Coach travel is too convenient to pass up. So, when I decided that I wanted to visit Europe over the Christmas season, what better way than with Expat Explore? If you are thinking about travelling with Expat Explore, then this review should clear some factors up.
Expat Explore Review
The most important factor for me, at the time, was cost. By booking months in advance, I snagged a huge discount. It made the world of difference to me as I was riding the severely underpaid train line at the time.
The price includes transport (bus, trains etc.), hotel stays, breakfasts and some meals here and there. The return flights to Europe was unfortunately not included. Neither were the optional extras – which you shouldn’t pass up!
The hotels were clean, central and they all had WiFi. Don’t expect luxury hotels (for that price) but who wants luxury anyway? You’re meant to be out exploring new cities, not wasting away in your fancy hotel room. 3* and 4* hotels are what you can expect.
Expat Explore made sure that everything ran smoothly and they were a fantastic choice for my first organised travel tour. I loved how the tour guide and the bus driver made a dynamic duo and they were just incredible at their jobs. I’ll never forget how the tour group were standing outside a Parisian restaurant one night and the tour guide spotted a pickpocket lurking and just screamed ‘HEY YOU! NOT TODAY!’ at the guy and he just stood their awkwardly as a pair of about 40 eyes turned around to glare at him. She meant business and was always on top of her game.
Do I think travelling around Europe by coach is for everyone? Definitely not. I do think you should try it at least once. It’s great not having to organise every little detail of your trip. It’s nice to rely on someone else to stress about the logistics of it all. And best of all – you are driven around and you can sit back, relax and enjoy the views. Or sleep on the bus (like I did) for reasons which will be soon uncovered.
Bear in mind, it’s early mornings. Waking up in unjustly hours of the morning when it’s below zero degrees is severe torture. The bus leaves when it’s still dark outside because you will be visiting different countries in a short space of time. So instead of enjoying the scenery, I slept on the bus. A girl has got to get her beauty sleep.
No chilling allowed
Apart from that, you’re in a rush all the time. You visit a new town and it’s manic to try to get something to eat and also explore as much as possible. It doesn’t give you a chance to truly appreciate the charm of the town you’re visiting. It does give you a taste of Europe and this will shape your future plans of where to visit in the future.
I loved travelling with Expat Explore because of travellers from all over the world book these tours. The chance of meeting people of different cultures is likely 100%. I made some amazing friends on the trip who are from all around the globe. To me, travelling is about learning and you don’t learn by sticking to cultures you’re already familiar with.
Is Expat Explore right for you?
You should book a tour with Expat Explore if:
- You’re disorganised or don’t enjoy planning details
- On a budget
- Looking to meet people from all over the world
- Want to see as much of Europe as possible
- You’re older or travelling with a friend/partner/family
- Nervous about navigating around Europe
Some extra bits you might want to know:
Places visited during Expat Explore tour:
- Started in London (see blog post here)
- Paris, France (see my Paris disaster here)
- Burgundy, France
- Interlaken, Switzerland (post popular blog post)
- Strasbourg, France
- Heidelberg, Germany
- Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Bruges, Belgium
- Parted ways in London
Beautiful memories were made on the trip. If you decide that you want to try organised travel tours, then I highly recommend Expat Explore. These tours are value for money, fast-paced and special.