Fooienonderzoek 2018: hoeveel fooi wordt er in de taxi gegeven?

Wat moet je geven als fooi?

Een goede vraag die vaak wordt gesteld. In het restaurant, bij eten thuis laten bezorgen, op reis, en dus ook in de taxi. Nog steeds komen er met regelmaat vragen binnen bij de taxichauffeurs van Taxi2Airport over hoeveel fooi ‘normaal’ is om te geven. Het airport taxiplatform kwam twee jaar geleden al met een onderzoek naar fooien, waaruit bleek dat Nederlanders gemiddeld zo’n 5,30 euro fooi gaven in de taxi van en naar de luchthaven.

Maar hoe zit dit nu anno 2018? En hoe verhoudt de gemiddelde fooi in Nederland zich tot andere Europese landen? Taxi2Airport deed onderzoek in 37 Europese landen, om het ‘fooigedrag’ van Europeanen in kaart te brengen. Per land werd aan minimaal 60 taxichauffeurs gevraagd om in de periode van februari 2018 tot en met september 2018 de gegeven fooien bij te houden.

In totaal werden tienduizenden ritten geanalyseerd. Uit deze analyse werd een selectie gemaakt van gelijkwaardige taxiritten (op basis van afstanden naar en vanaf het vliegveld), gelijke aantallen ritten per land en ritten per regio (in Nederland).

Nederlander geeft ruim 10 procent meer fooi in de taxi

Waar Nederlanders in het vorige onderzoek van Taxi2Airport gemiddeld 5,30 euro fooi gaven, is dit bedrag inmiddels gestegen. In 2018 geven Nederlanders afgerond zo’n 5,90 euro fooi; een stijging van 10,2 procent. Afgezet tegen de gemiddelde ritprijs (57,60 euro) geven Nederlanders hiermee 10,17 procent van de ritprijs aan fooi.

Taxi fooien per provincie

Gemiddeld geven Nederlanders dus 5,86 euro fooi in de taxi. Op provinciaal niveau bestaan er echter grote verschillen in de fooien die reizigers aan de taxichauffeur geven. Zo geven mensen in Utrecht gemiddeld 2,93 euro fooi per rit, terwijl Zeeuwen 7,73 euro tippen. Ook Friezen zijn ‘gulle tippers’ met een gemiddelde fooi van 7,25 euro. Reizigers in Limburgers mogen zich ook goede fooi gevers nomen. Zij geven zo’n 7,11 euro extra aan de taxichauffeur, op weg van of naar het vliegveld.

Hoogte taxi fooi in 37 Europese landen

In euro’s – Van alle onderzochte landen geven Britten de hoogste fooi in de taxi. Gemiddeld wordt (omgerekend) 7,95 euro fooi gegeven in de Britse taxi’s. Ook Finnen (7,36 euro), Zwitsers (7,10 euro) en Zweden (7 euro) geven gemiddeld hoge fooien aan hun taxichauffeur.

Taxichauffeurs in Macedonië hebben, van alle onderzochte landen, het minst geluk als het aankomt op fooien. De gemiddelde fooi ligt in Macedonië het laagst met 99 eurocent. Ook in Rusland (1,10 euro), Georgië (1,10 euro), Bosnië & Herzegovina (1,25 euro) en Servië (1,47 euro) krijgen taxichauffeurs relatief lage fooien die rond een euro schommelen.

In percentages – Wanneer de fooien worden afgewogen tegen de ritprijs, zijn het Spaanse taxichauffeurs die procentueel de hoogste fooien krijgen (11,44 procent van de ritprijs). Russische chauffeurs krijgen, met een gemiddelde van zo’n 2 procent, het laagste fooi percentage van alle onderzochte Europese landen.

Nederland staat, met het op-drie-na hoogste percentage van 10,17 procent, ook goed aangeschreven als ‘fooi paradijs’ voor taxichauffeurs.

Onderzoeksverantwoording
Taxi2airport verrichtte het onderzoek in de volgende landen:
Rusland, Litouwen, Griekenland, Duitsland, Georgië, Kroatië, Macedonië, Polen, Italië, Ijsland, Ierland, Roemenië, Noorwegen, Spanje, Portugal, Servië, Letland, Bosnië en Herzegovina, Slowakije, Hongarije, Luxemburg, Tsjechië, Belarus, Malta, Denemarken, Frankrijk, Oostenrijk, België, Turkije, Bulgarije, Cyprus, Zweden, Estland, Nederland, Zwitserland, Finland, Verenigd Koninkrijk.

Per land werd aan 60 taxichauffeurs gevraagd om in de periode februari 2018 tot en met september 2018 de gegeven fooien bij te houden. In totaal werden tienduizenden taxiritten naar en vanaf het vliegveld geanalyseerd.

