You are currently viewing Safe money and time while traveling Europe during peak Season

Europe’s high season is known for its vibrant atmosphere and warm weather, making it a popular choice for travelers. However, it can also bring with it bustling crowds and higher prices. Thankfully, with a little planning and some handy tips, you can still enjoy all the wonders Europe has to offer without stretching your budget or time. In this guide, we’ll show you how to make the most of your trip through smart travel. Please note that this post contains affiliate links, but rest assured, all recommendations are our own and based on genuine experiences or thorough research.

Embracing Smart Travel in Europe

Smart travel isn’t just about saving money; it’s also about utilizing your time efficiently and enhancing your overall travel experience. From pre-booking attractions to choosing local eateries over tourist hotspots, each choice you make can positively impact your journey. By embracing smart travel, you can experience the best Europe has to offer, even during peak season, without compromising on your budget or your enjoyment.

Tip 1 - Book Early

As the saying goes, the early bird catches the worm, and this certainly rings true when planning your travels. Even if you are reading this while you are already traveling, you can safe money, bust mostly time, by booking tickets for tourist attractions in advance. Even a few days in advance can save you lots of time!

The Benefits of Pre-Booking

Pre-booking your flights, accommodations, and even tickets to attractions can offer multiple benefits. Firstly, it can save you money. Prices for flights and accommodations tend to rise as availability decreases. By booking in advance, you can lock in prices before they increase. Secondly, it saves time. You won’t have to waste precious travel moments arranging accommodations or standing in lines to buy tickets.

How to Secure the Best Deals

To get the best deals, flexibility and strategic booking are key. Flights at less popular times, such as early morning or late at night, are often cheaper. As for accommodations, consider locations just outside the city center. They’re generally less expensive and can provide a more authentic, local experience.

When it comes to booking attractions, consider reliable platforms like Viator and GetYourGuide. These sites offer a wide range of options, from skip-the-line tickets to guided tours and excursions, often with ‘early bird’ deals or discounts for online booking. Not only will these platforms help you avoid standing in long queues, but they also provide detailed information about each attraction, making your planning process much smoother.

Remember, small savings can quickly add up. By planning ahead and booking strategically, you can allocate more of your budget to unforgettable experiences, meals, and souvenirs.

Paris Quiet Streets

Tip 2 - Find Activities Away from the Crowds

High season does not necessarily mean you have to battle your way through the tourist throngs. There are still plenty of lesser-known, but equally enchanting, places to explore.

Seeking Out Lesser-Known Attractions

Popular tourist attractions can be bustling during peak season. Instead, consider seeking out lesser-known, but equally engaging, destinations. Many cities offer hidden gems away from the touristy areas, from charming neighborhoods and beautiful parks to local museums and galleries. These places often provide a more authentic experience, allowing you to see the city through the eyes of a local, all while avoiding the largest crowds.

Why Lesser-Known Places Are Budget-Friendly

Besides being less crowded, these off-the-beaten-path attractions often come with a lower price tag. Entrance fees, if any, are typically less than what you’d pay at a major tourist hotspot. Furthermore, dining and shopping in these areas are usually more affordable as they cater to locals rather than tourists. Research and a bit of adventure could lead you to these fantastic, less crowded, and budget-friendly places.

Tip 3 - Dine Like a Local

Food is a significant part of travel, and where you choose to eat can greatly affect your budget and your culinary experience.

Avoiding Tourist Traps

Restaurants in popular tourist areas often have higher prices due to their prime locations. Instead, venture out into areas where locals dine. Not only will you likely find more reasonable prices, but you’ll also enjoy a more authentic experience. You can ask locals, your hotel staff, or use review platforms to find these hidden gems.

The Joys of Local Cuisine

Experiencing local cuisine is an essential part of travel. It offers a taste of the culture and history of the place you’re visiting. Street food, local markets, and family-run restaurants are excellent places to try traditional dishes. Eating locally not only helps you save money but also supports local businesses, making it a win-win for everyone.

