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Old 09-06-2012, 05:02 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by fsufan53 View Post
Whay about adapters for the outlets when I need to charge my phone, etc.? Do I really need one and where is the best place to buy?
Your phone charger is actually dual voltage. I'm going to pick up a good world travel adapter and then use my travel surge protector for my equipment.

Check out something like this, which also includes a built-in USB port - http://www.amazon.com/Tripshell-WORL...el+adapter+usb
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Old 09-06-2012, 06:05 PM   #137
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From our adventure last year...

And you have to use the UK plug on the Eurostar until you get to France, then you have to change to the France plug on the train.


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While this is still fresh on my brain, I thought I would throw out some things we learned from our Recent Adventures by Disney Trip to London and Paris. I hope that this reference will help not only those traveling to London and Paris, but to other locations as well


Understand the Power requirements of the locations you are going.
  • Check all of your devices and make sure they are capable of dual voltages!
  • Learn what plug adapters you will need. London and Paris use different power plugs than the ones used in the US and they are different from each other.
  • Get a dual voltage power strip that uses a universal power connector. If you get into a situation where you need to unplug a lamp to get power, you can plug in the lamp into the universal plug.

If you have an Ipad and want to avoid costly internet charges at the hotel, find a SIM Card provider that does not require a credit card on file.
  • I used Vodaphone. They charged £5 for a Sim and 250mb of data. I was able to get an additional 750mb for £15. Very reasonable. I used about 500mb total while we were in London.
Think about the bag you will carry around and protecting your wallet.
  • Think about using a messenger bag over a backpack. It is easier to keep a hand on a messenger bag. I carried a messenger style camera sling bag instead of my backpack. It is not as easy for someone to take items from a messenger bag.
  • Watch your pockets and be aware of your surroundings at all times.
If you use the hotel internet, bring a small wifi router (not access point).
  • When you purchase the hotel wifi or wired internet, you can only use it on a couple of devices. I had my travel router with me. This helped in connecting my Ipad, Blackberry, Iphone, and laptop. The router allowed me to use the wired connection and share that with all of my devices.
If you have free time, plan it out before you go on your trip.
  • We made reservations at a couple of restaurants several months out. These were small cafes and the space went quickly.
Take time to plan out where you want to wander.
  • Know that the most popular locations, in Paris especially, are popular targets for pickpockets and scammers. People will also sell "le crap" at these spots. AVOID THEM. We saw a person buy something and then he was then pegged as a "sucker." And was hit by every illegal "le crap" vendor.
XL = Sausage Skin in Paris.
  • I tried to purchase an XL shirt in Paris but was not happy to find that XL in Paris means body condom in US sizes. They do not sell any thing above XXL, and that was even tight.
More to come....
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Old 09-07-2012, 05:17 PM   #138
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Best buy and radio shack had adapters, too, if you don't want to order online. Just make sure you get a UK and a European adapter. The ones in UK are different than Paris. :-)

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Old 09-10-2012, 07:33 PM   #139
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Thank you all so much, we found an adapter package at Target that has adapters for UK and France so I think we are covered.

Next question! LOL I saw where some of you tipped the ABD guides in Pounds or Euros, however could I tip them via an American check? I dont want to carry much currency.

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2012, 08:25 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by fsufan53 View Post
Thank you all so much, we found an adapter package at Target that has adapters for UK and France so I think we are covered.

Next question! LOL I saw where some of you tipped the ABD guides in Pounds or Euros, however could I tip them via an American check? I dont want to carry much currency.

Thanks
At this point, we dont know who our guides will be.

Last year, we had a guide from London and one from the US.

If we had a US guide again, a check might not be an issue. If our guides are European, checks might be very, very difficult to handle and there is the possibility that they might not be cashable at all.

If you have a debit card, you should be able to use European ATMS.

It would be far easier on our guides to receive cash as a tip.

At our welcome dinner last year, we asked where each of our guides were headed after our Adventure. Landon (American) was headed back to the states, so we tipped him in US dollars. Adam (British) was headed back to London, so he was tipped in pounds.

You have to make sure you take the conversion rate in account when dealing with gratuities.

Please understand that I am not telling you what you must do. There is no "must". I'm just offering an opinion.
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Old 09-12-2012, 03:29 PM   #141
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Sitting here planning and printing address' to places in Paris I keep going from Excited to Panic to the point it's getting to me. Basically 'Wow I can't wait to get here to OMG I'm not ready!!!'

I saw above a mention of making restaurant reservations especially in Paris. I tried to research places via trip advisor and google maps and realized the worst restaurant in Paris is still better than some of the best restaurants here. Am I incorrect in this assumption? I was becoming overwhelmed at trying to find places to make reservations at both London and Paris. Plus I don't have a cell phone plan for overseas calling so a reservation call would cost me. There are so many places to eat in both cities I feel just going around looking at places and just eating where I feel would be nice or what I'm in the mood for that evening seems better than make a blind reservation at a place and being 'set' to eat there that evening. There is also that issue with my husband's gluten allergy but I'm becoming less and less worried about that the more I research.
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Old 09-12-2012, 03:44 PM   #142
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LionKingRules84 View Post
Sitting here planning and printing address' to places in Paris I keep going from Excited to Panic to the point it's getting to me. Basically 'Wow I can't wait to get here to OMG I'm not ready!!!'