5 Beautiful Bakeries in Paris

Whether you’re flying to Charles de Gaulle or Paris Orly airport, the first thing you should do when you arrive in France’s capital to is sample the best pastries available! Bakeries can be just as beautiful as the goods they produce. And, when it comes to Paris, this is certainly the case. Sampling the delicacies while visiting this romantic city is a must, but choosing the most beautiful bakeries should be a priority too. Here are some of the most stunning bakeries in the city to venture to when hunger calls.

Angelina

 

Eat baked goods like royalty in this famous bakery. Angelina is actually renowned for its hot chocolate, and you’ll probably see long lines of people waiting to try it. Once you get inside, you’ll find that the bakery is massive and so luxurious that you’d think it was meant for royalty. The walls are painted in gold and the dessert displays look straight out of a magazine. They are famous for their Mont Blanc, (a chestnut dessert) so make sure to give it a try.

Jacques Genin

 

This cute cafe is cozy and elegant with some fantastic desserts. The stone walls, exposed brick beams, and wooden floors make this place chic and gorgeous all at once. They serve delicious hot chocolate which should be accompanied by one of their chocolate tarts. Their eclairs, lemon tart, and caramel tart are said to be out-of-this-world too. No matter what you order, you’ll be treated to some free, homemade chocolates too.

Laduree

This bakery may be touristy, but it’s so beautiful that it’s worth the crowds. Laduree is located right in the middle of the city’s most famous street, Champs-Élysées, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. The lines are long but the elegant decor give you something to marvel at while you wait. They have some of the most famous macarons in Paris, and they are definitely worth a try. As you shop for baked goods take note of the gold furnishings, chandeliers, and museum-esque statues. The seating area features tufted, golden chairs, antique artwork, and ornate trim work on the walls. It feels like old-world Paris and makes a great setting to enjoy their artful baked goods.

Hugo et Victor

This bakery and sweets shop looks like it should sell fine jewelry rather than desserts. It is extremely elegant and features perfectly assembled rows of glistening baked goods. Most of the desserts can be found behind display cases, looking almost too good to eat. Each piece looks like a work of art, and there’s a policy that no one can take photos (it’s a pretty exclusive experience.) Try the choux puffs which are filled with rich praline butter.

Pierre Herme

 

If you want to earn bragging rights while in Paris, visit this bakery. It’s famous for its macarons and ispahan croissant. The pastry chef here is famous for creating artistic pieces that taste as delicious as they look. There are a few locations around the city but each has an elegant, yet modern decor. The buzz around this place is that their macarons are some of the city’s best. But, don’t forget to try the different styles of croissants (they’re all so tasty you may have difficulties choosing a favorite.)

If you want to eat your way around Paris, start with the bakeries. They are beautiful enough to be considered tourist attractions, with or without the baked goods. If you enjoyed this, then make sure you read our guide to the best cafes in Paris.

You can book your taxi from Paris Orly airport here or from Charles de Gaulle here. Make sure to ask your taxi driver to take you straight to one of these bakeries!

Global Festive Ranking: The 25 Most Christmassy Countries in the World

Christmas is by far the most magical time of the year: there’s great food, family, presents, music, and snow – if you’re lucky. Christmas is synonymous with snow, late-night church services with impressive choirs, traditions that stretch back across generations, and colorful Christmas markets in almost every town square.



That said, every country has slightly different traditions, and every continent differs even more so. Some cities will celebrate Christmas in grand style, other with local traditions and customs, and everything in between. Poland, for instance, considers Christmas Eve the most important day in the festive calendar, and families will not eat until the first star has appeared in the sky when 12 different dishes will be served as part of the festive meal. The significance of the 12 courses differs depending on your religious beliefs: Catholics say the dishes represent Jesus’ 12 disciples, while others believe consuming them will bring you good luck for the next 12 months.

Contrastingly, Christmas in Japan is not a religious holiday but is seen as a time to spread happiness. Their festive meal is actually fried chicken, with many families placing orders with restaurants like KFC in advance, while in India the traditional Christmas tree is typically replaced with mango or banana trees.

With all of these different traditions, it begs the question: which country is the most festive? That’s exactly the question Taxi2Airport decided to answer, with our Global Festive Ranking.

In order to put the ranking together, we thoroughly analyzed an array of festive data for every country around the world, including Christmas travel recognition, the chance of snow, and the popularity of Christmas music. We then ranked the countries around the world who offered the best for each of these categories, giving them a score out of 5 for each category.

The number one location was Canada, likely due to the very high chance of snow, and the country also scored highly for Christmas travel recognition. This was followed by Norway in second place, unsurprisingly, and Iceland in third, both of which are countries strongly associated with the festive period. Finland also rounded out the top 5 for much of the same reasons.

Read on below to find out the full results of our Global Festive Ranking.

