My bad trip – we wanted a charming money-saver but the overnight ferry was The Shining on the sea

It was almost empty, from another era and didn’t even take us to where we were going

Like many 21-year-olds before us, my boyfriend and I were on a budget when we travelled to Europe in 2016. We had decided we would spend no more than €100 each day on accomodation, food and transport. For the first few weeks of our trip, which we began in Italy, this was entirely possible.

We walked everywhere until we developed blisters and our feet bled. We stayed at hotels and bed and breakfasts, described as “rustic” and “charming” in online listings, though they were anything but. We carb-loaded to stay full: pastries for breakfast, paninis and panzerotti for lunch and pizza and pasta for dinner. We were having a wonderful time, despite the havoc the lack of fruit or vegetables was wrecking on our digestive systems.

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