September 29, 2020

BY ASHLEY KOWITZAKTravelPhoto

It’s getting close to the end of the school year and many students are planning their summer travel.

There are many destinations, near and far, that are perfect for a summer trip with friends or family. Whether you want to travel within the country or across the ocean, there are many places all around the world that cater to students. Here are five of the top ones.

Vancouver, B.C. – $600+

What is one of the best aspects of travelling within Canada? No passport is needed. Travelling to Vancouver keeps planning easier.  There’s no need to be concerned with the Canadian dollar’s conversion rate or needing to learn key phrases in a different language. It’s much simpler than international travel.

“The best part of Vancouver is the laidback attitude there. The atmosphere is so much more relaxed there than in Ontario,” said Megan Bristow, who has been to Vancouver four times in three years.

Vancouver offers a wide variety of things for tourists. For relaxation, you can walk through Stanley Park or tour the waterfront public art installations. For true relaxation, many tourists visit the hot springs.

Spring and summer offer many options for outdoor adventure in and around Vancouver. Grouse Mountain and the Capilano Suspension Bridge offer a day of cool sights and exercise.
In addition, Vancouver has many different neighbourhoods to visit and explore with a variety of incomes, cultures and architecture.

There’s something for just about everyone in Canada’s third largest city.

Las Vegas, N.V. – $500+

“Las Vegas is a good place to visit for students, especially if they are design students,” said Bronwyn Greavette, a third-year interior design student at Conestoga College. “The design is so unique because of Vegas’s main attractions, the casinos, but it has so much more than that.”

The casinos are the heart of Las Vegas, but they are not the only things that attract students to the city. There are endless shows, such as Penn and Teller, Cirque du Soleil and comedy shows.

There are also tours to the Grand Canyon and rock climbing excursions for those who enjoy the outdoors.

But students are often drawn to the bars of Las Vegas. There are endless places to get a drink while on the strip. There are even themed bars such as Minus5° Ice Bar, which gives guests a chance to escape the desert temperatures and enjoy drinks in boots and coats, or Rockhouse, a dive bar with cages to dance and beer pong tables for those who like to keep things interesting.|

“There is an endless amount of things to do in Vegas that are worth experiencing at least once,” Greavette said.

Cuba – $830+

Cuba offers resorts both near the city and on the beach, making it easy and cheap for students to visit.

“It is affordable and all inclusive. So, if you only have money to pay for the hotel stay and flight, not to worry. There is plenty to eat and drink with what you paid for,” said Gabriel Silva, a first-year supply chain and operations management student.

Most enjoy drinking at the numerous bars at their resort and lounging on the beach, but Cuba offers more for those who are looking for a little extra.

Most resorts offer trips such as group outings to baseball games, scuba diving or fishing. Each resort offers something different for the tourists, such as bus tours to markets or snorkeling in the ocean.

Silva believes travelling to places like Cuba is great for students. He said, “It will give students the opportunity to see how the locals actually live and might put things that we take for granted here in Canada in perspective.”

Italy – $1,500+

Looking for red wine, Italian food and an active volcano? Italy has a lot to offer for those who are looking for travel across the ocean.

“I think it’s a good place to visit, because it is loaded with great experiences,” said Wendy Czako-Mah, a student in the videography program. She went on to say that her favourite parts of Italy were the Coliseum, the cafés, the history and also the fashion.

While prices are high in Italy, several travel agencies suggest the further south you go the cheaper the accommodations. With the ease of train travel, day trips are the most economic way of travelling.

As well as a great nightlife, Italy has many beautiful cities with great architecture and much to see and do. It is diverse in art, natural landscape and traditions.

“It opens you up to another world that thinks differently. It helps you to have a more open mind,” Czako-Mah said.

Greece – $1,600+

Rich in history and also beautiful scenery, Greece offers a unique experience.

“My favourite parts of Greece were Ancient Corinth and Ancient Olympia,” said Enriqueta Pineda, a first-year business marketing student. “Both offered a lot of history and beautiful scenery. If someone loves the beach, then Corfu is the place to go.”

There are a few things that can only be found in Greece. First, there is mastiha; it’s a liquor that is made only on the island of Chios. There is also climbing or diving through the caves of Meteora with a chance of finding one that has yet to be explored. Greece also offers a chance to see Mount Olympus, the legendary home of Zeus.

The country is full of rich history and culture.

Pineda said that history is one of the greatest aspects for students. “I found Greece to be a very fascinating place when it comes to learning culture and also all the rich history.”

When planning your travel, it’s important to check your passport’s expiration. Some countries require that passports do not expire for a certain period of time beyond the travel dates. It is not uncommon for people to change the return date on their ticket, so many countries will require passports to be valid for 30 days, 60 days, three months, and six months beyond your scheduled return date.

“You cannot assume that because your passport has not expired in Canada, that it is good enough for entry into the country,” said Courtney Turner, a paid search specialist at Tripcentral.ca.

Medical insurance is also important when travelling abroad.

“No one ever plans on using it, but even a simple procedure in another country can be very expensive,” Turner said. She also went on to say whether you’re going for a weekend or for several weeks, travel insurance is important.

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