Monday, 14 September 2009

Ultimate Milan on a Budget, Part One

Have a trip to Milan planned? Want to get the most out of your trip on limited funds? Look no further; here's the Charade cheap and chic guide to Milan on a budget.

Before You Go

♥ As always, I’d recommend checking out everything on Trip Advisor for some first-hand advice. They also currently have a PDF all about Milan including budget options that you can download for free (follow this link and it's in the right hand column.)

♥ Google maps and now Google street maps can also give you a great idea of what to expect before you get there.

♥ Milan is most definitely the kind of trip you shouldn’t shop for but should shop during. If you’ve a little bit to spend on some new outfits, don’t buy in advance and instead take the bare minimum in your suitcase, leaving room for a first day shopping frenzy!

How to Travel

If you can book a little way in advance (which most of you probably will), then Ryanair is absolutely the flying option to go for (we found plenty of flights this September for just £5 each way between Bristol and Orio al Serio, Milan). Of course, there’s always a catch, and in this case it comes in the form of hidden charges, but if you’re clever and flexible, these can be avoided.

Carry on allowance for Ryanair right now is 10kg with a measurement of 55cm x 40cm x 20cm – plenty for a city break, and will avoid the charge of checking a bag. Also, try and be flexible with when you can fly as prices can change drastically from day to day. If you find a great price on a date that suits you then snap it up a.s.a.p. as within just 24 hours we found prices sky-rocketed.

A bus from Orio al Serio airport was 9 euros per person when we travelled, but because there were 3 of us we made a saving to 7 euros, so if you’re alone or in a couple, team up with others at the bus stop to save – they’ll like you for it! The bus will take you to the central train station - a good point from which to find your way. Don’t even consider a taxi from the airport as I was told they could be as much as 80 euro (gasp!)

Once you're central, getting around Milan is a doddle as there’s an efficient and cheap metro system. A day ticket costs just 3 euros, and most of the ticket machines have an English language option to make life easier.

Where to Stay

Okay, from my experience in this area, all I can really say is 'make an Italian friend in advance!' as that’s what I did, but that’s not the most helpful of advice... So, on your behalf, I’ve done a little snooping to find some great budget options:

♥ The Hotel 22 Marzo looks to be a nice little slice of budget style with rooms from just 40 euros pppn including free WiFi and a buffet breakfast – the positive reviews suggest it’s definitely not too good to be true, making it somewhere I’d opt for.

Aramis Studios also looks good for those on a super-tight hostel budget, particularly if you want to travel in a large group. Prices start from a mere 15 euros pppn.

Hotel Nettuno is another budget hotel that is very central and comes well recommended with single rooms going at £39 pppn.

For a wider range of options check out this Wikitravel guide to sleeping in Milan.

Stop on by this Thursday for part two, when I'll discuss Where to Eat, Where to Play and What to Take and, of course, if you've been to Milan, add your own tips in the comments!


Leia said...

I'm actually planning to go to Milan some time in the next few months! Thanks for these tips! :)

Rosie Unknown said...

Neat post, Milan is a place I want to visit someday!

Ella said...

I am planning to do Europe by train with my boyfriend and Italy is definately on the menu :)

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