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Old 6th March 2017, 17:32   #376
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

In Europe, most of my shopping happens at Primark and Foot Locker (apart from the usual H&M, New Yorker, Zara). Primark has great deals on daily wear, do check it out.
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Old 6th March 2017, 18:53   #377
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by racer_ash View Post
Bond street is another good place to shop for in London..
Posh and expensive! (and also joined to Oxford Street)
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Originally Posted by prateekm View Post
In Europe, most of my shopping happens at Primark
Not posh, and high value for money.

Two opposite ends of the London shopping market.

What racer_ash says about a few stores dominating the UK retail scene in every city is quite true. The big difference may only be in the appearance in those few places where planning laws have not allowed them to knock everything down!

Tottenham Court Road is good for electronics.

Most malls are dominated by clothing and fashion. I vote for John Lewis as best department store. The Oxford Street branch is possibly the best, but you can find them in many other places. Their restaurants are good value too.

On Regent Street, near to Oxford Circus, is a store called Liberty. Back to the world of posh and expensive! However its architecture is a treat, and its unique range of goods can be appreciated like a gallery. Just looking! That's one for the shopoholics!
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Old 6th March 2017, 19:34   #378
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
what are the good shopping places in Paris/Edinburgh/Switzerland and London(other than OxS)?
- For macrons, I'd suggest Pierre Herme in Paris.
- Would avoid watch shopping in Switzerland, they are way expensive in Swiss than getting the same watch outside
- For clothes, you'll most likely get them all in Madras, especially for men. Prateek's already mentioned some known brands for clothing.
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Old 6th March 2017, 20:17   #379
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Not to rain on your parade, but as per the EPL schedule, ManU match on 21 May is scheduled to take place in Manchester, not in London. Maybe you could make the trip like so many others from London and add Manchester to the list of cities "ticked off". Alternatively, Chelsea are playing in London that day, and ManCity are in nearby Watford. One of those two are bound to be celebrating on that day.
Oh ! Shucks !

How far is Old Trafford from London?
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Old 6th March 2017, 20:38   #380
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by prateekm View Post
In Europe, most of my shopping happens at Primark and Foot Locker (apart from the usual H&M, New Yorker, Zara). Primark has great deals on daily wear, do check it out.
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Originally Posted by narayans80 View Post
- For macrons, I'd suggest Pierre Herme in Paris.
For clothes, you'll most likely get them all in Madras, especially for men.
I agree with both. For me, Primark is like Saravana Stores in Chennai. Apparel are pretty cheap even comparable to malls in India. The best part about them is they proudly display 'Made in India' and 'Made in Bangladesh' written in Bold and prominent letters.

Other chains like Marks and Spencers too source their apparel from India/China/Bangladesh but display them less prominently though.
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Old 6th March 2017, 20:39   #381
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Friends,

Some questions about The Swiss Travel Pass :

I will be based out of Lucerne and doing the following trips over 4 days :
Day 1 - Paris to SStrasbourg to Basel to Lucerne by train + Potentially a bus ride from Lucerne rail station to Radisson Blu hotel + Boat ride in Lucerne
Day 2 - Travel to Mt Titlis + Travel to Mt Pilatus
Day 3 - Travel to Interlaken + Travel to JungFrau, including Trummelbach Falls, Grindelwald, Alpine Gardens + Return to Lucerne
Day 4 - Travel to Interlaken + Schilthorn + Return to Lucerne + Train to Zurich

Q1 - Do I need a Swiss Travel Pass if the above is my itinerary? We are three - me, wife and 13 year old. Will it turn out to be cost-effective if I bought the Swiss Travel pass as compared to paying my way through? I don't intend going to any museums - except if it is a chocolate or cheese museum in Lucerne or Interlaken.

Q2 - Will I need to buy a pass for my son as well, or can i get a family card in addition to two travel passes and my son gets to travel free?

Q3 - Can I use my swiss pass from the time I enter Switzerland itself? For e.g., can I get a ticket only from Paris to Basel on Rail Europe and then use the Swiss Pass from basel to Lucerne? Can I make it valid from as soon as I enter Switzerland(from the border itself)? Will the same as above apply (buy two, get child's free?)

Q4 - If the above Q3 is true, will I need to do some kind of validation at Basel on the station/platform BEFORE I board the train at Basel? I have a changeover time of 8 minutes at Basel - will that be enough for me to get off the TER train from Strasbourg, get the ticket validated at the station and then board the train to Lucerne? All with luggage and a child tagging along? Or can I miss that train and take the next one? How frequent are these trains?

