A Home Away from Home:
Self-Catering in Europe
Continued from Page 3
of three bedrooms in our Venice flat, with a window overlooking the courtyard.
Where to find your abode abroad
There are several ways to locate European apartment and house
Rental agencies. These vary from the upscale firms
listed in the back of U.S. travel and lifestyle magazines to local agencies
overseas. Most of the international agencies have Web sites, and so do many
local agencies. This makes it easy to compare prices and properties. See the
Web links on page 6 for agencies
that handle European rentals.
Local tourist offices. In some countries (Switzerland
is a prime example), even the smallest resorts have tourist offices that
publish lists of hotels, apartments, chalets, and other accommodations in
print and on the Web. If you already have a specific destination in mind and
want to minimize your costs, try the local tourist office's Web site before
checking the international rental agencies. (One caveat: Many landlords
won't know English, so communications can be a challenge if you aren't
familiar with the local language.)
Package deals. Ferry lines, railroads, airlines, and
travel agencies may offer packages that combine transportation with a week
in a cottage, apartment, or holiday center. (In past years, my family and I
had good luck with Danish vacation apartments and cottages arranged through
the Harwich, UK office of DFDS
Pay attention to the details
Continued on page 5
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Need a car in Europe?
If you live outside the EU,
a tax-free Renault or Peugeot tourist car lease can be cheaper than renting
for visits of 21+ days. Minimum driver age is 18, there' s no upper age
limit, and rates include insurance.
For car rentals under 21 days:
Traveling by train?
Get free schedules, maps,
and guides for 50+ European railroads. (Residents of North and Central
America can buy tickets and rail passes online.)
From Durant and Cheryl Imboden:
About Europe for Visitors