After Rome, we traveled by train to Florence and spent one day there. We booked our train tickets online before we even left Manila via ItaliaRail. Booking in advance always guarantees cheaper fares.
From Roma Termini we traveled to Florence Sta. Maria Novella station. The train ride took less then 2 hours.
From the train station, we had to ask around for directions to our hostel. I knew we had to take the bus, but knowing which was the correct bus was a little confusing since there were many of them lined up outside. Once we found the correct one, it took about 20 minutes to get to our destination.
It’s been a while since I last posted on this blog. I still have so much to write about (Florence, Berlin, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Zurich, Lucerne, the Swiss Alps) but still haven’t gotten around to it. 😦
Rome was our next stop on our European journey. We booked flights on Easyjet from Paris and got to Rome in about an hour. From the airport, we took the train towards the city to get to our lodging.
At the train station
Ah, Paris… Just the sound of it conjures images of sophistication, haute couture, and romance. But is Paris really just all about these things? Well, not exactly.
Our foray into our Europe began with Paris. For some reason, it had the cheapest flights from Manila, even cheaper than Berlin or Athens which were a lot closer to Manila than Paris. After traveling from Manila for 17 hours, we were tired but eager to explore the city.
Arrival at Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport. My face says it all.
We booked our Manila-Paris-Manila flights with Saudi Airlines because theirs were the cheapest rates. We got roundtrip tickets for a little less than USD 700 only (about Php 29k). Good deal, right? Or so we thought.
Before finalizing our flight bookings I went to Skytrax to see the reviews about Saudi Airlines. They were mixed. Most people complained that the fleet was too old and the food wasn’t good. But some reviews were actually positive so I figured those negative reviews were just because of “First World Problems.” I was used to flying with Cebu Pacific: no food being served during the flight, no in-flight entertainment, not much leg room, etc.; so I thought Saudi Air couldn’t be much worse.
It goes without saying that you need to save up before any trip (unless you’re rich and have an endless amount of disposable income, in which case, I hate you). Every peso counts. You don’t need that overpriced cup of Starbucks. You don’t need to party every weekend. You don’t need that new cellphone.
It’s all about priority. If travel is not your priority then you will ALWAYS have an excuse to defer it and spend your money elsewhere. I made my travel dreams happen because I desperately wanted them to come true. I was willing to sacrifice everything to be able to afford traveling.
Once you’ve saved up enough money for your trip, it’s time to get things rolling.
I like joining Facebook contests because you don’t really lose anything by joining. Some contests only require you to “Like” a post or make a comment then you are automatically eligible to win a prize.
This happened to me twice for the same specific prize: concert tickets to one of my favorite bands, We Were Evergreen.
There was just one catch: the gigs were in London.
I joined the contest because I didn’t really expect to win. The gig was four days away when I entered the contest just by commenting on a post. I think it was a day later when they announced the winner.
And I was like: