The cheapest way to get to Europe

US to Europe cheapGetting around the world for cheap is one of my favorite things to do. To get to Europe (from the U.S.) you’ll probably choose to fly and there are a few particular routes that tend to be the cheapest (although if you have time you could take a boat or cruise: vacationstogo has discount transatlantic cruises for as little as $250). While figuring out how you want to travel I recommend using skyscanner to compare prices, and then if you are a student or under 26 also look into STA travel for possible discounts on tickets. Remember that time of year and time of the week can both have dramatic effects on prices so the more flexible you are the more you’ll save.

No matter where you’re starting from in the U.S. or where you’re going in Europe you’ll probably want to get to either east or west coast to start. The cheapest places for you to fly to in Europe will probably be Norway or Iceland.


pulpit rock norway europeNorwegian Airlines is an international budget airline and has incredibly cheap flights from a number of major U.S. cities to Oslo (Currently $146.08 from LA if you buy a few months in advance or $123.89 from Boston next weekend). Once you get to Oslo you can easily get a flight on a discount airline to anywhere you want to go in Europe. The great thing about Oslo is how well connected it is to the rest of Europe, and it’s also a pretty cool city to check out in itself. You can actually fly to Denmark and Sweden from the U.S. on Norwegian for very cheap too. Take some time to explore your options both for where to start from in the U.S. and where to end up in Europe. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your routes to save the most money and see the coolest places.


wow air U.S. to europe

This is pretty awesome: WOW air has begun flying to from Boston to Reykjavík for $99! Flying on to the rest of Europe from Iceland will cost you a little more than flying from Norway, but Iceland is an amazing country (Northern lights! Hot springs! Waterfalls!) and definitely worth a visit before going on your way. Currently they are running promotions from D.C. and Boston, but check out their best deals page to decide the best way to go.


Tower Bridge London EuropeEngland is the third cheapest country to fly to in Europe and it could be an especially good option for students who could possibly receive discounts through STA travel to get there with a special deal. From England you can fly on to other countries for next to nothing. In a week I’ll be flying from England to Ireland for about $12. $12?!?!? That’s totally ridiculous but it’s completely legit.

europe baltic sea with friendsOne of my goals for trippin with Ray is to help as many people as possible realize how accessible travel can be to everyone and to help everyone travel more. I hope that these tips will help you score some cheap flights so that you can save some cash and go on even more trips! Happy travels! ✈

Bonus: If you’re coming from Asia to Europe you can also get very cheap flights on Norwegian from Bangkok to Oslo!

photo credit: Norway – wikimedia,  Iceland – WOW air

14 responses to “The cheapest way to get to Europe”

  1. taylor t says:

    awesome stuff ray! I can’t wait to visit!!

  2. taylor t says:

    awesome stuff ray! I can’t wait to visit!!

  3. Nevena Dz says:

    What is the next trip destination Ray? 🙂

    • banks says:

      My next trip is to England! I’m leaving on Friday. But…I’m not sure where the next place I’ll write about will be! I guess just whatever inspires me : D

  4. Kae Erwin says:

    I was just looking at super expensive flights to England (depressing) and stumbled on your post via Facebook. Thank-you for the good tips!
    P.S. If you need somewhere to stay in England (Norwich area) contact my Mum via Facebook. They are always more than willing. 🙂

    • banks says:

      Thank you so much! That’s very kind. I’m headed to England tomorrow but I’ll be around Coventry. Lmk if you ever decide to come visit Italy! : )

  5. Darcy says:

    What’s the cheapest way to get from Utah to Milan? I have a brother serving a mission there now and we plan to visit after he gets back next spring.

    • banks says:

      Hi Darcy! My recommendation would be to spend some time on skyscanner and play with different routes to get you there. Your best bet is probably to get down to California or over to the east coast, then to Europe and on to Milan! It will be especially helpful if you’d like to stop by somewhere on the way over. Good luck!

  6. Manny says:

    Hello, im from tijuana mexico and planing to backpack around europe but i currently dont have a bank account, my question is does it make a difference what bank i open an account with? you know mexican bank or from the U.S or even different banks (citi bank, us bank, etc) i was thinking maybe HSBC but does it make a difference? Do you have any tips?

    • Ray Banks! says:

      Hi Manny!

      Great question. It does make a difference what bank account you open up with because they will charge you different overseas fees and such while you’re traveling.

      Most often the charge for international purchases is around 3%. Capital One and USAA (in the order) charge the smallest percent.

      For withdrawing from an ATM, Citibank tends to be the best.

        If you want to get into more details check out this website and then check on each individual bank’s website for the most up-to-date info:

        Good luck and happy travels!

  7. lawrence kaibetoney says:

    What about traveling in the states?

    • Ray Banks! says:

      Great question! Although it is difficult to fly around the U.S. for as cheap as Europe or parts of Asia, you can still use and budget airlines to find great deals! Good luck and happy travels!

  8. Rhiannon says:

    This is a great post, I love all the useful information! I’m always looking for cheaper ways to travel. Please see my recent post Why Lincoln City is Oregon’s Best Kept Secret at:

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