SOURCE: United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)

United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)

September 22, 2009 11:30 ET

Quick Tips for Europe Travel

5 Hints From the Insiders at USTOA

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - September 22, 2009) - When should you avoid shopping in Southern Europe, where can you find a 350-year-old restaurant in Rome, whose birthday can you celebrate in Scotland this fall?

The U. S. Tour Operators Association -- whose member companies send 11 million people annually on vacation -- asked its members for insider tips to various parts of the world. Below are quick tips for visiting Europe destinations from destinations around the globe, from Ireland to India.

Southern Europe:

When should you avoid shopping in southern Europe?

Stop before you shop. In some parts of Southern Europe, shops and restaurants close for siesta in the afternoon, reopening in the evening and remaining open late. Travelers should plan accordingly so they are not disappointed. (Avanti Destinations)

Italy:

How should you dress for Italy?

The climate in Italy can vary from fifteen to twenty degrees in all seasons. So it's wise to bring a sweater, clothes that can be layered, and an all-weather jacket, plus comfortable walking shoes. For cruises, informal dress is the general rule, though on formal nights a cocktail dress for women and a suit or coat and tie for men is required. In addition, some religious sites in Italy may require modest dress to enter, meaning no shorts, short skirts, or sleeveless tops. (Gate 1 Travel)

Where can you dine at a 350-year-old restaurant in Rome?

La Cisterna, one of Rome's oldest restaurants, is located in the city's Trastevere section. Run by the Simmi family for over 75 years, the restaurant's origins date back to 1630. (Tauck World Discovery)

Ireland and Scotland:

How can you see Ireland on your own terms?

Choose an open voucher program that provides the first night's stay at a pre-booked hotel, and remaining nights where you will. In between explore on your own. (Celtic Tours World Vacations)

Whose 250th birthday is Scotland Celebrating?

To mark the 250th anniversary of poet Robert Burns' birth, now through November 30, Scotland is hosting numerous commemorative events. Events include the first annual Homecoming which focuses on visitors with Scottish heritage. (Go Ahead Tours)

For more information on USTOA, and for a list of member companies serving destinations around the world, visit: www.USTOA.com, www.USTOA.travel