Results

 


Canada ranked in the number one spot thanks to the impressive amount the population listens to Christmas music; the country ranked in 8thplace out of 55 countries looked at by Spotify, and their most distinctive yuletide anthem is Sarah McLachlan’s Away in a Manager. The country also had the 68hhighest chance of a white Christmas, with World Weather Online predicting a 43.55% chance of snow on Christmas day. From skiing with Santa at the world-renowned Whistler Blackcomb ski resort to ice skating around Lake Louise – hailed “the world’s best skating rink” – and riding in a horse-drawn sleigh in Sun Peaks, it’s easy to see why Canada topped our festive countries index.

The country also scored highly for Christmas search interest and Christian population – with 67.3% of the country claiming to be Christian – all pointing towards a very festive season where travelers will be surrounded by people who love Christmas as much as you do.

Following Canada, the top 10 countries are:

1- Norway

2 -Iceland

3- Liechtenstein

4- Finland

5- Lithuania

6- Sweden

7- USA

8- UK

9- Ireland


Norway ranked highly thanks again to the amount Norwegians listen to Christmas music, which managed to get the second place in Spotify’s ranking of how hard Christmas music trend in the country during 2017. Their most festive song was, of course, Kurt Nilsen and the Norwegian Radio Orchestra’s Himmel På Jord. Christmas in Norway stretches over an entire season – in fact, the popular Christmas House in Drøbak in Southern Norway is open all year round. The tradition of Christmas predates the Christianisation of the country, and traditionally it was celebrated with animal sacrifices and beer – so not that different to 2018, then. Again, Norway has a high chance of snow (42.34%) on Christmas day and the Christmas search interest averages at 23.2 for the period between 1st November 2017 and 25th December 2017.


In true Christmas spirit, the top 10 countries for how hard Christmas music trended throughout the year are as follows:

1- Iceland: Ef ég nenni – Helgi Björnsson

2- Norway: Himmel På Jord– Kurt Nilsen, The Norwegian Radio Orchestra

3- Sweden: Mer jul– Adolphson & Falk

4- Denmark: Guld Jul– Gulddreng

5- Ireland: This Christmas– Picture This

6- Finland:Hei Mummo– Suvi Teräsniska

7-  United Kingdom:Here Comes Santa Claus – Bob B. Soxx & The Blue Jeans

8- Canada:Away in a Manger– Sarah McLachlan

9- Netherlands:Why Couldn’t It Be Christmas Everyday – Bianca Ryan

10- Austria:Joyful Christmas to You All – Joyful Christmas All Stars

 


And for all of you looking specifically for Bing Crosby’s White Christmas, here are the top 10 countries with the best chance of getting snow come 25th December:

1- Russia –89%

2- Belarus –82%

3- Finland –19%

4- Estonia –19%

5- Lithuania –39%

6- Greenland –18%

7- Kazakhstan –95%

8- Canada –55%

9- Ukraine –15%

10- Iceland –34%

 


Methodology

 

In order to compile our Global Festive Ranking, we used the following methodology. We analyzed a variety of studies, articles, and surveys relating to Christmas in order to determine what factors are important to them at Christmas, and what people would typically associate with being “Christmassy”. The elements we found to be important were:

  •  Christmas Travel Recognition
  • Chance of Snow
  • Christmas Search Interest
  • Christian Population
  • Christmas Music

In order to identify exactly what each country had to offer, we searched through a variety of different sources. One source we looked at in particular was the chance of snow for each country which is, of course, an iconic image of Christmas, but rarely a reality for much of the world. We also looked at Spotify’s ranking of which countries trended highest for listening to Christmas music over the year, as well as multiple sources ranking the best places around the world to spend Christmas, in order to come up with a thorough, overall ranking based on which destinations repeatedly ranked highly. Additionally, we scoured numerous travel guides to identify the most popular locations for Christmas travel, and finally, we added in data about the Christian population for each country, as Christmas is traditionally a Christian holiday.

For each of the above categories, we scored each country from 1-5 (with 5 being the highest) and added these scores together in order to get our final GFR score, with a total of 25 being the highest available. We then ranked the countries based on their scores.

The full dataset is available upon request.

Sources:

Wikipedia 

Spotify

Google Docs

Google Trends

Rough Guides

CN Traveler

CNN 

CNN

Thid is insider 

 The daily meal

 

 

5 Great Things to Do in Madeira in January

This Portuguese island is incredible, even during the winter. In fact, locals love Christmas and New Years, and celebrate accordingly. If you visit in January, expect an unconventional, winter wonderland. With temperatures at about 20C, you’ll be warm enough to explore everything Madeira has to offer. So, what should you do? Here are 5 great things to do in Madeira in January.

Go Dolphin and Whale Watching

This can be done all year, but in January, some very special species make an appearance. The sightings may be fewer than other times of year, but it’s worth it to see these rare animals. Visitors may get a glimpse of the Common Bottlenose Dolphin, Short-beaked Common Dolphin, and the Short-finned Pilot Whale. Since the water is relatively warm all year, you can add some scuba diving to your ocean adventures too.

