Posted July 12th, 2005, 11:25 AM
Last edited by stowaway2k; July 12th, 2005 at 11:29 AM
Ryan Air do have low fares - but need to be checked carefully. They have a low baggage allowance which could be a handicap when linked with a cruise. I have heard complaints that the sirports they use are sometimes a distance from the destination. There are a number of budget airlines operating now in Europe (almost all with limited baggage allowances) but trains could be a good option and especially night to maximise time.
This is a very important consideration. Ryan Air's luggage allowance is 15kg. (33lbs) per person. Not nearly enough for one who is to be boarding a cruise ship. The penalty is 7euro per kg over the limit, AND there is a limit for carry-on bags of 10 (22lbs), so cramming things from your main suitcase into your carry-on is not an option.
One must consider the luggage fines into the cost of flying RyanAir and any other inter-European budget airline. In addition to this, the tickets are heavily taxed and loaded with fees. Count on adding about another 20euro to the cost of the actual ticket. Another added expense that must be considered to these "low priced" tickets is the cost of getting to/from the isolated airports served by RyanAir to/from your actual destination. Add another 10euro or so for train or coach travel, and at least 50 for taxi.
For example, I resently booked RyanAir to fly out of Hamburg. RyanAir lists this as Hamburg(Lubeck). Lubeck is 90 minutes from Hamburg. That's right, 90 minutes. So this hour and a half needs to be considered in total travel time, which of course includes arriving at the airport a minimum of an hour before the flight. Why waste valuable and limited vacation time with things such as this?
The moral of my rambling on is that all of this can be avoided with train travel, which is fun, relaxing, a great opportunity to get to know some locals, and the views are wonderful.
If the train is less than a full day of travel, I wouldn't consider flying.
Of course, the decision is yours, but everything I just mentioned are vital, and unavoidable considerations.
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We love living vicariously through other people's travel plans!
You will fall in love with Paris, Venice and Florence. I have not been to the places Czechmate mentioned, I'm sure you'll love those as well.
If you do go to Venice (how could you not, with this golden opportunity), once you exit the train station to board your vaparetto or taxi, you will be stopped short, breathless and paralized, with awe, at the beauty, the wonder, and the immortal enchantment that is Venice. You will wonder if it is real, and if you are actually there, seeing what you are seeing. A magical moment not to be missed, with the one you love.
(Have I convinced you?)