Wednesday, April 1, 2009

To Europe and back on planes, trains, and automobiles

Ok, we had a little snafu with the final bookings for our Europe trip. As you know, we got a killer deal from Chicago to Dublin and Paris to Chicago for $700.32/person. Well, we don’t live in Chicago so we still had to book to/from there, as well as how to get from Dublin to France. Clearly since Ireland is an island we can’t hop on the EuroRail, so a new flight was in order. When we booked in January, I was excited to learn that Aer Lingus flies into Bordeaux France and I decided I would wait to book the rest of the transportation until later on, March-ish.

So, here we are, in “March-ish” and guess what? The only flight that Aer Lingus is sold out of from Dublin to Bordeaux is the one on June 10. Oh My God. I am so mad at myself. Grr.
So, after searching other options and coming up with insanely priced flights, I look at other airports that Aer Lingus flies into and find that Toulouse is a 2+ hr train ride from Bordeaux and we can get that flight for about $100 each, so we book it. Done. 2 hrs lost, but then again, even in my original plan, in we wouldn’t have gotten into Bordeaux before the chateaux close anyway…(they mostly close at 4pm) now we’re just in a bit later and have to make sure we pick a place to stay that has an on-site restaurant. C’est la vie, right?

However, that did prompt us to book all the legs of travel, with the exception of the Eurorail pass – I need to be a bit more investigation on that. Our total travel costs so far are $1,740.30 – from St. Louis to Dublin, Ireland to Toulouse, France and from Paris, France to St. Louis. Not too bad, right? Its lot of travel though - a LOT, particularly that last day!
I was putting our itinerary on one spreadsheet and I thought I might as well share it with you:

So, you might have noticed that our trip starts out with “BUS”. Yes, that’s right, that’s a bus. We found that the train from St. Louis to Chicago wasn’t going to work out time-wise anyway, so we looked into (which offers really low cost direct buses to a limited amount of destinations) and booked both our tickets for $20.50 total – which is good since we are flying back from Chicago.

So, literally, we are taking Planes, Trains, and Automobiles in our trip. I’m going to try to get a boat in there just for kicks – why not round out and include all modes of motorized transportation???

Stay tuned for more Europe 2009 posts as we book the rest of our travels!!!!

1 comment:

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