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Thread: Enjoy Visiting Madrid On a Budget

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    Member siamak's Avatar
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    Smile Enjoy Visiting Madrid On a Budget

    Madrid is probably the cheapest of all European capitals to visit. Here we explain how to experience the city at the lowest possible cost!

    Find flights. Here's where you can make the biggest savings. Check out both direct and indirect routings. Travel off season (both at origin and destination). Sometimes it is worth flying on a low cost carrier to a major hub then purchase the international segment separately.

    Analyze your airline. Make sure you sign up for your carriers frequent flyer scheme. This will offset future flight costs or pay for a treat after your visit.3Book the hotels before you get there. Find the hotel you like. Search the hotel name and find the lowest Internet offer then contact the hotel directly asking if they can beat the best Internet rate you've seen. You may be pleasantly surprised.4Obtain local currency. Do this in Madrid where you will be offered a better rate than buying foreign currency that is funny in your home country. Not at the airport though! Alternatively you can draw money through an ATM at better rates (There are ATM's in the airport).5Get to your hotel. The Madrid metro and bus system is both safe and efficient.

    A 10 trip ticket costs 7€ and can be shared by the whole group.6Getting out of the hotel. Nearly everything you will want to see is within walking distance. Donīt take a taxi unless absolutely necessary. If you do need a taxi stop one in the street, donīt telephone for one as the meter starts immediately the call ends.7Go and sightsee. There are a number of discount cards offering combined entrance to the major attractions. Find the scheme that suits you best.8See the Museums - Visit on Sundays and public holidays when entrance is free for the majority.

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    Member siamak's Avatar
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    Keep enough free time for an excursion - These are cheaper and with more convenient timings if you do them yourself using the regional bus and train network.10We've all got to eat. Eat well at the hotel provided breakfast buffet. For lunch choose a small bar offering "Menu del dia". "Menu del dia" is a three course meal for less than €10 and the quality is always good, after all the bars want the repeat custom from the natives.11A souvenir or two. Make sure you collect the receipts for purchases over €92 and claim back the tax paid upon departure at the airport.12Protect your purchases. Make all purchases with credit cards in order to have added buyers protection.13Enjoy a Sporting event - Book tickets for football and basketball directly with the clubs themselves. Its not difficult and there are guides out there explaining how to do so. This will save you up to 200% against tout / scalper prices.14Optional step. Companions - Visit Craigslist and ask for a Spanish guide in exchange for speaking English with them all day. The number of Spanish people proud of their city and wanting to practice English is astounding.

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    Member siamak's Avatar
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    Before visiting ask as many questions as possible on Internet travel sites & forums.Open a new favorites folder named "Madrid holiday /vacation" and store all the useful sites you find. You can always delete it afterwards.
    Visit the major pay-for attractions during the siesta time on weekdays (afternoons between 1400 & 1700).Cuban cigars are freely available but if you are flying to the USA they are likely to be confiscated.
    Street vendors of DVDs carry low quality products and will say they are in English although they are not.

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