Watch New Year’s Eve Fireworks From The Sea

 

The Madeira fireworks display on New Year’s Eve is absolutely epic. In fact, they broke a Guinness World Record back in 2007! Funchal Bay is usually a great spot to view them, especially if you charter a boat. Some of the ships are so luxurious that they have bars and restaurants, so you can ring in the new year right with a glass of bubbly.

Go Hiking

 

The hikes in Madeira are where you’ll find the most beautiful scenery. In January, the weather isn’t too hot, which makes it perfect for some mountain climbing. There are plenty of trails to choose from, but popular treks include: Ponta de São Lourenço, a coastal hike lined with volcanic rock and stunning lookouts, and Pico Ruivo, home of the island’s highest peak. If you’d prefer more of a walk, try the Levadas. These walking paths were carved out in the 1500s to make the land more accessible. Levada dos 25 Fontes is recommended as it takes you past a 100-metre waterfall.

Try Surfing

While summer may seem like the time to surf, winter in Madeira actually has better waves. Plus, January is the low season for tourists, so you won’t have to battle the crowds. The coastline is usually full of novice surfers, some hopping on their board for the first time. In January, you’ll have killer waves, plenty of space, and less newbies to worry about. Some of the best surf beaches include: Faja de Areia, Ponta Delgada, Porto da Cruz, and Ponta Pequena. Here is our guide to the best surfing spots in the rest of Portugal.

 

Wine Tasting

What better way to ring in the new year than with some Portuguese wine? Fortified wine is Madeira’s speciality, and you’ll want to taste as many as possible. Visit Blandy’s Wine Lodge to start your trip off right and learn all about the local drink. You can do a tour, a tasting, and buy a few bottles to send home as souvenirs. Funchal Bay is a great area to explore if you want to dive into the wine scene, so spend plenty of time here.

January is an excellent time to visit Madeira. The weather is fine, tourists are few, and there is still plenty to see and discover. Book your Madeira taxi here.

7 Game of Thrones Sites to See in Dubrovnik

If you can’t get enough Game of Thrones, you’ll love seeing the show sites in real life. The best place to visit for this kind of tourism is Dubrovnik, as it’s full of filming locations. True fans will get a kick out of exploring this Croatian city based on the T.V show. So, to help you out, we’ve compiled a list of 7 Game of Thrones sites to see while in Dubrovnik.

Fort Lovrijenac

 

Fans will recognize this site pretty quickly as the Red Keep in King’s Landing. Seasons two and three are where this ancient fort appears most frequently. Remember the scene when Tyrion slaps King Joffrey across the face after attacking him at Pile Gate? This fort is where the king is trying to get to. It is also the site of King Joffrey’s naming ceremony where they have a celebratory ceremony during season two. You’ll also recognize it from season three’s first episode when Bronn asks for his pay to be doubled by Tyrion.

Gradac Park

This park can be found right next to Dubrovnik’s old town. It is best recognized from the second episode of season four as the scene of the Purple Wedding feast. It was here that King Joffrey was poisoned.

 

Jesuit Staircase

This staircase has played important roles across multiple seasons. It was featured in the first episode of season 5 as the meeting ground for people to pay their respects to Tywin Lannister. They are used as the steps of the Great Sept of Baelor, and also as part of Cersei’s walk of shame in season five. During filming times, the cafes and shops near these steps were shut down and paid extras were brought in by the hundreds to fill the streets.

Dubrovnik City Walls

These walls make an appearance in the show countless times. During the season three premier, Podrick, Tyrion, and Bronn are seen walking along the walls as workers are making repairs after the Battle of Blackwater. They also make an appearance in season six when Marcella’s body is being transported by ship to the King’s Landing.

Minčeta Tower

This is the highest point in the city and also a filming location for the show. You may recognize it from season two when it was used as the House of the Undying in Quarth. This is when Daenerys Targaryen is looking for her dragons that were stolen, and scans the tower looking for the entrance in the walls.

 

Ethnographic Museum

 

This 16th century museum is known in the show as Littlefinger’s Brothel. Visitors may recognize it from season four when Oberyn Martell meets Tyrion looking to seek revenge for the death of his sister and her children. In real life, this museum features agricultural artifacts, folk costumes, and exhibits.

Hotel Belvedere

Located just outside of Dubrovnik, this abandoned hotel served as the location for the fight between The Mountain and Prince Oberyn. There’s a small amphitheater here that you’ll recognize right away if you paid attention to this thrilling scene in the finale of season four.

 

Start with this list if you want to revisit scenes from your favorite show. Dubrovnik is full of them so you’ll find even more to explore once you’ve crossed these off the list. You can book your taxi from Dubrovnik airport here.

5 Creative Ways to Save Money for Travel

Many people have the dream to travel around the world. If you want to make your dream come to you have to know how to save money. Travelling can be very expensive, especially if to want to do it often. After all, having money means having options and isn’t this what traveling is all about?

In the following, you will learn about clever ways to save money for your travel.