My conclusion after all my hotel, train and other bookings in Switzerland - this country is an organized, government-sponsored mechanism for Swiss residents to plunder tourists ! Everything is so expensive ! And even fines - 20 days income(whatever your income may be) if you break certain road rules.

If the Indian government and Indian people can charge the same in Kashmir/Manali, I am sure we can maintain the mountains of India also as clean and spotless as the Alps.

!! Thanks
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Old 6th March 2017, 20:40   #382
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Oh ! Shucks !



How far is Old Trafford from London?

Well, I think it should be about 2.5 hours on the train from Euston station to Manchester. You need to check the connectivity at both the end points. But it's a Sunday, and sometimes schedules are curtailed on Sundays, so better to check in advance.
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Old 6th March 2017, 22:32   #383
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
I will be based out of Lucerne and doing the following trips over 4 days
Lucerne-Interlaken is about 2 hrs by train one way. Late May you should have good daylight (atleast till 8 PM), but still adding 4 hrs of travel seems to a bit too much for a day.

About Swiss Pass, you get 50% off in Titlis, Pilatus, Jungfrau tickets. Trains and buses are included fully in Swiss Pass. Am not sure of cost effectivity, but timewise it'll save you. We got the Swiss Pass at Lucerne station.

Am not sure of the age limit for the child, mine was 4 at that time and she travelled free with our tickets.
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Old 6th March 2017, 22:42   #384
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by reverse_gear View Post
Well, I think it should be about 2.5 hours on the train from Euston station to Manchester. You need to check the connectivity at both the end points. But it's a Sunday, and sometimes schedules are curtailed on Sundays, so better to check in advance.
Train journeys booked on the spot are expensive (if available, even) but tickets sold in advance attract various discounts. Please book online in advance if planning to use intercity trains in UK. You may even find that you can afford First Class: in my humble opinion, it is different enough to be worth it.
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Old 7th March 2017, 08:55   #385
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Q1 - Do I need a Swiss Travel Pass if the above is my itinerary? We are three - me, wife and 13 year old. Will it turn out to be cost-effective if I bought the Swiss Travel pass as compared to paying my way through? I don't intend going to any museums - except if it is a chocolate or cheese museum in Lucerne or Interlaken.
Swiss Pass will give you immense freedom of movement; and knowing you have a pass that covers it all, you will not hesitate in traveling.

Also, distances and walking can get to you (your kid); a quick bus/train hop will keep your energy levels high.

Transport, even intracity, in Switzerland is extremely expensive (from an Indian point of view), something like 6 CHF/person one way if you want to cross a couple of stations. The Swiss Travel Pass will really come in handy at such occasions.

Quote:
Q2 - Will I need to buy a pass for my son as well, or can i get a family card in addition to two travel passes and my son gets to travel free?
How old is your kid? Check the provisions for free travel for kids below 7 years of age if the parent has a Swiss Pass.

Quote:
Q3 - Can I use my swiss pass from the time I enter Switzerland itself? For e.g., can I get a ticket only from Paris to Basel on Rail Europe and then use the Swiss Pass from basel to Lucerne? Can I make it valid from as soon as I enter Switzerland(from the border itself)? Will the same as above apply (buy two, get child's free?)
The Swiss Pass is in effect the first time you use it; so you can buy it whenever but the three days start only when you use it the first time.

There's some flexibility here:
for 210 CHF, you get a pass that has to be used in three consecutive days
for 235 CHF, you get a pass that can used in three days over 30 days (from the first use)

Quote:
Q4 - If the above Q3 is true, will I need to do some kind of validation at Basel on the station/platform BEFORE I board the train at Basel? I have a changeover time of 8 minutes at Basel - will that be enough for me to get off the TER train from Strasbourg, get the ticket validated at the station and then board the train to Lucerne? All with luggage and a child tagging along? Or can I miss that train and take the next one? How frequent are these trains?
If your ticket has a seat, you don't need validation. But this is something that I'm not very sure of.

Frequency of international long distance trains isn't enough that you don't have to sweat missing one. If the platforms are closeby, eight minutes is doable, provided you sprint.

Quote:
If the Indian government and Indian people can charge the same in Kashmir/Manali, I am sure we can maintain the mountains of India also as clean and spotless as the Alps.
Go to Mt. Titlis/Jungfrauhoch and your mind will be blown away by what will and technology can do.

And then you'll feel incredibly sad that we have absolutely neglected the immense potential nature has afforded India.

