New travel opportunities proposed for over 18s

New travel opportunities proposed for over 18s

An Irish MEP wants all Europeans to be given an inter-railing ticket on their 18th birthday.

The proposal is set to be  discussed at the European Parliament in Strasbourg this week.

Fine Gael's Brian Hayes thinks it would benefit teenagers, tourist operators and enhance social cohesion.

Beat News spoke to two girls from the South East who bought inter railing tickets in the Summer of 2016.


The pair said traveling around Europe was a 'fantastic experience'.

Tara Condon and Catherine O' Donoghue left Clonmel in Tipperary on the 1st of June and went inter railing for 25 days. Catherine said: "The three of us, me our other friend Ava and Tara wanted to go inter railing because we were talking about going away for a bit in the summer and we all kind of wanted to go inter railing anyway without even having to discuss it. It was a great way to travel around Europe and get it over with now before we got older and didn't get a chance to. We went on the first of June so we had a couple of weeks after college before we went off."

The girls went to Amsterdam, Berlin, Krakow, Prague, Budapest, Lake Bled, Vienna, Venice and Rome. They told us they were fascinated how one day they were in one country and the next day they were in another.

They started off flying out from Dublin to Amsterdam exploring the Dutch city by purchasing an 'I Am Amsterdam' ticket. The value ticket is aimed at anyone who wants to have an action-packed trip around Amsterdam. It allows free, unlimited travel on public transport for however long you are staying there for. You also get a free canal cruise and free entry to some of the main attractions in Amsterdam such as the  Van Gogh Museum, The Foam Photography Museum, The National Maritime Museum, to name a few. To top it off in Amsterdam, most of the nightclubs are free entry, with complimentary shots as well as a free über (transport app) at the end of the night after you've danced your night away in the popular capital.


So did it break the bank? Tara and Catherine reckon the inter railing ticket only came to roughly €380 and then all of the hostels they stayed in for their duration of the trip came to around €240.

Catherine says: "I would say that in regards to hostels, try book them as close to the centre of wherever you are staying as it costs a bit extra when it comes to using public transport."

The girls booked hostels in advance paying a small deposit for the first three countries they visited a few months before jetting off. The pair also advised that booking in advance to get the best deals before they rise up in price, so planning ahead especially for going on the trains is always a good idea. Tara explained that: "Mostly you can just go to a station and hop on to wherever you want to go. However, certain trains have to be pre-booked. For example we took a night train from Krakow to Prague which we had beds on, so we had to book this train in the station the day before!"

Tara liked staying in hostels as "you can cook your own food in there to save money eating out all time". Catherine said it wasn't too expensive for them to travel around Europe for a month as food and alcohol were much more affordable than the prices here. As for drinks, since beer is so popular in Europe, the girls made it a thing to try every local beer in all the different cities!


The girls followed the trip to Berlin while paying a visit to some famous tourist attractions such as Checkpoint Charlie, the Brandenburg Gate, the East Side Gallery, the Berlin Wall and the Holocaust Memorial. Tickets for these attractions can be bought online.

In Rome they went to see the Trevi Fountain and the Colosseum. While in Prague they visited the John Lennon Wall. Tara really enjoyed visiting Krakow as she's studying history as part of her course in UCC. "We visited Auschwitz when we went to Krakow which is something I’ve really wanted to do as I've a huge interest in history so that really stood out to me!"

When asked what their favourite memories were, Tara added: "I genuinely cannot pick out one thing that was specifically the best part for me because I seriously loved every minute of it! I loved travelling around to so many different places and seriously enjoyed every part of it. If I try to pick my favourite part I change it again to something else every time! I did particularly love our time in Budapest and Bled though. I loved experiencing the different cultures. I can’t pick my favourite one, everywhere was unique and I enjoyed them all. "




Catherine told us about their funniest moment while away in a water park in Venice: "We were on a big water slide called the Crazy River. So basically it's two people in a rubber float and you go down a kind of a "river styled" slide and in the middle there's kind of an interval where you just float around on a flat water surface for two minutes, then the current kind of brings you down onto the next part of the slide. But for me and Tara it wasn't that easy and we ended up getting stuck there twice! The first time we were stuck for 20 minutes! But one of my favourite nights was in Lake Bled, we went to a bar and it was full of young Irish people, it was a good laugh!"

When asked for any advice for first timers heading off the girls said to budget wisely and try not to spend too much in one country, Tara advised  to look into the train times and dates as such before leaving to have some sort of a plan, the girls planned dates and times ahead so they knew exactly when they were going to be in a certain place.

Both girls have made some plans for next summer: Catherine is hoping to go to Greece for a couple of months, Tara isn't sure of a location just yet, but is definitely planning on traveling around again.