 

Reevaluate your living space

Of course, we all need a roof over our head. A secure and warm place to be able to develop. However, we don’t necessarily need 500m², a jacuzzi, and a guest room. If you have a free room and traveling is really your first priority, you should definitely think about getting a roommate or renting out a room on Airbnb. This way, you will be able to save 100€ to 1000€ a month depending on your approach.

 

Bring your own lunch

Bringing your own lunch to work can save you a lot of money. At least, if you don’t have a free lunch included at work, which is not often the case. However, this doesn’t mean that you will be stuck with an endless cycle of peanut-butter and jelly sandwiches. In fact, you could just cook an extra large dinner and take the leftovers to lunch the next day. If you don’t know what to cook, there are plenty of sites in the internet that can give you a little inspiration.

 

Reduce your alcohol, cigarette and coffee addiction

Coffee in the morning, beer after work or a cigarette when being stressed is indispensable for many people. But most of them are not aware of how much money they are actually spending on it. A pack of cigarettes or a six-pack might not seem like much as itself, but little things add up. For example, let’s assume that a pack of cigarettes costs 7€ (of course depending on where you live) and you smoke 1 or 2 packs a week.  This results in yearly costs of 350-700€ only for smoking! It doesn’t mean, that you have to stop at all, but cutting it down by 50% would already save you a lot of money.


Sell your stuff

This might sound more radical then it is actually meant. Of course, you don’t have to sell your favorite owners, but many people do not realize how much unnecessary things they have been gathering their whole life. For instance, it could be a basement full of old furniture or a closet that is so full of clothes, that it won’t close anymore. The solution is easy, just take a day and go through all your stuff asking yourself: “Do I really need this?” or “Am I ever going to wear this again?”. If you answer those questions honestly, I assure you, you will have a lot of things that somebody else would be happy with.

 

Earn while you’re traveling

This is actually a nice way to start faster with your travel. If you have the option to earn money on your travel, you don’t have to save quite as much. There are many ways to earn money on your trip. For example, you could have your own travel blog, be an online graphic designer, work as a translator or even work on a farm for a short period of time. Depending on which country you are traveling to, you will have many local jobs, that you could go for. Of course, your personal skills and the timeframe of your travel plays a huge role in this.

 

Most importantly, remember that saving money will not be easy. Try to keep in mind what things you actually need and what you want. Cut out your “wants” as much as possible, keeping your goal in mind: Travelling around the world.
If you need a cheap taxi on your travels, you can book your transfer here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 places to visit in Italy

Italy is an amazing and beautiful country. If you go there it would be hard for you to decide what places visit in priority. This little guide is made to help you to choose your next destination. Enjoy!

Where in Italy?

   

Rome

If you come to Rome or Italy you must visit one of the most famous attractions in the world, the mighty Coliseum.

The ruins of this magnificent amphitheatre are one of the greatest historical relics of our time and once it would have had a capacity of over 65,000 spectators.

Built of travertine, tuff, and brick-faced concrete, it is the largest amphitheatre ever built. The Colosseum is situated just east of the Roman forum.

 Mediterranean cost

Cinque Terre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as being designated as a national park.

Over the centuries, people have carefully built terraces on the rugged, steep landscape right up to the cliffs that overlook the sea. Part of its charm is the lack of visible corporate development. Paths, trains and boats connect the villages, and cars cannot reach them from the outside. The Cinque Terre area is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy

Nestled in Liguria, the ‘Five Lands’ is made up of five distinct villages that sit atop craggy cliffs overlooking the famous Italian Riviera.

The five villages include Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, Riomaggiore, and Monterosso, and each has its own unique charms and sights.

Northeastern

Parts of Venice are renowned for the beauty of their settings, their architecture, and artwork. The lagoon and a part of the city are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Grand Canal in Venice is one of the most famous waterways in the world and there are a variety of ways that you can enjoy it.

One of these is to take a water bus known as a Vaporetto along the various parts of the canal where you can marvel at the little bridges and traditional Venetian homes that back onto the water.

Venice is also known for its several important artistic movements, especially the Renaissance period.

 North

Lake Como in Lombardy spans an amazing 146 square kilometres and is the perfect place to get out on the water and explore Italy by boat.

In 2014, The Huffington Post called it the most beautiful lake in the world for its microclimate and environment with prestigious villas and villages

The area around Lake Como has houses owned by some of the richest celebrities in the world, which tells you everything to know about the kind of views you can expect here.

The landscape surrounding the lake is covered with alpine forest and traditional villages as well as dainty ornate houses that make you feel as if you are in a picture postcard version of an Italian masterpiece.

The Vatican

 The Vatican is its own state within Italy, although you can only visit this landlocked area by first travelling to Rome.

As it is one of the most important religious spots in the world, you should definitely consider to visit it if you are the region then you. The Vatican contains powerhouses such as the Piazza San Pietro and St Peter’s Basilica.

