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Planning my return to Budapest

There are sometimes a lot of “process” questions, so maybe someone will find this helpful.

Departure 17 February +/-
(I have to be in Mohacs on Fat Tuesday)
Return 20 March +/-

Step One: Check the Schengen Calculator: which says I could stay until April 13 if I wanted.

Step Two: Plug in the rest of the trips over the next 12 months or so and see if I hit any bumps and discover I never get closer than 13 days to the Schengen limit.

Step Three: Book the room in Budapest

Step Four: Find airfare. AUS to BUD through AMS for under $1000 on KLM including the cost of the seats. But that is Economy Light so no checked bag (and I don’t like to check luggage if I can find a way around it) and a limit of 12kg of carryon/personal item combined and $300 to change the flight.

So, in my case with no checked bag, but I do like to pre-select seats (about $80) the total of Economy Light is $905.00 and the cost of Standard Economy with pre-selected seats (and a checked bag allowance that I will not use) is $990.00. BUT, Standard Economy flight changes are free. So, do I upgrade and pay $85 for insurance against the $300 cost on flight changes?

Step Five: Book some entertainment
See what is playing in town and pick up some theater or concert tickets.

Step Six: Confirm the luggage restrictions
KLM Carry-on limit: 21.7 x 13.8 x 9.8 vs my 21 x 14 x 9 ):
KLM Personal Item limit: 15.8 x 11.8 x 5.9 vs my 16 x 12 x 7 bag wich I can crunch down to the limit if checked
Combined Carry-on AND Personal Item weight limit is 12kg.

Step Seven: Packing Planning
Its freaking winter and I get 12kg so I have a list when paired and layered is good from 60F to 20F and it begins with my Columbia quilted synthetic down jacket with the space blanket looking foil interior (best jacket I have ever owned. 10 years old, pop it in the washer comes out looking brand new. Perfect weight) And the list always includes dress pants, good looking shoes and a bag of stuff that I always bring, but never use.

Posted by
646 posts

Mr. E, because you travel quite a bit to Budapest, would it be possible for you to leave a (seasonal) capsule wardrobe with friends? For years, my sister left a basic wardrobe built on black and taupe in Rome (a pair of black pants, couple of shirts, couple of sweaters, pair of dressier shoes, and the like) and traveled well under the carry-on limit. Now that she lives there six months a year, she no longer needs to do that, but she does have stuff in Pittsburgh so that when she visits our father she can essentially go there with a purse and a laptop.

Posted by
2440 posts

Coincidentally I am planning my return to Budapest for a week next May...finally! Did some preliminary plotting, saw that the room I like so much at the Medos Hotel is available--enormous room with a private terrace that offers a panoramic view & breakfast for $115 per night--booked it, then booked my flight. Everything else will fall into place as it always does--storks, Ecseri piac, perhaps a show at the Operettszinhaz, as much toltott kaposzta as I can manage--for now I am positively giddy with glee.

Posted by
15091 posts

Christa, have you been back since they finished the renovation at Jókai tér? Very nice now. Very smart place to stay.

Posted by
2440 posts

James--I don't think so...last visit was May 2019. I love being right off Andrassy, close to the Oktagon and using the M1 line every day. I do want to check out the new location of the Ethnography museum, though it looks quite modern and the old building was so charmingly antiquated.