I saw above a mention of making restaurant reservations especially in Paris. I tried to research places via trip advisor and google maps and realized the worst restaurant in Paris is still better than some of the best restaurants here. Am I incorrect in this assumption? I was becoming overwhelmed at trying to find places to make reservations at both London and Paris. Plus I don't have a cell phone plan for overseas calling so a reservation call would cost me. There are so many places to eat in both cities I feel just going around looking at places and just eating where I feel would be nice or what I'm in the mood for that evening seems better than make a blind reservation at a place and being 'set' to eat there that evening. There is also that issue with my husband's gluten allergy but I'm becoming less and less worried about that the more I research.
We did this trip last September with the DIS, and we found that the concierges at both the London and Paris hotel were wonderful with dining recommendations and reservations.

Have fun!!

We made a day of reservation in Paris through the concierge for our OYO night and ended up having a terrific and romantic dining experience.
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Old 09-12-2012, 03:51 PM   #143
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We did this trip last September with the DIS, and we found that the concierges at both the London and Paris hotel were wonderful with dining recommendations and reservations.

Have fun!!

We made a day of reservation in Paris through the concierge for our OYO night and ended up having a terrific and romantic dining experience.
Frank reminded me that "we" did the same in Rome. Upon arrival (a day early) several in our group asked the concierge to make a restaurant recommendation. He not only made a recommendation, but called the restaurant to see if we could be seated. We like the restaurant so much we went back a second night.

Now, Rome is different than London and Paris, but there is something to be said for "winging it" instead of being an uber planner.
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Old 09-12-2012, 04:48 PM   #144
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Thanks for the responses!

I think 'winging it' is the best idea and sounds like the hotels are pretty helpful in finding places and getting reservations.

I'm also a big 'walking around see a place and ask' type of person but not sure how well that works in Europe. Pubs I assume are 'walk up' places but I know here that's not always the case. Though I'm pretty comfortable at sitting at a bar instead of a table if it means I get to eat or drink sooner.
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Old 09-12-2012, 05:14 PM   #145
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Originally Posted by LionKingRules84
Thanks for the responses!

I think 'winging it' is the best idea and sounds like the hotels are pretty helpful in finding places and getting reservations.

I'm also a big 'walking around see a place and ask' type of person but not sure how well that works in Europe. Pubs I assume are 'walk up' places but I know here that's not always the case. Though I'm pretty comfortable at sitting at a bar instead of a table if it means I get to eat or drink sooner.
Had the best meal in Paris on the recommendation of our ABD guide Francesc : George V on the Champs Élysées! Escargot, French onion soup, duck, chicken, beef,champagne with strawberries, crepes with chocolate, citron sorbet..... EVERYTHING was delicious and we sat with the floor to ceiling windows open, so it was like we were right on the sidewalk and could people watch. Oh, I want to go back!! :-)

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Old 09-13-2012, 09:04 AM   #146
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On last year's trip, at the recommendation of the concierge in the London hotel, we ate at an Italian place a block or two from the hotel called Bacco. I wasn't sure about it because we have pretty simple tastes and the menu was a little "frou frou", but it was delicious. A great way to kick off our trip!

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Old 09-19-2012, 08:53 PM   #147
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It's here!

It's here!

Yours should be here soon!
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Old 09-19-2012, 10:49 PM   #148
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It's here!

It's here!

Yours should be here soon!
Yay! I'll have Ryan keep an eye out!
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:03 PM   #149
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Originally Posted by DisneyKevin
It's here!

It's here!

Yours should be here soon!
Hey Kevin,

Can't believe you'll be back here in a little over 2 weeks time! That has come about so quickly. Venice seems like it was only a few weeks ago!

Are there any plans for a meet before your adventure begins? I know you were hoping to do something last time we spoke.

Will be great to see you all again, albeit briefly!

Adam
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:48 PM   #150
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Hey Kevin,

Can't believe you'll be back here in a little over 2 weeks time! That has come about so quickly. Venice seems like it was only a few weeks ago!

Are there any plans for a meet before your adventure begins? I know you were hoping to do something last time we spoke.

Will be great to see you all again, albeit briefly!

Adam
There will be a meet.

I'm not sure when or where.

Our only free time in London is the afternoon of October 9th (Tuesday).

This is not convenient for anyone.

I believe that there is talk of changing this.

If you have Facebook, you might want to watch Pete's page.

That seems to be where information is being dispersed.

Looking forward to seeing you and Kat again!
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