How it all began…

December 29, 2011 § 3 Comments

My December trip, 2011.

From Kiitos to Danke, Dĕkuji to Danke (again) and finally a Tak. In less than 20 days, while traveling around Europe, I have learned to say “Thank you” in Finnish, Czech, German and Danish. It was a cold trip yet full of fun and good food.

My trip began when I first saw a KLM winter ticket promotion online in May: from Hong Kong to Europe for around HKD 3700 (excl. tax). I wasn’t sure about my work schedule or if I could afford a trip, so I kept dragging to get the tickets. Right before the promotion ended, I grabbed my credit card, tried to buy them but failed. I thought it was some website problem, turned out, I had a hold on my credit card…

A few weeks later, when I’ve forgotten all about it, Finnair had a similar promotion with a competitive price. This time, I didn’t wait, and went straight ahead with it. Turned out, it was a good decision. As Finnair had the Quality Hunter program in late October, the whole event just warmed me up to this airline. After reading so much about Finnair and interacted with people from this online community, I couldn’t wait to get onboard of a Finnair flight and see it for myself (which is an experience I will discuss later).

Then I booked all my trains from Vienna all the way to Berlin, and a bus connection from Berlin to Copenhagen. I must say the German train website was the most convenient to use of all. Love that. Every information is very easy to find. Details are clear and the website has an extensive English version which wouldn’t switch back to their local language all of a sudden. Next, I did my research, checking out all the places I wanted to see; when to get there; how to use the local transportation; what to eat, what not to do… I’m nuts about researching. After all, I want to get the most out of my trip and make every penny worths!

One thing though: NEVER book your hotel stay through Hotels.com. Or make sure you check out all the fine prints and service charges before you pay. I made the mistake of booking a discounted room with them, but with their heavy service charge, it was more than I would have paid if I book regular price directly with the hotel. So a lesson learned here.

This is how I prepared for all my journeys. Dec 09, 2011.

Having everything printed out, and put into a clear plastic folder, on Dec 10th 2011, I get on that Finnair AY 0070 at 01:15 am, and headed towards Helsinki. In my mind, it is a snowy winter wonderland with Santa running all over the country and reindeer flying around the sky……

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§ 3 Responses to How it all began…

  • Haha, nice to hear the start of your Europe visit. Great post, Kath. And for future reference: I always use booking.com. No hidden charges at all. Price advertised, is price payed. Simple as that. And always a good bargain to be found.
    Am looking forward to your next posts :).

    • Katharine says:

      Good to know! I’ll check out booking.com next time for sure. Now I’m in the process of getting the photos off from my camera! hope to get the next post out with some good pic for Helsinki!

  • Yuval Golan says:

    Hey Katherine,

    Good story- waiting to read some more!

    Yuval

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