Camping in Europe

Discussion in 'EMEA' started by TexPaul, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. wheatwhacker

    wheatwhacker It's raining here

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,988
    Location:
    Cork, Ireland
    #41
  2. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    Is this coming from personal experience? I have had many people try and tell me that you could get insured in the uk so long as bike was in your name but this is not the case, as per my personal experience and about 4 other people I have had conversations with on here. If Ireland is a goer then it could be the European holy grail... although bike choice over there didn't seem the best - not a very big second hand market.
    #42
  3. lhendrik

    lhendrik Truffle Rustler

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,446
    Location:
    Earth
    Thanks Wheatwacker: next time I am over there I'll check into this issue of being able to register and insure without a UK address.
    #43
  4. wheatwhacker

    wheatwhacker It's raining here

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,988
    Location:
    Cork, Ireland
    You can get "green card insurance" for any bike as long as it is titled in your name. We have done it already.
    Reg is 40 Euro/year, renewable online and, I can store any number of bikes at my place 15 min's from Cork airport.
    #44
  5. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    Good stuff, cheers for the info, sorry for derailing the thread. Back to topic... camping.
    #45
  6. teizms

    teizms Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,741
    Location:
    Plano, TX
    which service are you using for green card insurance?
    #46
  7. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    #47
  8. teizms

    teizms Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,741
    Location:
    Plano, TX


    yes but that is not 40 per year
    #48
  9. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    Read it again... 'Reg' - i.e registration is 40 per year. That is not 3rd party insurance.

    If anyone finds 3rd party for 40 per year to cover Europe they will make a lot of friends on ADV.
    #49
  10. teizms

    teizms Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,741
    Location:
    Plano, TX
    ooOOOo now i get it. at 40 per year i would buy a few years in advance :deal
    #50
  11. wheatwhacker

    wheatwhacker It's raining here

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,988
    Location:
    Cork, Ireland
    I have a container leaving SF in 3 weeks if any of you want to get bikes on it.
    #51
  12. wheatwhacker

    wheatwhacker It's raining here

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,988
    Location:
    Cork, Ireland
    Container full. Sorry
    #52
  13. ebel

    ebel Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    55
    Location:
    Ireland, EU
    Scotland (but not England/Ireland/Wales) has a "legal right to camp on any field" (wild campnig they call it).

    +1 to Tourist information Offices. They'll tell you were local hotels/hostels/campsites are, and sometimes even phone them up and book a room for you.

    http://www.adverts.ie/ is another good irish classified/craigslist style site. I've bought both my bikes off that site.


    If you wanna stay cheap, look at hostels aswell. They are all over europe, and are basically really cheap hotels, and sometimes priced comparable to camping. I've stayed in hostels with private rooms and your own en-suite bathroom. The build quality isn't usually as good or fancy as a hotel, and you have to bring you own towel, and no TV or minibar in the room, but it's a real bed inside, out of the cold and rain. :) Hostels in the middle of medium/large city centres can be very loud and noisy because you might have a group of 10 twenty year old lads who are away on a drinking holiday staying in the hostel. When the pub closes, they come back to the hostel and continue partying. Hostels in rural areas often don't have this problem. Hostels, like campsites, are usually more friendly places and you can meet other travellers aswell.

    If you're going to stay in hostels, you should join the International Youth Hostel association, look for the one in your country. It's cheap to join (~€20 per year), and you get discounts when you stay in some hostels.
    #53
  14. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    This is a good point, we stay in hostels a lot at the moment because relatively it costs only a fraction more than camping (paid camping that is). I have stayed in at least 70+ hostels now over the years, so can pretty safely give some advice. We generally stay in hostels in the bigger cities and camp when we get off the beaten track.

    The cheapest website is www.hostelbookers.com - has a great review system and we use this to sometimes book, but mostly just to get an address which we punch into the GPS and then rock up at (this works in low season, wont work in high season) You can also try www.hostelworld.com - these are the major two. If you rock up without booking you might get a slightly cheaper rate, sometimes they will try and charge you more at which point you quote them the online price and they will nearly always come down.

    Always have a backup hostel address for a town. Go with 2, better bargaining and you can check out the hostel to make sure it has what you want.