However, You can also go and see the majesty of the Vatican Palace as well as the Sistine Chapel which features the Creation of Adam

  Sicily

If you are going to Sicily as part during your travels then your first stop needs to be the Valley of the Temples which is located in Agrigento.

Here you will find a huge archaeological complex that has some of the most intact Doric temples that were built here in the 5th century.

One of the best things about the temples here is that they overlook the town below and you can take in the stunning views as you tour the historical site.

Venice

Venice has a range of peerless attractions although perhaps the most famous of these is Saint Mark’s Basilica which sits on the famed Piazza San Marco or Saint Mark’s Square.

The basilica is the final resting place of Saint Mark the Evangelist and started life as a Byzantine church before being developed over the years.

The church is a work of art in its own right and you will find glittering mosaics and gorgeous marble decorations all over the complex as well as bas-reliefs

Southern

Pompeii is a famous city for the events that took place here in 79 AD when Mount Vesuvius erupted and covered the town in ash.

The eruption meant that Roman life was captured and frozen in time, and when the site was excavated it offered a glimpse of a bygone era.

If you visit Pompeii today you can expect a kind of open-air museum where you will find preserved houses, baths, and ancient Roman forums, all filled with the relics of the people who were living here when the eruption took place.

  Mediterranean cost – Campania

The gorgeous Amalfi Coast is one of the most scenic spots in Italy and if you want to experience as much of it as possible in the shortest amount of time then consider taking a boat trip along the shoreline.

The Amalfi Coast is a popular tourist destination for the region and Italy as a whole, attracting thousands of tourists annually. In 1997, the Amalfi Coast was listed as a UNESCO world site heritage

A number of companies offer boat rental and you can take in sights such as the towering Lattari Mountains as well as various cute coves and inlets.

Seemingly out of nowhere traditional Mediterranean villages will appear and boat tours usually come with food and drinks included so that you can snack on local produce as you take in the views.

 Bonus –  Rome

The Roman Forum is another one of Italy’s big hitter attractions and lies between the Capitoline and the Palatine hills in Rome.

The Roman Forum is a rectangular forum (plaza) surrounded by the ruins of several important ancient government buildings at the center of the city of Rome. Citizens of the ancient city referred to this space, originally as a marketplace.

This would once have been the center of the mighty Roman Empire and you can take in the beautiful complex here as well as enjoy views from the terraces all over the wider city.

Wanderdust: A Guide to the Most Germ-Ridden Items

Holidays are, undoubtedly, the best time of the year. Whether it’s a Christmas getaway, a long weekend exploring a new city, or a two week, all-inclusive, poolside break in an exotic country, it is always, always something to look forward to. But how much do we actually know about our holidays, and the places we visit – especially when it comes to how many germs we’re encountering? We are all careful to wash our hands, wipe down the surfaces with anti-bac, and carry hand sanitizer with us when we’re at home, but when we’re away we can become unwittingly trusting that the place we’re staying in – and the places we’re visiting – are squeaky clean. Is it because the idea of a professional cleaner makes us assume things are cleaner than they are? Or do we simply care less because we’re on holiday, and feeling more care-free?

Whatever the reason, the chances are you’ve been lulled into a false sense of security, so we decided to put it to the test and see just how germy each aspect of your holiday is. From the airport all the way to the beach, we thoroughly analyzed every part of the travel experience to find out the most germ-ridden places and objects you are likely to encounter while traveling. We’re afraid the results aren’t pretty.

You Will Encounter While Travelling

First things first, in order to properly assess how germ-ridden a holiday can be, we looked at a variety of different places you encounter while traveling: the airport, aeroplane, hotel room, public transport, cars, the beach, and the pool, using various sources and statistical data sets to analyse the number of bacteria found on objects in these places.

To get right down to the dirty details, the number one most germ-ridden item you will encounter while traveling is the self-check-in machines found at the airport, with some machines hosting over 1 million colony forming units per square inch (CFU). Considering the sheer volume of people that pass through an airport every hour, let alone every day/week/month/year (for instance, Heathrow has on average 8,904 people pass through the airport every hour), as well as the increase in people seeking out “do it yourself” technology in otherwise stressful situations – such as when travelling – it is unsurprising that these machines are so germy.

Surprisingly, the least germ-ridden part of your holiday is the airplane’s toilet seat, as this is something that will be cleaned constantly. It still harbors tons of pathogens though, so experts recommend lining the seat with toilet paper, so your skin doesn’t actually make contact with the seat.

Have a look below at our breakdown of bacteria across different locations you visit while traveling.

The Airport

Aeroplane germs

The worst part about going on holiday is, undoubtedly, the airport. Checking in, hanging around, dealing with screaming kids, having to find your check-in gate, it’s pretty much all awful. But wait, that whole experience is about to get worse. Because the airport is absolutely FULL of germs. Wherever you are in an airport, you name it, it’ll be germier than probably your whole house put together.

