacionParaExtranjeros/Pages/RequisitosDeEntrada.aspx
Sweden – https://www.migrationsverket.se/English/Private-individuals/Visiting-Sweden.html
Switzerland – http://www.swiss-visa.ch
Ukraine – https://mfa.gov.ua/en/consular-affairs/con/visa
United Kingdom – https://www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa/apply

We hope ‘Traveling to Europe and want to know what Visa’s you’ll need?’ was useful and will get you organised. This information is correct as of March 10, 2019 and is subject to change. It is your responsibility to check your passport validity and what are the Visa requirements for your tour.  Above all, before paying out any money, you should find out what Visas you will need so that you dont make a commitment you cannot keep.  Make sure you submit all applications at least 3 months before your desired departure date. Blue Danube Holidays do not apply for Visas or Visa Waivers on your behalf. Because we can only assist by providing supporting documentation, such as proof of your tour or cruise booking.

Here are some link to our tours we hope will make you want to be able to answer the question: Traveling to Europe and want to know what Visa’s you’ll need?

Vacations to Europe by Country

We have over 500 tours and cruises to choose from. You can browse by country using the Navigation menu. If you wish to see the different types of vacations we offer you can use the top menu.  We leverage our extensive expertise and contacts to bring you the best vacations to Europe.

Multi Country Vacations to Europe

In Europe you can travel through several countries in one day. Why not plan a vacation to explore several cultures, histories and languages? Our friendly and knowledgeable guides will escort you through their homelands using well planned itineraries.

Eastern Europe

We are expert in Eastern European destinations and culture. The history, natural beauty and culture of this region has only recently been open to the West after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Short Stays

We offer short vacations for people with limited time. Enjoy a quick trip to famous cities, with flexible itineraries, first class accommodation, sightseeing and transfers all included.

Independent Vacations to Europe

We offer independent vacations for those returning to a country or for confident travelers who speak enough of the local language. The itineraries include sightseeing, accommodation and transportation.

Health Spa Resorts

Relax and recuperate in a hot spring health spa in Bulgaria, Czechia, Hungary or Slovakia.

River & Coastal Cruises in Europe

Towns that were built in medieval times were built near the coast and on rivers that were the highways of the day. Blue Danube Holidays small ship cruises will help you to discover the heart and soul of these countries.  Discover Europe  aboard a floating hotel.

History, Nature and Music

Why Visit Salzburg? Three reasons…

Why Visit Salzburg? Three reasons…that travelers visit the authentic (UNESCO World Cultural Heritage) town of Salzburg: music, history and beer! Below are three lists to help you get to the heart of  Salzburg.

Music and Performance

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in Salzburg in 1756. The Mozart Birthplace (on the Getreidegasse) and The Mozart Residence (on Makartplatz) are both museums dedicated to the memory of Mozart. There are numerous concerts, festivals and guided tours. You can even get Mozart chocolates in the original silver & blue wrappers. There are many classical music festivals and concerts

  • Mozart week Jan 23 – Feb 2, 2020
  • Summer music festival Jul-Aug (vibrant atmosphere for visitors)
  • Siemens music festival – which is free
  • Concert “Piccolo-Konzerte” 14.05.2019
  • Mozart piano matinee 14.05.2019
  • Organ at Noon 14.05.2019
  • Residence Concert 14.05.2019
  • Mozart violin sonatas 14.05.2019
  • Salzburg Classical Music Concerts 14.05.2019
  • Chamber concert 14.05.2019
  • Mirabell Palace Concerts 14.05.2019
  • Best of Mozart Fortress Concert 14.05.2019
  • Mozart piano matinee 15.05.2019
  • The 2019 Whitsuntide Salzburg Festival: ” Celestial voices”
  • The Salzburg Easter Festival founded in 1967 by Herbert von Karajan.
  • Sommerszene 17 – 29 June, 2019 contemporary performance art, theater, dance, performance and installation
Other Salzburg Concerts
  • Sound of Music tours – the movie was shot on location around Salzburg
  • Advent in Salzburg Nov 29- Dec 15 small vocal ensembles and Alpine melodies
  • Jazz & The City: Oct 7-20, the churches and wine bars opening their doors with free admission
  • Salzburg Marionette theatre
  • Celebration of Silent Night concert (originated in Salzburg)
  • Christmas markets (which only sell locally made handcrafted goods), from the end of Nov to Dec. 2019
  • St Rupert’s Fair – September 24th each year for 5 days
  • Organ music concerts – see Salzburg website for dates and times

History and Culture

Salzburg is the Rome of the North with the largest collection of Baroque artifacts.

  • The Hohensalzburg Fortress is the biggest fully preserved castle in central Europe
  • Hellbrunn Palace has 400 year old trick fountains 
  • The Domquartier Salzburg, houses the inner city historical buildings 
  • Mirabell Palace was built in 1606 by prince-archbishop Wolf Dietrich
  • Salzburg Cathedral has the baptismal font, the art work “Vanitas”, plus the chest containing relics of Saints Rupert and Virgil
  • Red Bull Hangar 7, where you can see the Red Bull owner’s collection of racing cars and planes
  • Traditional shopping 
  • Untersberg Mountain is only 20 mins from Salzburg. Take the cable car to the top of the mountain for stunning views.

Beer

There is a tremendous beer culture in Salzburg stretching back 600 years. Quality local beer is carefully produced and delivered to the local establishments. A list of traditional inns can be found below:

Hotel Friesacher Anif

  1. Alchimiste Belge
  • Outstanding beer expertise, enjoyable tastings and 150 of the world’s most famous, most decorated beers.
  • 5020, Bergstraße 10, www.alchimiste-belge.at
  1. Braugasthof Sigl – Trumer Welt
  • Regional dishes plus Austrian and international specialty beers
  • 5162 Obertrum am See, Dorfplatz 1 www.braugasthof-sigl.at
  1. Die Weisse / Sudwerk
  • A traditional brewery and inn. 
  • 5020, Rupertgasse www.dieweisse.at
  1. Friesachers Einkehr – Here, no one ever turns around at the door
  • Extensive beer menu, specialty beers from different countries
  • 5081 Anif, Hellbrunnerstraße 17 www.friesacher.com
  1. Fuxn – Salzburger Volkswirtschaft –a home away from home
  • Traditional Austrian cooking and interesting beers: from Fuxnbier and Stiegl, to Budweiser and Tegernseer.
  • 5020, Vogelweiderstraße 28 car park: Sterneckstraße 33 www.fuxn.at
  1. Beffa Bar, Belgiek
  • A flagship of international beer culture. Belgian, British, American and other specialties
  • 5020, Bergstraße 13 www.alchimiste-belge.at
  1. Braugasthof Hofbräu Kaltenhausen- Beer from their own brewery
  • Established in 1475. The restaurant cooks with beer.
  • 5400 Hallein, Salzburgerstraße 67 www.kaltenhausen.at
  1. Gablerbräu
  • 500-year brewing tradition
  • 5020, Linzer Gasse 9 www.gablerbrau.at
  1. Raschhofer’s Rossbräu Herrnau
  • Traditional brewery and THE beer garden in the south of town.
  • 5020, Alpenstraße 48, www.raschhofer.at
  1. Sternbräu
  • Established  in 1542 as a Brewery and an inn.
  • 5020, Griesgasse 23, www.sternbrau.com

Here are some of our trips to Salzburg:

Germany & Austria

Christmas in Salzburg

Highlights of Austria

Private Escorted Tour of Austria – Tour AT106