Pro tip: consider booking a food tour at your destination to get to know the local cuisine without taking risks.

Happy Tourists Dining at Local Greece Rural Restaurant

Tip 4 - Travel Light

Traveling light can significantly enhance your comfort and save you money. Let’s delve into why this is a smart travel strategy.

Avoiding Extra Baggage Fees

Most airlines charge additional fees for checked bags, and these can quickly add up, especially if you’re traveling through multiple cities or countries. By packing only what you need in a carry-on, you can avoid these costs. This approach also makes moving around easier and reduces the risk of lost luggage.

The Art of Minimalist Packing

Minimalist packing is about bringing just the essentials and being resourceful with what you have. Opt for versatile clothing items that you can mix and match. Remember that you can always do laundry on the road or buy items you may need during your trip. This approach not only saves you money but also makes it easier to navigate through airports, train stations, and city streets.

Tip 5 - Public Transportation is Key

Traveling around Europe doesn’t need to be expensive. With a comprehensive public transportation system and affordable alternatives, you can get where you need to go without breaking the bank.

Navigating Europe's Public Transport System

Europe boasts an extensive and reliable public transport network, including metros, trams, buses, and trains. You can familiarize yourself with the system of the city you’re visiting using online maps or transport apps. If you’re unsure about anything, don’t hesitate to ask locals or station staff – they’re usually more than willing to assist.

For travel between cities or countries, consider reputable train services like Deutsche Bahn in Germany or SNCF in France. They offer comfortable, efficient, and often scenic journeys across various regions.

How to Save Money on Transportation

Opting for public transportation over taxis or car rentals can significantly reduce your travel costs. If you’re staying in a city for several days, consider purchasing a transport pass. These passes usually offer unlimited travel within a specified area and can be a cost-effective option.

For longer distances, trains are an affordable and scenic option. Plus, booking your train tickets in advance often leads to substantial savings.

Another fantastic option for budget-friendly long-distance travel is Flixbus. This company operates a vast network of coach services across Europe, offering comfortable travel at competitive prices. By considering all these options, you can choose the most convenient and cost-effective means of transportation for your journey.

Tip 6 - Avoid roaming costs with eSIM

In the digital age, staying connected while traveling has never been easier, thanks to advancements like eSIM.

What is an eSIM?

An eSIM, or embedded SIM, is a digital SIM card that allows you to activate a mobile network plan without having to use a physical SIM. This technology makes it easy for travelers to switch between carriers or plans, ensuring you always have access to the best local rates wherever you are.

Avoiding Roaming Charges

Roaming charges can add a significant expense to your trip. By using an eSIM, you can avoid these charges. You can purchase a local data plan or a global roaming plan that offers better rates than traditional roaming. This means you can use your phone freely to navigate, research attractions, and keep in touch with friends and family back home, without worrying about a hefty phone bill when you return.

Elderly tourists enjoying iphone with esim

Tip 7 - Be Flexible with Travel Dates

While peak season travel is a given, being flexible with your exact travel dates can lead to big savings.

Navigating Europe's Public Transport System

Midweek travel, especially from Tuesday to Thursday, tends to be cheaper and less crowded. Many people travel for long weekends, leading to a surge in demand and prices from Friday to Sunday. Therefore, if you can arrange your schedule, consider visiting major attractions or city centers from Monday to Wednesday. Here’s a rough idea of the crowd levels throughout the week:

DayCrowd Level
SaturdayVery High

Securing the Best Accommodation Deals

Hotel rates often follow the same pattern as flight prices, with rates dropping during the less busy midweek period. By booking your stay from Monday to Wednesday, you can secure better deals on accommodations. Also, booking platforms occasionally offer ‘last-minute’ deals, so keep an eye out for these if your travel dates are flexible.

