Trip fail: Milan

Trip Fail: Milan, by Packing my Suitcase

Not every trip is successful, even if you are a travel blogger, and have planned more trips than you can count. The chances of having a trip fail is higher than you think, and while they count as big disappointments, they may also become a funny story to tell sometime later.

If you have been following the blog long enough, you might remember that in 2014, at this exact time of the year, I was in Milan for the Formula 1 Grand PrixΒ in Monza. You might remember my impressions of MilanoΒ as well, but there is something you still don’t know about this trip: it was a fail, and here is why:

It was a Friday, after a few hours on the road driving from Munich and paying way too much for the tolls for using the Italian motorways, we decided to head straight to the circuit and see the remaining training sessions of the day. We gave away 20€ for parking the car somewhere near the entrance gate.

When leaving the circuit couple of hours later, something was wrong with our car. It just wouldn’t start. Luckily some guys were passing by and helped us with pushing it. It worked! Afraid of turning off the car again, we drove to the hotel. The problem? Milan’s traffic. It took us 2 hours to reach our destination, and we were both nervous about the probability of being one of those people whose cars break in the middle of the street.

With a bit of luck we arrived at the hotel safe and sound, and parked the car on a nearby street. Worried how we would drive back to Germany on Sunday after the race, the first thing we did when we entered the room was to call the car service back in Germany and explain what happened.

The person on the other side of the line was not sure what was wrong, and said it could be something very simple to something very complex. What to do? We decided to leave the car right where it was for the rest of the weekend, and only use public transportation to go to the Monza’s circuit.

Our car is red, but certainly not a Ferrari.
Our car is red, but certainly not a Ferrari

After a long first night trying to sleep – the hotel room was very loud because of the tram passing right under our window, and the bed sheets smelled like bleach – it took us 2 hours to reach the circuit with packed public transportation. The truth is, by the end of the trip we realised that there was no faster way to get to the circuit, 2 hours was the best we could do!

Saturday night, after leaving the circuit, we decided to take a walk around Milan’s center city before having dinner at 202 Milano. It took us longer than we thought and we still needed hurry back to the hotel to take a shower and change clothes. It was then too late to take the public transportation to get to the restaurant. So we went to the street to try to find a taxi, which was not an easy task in the given neighbourhood.

We finally found a taxi 10 minutes before our reservation time. I said the name of the restaurant to the taxi, but when we got there, the place was not a restaurant, but a simple grill where there weren’t even tables to sit down. I figured something was wrong and looked up on Internet the exact address. We were definitely at the wrong place. We took the next taxi available and rushed to have our dinner.

Trip Fail: Milan, by Packing my Suitcase

Sunday arrived. It was our last day. We had no choice but drive with the car to the circuit – from there we were driving straight home – and we were lucky once again to get help from a guy passing by. The car worked and we almost made a party.

At the circuit we decided to park the car in a free parking, which was about 4Km from our entrance gate – I am not kidding. The entire Formula 1 weekend was amazing, but when the race was over, all we could think about was the car. Would it work until we get in Germany? We couldn’t stop for anything on the way, and if we did, we had to leave the car on.

When arriving at the parking lot, the drama of finding someone to help and make the car work again began. After half an hour trying, with the help of a mechanic guy, we were set to leave Italy. But first: we needed gas.

At the gas station one of the staff asked us to turn off the car and we both screamed NO, we can’t! He just said: BATERIA? Yeah, whatever you say, we knew it wasn’t the battery, but we just said yes and he let us be.

Trip Fail: Milan, by Packing my Suitcase

Hours later, we made it to Germany and went straight to the car service that would repair the car the day after. Even though the garage was closed on Sunday night, we decided to leave the car parked nearby the entrance; it would make the move easier on Monday morning.

When we finally got home and had time to breathe, we started to process the latest happenings. What a weekend! We walked a lot, we went to the wrong restaurant, on the first night we had dinner at a place where they brought the wrong order, the car broke down, the journey to the circuit was incredibly long, the hotel was horrible, we paid a lot for tolls and parking, and guess what? One week after we left the car parked near the garage, we received a fine for not paying the overnight parking on the street – we didn’t see that we were supposed to pay to park there.

This trip was such a fail that even one week later we faced the consequences. Not to mention, we had to walk so much around the circuit that my ankles were pretty sore for days. At least the problem with the car was just a simple chip that got disconnected!