    Sorry to dig on the last poster, we have a pretty low opinion of YHA hostels, or HI, coming from at least half a dozen bad experiences. Sometimes they are the only hostel in the entire town, eg. Genoa and Matera in Italy, they have very bad reviews but do not need to change as they have a monopoly. IMO they are stuck in the past (they come from a time where you had to be a member to stay at a youth hostel, before a time where the internet empowered consumers through peer review systems), in Genoa, Italy for example, they had no shared rooms and my gf and I were put in separate male and female dorms. Generally they are set up like hospitals or schools and you are treated like they are doing you a favour by letting you stay. This was probably commonplace 20 years ago when hostels were a bit different, but these days you should get a lot from a hostel, there is plenty of competition out there, especially in the bigger cities. I have stayed in around 10 YHA and HI (now I believe the one company) hostels so I think I can fairly pass judgement, out of that many there were only 1 or 2 that I would go to again. Paying 20 euro for a YHA card will just lock you into that hostel chain and you would save more by using the many independent hostels out there. You should get a lot more from a hostel and in my experience you should get;

    - Free unlimited wifi - do not accept anything less
    - 24 hour hot showers
    - Heating in winter as a must and preferably air conditioning in summer.
    - A kitchen for you to cook in - this is a big thing - if you can cook yourself you can reduce your costs significantly and also eat healthier food. As we have found, restaurants and fast food really cater for once off meals and not for people who have been on the road 6 months and just need to eat a nutritious meal.
    - The better hostels will have maps of the city and give you advice on what to go given your situation.
    - Motorcyclists generally have underused hostels and we have found we are a bit of a novelty, as such we have nearly always been given off street parking for the motorbike and when not, they have found a place for it. (like in full view of a 24 hour security camera, watched by someone on 24 hour reception)

    - In Eastern Europe (and Ireland) We have been paying around 7-10 Euro pp, for a night for a shared dorm and 12-15 euro pp, for a private room with shared bathroom.
    - In Western Europe (low season) around 12-18 Euro pp for shared dorm and about 20-25 euro pp for private.

    For these prices you should be able to get everything I listed above. Unsure of Asian and South AM prices. Although in Asia years ago I was paying as little as 3-5 euro for a shared dorm per night.

    As the last poster mentioned there will be a lot of youth in hostels. They will likely be noisier on weekends. If you want to stay in hostels, take a pair of earplugs, it is part of the territory. Even if they are not drinking, you will find that if you are sharing a room with 6-8 people that are coming and going at different times there will be at least a little bit of noise. Plus with 8 people in a room, chances are one will be a snorer.

    Reviews are extremely important to hostels (much more than hotels) and can make or break a place, you can use a bad review as your way to make sure you are getting what you paid for. If you book online you will get a chance to review. Otherwise you can review through tripadvisor.com - hostels also pay attention to those reviews. I would be reluctant to stay anywhere that has a review rating of less than 80% on hostelbookers.com - Hostel owners will stand to attention as soon as the words 'bad review' cross your lips.

    I am 28 and I have met plenty of mature people in hostels, mostly they call themselves Hostels these days and any reference to Youth has been dropped. Ironically there was always an older crowd at the Youth Hostel International (YHA) - I put this down to a lack of knowledge of what else is out there, you can always find the YHA listed in the Lonely planet. So it's not just for young people. In my experience, all hostels are happy to take your money.

    Also to mention, they can be a great place to meet fellow travellers and get advice on the places you are going, usually someone is either going where you have come from or have been where you are going. We have found some gems that we would have otherwise passed by this way.

    Happy hostelling!
    #54
  15. 2WheelieADV

    2WheelieADV Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2010
    Oddometer:
    386
    Location:
    NJ
    I just wonder, if you stay in a room with other people, how do you take care on your valuables especially at night - cameras, laptop, and other stuff like that?
    #55
  16. jetjackson

    jetjackson Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Oddometer:
    490
    Location:
    Somewhere in Europe on a Motorbike :)
    The majority of hostels have lockers in the room that are free - each bed has it's own locker. Usually big enough to fit a standard backpackers 65L pack in them.

    http://pacsafe.com/ultimatesafe-32l-anti-theft-backpack - I also have one of these and we use this to store laptop and valuables in case there are no lockers. However, the latter is quite rare.

    A lot of backpackers don't go to extraordinary lengths to secure their items. I see laptops left around a lot and so forth. For the most part travelers are honest, there is the occasional bad apple though.

    If you are really paranoid, ask the hostel if they allow locals to stay, I only ever found this an issue in Ireland and some parts of England, where they would allow locals to stay in the hostels. You ended up with people staying for a night just to steal things - it never happened directly to me (I always lock up my stuff) and really only happens to people who get careless. However, a decent hostel should only let tourists stay, not locals.
    #56