Tip 8 - Leverage Technology

In today’s connected world, technology has become a game-changer in the way we travel. From booking flights and accommodations to mapping out city tours, mobile apps and websites have revolutionized the world of travel. Not only do they provide convenience, but they also offer numerous ways to save time and money. Whether it’s scoring a last-minute deal, comparing prices across different platforms, or discovering off-the-beaten-path destinations, technology can unlock a wealth of savings and enhance your overall travel experience.

Using Travel Apps and Websites

There’s an app or website for almost everything travel-related. From booking flights and accommodations to planning itineraries and purchasing tickets for attractions, technology can streamline your travel process. Some useful apps include Skyscanner for comparing flight prices, for accommodations, and TripAdvisor for reviews and travel advice. Many of these platforms also offer special deals and discounts, making them a valuable resource for budget-conscious travelers.

Making the Most of Digital Navigation Tools

Navigating a new city can be challenging, but digital tools can make it much easier. Apps like Google Maps, Citymapper, and Rome2rio can provide directions, public transportation options, estimated travel times, and more. They can help you get from point A to point B efficiently, so you spend less time lost and more time enjoying your trip.

Tip 9 - Choose Accommodation Wisely

Choosing where to stay is one of the most crucial aspects of travel planning. The right accommodation can set the tone for your entire trip, and its cost can significantly impact your travel budget. Staying in the heart of the city might offer convenience and save transit time, but it often comes with a premium price tag. Conversely, lodging a bit further away, in local neighborhoods, might not only save you money but also provide a unique and authentic experience. Therefore, finding a balance between comfort, cost, location, and amenities is essential to make the most out of your stay.

Benefits of Staying Outside City Center

While city-center accommodations offer convenience, they often come with a hefty price tag. Consider staying in neighborhoods outside the city center. Not only are these areas usually cheaper, but they also offer a chance to experience the city like a local. You might find a charming local cafe or a beautiful park that isn’t overrun with tourists.

Finding Affordable Lodging

There are several options for affordable lodging. Hostels are a good choice for budget travelers, and they offer opportunities to meet other travelers. Vacation rentals, such as Airbnb, provide a home-like environment and often have kitchen facilities that can save you money on meals. Don’t forget to check guest reviews before booking to ensure a quality stay. When booking accommodation, remember to compare prices across various platforms to find the best deal.

Tip 10 - Plan Around Busy Times

The charm of Europe during high season is unparalleled – the weather is perfect, attractions are in full swing, and the streets are vibrant with life. However, these enticing features also attract massive crowds. Smart planning can help you navigate through this busy time and enhance your travel experience.

Understanding Europe's Peak Season

Europe’s high season typically runs from June to August, coinciding with summer vacations in many parts of the world. During this time, iconic sites such as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome, or the Acropolis in Athens see a considerable influx of tourists. Weekends, in particular, tend to be busier, with many people embarking on short city breaks. Therefore, planning your visit to these attractions on weekdays can help avoid the most significant crowds.

Strategies to Avoid the Rush

Timing is crucial to evade the peak tourist rush. Many museums and attractions are less crowded early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Also, consider exploring less popular yet equally charming areas of the city. They often offer a more authentic experience and are less likely to be crowded. Similarly, outdoor activities like hiking or visiting parks can be great alternatives to more crowded tourist hotspots.

Avoid Crowds in Rome


Traveling during Europe’s peak season doesn’t have to be daunting. With the right planning and strategies, it can be an unforgettable and enriching experience.

The Joy of Smart Travel

Smart travel is all about making the most out of your journey – seeing the best sites, enjoying local cuisine, and immersing yourself in the culture, all while staying within your budget and avoiding unnecessary hassle. It’s about crafting an experience that aligns with your interests and preferences, without being swept up in the tourist tide. By implementing these tips, you can save money, avoid crowds, and truly savor the joy of traveling in Europe during high season. Safe travels!

Useful links that will save you money

Booking activities & tickets in advance:,
E-SIM to save roaming costs:
Smart Packing:
Hotel Deals & Discounts:

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