Who else had a trip fail recently?


Β See also: Trip Fail: The Bahamas

About Allane

A Brazilian living in Germany. Married to W. mommy to a baby girl and a Golden Retriever. Traveler, writer, aspiring photographer, diver, wine appreciator, Formula 1 fan, avid reader of historical and young adult fictions books. City girl, nature lover, believer of a better world, one little change at a time.

  • I’m so glad you wrote about this. I think there’s a stigma against people complaining about travels, bc it’s such a gift just to have an opportunity to, you know? The 2nd part of my summer vaca, in Italy, was a trip fail – following a nightmarish train ride, I was mostly stuck at my Agriturismo without mobility for a week, and even the food was meh.

    • hahaha yes, shit happens πŸ™ not everything is perfect, even if you are travelling… so many things can happen!
      I am sorry that your Italy trip wasnt successful for you! Next time you know how do make it better πŸ˜€

  • hahaha no problem Vlad, today we only laugh about it. But it was a long weekend! At least we had fun at the F1 Grand Prix πŸ˜€
    Ohhhh I wanna read story already hahaha

  • hahaha exactly! It was very chaotic. Driving in Milan isnt fun πŸ™

  • hahaha I guess you are right Andrew!!!
    I was actually very happy about the Formula 1 part, the rest was a total stress hahaha.

  • Yes, I agree with you, not every trips is perfect πŸ˜€
    Ohh noo, really? I think getting sick is probably the worse one πŸ™

  • I know right?? We even tried to meet a friend there, but it was very difficult to find time, as we spent the whole day at the circuit and many hours trying to get back to Milan hahaha. Next time it will for sure be better πŸ˜€ and we can finally meet each other!!

  • hahaha yesss, it wasn’t the most successful trip πŸ™
    Ohh noo really? You guys too? Sorry to hear that. Good that you got a replacement car, but I can only imagine the stress of the situation!

  • haha yes, it wasn’t the best experience, but could have been worse I guess. And you are right, driving in Italy can be challenging sometimes, nothing like in Germany πŸ˜€
    And the Grand Prix no doubt made the trip be worth it πŸ˜€

  • hahaha we did worry about the car all the time, but we didn’t have much to do, but to wait. It could have been worse I guess hahaha, at least we made it back safe and sound πŸ˜€

  • Hi Pati!! haha yess, it was an exhausting weekend, at least the F1 GP was awesome πŸ˜‰
    Yess, the traffic was terrible, especially on Friday at rush our hahaha

  • Phoebe Thomas

    What an exhausting weekend, but like you say, good to write up later as an epic fail!!!

  • Kathleen (Kat)

    I guess the expression “when it rains, it pours” is quite apt in your failed trip to Milan. Yeah happened to me before when I went to North Goa – Anjuna – didn’t meet my expectations one single bit, was sorely disappointed πŸ™ #MondayEscapes

  • At least you can probably laugh about it now! Aachen was a sort of trip fail for us…we wanted to visit it because we had a thought about maybe moving there and we had planned to stay there and check out the town to get a feel for it, but within the first 10 minutes driving into town we were immediately turned off and all of our plans changed for this trip. That’s why we went to a bunch of other places like Monschau and Leuven. Some trips just don’t turn out to be what you want them to be!

    • Ohhh noo really? I have never been to Aarchen before! I think it was a good idea for you guys to visit it before planning to move there πŸ˜€

  • Ohhh nooo, are you serious? I am so sorry to hear that! That was definitely a fail πŸ™

  • Ohh my!! I am looking forward to read it!!

  • hahaha yes, it happens to everyone!! It’s good that we can laugh about it later on!

  • I have to say that Milan didn’t conquer my heart, but the old town is very pretty with the architecture and all πŸ˜€ though not a place I would love to go again, only if it is for the F1 GP again πŸ˜€
    I think you made a great decision on visiting the lakes!

  • Yes, bad days are difficult to avoid πŸ™
    Oh nooo, I hope you get your car soon to get fixed, better now than later!

  • hahaha yes!! It seems that on bad thing attracts the other!

  • hahaha yes, I hope next time will be better πŸ˜€

  • It was not the best weekend of travels, but the Formula 1 Grand Prix made it worth it though πŸ˜€
    I hope next time I visit Milan things will be better!!

