Tips & tricks


Hi there
I am travelling solo on the European Getaway on 2 Apr and then onto the Greek Island Hopping from 23 Apr.

I am looking for the best tips and tricks for packing, clothing, money, weather etc.
What is the weather like in Europe at that time? Are the nights cold?
Type of space saving clothing?
Money, cash, travelex card or credit card?
Tips for shoes?
Any other tips you may have.

I have never been on a trip of this scale before, let alone solo!!

If anyone can help me out, it would be muchly appreciated.

Thanks so much


Hi hun,

I did the Greek Island Hopper so ive listed my best tips below:

  • Nights were VERY COLD, take long pant, enclosed boots and jackets. Days were nice and warm but nights we cold.

-We just drew money out from the ATM’s at about $500 at a time so we got less charges.



I did European Getaway in 2008, Summer fun and sailing in 2010 and greek island hopper in 2010

hope this bit of info helps you out:

i took a suitcase and a soft cabin bag with me when i flew over. when i got to london i emptied all the contents of my cabin bag into the suitcase and folded the cabin bag up and put it on the bottom of my case so i only then had 1 bag to worry about. all up i had about 18kg in weight.

i went in the end of august so it will prob be similar weather over there. you will need to take a mixture of clothes with you, think layers!! during the days we were mostly in shorts and tshirts or jeans and tshirts and keep a light jacket with you cos it can get a little cold during the afternoon. then in some countries it can be soooooo cold so make sure you have a warm fleecy jacket with you as well. i basically took:

2 x jeans
2 x shorts
2 x summery dresses
6 tshirts
3 singlet shirts
3 short sleeve going out tops
3 long sleeve going out tops
2 light jackets
1 warm jacket
1 scarf ( a MUST!!)
1 going out dress
1 pair of sneakers
1 pair birkenstocks
1 pair low heels (even the nights you go out, you will do some walking and on cobblestones - a lot of girls did take 1 pair of heels with them and they were fine)
2 pairs of swimmers
1 sundress to put over swimmers
bras, undies, toiletries, sunnies, chargers, etc
i think thats about it!!

i took a summer weight sleeping bag from kathmandu - you wont really need anything warmer, most places have central heating or reverse cycle aircon in the rooms
if you bring dresses and heels you wont be out of place, it was baout 50/50 on our tour, some girls just wore jeans and dressy tops to go out and the other wore dresses and heels/strappy sandles (there were prob only 3-4 night they wore heels, the rest of the time nice girly flat sandles)

money = i took an ANZ travel card. you pre-load it over here in aus and it converts to euro, so when you use it overseas you dont pay any conversion fees. you can also withdraw any kind of currency with it (so if youre in croatia you can use the atm and withdraw kuna) and its a visa debit card, so you can select credit when you buy stuff from shops and not pay any fees. the anz web site has all the info.

the bus = you normally get up have breakfast and are on the bus about 8am, then you will be on the bus til about 2pm driving (you will stop every 2 hours for breaks and to top up on snacks - take tissues with you cos some places dont have a lot of tiolet paper). you willl get in to wherever your going and have the afternoon there. the next morning you will be dropped into town for your free day and you find your own way back. so every second day you will be on the bus for at least half a day. you can watch movies, listen to music and best of all SLEEP!
i would say i dont think i saw bed before 1am at least every night, so the bus is a godsend to catch up on sleep!

quite a few people took little laptops a lot of the places we stayed had wifi so they could log on. they all reckon they came in soooo handy!! i normally found a macdonalds and logged in on my phone using their wifi for free. when i go back again this year i will be taking a baby laptop with me for sure.

oh and make sure you take panadol, motion sickness tablets and anti nausia tablets, you will need them!! lol. the ferry crossing from dover to calais can be very very very rough and every single person on my trip was sick on the boat coming back. and then if you have had a big night before and youre on the bus and its a windy road you can feel really sick, so take stematyl tablets. oh and take anti-hystamine tablets with you too!! something like phenergan. if you get bed bug bites or have an allergy they will help sooooo much!!

i took the same stuff with me for the greek island hopper as well. Mykonos is AMAZING!! the other hotels are good too, basic but clean.

If you have any other questions please ask :slight_smile:



Wow!!! Thank you so much Nic, thats an amazing help.
I cant wait to go now!


Hi Nicola
what did you do phone wise?
did u get a traveller sim card or just use roaming?


Hey AJ - Topdeck provide a free roaming free sim for you to use - just go to and use your booking reference number to redeem you free sim car :smiley: It’s super easy. But do it with plenty of time to spare - just in case the postage takes a little while B-) That way you won’t be paying your Australian roaming fees :slight_smile:


Hey AJ

I took my own mobile and put it on roaming, and i only used it to send pics back to family and friends at home. i bought a pre paid UK sim card and phone and loaded it with pound and used it to make phone calls. it worked out heaps cheaper!!! i got an internatioanl prepaid sim so i could roam with it through vodafone.


Hi Natalie

I just received the sim card from the company recommended by Top Deck but it does not fit in my iphone.
Did you have that problem?


Iphones use a micro sim so a normal sim wont fit. I have been told you can get micro sims over in Europe. I couldnt find any to get in Aust so I got a travelsim sim card and borrowed a good ol nokia to tie me over while I am there. I plan on taking my iphone to use as an ipod and for the free wifi in places :wink:

Sar :o)


Oh no. My ekit sim was dispatched today and now I read this. I plan on using my iPhone. Why wouldn’t they say this on the site. They even give some instructions for iPhone. There has to be a way.


Maybe they have them now :confused: my travel agent said they didn’t Hmmmm >(


I expect it to arrive today so will keep you posted.
If not it looks like the Nokia will make it’s way out of the draw.


allll goooooddd! the sim fit in my iphone :slight_smile:


Good news. How did you make it fit? I found my old Nokia E71 so hadn’t looked. Have to work out how to take the back off first. Lol


The sim card holder for the iphone is located next to the power button, there is a tiny hole you need to use a paper clip to poke in and the sim holder will pop open. the ekit sim just fits in the holder!


I think I have worked it out. Is your phone an iPhone 3? The 4 is the one that has a micro sim I now realize. Apparently you can get them cut but not sure I want to risk it. What a shame as I now have to carry 2 phones. I want to WiFi on my iPhone.
I sent an email to ekit to let them know they should probably note something on the website as iPhone is listed as compatible. They were not that helpful to be honest an more or less told me that I should have told them I needed a micro sim. Which I didn’t know until I read this thread.
Good lesson for others though.


Trace…I am in the same boat as you. I have a iphone 4 too. I will be carrying two phones around with me as well. One for music and wifi and one for messages etc. I agree they were not helpful at all and were very rude. I ended up getting a travelsim card. It cost me $50 (inc $5 credit so u will need to buy more) but it has a feature where your friends and family can go to a website and text u unlimited for FREE! You just have to remember to reply to their phone and not the website. Their customer service is very very helpful. And you can recharge in the menu on your phone!!!


Hey all… Thanks for the great advice !!!


To those with iphones that need a microsim, you can make a regular sim into a microsim just by cutting it to size there are heaps of how-to things if you google it, here’s one link:
Hope that helps. :slight_smile:

How long does it usually take for the sim to be posted to you? I might have to get it sent to my friend in england instead.


I emailed ekit today and they said they have the micro sim for iPhone 4’s.