At least 10% of airport surfaces have traces of virus causing bacteria on them, which is a hefty amount when you consider you how big an airport is. Not only this but the water in water fountains that you’re encouraged to use to fill up your water bottle? Turns out toilet water would actually be cleaner, because water fountains are rarely if ever, sanitized. Which is fine, just make sure you use a towel to turn the sink on and off if you fill your bottle up in here, because the sink handles are absolutely covered in bacteria (50,000 CFU per square inch, to be exact).

The Aeroplane

Even though flying is often advertised as being cool and glamorous, the reality is far from this. The truth is, it’s uncomfortable, cramped, the temperature is never right, the lack of humidity dries out your skin and causes breakouts, and there’s always at least one person who’s got some sort of flu. All in all, it’s pretty grim. Which is why it’s not surprising that most people end up ill after flying.

Not only is the plane not cleaned between flights, but those magazines that everyone handles every trip? Only changed once a quarter when a new edition comes out. Those overhead air vents that are great for cooling you down? Excellent distributors of airborne germs. And that seatbelt you wear to keep yourself safe? The likelihood is that it’s never been cleaned.

The Hotel Room

Considering that every single time you stay at a hotel you can always spot at least one maid making the rounds, a hotel room is really not as clean as you would think. Or as clean as you would like. Case in point: fecal matter can be found on 81% of surfaces. So that’s four out of five things you touch that has fecal matter on it. Grim.

The biggest hot spots are the light switches, telephone keypads, and TV remotes because let’s face it, these are the easiest items to forget about but that clearly doesn’t mean everything else is clean. For example, sponges often carry bacteria from one room to the next, contaminating different sections of rooms, and glasses are often cleaned with cloths previously used to clean dirty surfaces and then not cleaned themselves.

Public Transport

Unless you’re lucky enough to have your hotel smack bang in the middle of everything, chances are you’ll use at least one form of public transport while traveling. Everyone knows about the germs that are present on public transport because this isn’t a new thing for germaphobes to focus in on, and one in ten people are reported to avoid public transport completely due to hygiene fears.

It turns out people are right to have these fears: the subway is often the dirtiest way of traveling around a city, with train seats over six times dirtier than toilets. And if that’s not enough to put you off, thanks to the high level of bacteria found on bus handles/poles, if the same level was found in a supermarket it would be shut down by a health inspector. Nice.

Cars

If you decide against public transport (which isn’t surprising considering that little nugget of information about how dirty public transport is), chances are you’ll be hiring a car. But be wary here too, as studies show that on average people only clean the insides of their car less than 10 times a year. That’s a long time for germs and bacteria to build up.

In fact, the dashboard of a car is said to be as dirty as a toilet seat, while a gear stick is a home to 356 different types of germs. On the bright side, the steering wheel is the cleanest part of your car – until you have to use your gear stick though, apparently.

Beach/Pool

Despite it being hammered into you when you were a kid that a pool is full of chlorine, hence why you shouldn’t drink the water (like it stopped you anyway), that doesn’t actually mean it’s clean. Did you know, for example, that if you can smell the chlorine that means the pool is actually very dirty? It’s because chlorine only emits that specific chlorine smell when it’s been activated i.e. when it’s doing its job and cleaning the water – which means the water is dirty.

As for the beach, turns out although seawater is likely to be contaminated with wastewater from sewage and other sources, there are still up to 100 times more bacteria on the sand than in the water. Plus, for those that like to play in the sand or be buried in it: you’re more likely to develop diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.

Looking for some more dirty details? Have a look at our travel germs by numbers breakdown below.

 

Lonely Planet: A Good Trip Fellow

Sometimes it is difficult to know which the best places to visit are or where to invest your time. Especially, when you are travelling to a destination you have never been before.

The internet is of course a good source, but it can turn out to be a bit complicated. There exist so many websites that offer different opinions. Therefor, it may be tricky to know which is the good one.

What is it?

For this problem, we have a fair and completely reliable solution for you: Lonely Planet. This is a travelling guide which will provide you the best advise, no matter where you are travelling. The most touristic cities are available in several languages making your experience easier. In addition to that, it is recommended by travelling experts who really care about this kind of experiences.

Of course it is a way to guide your vacations and you will love this guide if you still like paper writing books. Each one is written by a well experienced person who knows perfectly the zone. He will provide suggestions to visit the best places.

How to proceed?

Our suggestion is that, the first day you arrive to your destination, you may catch your taxi previously booked. Go to your hotel or apartment, leave your luggage there and go to the closest bookshop to your location.

They usually have a specified department devoted to travel. Here, you will easily find the Lonely Planet version in your own language.

You will find two versions, the normal and the pocket one. The last one is more appropriate when you are travelling few days and you want to do. After all it will suggest plenty of things and activities. Prices varie between 12 and 25 EUR, you can also visit their webpage.