  • Thank you Trish, yes, I think that sharing the bad is also good!! People need to know that not everything is perfect! πŸ˜€

  • Yes, it was very stressful… but thank God the F1 GP was awesome and it was worth it!
    Oh no, really? Sorry to know that!
    You never know when these things happen right? We always check the car before going on a road trip, though somethings are difficult to avoid.

  • haha great point! I can certainly agree with you! πŸ˜€

  • hahaha yeah, the GP was amazing, so it was worth it going there anyways! πŸ˜€

  • Yes, it wasn’t a good weekend, but yes thank God the F1 GP was amazing πŸ˜€
    Ohh noo, really?? Sorry to know that! I hope the rest of the honeymoon was amazing πŸ˜€

  • hahaha yes, I certainly can laugh about it now.
    Ohh nooo, the problem with the luggage is reaaally annoying πŸ™ at least you didn’t lose all your stuff.
    I also like telling the negative side of things too haha, I think it’s important!

  • OMG really? πŸ™ sorry to know that!! I can only imagine how mad you were about it.
    Yes, luckily trip fails don’t happen often!! I am really glad about it πŸ˜€

  • hahaha yes Claire, it can happen, but fortunately not often πŸ˜€ thank you, I’m glad we got home safe too!

  • hahahaha yes, I laugh a lot about this trip! It became a story to tell everyone πŸ˜€
    Next time will be better, I hope hahaha

  • Yes, you are right Lisa! Somethings are simply hard to predict. πŸ˜€

  • Ohh yesss, I remember reading your story! Oh my, that was very unfortunate πŸ™ I would be very mad at this. Sorry again for that, at least it turned into an interesting story to tell!

  • Yess, really annoying πŸ™ but well, next time I know πŸ˜€
    Ohh that’s a good idea! Nor cars in Milan hahaha
    I hope you enjoy your trip!

  • Ohh nooo hahaha, I am always afraid of buying a flight ticket twice, before paying I check it 100 times just to make sure. πŸ˜€

  • hahahaha, yes very annoying!!
    Don’t worry, you are not the only one having trip fails. At some point it happens to everyone. πŸ˜€

  • ahaha yes πŸ˜€

  • My goodness so glad you got home safe and sound Allane! I’m sorry to hear that you had such a stressful trip to get to the Monza Grand Prix but it’s good that you’ve highlighted this in your blog as unfortunately things don’t always go to plan. We loved Munich for example but it was horrible being so sick for the first few days when we both had the flu. It meant we couldn’t do as much as we planned and I felt so weak and ill when we went out at first πŸ™ However we were lucky enough to be in Germany with good health facilities – loved our “local” Apotheke!!

    • Yes, thank God it was only the stress and everything ended fine.
      I know, being sick while traveling is probably one of the worst things. I have also been sick while traveling before and it wasnt nice πŸ™
      Glad you recovered on time to enjoy Munich πŸ˜€

  • Mabel Kwong

    That sounded like a very stressed trip :/ It was almost like everything that went wrong, almost went wrong. Car trouble is always the worst because sometimes that means you don’t end up going to certain places you want to go to. But glad to hear you got back all okay in the end.

    Sometimes I like to travel to the outer suburbs of Melbourne and go exploring. Often, the public transportation takes longer than usual – usually because it is slow and delays. And that leaves less time to go exploring around and end up rushing back πŸ˜€

    • Yes, it was πŸ™ but I am glad in the end we had fun at the GP and managed to get back home safely πŸ™‚
      Next time will be different haha πŸ˜€

      Oh really? Is the public transportation in Melbourne slow?

      • Mabel Kwong

        It always seems like you have fun at the races. Always a good time do that is good πŸ™‚ Public transport in Melbourne can be verrry slow. If one tram or train breaks down, then the whole line for that area will be affected :/ But, when there are events like the F1 on in the city, then there will be more trams and trains. Still, always very packed πŸ˜€

  • hahaha thank you so much dear! I’m happy to know that you like my honesty. I do think this is very important, people also should know the negative things too, not everything is perfect πŸ˜€

  • Yes πŸ˜€

  • Ohh nooo, so sorry to know that!! :/
    I hate to have car problems on a road trip!
    I hope your trip to Milan will be amazing!