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Posted in: Paris Planning

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Cafe croissant Paris
No tip necessary. Photo by Julie70
Note: This article was updated on September 15, 2014 with new links and information. In a city where customer service is as low a priority as cleaning up after your dog, the scarcity of tipping in Paris should come as no surprise. Still, many Americans find it difficult to stop calculating 15-20% of the bill » Read more

Posted in: Belgium

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Antwerp
Enjoying the sun at a cafe in Antwerp, Belgium. Photo: Visit Flanders
Antwerp, the capital of Flanders, is an oddly overlooked charmer in spitting distance by train of several big European cities, most notably Brussels (only 1 hour away by train), Amsterdam, Paris, London and Cologne. The city, long a diamond trade and fashion industry motor, is stylish and self-possessed. There are loads of reasons to visit » Read more

Posted in: London Hotel

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Trocadero
The historic Trocadero building will soon be home to a new budget hotel with over 500 rooms. Photo: Hazrulnizam Rosle
If you’ve ever been one of those tourists who snaps an iconic photo in front of the lights in Piccadilly Circus, you’ve probably also seen the Trocadero building, an enormous Edwardian edifice which sits between Shaftesbury Avenue and Coventry Street. Over the years the building has been home to many different things, most recently an » Read more

Posted in: Hamburg

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Night Market Hamburg
The St. Pauli Night Market comes alive every Wednesday evening. Photo: Courtesy of Spielbudenplatz
A long night out in Hamburg doesn’t have to burn a hole in your pocket. Germany’s “Hafenstadt” (port city) offers a number of fun, free evening diversions that, accented with select stops for food and drinks, will leave you with plenty of travel funds left over for the next day’s adventures. This tour takes you on » Read more

Posted in: Hotels

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How far in advance should you reserve your hotel room? Not surprisingly, that depends on several factors!
How far in advance should you reserve your hotel room? Not surprisingly, that depends on several factors!
After painstaking research, you find a hotel in Rome that perfectly fits your trip. Great location, cute décor, friendly management, nice bathrooms, and free Wi-Fi. And the rates? Well, doubles are listed “from €98″, which seems perfect for your budget. But then you try out your dates, only to find that it’s €149 a night » Read more

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Totally Thames
Totally Thames Festival is a highlight of September happenings in London. Photo: Garry Knight
The River Thames links London together as much as it also marks out that oh-so-important north / south city divide that locals feel so passionate about. But this month, the Thames Festival Trust, who have organized many exciting events along the river over the last 16 years, is embracing the importance of our river even » Read more

Posted in: Norway

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Tromso
Tromsø is a a great home base way up north in the Artic Circle to see the Northern Lights. Photo: Alex Robertson Textor
There’s a reason that so many European magazines and newspapers were buzzing a year ago this time about the Northern Lights. This past winter witnessed what is known as the solar maximum, a peak in activity in the sun’s 11-year cycle. Oh the Northern Lights. I saw them on my February visit to Tromsø, and » Read more

Posted in: Munich

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Oktoberfest
A happy and packed tent at Oktoberfest. Photo: xsnowdog
Munich’s famous festival tradition always begins the second-to-last weekend in September and ends the first weekend of October. We prefer going in September, before the masses start arriving from all over Europe and the world. But no matter what day you go, prepare for a unforgettable time—if you can remember anything at all after so » Read more

Posted in: Hamburg

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Hallo Frau Nachbar
Hallo Frau Nachbar is a popular monthly flea market in Karo featuring local artists, designers and chefs.
If, like us, you’re looking to avoid chain stores and restaurants when visiting Hamburg, the Karolinen- and Schanzenvierteln—or as they’re known to locals, Karo and Schanze—are the city’s answer to your prayers. Nearly every shop, cafe and restaurant is owner-operated; Here you’ll meet the designers and chefs behind the products themselves. You’ll find a wide » Read more

Posted in: Belgium

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Bruges
Looking for an affordable destination filled with European charm? Welcome to Bruges. Wolfgang S
Bruges has a hassle-free vibe, wrapping locals with a warm blanket of comfy taverns, bakeries and romantic wanders. Weekends pass slowly and satisfying as people embrace the feeling of this 14th century sleepy Flemish town. Plus, there’s no lack of affordable hotels and hostels in town starting at $47. But where do you begin to » Read more

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Paris Pastries
Escargot and Pain Suisse are just two of the top pastries you can try in Paris. Photo: question everything
We all hear about the croissant and its rich little brother the pain au chocolat, but these are not the only breakfast items available at the bakery. Parisians aren’t about to dive into an éclair or creamy millefeuille for breakfast, but they do have other options. Skip breakfast in the hotel to save a few » Read more

Posted in: Stockholm

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Fargfabriken
The contemporary gallery Färgfabriken is just one of the many free museums in Stockholm. Arild
Note: This article was updated on August 29, 2014 with new information, links and photos. A few years ago, the government decreed that all museums in Stockholm would offer free entry. Unfortunately for tourists and museum-lovers alike, this did not prove to be economically feasible and the experiment was brought to an end. Luckily, Stockholm’s » Read more

Posted in: Munich

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Munich
The classic cityscape of Munich. Photo: John Morgan
Bavaria is Germany’s wealthiest region, and Munich is known for its posh spots and expensive tabs. However, not everything is out of a Cheapo’s budget in this city. Munich is also home to wonderful traditions and scenery that won’t cost you even one euro to experience. Here are seven of our top free things to » Read more

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Islington
For a charming slice of London, it's hard to beat an afternoon exploring Islington. Photo: Alan Stanton
Tackling London’s top sights and busiest central areas is one thing, but if you really want to get under the skin of this city, you need to eat, drink and shop in the areas where locals actually live. Islington is one of north London’s jewels in the crown, a lively corner where some of the » Read more

Posted in: Turkey

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Istanbul street food
Istanbul has some of the best and cheapest street food in Europe. Photo: question_everything
Where can you find some of the tastiest and most affordable street snacks in Europe? Welcome to Istanbul. Fresh from a trip to Turkey, I spent days wandering around this spectacular city trying out all of the delicious dishes. Luckily for me, Turkish street food is amazing, safe to eat and very easy on the » Read more

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