Da more than 30 years generations of kids have left for theinterrail discovering Europe: backpacking, train ticket and a great desire to discover. Unfortunately, a number of interrails have been associated with time false myths, fed in part by the travelers themselves. I'm personally departed 3 times in interrail (France, Germany and Eastern countries) and I would therefore like to try to debunk some foolish beliefs.
1) You sleep in the hostel to save money
There is not nothing more foolish it's false. The hostels come to cost as well 15-20 euros per night per person, while not offering the comforts of the hotel. If you really want to experience interail, that is to walk all day and visit every corner of the city you arrive in a slavish way, you just can't afford to spend sleepless nights in god-forgotten places, or in uncomfortable dormitories. We are in 2011: just book a hotel before leaving for pay it less than a hostel. There is nothing simpler than getting 3 or 4 star hotels at 20 euros per person per night, you just need to know how to organize yourself.
2) The interrail is not organized, we just leave
This is not false, it is simply stupid. What good is it to leave with no idea in mind and find yourself waiting hours and hours in train stations for impromptu destinations at the last moment, throwing away what you have most precious: your time. A good traveler gets organized always on time and always has a clear idea of the places to reach before leaving.
3) To save money, you bring food from home and eat cans
Again: 1 bringing food from home is grotesque. Excessively filling a backpack already destined to be full (average travel time: 3,4 weeks) with food bought before leaving is a decision worthy of the worst traveler. I assure you: you can also find food abroad, and at the same prices, if not less. Also, eating cans of beans for 3 weeks may save you a few euros, but it only contributes to spoil the trip: you need energy to travel well and move every day, so you need to eat decently, not in a three-star Michelin, but simply in local places, where the natives eat.
4) The desperate assault on washing machines
Not a few times I have seen travelers, already reduced to bad conditions, who wandered through the cities in desperate search of washing machines for your own clothes. Now, if you are traveling in the summer, just leave with a 60-80 liter backpack and a decent number of changes to never have to waste time washing clothes. Two compartments are made in the backpack and used and clean clothes are divided. On return he washes everything.
5) We leave without a guide because interail is an adventure
Yet another madness: the driving is key. It is there, on your beautiful Routard, that you will find advice on where to eat, have breakfast and what to visit. Sure, never delegate in full a guide for their holiday, but always remains a very faithful ally. You should never be presumptuous while traveling. Nothing prevents us from stopping someone on the street to ask for some advice.
If the interail you do it for yourself follow the advice. Otherwise, if you do it for others, and you want to swell the numerous queues of those who have traveled just to be able to say, once back: "we did the interrail we killed each other, never ate for 3 weeks, slept alone in the station and never washed ”, please ignore this post.