18 Year Old/ First Trip to Europe

We have an eighteen year old relative that would like to back PAC/travel to Europe as a post High School trip. He has no idea where he wants to go; will be traveling mostly on his own, possibly meeting up with a friend in Holland. This will be his first trip abroad. His budget is $5,000 USD, how far will this get him considering he will stay at Hostels? Of course,, his Mother is nervous. Any advise from you would be appreciated. Trip would occur in July or August.

Posted by David
Florence, AL, USA
1960 posts

His mother should be nervous, unless the young man is very mature for 18 years old. Is he going to have anyone traveling with him? $5,000 would get me through two months' travel if I was a hostel type traveler. My nephew spent summer school in England in a program sponsored by his university. He traveled Europe by train with three friends for 3 weeks after school was completed. He was 21 years old and very worldly when this odyssey began. And he had the time of his life.

Posted by Anneta
Hamburg, SH, Deutschland
21 posts

I think that is a great idea. He could get an interail train ticket that would allow him unlimited train travel for around $800 for two months. They can also cover the whole of Europe. Here is Germany we see quite a few people his age doing exactly the same thing so I should not be worried at all.

Posted by Nancy
Bloomington, IL, USA
7675 posts

How long he could travel on $5K (I am assuming this is your question) is completely dependent on where he wants to go, how he wants to get there and what he wants to do. Without a plan, he will be unable to take advantage of some cost savings, like booking intra-Europe flights at a budget price. Also, as a first time traveler, he doesn't know other "tricks of the trade" that might save him money. I would suggest he read "Europe Through the Back Door", which will teach him the basics of European travel. Solo travel can be great (I often travel alone) but it can also be exhausting, overwhelming, and lonely, particularly if you are in areas where you don't speak the language.