Last edited by libranof1987 : 7th March 2017 at 08:58.
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Old 7th March 2017, 17:32   #386
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Friends,

Some questions about The Swiss Travel Pass :

I will be based out of Lucerne and doing the following trips over 4 days :

Q1 - Do I need a Swiss Travel Pass if the above is my itinerary?
My conclusion after all my hotel, train and other bookings in Switzerland - this country is an organized, government-sponsored mechanism for Swiss residents to plunder tourists ! Everything is so expensive ! And even fines - 20 days income(whatever your income may be) if you break certain road rules.

If the Indian government and Indian people can charge the same in Kashmir/Manali, I am sure we can maintain the mountains of India also as clean and spotless as the Alps.

!! Thanks
You are the best person to decide on this aspect. You can do a Cost Benefit Analysis based on your itinerary and decide if the pass if worth it. All fares (with and without passes) are readily available online and you might have to spend a couple of hours to calculate if the pass works out cheaper or vice-versa.

Atleast here in the UK, the annual rail passes pay for themselves pretty fast (sometimes in as less as 3 or 4 journeys by train). The London attraction passes on the other hand only break-even if you plan to visit all attractions available. Hence it is a cost based decision in the end.

If you think Swiss is costly, wait till you go to Iceland. The Icelandic Krona is weaker than the Indian Rupee (1IKR is ~ 0.6 INR) and an average litre of Semi-Skimmed milk costs in the region of 400IKR. Convert that into INR and I am sure your eyes will start to water. If not for the wide-spread card acceptance, Icelanders would need to carry tens of thousands of Krona for going about their daily business like grocery shopping.
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Old 7th March 2017, 20:45   #387
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Oh ! Shucks !

How far is Old Trafford from London?
Its around 2 hours 30 minutes by train as already mentioned by members here.
You can book it via Virgin Trains/ National rail. As its a match day the train tickets are quite steep if you plan the journey on 21st March its £82.90. Change the date to 20th May, its only £22.00, but again that's the day you are flying into London.
It all depends on how much of a ManU fan you are. Old Trafford is really the holy grail if you are one
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Old 8th March 2017, 10:04   #388
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Friends,

Some questions about The Swiss Travel Pass :

I will be based out of Lucerne and doing the following trips over 4 days :
Day 1 - Paris to SStrasbourg to Basel to Lucerne by train + Potentially a bus ride from Lucerne rail station to Radisson Blu hotel + Boat ride in Lucerne
Day 2 - Travel to Mt Titlis + Travel to Mt Pilatus
Day 3 - Travel to Interlaken + Travel to JungFrau, including Trummelbach Falls, Grindelwald, Alpine Gardens + Return to Lucerne
Day 4 - Travel to Interlaken + Schilthorn + Return to Lucerne + Train to Zurich

Q1 - Do I need a Swiss Travel Pass if the above is my itinerary? We are three - me, wife and 13 year old. Will it turn out to be cost-effective if I bought the Swiss Travel pass as compared to paying my way through? I don't intend going to any museums - except if it is a chocolate or cheese museum in Lucerne or Interlaken.

Q2 - Will I need to buy a pass for my son as well, or can i get a family card in addition to two travel passes and my son gets to travel free?

Q3 - Can I use my swiss pass from the time I enter Switzerland itself? For e.g., can I get a ticket only from Paris to Basel on Rail Europe and then use the Swiss Pass from basel to Lucerne? Can I make it valid from as soon as I enter Switzerland(from the border itself)? Will the same as above apply (buy two, get child's free?)

Q4 - If the above Q3 is true, will I need to do some kind of validation at Basel on the station/platform BEFORE I board the train at Basel? I have a changeover time of 8 minutes at Basel - will that be enough for me to get off the TER train from Strasbourg, get the ticket validated at the station and then board the train to Lucerne? All with luggage and a child tagging along? Or can I miss that train and take the next one? How frequent are these trains?

My conclusion after all my hotel, train and other bookings in Switzerland - this country is an organized, government-sponsored mechanism for Swiss residents to plunder tourists ! Everything is so expensive ! And even fines - 20 days income(whatever your income may be) if you break certain road rules.

If the Indian government and Indian people can charge the same in Kashmir/Manali, I am sure we can maintain the mountains of India also as clean and spotless as the Alps.

