How to travel by Bus or Train across the Europe. Interrail, Eurail or Eurolines Pass?

How to travel by Bus or Train across the Europe. Interrail, Eurail or Eurolines Pass?

 

Interrail, Eurail, Eurolines Pass or simply book your bus or train travel across the Europe?

 
This guide will compare advantages and disadvantages of both train and bus travel in Europe.
Prices and important links are included to help you travel cheaper or longer.
 
Zurich Main Train Station
 
Zurich Main Train Station
 
 
Money saving travel tips. Let’s start here
 
Even if the low cost airlines are present in Europe, and cover most of the big cities and interesting places, honestly, train travel and especially buses beat the prices rather easily.
 

If I really want to travel cheap in Europe than I would definitely choose a BUS.

 
DB Bus
 
Drives under 5 hours are convenient, but sometimes great prices push you to travel more, even if the whole comfort is more than questionable, mostly for tall people (like me)
 
Bus Travel
 
On the other hand, nothing beats the comfort of a train. Night trains are also a great option to save on accommodation and if you are asleep then the traveling goes faster.
 
Another advantage of train and bus travel compared to flying is that main stations are almost always located in city centers, so you don’t need expensive transport from the airport and you can use public transportation.
 
The next great thing about traditional traveling by bus or train is the luggage, you are not very limited, but you can pack more on a train than a coach.
 
Even train carriers understand the power (I think the cheap price) of bus transport, DB (Deutsche Bahn) also operates IC buses on some routes.
 
Ready-made bus tours are somehow controversial; on one hand, they let you see the places sometimes for the fraction of the price that you would pay travelling by yourself. But should you share your experiences with 40 other people, in a hotel that is 100 km out of the city center and where sleeping on a bus is considered as normal?
 
Is 280 Euro, 6-Day French Riviera tour (accommodation included) worth thinking about?
 
More ways to get around Europe on the cheap? Click here.
 
Trains
 
The most comfortable art of traveling in Europe (ok, maybe not in Eastern Europe, but still ok).
Even here, low cost carriers fight with traditional monopolies.
 

There are basic rules that apply that are similar to booking a plane ticket. You need to book in advance in order to save.

 
There are also some exceptions like Switzerland, where advance purchase won’t save you the Money.

Probably the most helpful website on trains and timetables is SEAT61 from Mark Smith (I am a fan of overland travel)
 
Train Travel
 
Children get ticket discounts in most countries in Europe.
 
The best train timetable information for your travels in Europe are accessible through Deutsche Bahn (sorry, no fares outside Germany).
 
Trains Germany
You can also check available train connections via ACP Rail
 
Rail Europe or Eurail Pass?

To be honest, I think buying a point-to-point ticket directly at the station is a much better option.

 
Train Passes are overpriced, but I can understand that for some people they are a kind of security and help them stay stress free during their European trip.
 
Even if you don’t buy your train tickets in advance, there is also an option to book your bus tickets online.
 
Traveling 3 Days on Eurail One Country Pass in Italy will cost you about 166 Euro in second class.

If you want to check prices on train passes, you can visit Eurail or Rail Europe
 
Pendolino
 
You can take a look and estimate prices for your travel across the Europe at Rick Steves’ website
 
In the UK, you can check timetables at Red Spotted Hanky
 
Low-cost train options in UK are available through Virgin Trains
 
Nice train travel tools are also available at Voyages SNCF (focused on France)
 
Wien Hauptbahnhof
 
In Czech Republic and in Slovakia, low cost carrier Regio Jet operates. As a standard, they offer free WIFI (to be honest, free WIFI on trains and buses sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t) and coffee on their trains.
 
They compete with another train carrier Leo Express
 
Since December 2011, railway company Westbahn operates between Vienna and Salzburg. This company also covers buses to Prague, Trieste (Italy), and connection buses to Munich with other bus companies.
 
Buses
 

One of the biggest bus operators in Europe is Eurolines

 
Eurolines also offers Eurolines Pass, which includes 15 Days of fare starting from 195 Euro.
 
Flixbus
 
In Germany, Meinfernbus is quite popular because of its prices. Buses are comfortable, you can use free WIFI (when it works) and they also have their own movie library.
They have a broad route network through Germany and connecting Germany with Austria, Italy and Switzerland.

Munich – Salzburg fare was 7 Euro one way
Munich – Vienna was 37 Euro one way
Vienna – Graz 9 Euro one way
 
Flixbus – Sometimes even cheaper than Meinfernbus and with different routing (Vienna through Salzburg).
 
Munich – Vienna 19 Euros

 
ADAC Postbus
 
Probably the best coach operator in Germany
 
Adac Postbus
 
Berlinlinienbus
 
Another coach service with low prices. Buses are very comfortable and the company has high safety standards.

Berlin – Amsterdam fare 22 Euro one way
Berlin – Budapest fare 44 Euro one way

 
IC Bus DB (Deutsche Bahn) works together with other coach carriers in order to cover bus transportation in addition to the rail network in Germany. They offer regular routes between Prague and Munich. You can also book the tickets via Student Agency

Prague-Munich fare starts at 27 Euro.
 
Student Agency offers both train and coach (yellow buses) services. Trains are running in Czech Republic and Slovakia, but their buses connect the whole of Europe and are quite cheap. Route networks include Paris, Naples in Italy, London, Goteborg and many other European Cities.
 
Regiojet
 
In Slovakia, there are also many bus companies, but the best known are Student Agency, Interbus and Eurobus. Most of the bus companies here are working in cooperation with Eurolines.
 
Once in Eastern Europe, there is another cheap but quality bus carrier called Polskibus with new bus fleets and all necessary comforts on board, such as WIFI and air conditioning.

Krakow – Berlin 16 Euro Fare
 
If your European itinerary includes cities as Riga, Tallinn, Vilnius or Moscow then Lux Express and Ecolines are good choice.
 
Where is it possible to get a bus ticket for as low as 1.5 Pounds? The answer is Megabus. Now Megabus covers Europe with routes from Germany, UK, Belgium, France or Spain.
 
24-Hour Coach Drive from Barcelona to Amsterdam (I think no one would do this) for 17 Euro.
 
There is a special kind of bus travel known as Bus Tours.
 
Probably the most well-known company is Busabout, combining great crew and cheap prices.
 
Busabout, HAGGiS & Shamrocker share the same concept. Haggis is focused on trips through Scotland, Wales, and Cornwall. With Shamrocker, you can experience Ireland
 
Bus or Train Travel across the Europe? Let us know.
 

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