Friday, January 6, 2012

So...I'm Going to Europe.

So, in my 2012 goals I mentioned that I wanted to take a trip with my friend Shelley. There are a few reasons for this. First, she's great. Second, she and I travel really well together. We're both Type A, list makers, itinerary writers...not relaxed travelers, but we did England and Scotland together and it was amazing. Third, she lives in Portland now, so when I want to see her I have to fly anyway...may as well pick a destination and meet there.

On Wednesday we had a phone chat and tossed around ideas. We started with Europe, but then talked about a trip to the South or Canada, trying to go cheaper. We ended up back in Europe, talking about Berlin and Prague. Then we talked again and tossed around Austria or Holland. Then I called my grandma, who's been to all of these countries and got her advice. After several days of deliberation, I can now officially announce that I am going to Belgium and Holland for my Spring Break! I'm giddy about going to Europe again, and going with Shelley!

We both have money in our savings, so no debt is required. We both have boyfriends who don't like long flights, so it makes sense to do this together. We are also both on the marriage track, which leads to the kids track, which means vacations to Europe with a girl friend probably won't happen again anytime soon. While the smarter financial choice is to go somewhere domestic, the best life-experience choice would be to go to Europe now while we are single and can afford it.

This will change some of my financial goals...or at least push them back a bit. My ING account will switch from being my house down payment fund to being my Europe fund (and it may become my travel fund permanently). Any extra money from my budget will go there. I am estimating that I will need about $2,500 for the trip ($900 spent tonight on airfare...out of my E-fund). I'd love to do it for $2,000, but I want to save $2,500 to be on the safe side. I'll do another post with ways I hope to save for the trip without derailing other goals.

But guys: I'M GOING TO EUROPE! I can't tell you how excited I am to travel abroad again. And I'm STOKED that I get to visit two new countries that I've never seen before. I just requested books about The Netherlands and Belgium from the library...hope there's no limit to how many times I can check that out.



  1. Sounds like fun! I'm so jealous. We need to get our passports soon.

  2. That is so exciting, I love travelling overseas. My husband and I have a designated travel fund and have booked flights (including one through airpoints) to Melbourne, Australia in April. I look forward to updates about your European adventure.

  3. Traveling in Europe is so much fun. My husband and I are lucky enough to live over here (thanks USAF) and have gotten to travel around so much. I adore the Netherlands and Belgium. I actually think that Belgium is my favorite country up here.

    In the Netherlands, depending on when your Spring Break is, there's a garden called Keukenhof and it's absolutely amazing. It features around 8-10 thousand tulips. We went last year with only around 3-4 thousand left in bloom and were still absolutely stunned.

    In Belgium, my absolute favorite city is Bruges (Brugge for the Belgian spelling). It is quaint and medieval and very tourist friendly.

    I hope you enjoy your trip!

  4. Awesome! I can't wait to read your planning posts and see pics after! Y'all are going to have so much fun! :)

  5. That's awesome to have someone so alike you in such similar situation, and that you can enjoy such nice trips with. I too look forward to all of your planning posts.

  6. that is awesome, congrats!! I want to do Europe in 2013, I have some other travel plans for this year ; )

  7. That sounds so exciting! Good luck on saving for the trip! Are there any particular places you want to visit in those countries? I don't really know that much about either of those countries so it will be fun to learn new things from your posts!

  8. Wow that sounds awesome! I am so jealous :) Am sure it will be a great trip

  9. I just got back from Brussels and Amsterdam! I personally didn't like downtown Amsterdam too much and I found that the Red Light District was a bit of a tourist trap but otherwise it's a really nice place. You must take day trips to the countryside though and check out the old windmills.

    I wanted to visit Bruges so badly but unfortunately time didn't allow for it. Brussels was lovely. You can get a sugar waffle, freshly made, for only 1€!! So yummy!

  10. How was your Europe trip with your girl friend? What places did you visit? Paris, London, Amsterdam? I’m so curious as to where you went! I always wanted to visit Spain and Italy with my best friend but we were always strapped for cash -- and time. Between work and life, we just can’t seem to get a break. Hahaha!

    Corina Ogan