When to take the bus instead of the train

Hip mannequin in Prenzlauer Berg

So you want to explore Europe and enjoy the journey as much as the destination? Renting a car is a hassle. So you can choose to go by train or bus. Let’s take a look at the important differences between Eurolines and Interrail.

Eurolines operates all over Europe and connects 600 cities all over the continent. You get a clear picture of the costs by using their booking form to check prices between cities.

The trick is to spot the regular promotional offers. You can easily spot them if you open up the calendar next to the booking form. Hint: They often recur weekly.

Interrail does not give you a clear breakdown of involved costs. Sure, you can buy the Global Pass and use it on all regional trains in Europe. But the Interrail Pass is at least 250 Euro for an adult and there are a few facts that this flexibility involves:

  • If you will only travel to 2-3 places over the course of two weeks, then chances are that you pay 80 Euro or more for each leg of the journey.

  • Some regional trains will require you to have a seat reservation. If you are really ot of luck, you might have to stand in trains. Especially if you travel during commuting hours on busy routes.

Do you really need all that flexibility?

It’s great to just roam around freely in Europe with train. Looking out the window from the bistro car while you enjoy your supper with friends is fun! There is plenty of space and you can move around freely. But a bus will take you from A to B and you will have your seat, most likely for a very low price with Eurolines.

So when are you better off taking the bus? The question you should ask yourself before setting out on your trip is whether you need the flexibility that an Interrail pass comes with? If you already know exactly where you want to go and the journey is secondary to the destinations, then Eurolines can save you some precious money.

If you are clear on where you want to go, then check the total cost for all legs of your journey with Eurolines. What you loose in terms of flexibility, you most likely save in money compared to using an Interrail Global Pass!

A steady increase of Eurolines passengers the last decade

The last 10 years more people choose to ride around in buses around Europe. The comfort has increased steadily and with the onboard Internet it’s now easy to find online distractions while on the road. Although most passengers are 18-25 years old, the comfort and reach of Eurolines buses is becoming a more attractive option for older generations as well.

Eurolines and Interrail have their distinct advantages. Just put some time into preplanning to find out what works best for the trip you’re going on.

 

 

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