!! Thanks
Team - will appreciate an answer to my questions above as I am looking to get my Swiss pass and Paris-Lucerne train tickets today. Can save a lot based on your answers. (I could calculate based on internet data, but that will be a huge task. I have mentioned where all I intend going. if anyone can give a perspective if it makes sense to buy the swiss pass, as well as answer my other questions, it will be great). Thanks in anticipation.
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Old 8th March 2017, 12:49   #389
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

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Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Team - will appreciate an answer to my questions above as I am looking to get my Swiss pass and Paris-Lucerne train tickets today. Can save a lot based on your answers. (I could calculate based on internet data, but that will be a huge task. I have mentioned where all I intend going. if anyone can give a perspective if it makes sense to buy the swiss pass, as well as answer my other questions, it will be great). Thanks in anticipation.
In general it nearly always make sense to book a pass:

https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-ti...nd-rail-passes

Validation shouldn’t be a problem;

http://www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/howtouse

Enjoy

Jeroen
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Old 8th March 2017, 18:20   #390
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Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by HighwayBuddha View Post
Friends,

Some questions about The Swiss Travel Pass :

I will be based out of Lucerne and doing the following trips over 4 days :
Day 1 - Paris to SStrasbourg to Basel to Lucerne by train + Potentially a bus ride from Lucerne rail station to Radisson Blu hotel + Boat ride in Lucerne
Day 2 - Travel to Mt Titlis + Travel to Mt Pilatus
Day 3 - Travel to Interlaken + Travel to JungFrau, including Trummelbach Falls, Grindelwald, Alpine Gardens + Return to Lucerne
Day 4 - Travel to Interlaken + Schilthorn + Return to Lucerne + Train to Zurich

Q1 - Do I need a Swiss Travel Pass if the above is my itinerary? We are three - me, wife and 13 year old. Will it turn out to be cost-effective if I bought the Swiss Travel pass as compared to paying my way through? I don't intend going to any museums - except if it is a chocolate or cheese museum in Lucerne or Interlaken.
Since you are traveling quite extensivvely in Swiss and that too by public transport, its recommended that you buy the swiss travel pass. Eventually it will end up cheaper than buying on the go.
It covers all forms of transport and you do not need to worry about timing or route as those things can get tricky if you buy specific train tickets.
This website is the offical one and looks quite informative.https://www.swissrailways.com/en/node/66
I will also refer the link provided by Jeroen.

Quote:
Q2 - Will I need to buy a pass for my son as well, or can i get a family card in addition to two travel passes and my son gets to travel free?
Only kids below age 6 travel free. If you are the lucky one who is aged below 26 your rates are lesser compared to that of an adult.
I would recommend some digging in to see if any discount websites are giving away vouchers which will qualify for a family card.
This pdf document looked informative.
http://www.swissrailways.com/sites/d...te_2017_en.pdf

Quote:
Q3 - Can I use my swiss pass from the time I enter Switzerland itself? For e.g., can I get a ticket only from Paris to Basel on Rail Europe and then use the Swiss Pass from basel to Lucerne? Can I make it valid from as soon as I enter Switzerland(from the border itself)? Will the same as above apply (buy two, get child's free?)
Yes, if you are buying the travel pass then its applicable within Switzerland from the day that have requested it from.
This link gives some more information. https://rail.stc.co.uk/en/node/66
You would need to present your passport/ any other id along with the print out of the pass.

Quote:
Q4 - If the above Q3 is true, will I need to do some kind of validation at Basel on the station/platform BEFORE I board the train at Basel? I have a changeover time of 8 minutes at Basel - will that be enough for me to get off the TER train from Strasbourg, get the ticket validated at the station and then board the train to Lucerne? All with luggage and a child tagging along? Or can I miss that train and take the next one? How frequent are these trains?
8 minutes is definitely too little for a train transfer. But even if you miss a train it should not be a huge issue for you as there are 14 trains between Basel to Lucerne per day. Since you have a train pass you should be able to board any tain.

Quote:
My conclusion after all my hotel, train and other bookings in Switzerland - this country is an organized, government-sponsored mechanism for Swiss residents to plunder tourists ! Everything is so expensive ! And even fines - 20 days income(whatever your income may be) if you break certain road rules.
If the Indian government and Indian people can charge the same in Kashmir/Manali, I am sure we can maintain the mountains of India also as clean and spotless as the Alps.

!! Thanks
I agree to the expensive part, even by Western European standards. Once I had to pay 35£ for using Swiss roads for a day! To be fair the pass was valid for a year even though it didnt make much difference to me. I wouldnt be bitter with that as the way things are organized in Swiss. The trains, the motorways everything is well organized and clean as a whitsle.
With respect to 'government sponsored mechanism for Swiss residents to plunder tourists', I do not agree to that. As whatever price you pay at an attraction/ train or any facilities is the same for a resident and a tourist.
Its the same even with fines.
I dont know if you have noticed, if you go to any of the attractions or even a local zoo in India, foriegn residents are required to pay 10 times what a normal Indian pays at the same attraction. At Taj Mahal as an Indian one will pay INR 20, but INR 750 if you are a foreign national. That's outright discrimination! However at INR 750 Taj Mahal will be the cheapest wonder of the world for a visit.
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