 

Recommendations

You will not regret having invested your money in that guide, that is for sure. Furthermore, you will be given details about every place that is worth a visit.  In addition, it will give you prices and schedules. As a result,  you can plan your trip and enjoy it as much as possible. You will also find recommendations about museums, interest points, nature and many more! Everything will depend on the destination you are visiting, but you will be recommended the best places and experiences from this location.

Food and drinks

You are also given advices for restaurants and places for having some drinks and food. As people usually try to avoid touristy places and go to local establishments, this is usually a tricky point when travelling. In that way, you will be also able to save money, as the guide will indicate different options for all cuisines and in several price ranges.

This guide will indicate you places that are offering you food and drinks that are typical of the location. Of course, this is one of the best things to experience when travelling abroad.

 

Travel on a budget

 

One of the advantages this guide offers, is that it always provides prices about all the activities it is mentions. As a result,  you will not be surprised once you are there. Apart from that, it is offering the cheapest options for every type of visit (restaurants, shopping, etc.). You will always find different possibilities, no matter the budget that is at your disposal.

Transport and maps

 

As a proper guide, it is of course offering a map for every part of the city. Moreover, you will be given public transport options to reach the places. This way, mobility will not be a problem for you. Do not forget that the best transport for your arrival day from the airport is Taxi2Airport.com. Of course, for your your return transfer to the airport as well.

5 Best Places to Experience Fall in Paris

Go beyond the cliches if you want to experience Paris like a local

Forget the Eiffel Tower and leave with a Parisian to take a walk in Paris totally different from what you imagined and to discover the capital under a new angle.

Paris is filled with surprising activity and incredible places to be discovered. This guide will present you the 5 things to do in Paris as well as tips and advice for your stay.

 

Jardin du Luxembourg, 6ème arrondissement

Situated on the border between Saint-Germain-des-Prés and the Latin Quarter, the Luxembourg Gardens, inspired by the Boboli Gardens in Florence, were created in 1612. The gardens, which cover 25 hectares of land, are split into French gardens and English gardens. Between the two, lies a geometric forest and a large pond.

The garden has 106 statues spread throughout the park, the monumental Medici fountain, the Orangerie and the Pavillon Davioud. Whether you are Parisians or tourists, you can play chess, tennis, and bridge or remote control boats.

The cultural programme is characterized by free photography exhibitions on the garden railings and by concerts in the bandstand.

Opens between 7.30am and 8.15am, and closes between 4.30pm and 9.30pm according to the season.

Jardin du Luxembourg

Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre18arrondissement

The Sacré-Coeur, consecrated in 1919, is one of the most iconic monuments in Paris.  At the top of the Butte Montmartre, it has one of the most beautiful panoramic views of the capital, from 130 meters above ground. And to go even higher up, visitors can access the dome where the 360° view of Paris is magnificent.

After exploring the charming museum of Montmartre, take a break in the gardens of Renoir, a haven of peace overlooking the vineyards of Montmartre.

A short walk from the Sacré Coeur is the Place du Tertre, the old Parisian unique district of Abbesses with its steep, winding roads, and at the bottom of the hill, the famous Moulin Rouge cabaret.

The basilica is open every day from 6 am to 10.30 pm

Sacre-Coeur Montmartre  

Catacombes de Paris, 14arrondissements

If you like strange places, dare to go down into the bowels of the city. The visit of the Catacombs of Paris is without a doubt the most frightening attraction that Paris has to offer, with kilometers of tunnels lined with femurs and skulls of six million dead Parisians.

Built 23 meters underground at the end of the 18th century to prevent diseases from spreading in the cemeteries of the city center, the Catacombs are now the scene of a thrilling walk.

From Tuesday till Sunday from 10 am till 8:30 pm

Catacombs Official Website

Opéra Bastille, 12e arrondissement

After having read the website of the Opera Bastille, choose your favorite opera show and note the date in your diary so as not to miss it.

On the day of the show, go to the doors of the Opera Bastille to the around 16h. At 6 pm, the doors of the opera open and 30 tickets are available at a modest price of € 5 (2 tickets per person maximum).I

n the program, there are operas, ballets, and superb classical music concerts. Enjoy a fabulous show in one of the most beautiful buildings in Paris, we assure you that you will not regret it!

Bastille Opera  

Passages Couverts, 9e arrondissement

More than old shopping malls, The Covered Passages around the Grand Boulevards are galleries with a particular atmosphere dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries.

Covered by a charming glass roof, their second-hand bookstores, tea rooms, and gift shops make them fun alternatives to Parisian shopping galleries. We recommend the Galerie Vivienne and the Jouffroy Passage, which houses the Grévin Museum.

Parisian Covered Passages

To enjoy your stay in Paris, head to the place that inspires you the most: The Latin District will be the ideal place if you are looking for a student and intellectual atmosphere during your visit to Paris, the Invalides if you appreciate the architecture imposing place, Montmartre if you have the soul of an artist, Belleville if you want to find the atmosphere of old Paris typical.