The simple idea of backpacker travel is to tour destinations with a small budget. I have been on low budget trips without an actual backpack on my shoulders, so I don’t see it as a necessary low budget travel gear. Staying in hostels, camping areas, and other affordable places, using public transportation and enjoying low cost meals are essential elements of backpacker travel. Here are the cheapest and most expensive European cities for backpackers.Read the story “The most affordable and expensive cities in Europe for backpacker travel”
During my journeys, I have noticed that travelers who come from relatively small countries that have their own language often can speak foreign languages very well. Perhaps the explanation is that no one else outside the borders of the country can speak their language, so they have to learn foreign languages. Language institute EF has measured how well people across the world understand English, and the results seem to reflect my small country theory to a certain extent.
Dark blue and dark grey indicate countries with high English skills (EF). Read the story “The best countries to travel in for tourists who only speak English”
Good reputation for a person is so valuable it is difficult to measure, although everyone knows what it means. A consultancy, Reputation Institute, has specialized in measuring corporate and national reputations. For travelers, the annual City Reptrak ranking gives insight on destinations where trust, government and environment are in balance. In 2017, only cities from Europe, Australia and Canada made it to the high reputation top 10 list.
Certain regions of Europe and especially, a number of big cities on the continent have so much traffic that inevitably, roads become congested during peak hours. If you are planning a road trip in Europe, the best thing is that it is very easy and usually fast to drive from one country to another, but the downside is that some cities can be choked with vehicles. Here is the top 20 ranking for the most congested cities in Europe.
One important thing that makes traveling in Europe, especially in countries that have joined the Euro, easy is the common money. You can cross borders, for instance, from France to Italy or from Estonia to Finland without having to worry about currency rates or having to search for a currency exchange kiosk. For travelers, the Euro is the best thing since the bottled water was invented, but also statisticians can take advantage of the common currency, because it makes comparisons between regions easier. Now, Luxembourg has been ranked as the most expensive country in the Euro zone.
A safe travel destination doesn’t mean it is a boring place. On the contrary, if we take a look at the Economist Intelligence Unit’s ranking for the world’s safest cities in 2017, for instance, Amsterdam has a fairly large red light district with cannabis cafés in the city center, but it still is the sixth safest city in the world. The safest city in the world is Japan’s capital Tokyo.
The best way to assess if a city or a country has qualities you are looking for when you are planning a longer trip or moving to another country is to visit there yourself. There is absolutely nothing that else that gives you feel for the atmosphere, people, culture, traffic, food, languages understood, choices for outdoor activities, or attitudes towards children or pets (if you have any).