1 Week in Europe Itinerary: Flying Only Low-Cost Carriers

You finally make plans to travel around Europe and one week in Europe sounds absolutely amazing! Or you live on the continent and want to explore it during a vacation. A week is not enough to scratch the surface but, let’s be honest, many travelers cannot really take a longer vacation or cannot afford it.

That’s why I have come up with this simple Europe trip itinerary using only low-cost carriers and making use of home stays at each destination. Or you can even try an AirBnb. I bet Europe on a budget sounds pretty good to anyone.

2 days in London


I assume you will be landing in London– if you come from the Americas – and that the capital of Great Britain will be your first stop in Europe.

With plenty of free things to do available in London , your cheap European vacation starts off in a positive note.

I recommend the British Museum – where you can easily spend an entire day! – and the change of guards in front of Buckingham Palace. Weather and budget permitting, you may want to head to either London Eye or The Shard for some amazing views of the city.

Accommodation wise, Bayswater is a very interesting neighborhood, located close to Hyde Park and with very easy access to two tube stations , which makes it super easy to connect to the airports. You can find home stays from 45 EUR per night in this area, if you book 2-3 months in advance.

London to Rome by low-cost carrier

You fly your first leg on Rynaiar . The route will be London Stansted (STN) to Rome Ciampino (CIA). The flight takes 2 ½ hours and you can pick 5 flight times , spanning through the day.

If you only have one week to travel around Europe , then you can plan to take the 7:40pm flight out to Rome, maximizing your stay in London. Looking at flights about two months out from the date the article was written, expect to pay from 31.99 GBP (including carry on but without any checked baggage) for an adult (traveling in October 2017).

Don’t want to fly Ryanair ? Not a problem: EasyJet also flies the route , but departs out of London Luton (LTN) and flies to Fiumicino (FCO) . A similar flight costs from 36.49 GBP (including carry on but without any checked baggage) for an adult.

2 days in Rome


Rome is an open air museum so you can easily spend your time just checking out the free things to do here . Budget permitting, I recommend visiting the Forum and the Colosseum.

Accommodation wise, staying close to Termini Train Station is not as bad as it sounds (yes, I’ve stayed exactly there). It offers quick connection to the airport and you are within walking distance of the major sites in Rome. You can find home stays from 20 EUR per night in this area, if you book 2-3 months in advance.

Rome to Athens by low-cost carrier

The second leg will be on Ryanair. The route will be Rome Ciampino (CIA) to Athens (ATH). The flight takes 1h 55min and there are two flights per day available. Take the evening one at 9:30 pm to maximize your time in Rome. Looking at the same time frame, expect to pay from 41.99 EUR (including carry on but without any checked baggage) for an adult.

While EasyJet used to operate on this route, they no longer do, making Ryanair your only low-cost option.

2 Days in Athens


Out of all the cities in this article, Athens is the cheapest to visit. And yes, there are quite a lot of free things to do here as well. More so, a free walking tour can we an amazing addition to your Europe trip itinerary.

I recommend visiting the Acropolis and the Greek Agora, which together will keep you busy for a day. For a bird’s eye view of the city and to check out a place which isn’t on the traveler’s radar usually, head to Anafiotika.

Accommodation wise, I prefer Monastiraki area or to be right smack in the city center. You can find a home stay from 18 EUR per night in the center if you book 2-3 months in advance.

Athens to Budapest by low-cost carrier

You will fly your third leg on Ryanair, as well. The route will be Athens (ATH) to Budapest (BUD). The flight departs in the evening, which allows you to maximize the time spent in Athens. The flight time is 2h. Looking at the same time frame, expect to pay from 60.99 EUR (including a carry on but without any checked baggage) for an adult.

A day in Budapest

Budapest Chain Bridge
A day in Budapest is enough only to get a taste of what the city feels like. You can start with the free things to do and I recommend to just walk along the Danube, cross it on one of the bridges and go on Castle Hill.

Accommodation wise, anywhere close to Rakoczi ut is a good choice, as you will have quick access to the metro and the airport. You can find a home stay from 17 EUR per night in this area, if you book 2-3 months in advance.

Important note: before planning your trip around Europe, check your visa entry requirements. European Union nationals can travel visa-free between these destinations.

Do you like this itinerary and want to personalize it to fit your needs? Drop me a note. I can help.

Note: all prices are valid for October 2017, as researched in July 2017 and may change without notice.

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9 thoughts on “1 Week in Europe Itinerary: Flying Only Low-Cost Carriers

  1. I think this itinerary is really amazing if someone has just one week in Europe! It combines best of the West, East, and South Europe! For amazing and FREE view of London, I recommend to visit Sky Garden 🙂 I wish to visit Athens so much, I really love Greek culture 🙂

    • Ah, thanks for the tip! I’ve been to London in 2011 and stayed 5 days but, boy, was it hard to get everywhere I wanted to!
      I’m in love with Greece! You should def go!

  2. Love it Cris. If you don’t live in Europe you need to maximise your time and your budget. You’ve covered some great highlights and all the classics using these low cost airline options. I second the London Sky Garden view mentioned by a previous commenter. A great way to see the city from on high without breaking the bank

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