Hungary Train Travel

Old Feb 7th, 2014, 01:30 PM
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Hungary Train Travel

I am very aware of the need to validate metro/tram/bus tickets in Budapest, but when traveling on regular trains (to Eger, Pecs, etc.), does one need to validate a ticket or does a train staff person come around while the train is under way and stamp tickets during the journey?
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Old Feb 7th, 2014, 02:09 PM
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depends on what type of ticket you have - usually there are discounted tickets that are train-specific and cannot be changed - thus need not be cancelled usually as if you don't show up the ticket is automatically used up.

If it's a full-fare and fully flexible ticket that can be changed and used on any train then you may have to cancel it yourself before boarding because conductors do not IME of decades of European train travel always check tickets but use an honor system. That said these are general rules and not specific to Hungarian trains but I suspect so.

You may check these sources for more info - great sites to learn about European trains in general: www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com - all with a wealth of useful info. Best in your case to ask when purchasing a ticket or at the station before boarding to get a definitive answer. If you do not cancel your own ticket if required you may be considered to be riding sans a valid ticket and penalized and also charge the full-fare price.

If you must cancel your own ticket do like others are doing and stick it in some cancelling machine trackside before boarding.
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Old Feb 8th, 2014, 12:14 PM
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http://www.mav.hu/english/

Maybe come info on that on the official site of Hungarian Railways?
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Old Feb 8th, 2014, 07:25 PM
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Hungarian trains have conductors who come around and check your ticket. No need to validate in any machines.
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Old Feb 10th, 2014, 12:41 PM
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Hungarian trains have conductors who come around and check your ticket. No need to validate in any machines.>

I assume Julie knows this for sure - but in case it is just the case that conductors come around and check that leads her to say this than in other countries, like France where they almost always do - that you still may be required to self-stamp your ticket if a fully flexible one - saves conductors time and on crowded trains they may not be able to get to everyone before they get off. Just a caution - again I do not want to doubt Julie but just to make sure she is saying this is the rule - there are no self-cancelling machines, etc. Best always to ask as things can also change suddenly.
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Old Feb 10th, 2014, 07:13 PM
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Hi Pal.... I guess it would be helpful if I added that I live in Hungary and travel frequently by train as we do not own a car. I have never needed to validate a Hungarian train ticket.

Many people buy their tickets from the conductor. I never do this as I never met a Hungarian conductor on the non international trains who speaks English!

If you are buying a ticket from one of the smaller or domestic stations, you may want to write down where you are going. Hungarian words are not easy to pronounce and I get a lot of puzzled looks at the domestic ticket windows (ex. Cs is pronounced ch... So Pecs in pronounced "pech", c is a tz so Vac is pronounced Vatz, etc). At Budapest Keleti international window, no problem. At Budapest Nyugati, English is hit or miss.
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Old Feb 10th, 2014, 07:20 PM
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Oh, one other thing implied in the above... I do not have tons of success asking anything here, as English, while improving, is not great (and even amongst the young). This will likely not improve with the new job saving law that only Hungarian Nationals can teach English in Hungarian schools.... I digress.

Enjoy Hungary. Do not be intimidated. People here always try to help me. Learn how to say hello and thank you in Hungarian and they will nearly weep in you arms.
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Old Feb 12th, 2014, 02:18 PM
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Hi Pal.... I guess it would be helpful if I added that I live in Hungary and travel frequently by train as we do not own a car. I have never needed to validate a Hungarian train ticket.>

And I thought that, especially with an English name, may be the case but then I thought maybe just someone riding a few trains - thanks for clarifying and relaying the accurate info - please do not take my questioning wrong or in a bad way please! - I just wanted to clarify - you are the expert on this
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Old Feb 12th, 2014, 07:15 PM
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No worries... It was a good question, my bad.
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Old Feb 12th, 2014, 07:45 PM
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Thank you!
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