Notices

Travel from Paris to Budapest

Reply

Apr 5th, 2014, 04:29 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Travel from Paris to Budapest

In July, I will be traveling for a couple of weeks with three other people, starting in Paris and ending in Budapest. I am trying to determine the best way to travel from Paris to Budapest. I may have as many as six days to get there. It is unlikely that the mode of travel will be booked more than two weeks in advance. Of course, the lowest cost would be preferable, but all options are open. It appears that taking a train is considerably more expensive than taking a discount airline flight. Ease of travel would also, of course, be preferred, and time waste is also a factor.

The six days allocated for travel are not necessarily strictly for getting from point A to
point B. If we fly, then we would likely fly somewhere close to Budapest and tour there for the balance of the travel time. If we travel by train of bus, then we could visit someplace between Paris and Budapest, but I prefer it to be only one major stop. Something in the mountains or nature would be preferred. Possibilities could be flying to Crackow and taking a train/bus through Slovakia to Budapest, or flying somewhere closer in Austria and hiking from hut to hut and then a train to Budapest. Not sure if those are feasible, but that is the kind of thing I have in mind.

Any opinions on train versus plane? Is a bus an option? A rental car would currently be the least preferable mode. Would a combination of travel modes be realistic, or overly complicated or expensive?
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 5th, 2014, 05:01 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,190
I would stop in Salzburg or Vienna on the way to Budapest. From Salzburg you can access smaller towns in the countryside. Perhaps rent a car there and explore the area. Outside of main towns/cities public transportation is often not the best method of travel.

I would not take a bus from Paris to Budapest as the train takes 14+ hours during the day and 20 hours at night. The Eurolines site is down right now so I could not check the time from Paris to Budapest.

Krakow to Budapest by train is 10 hours. The Orangeways bus leaves mid afternoon and arrives at 10:00 or there is an overnight bus arriving in Budapest at 6:00 AM.

Train is better than bus as you can get up and stretch and bring a lunch on board.

I've heard of hut to hut hiking in Switzerland but don't know if Austria has the same thing.

Where did you look up the train pricing? From Paris you should buy tickets 90 days in advance for best fares. If you looked on Raileurope you will definitely pay too much and if you looked at the French rail site but did not look 90 days ahead then you're not looking at the best fares.
adrienne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 5th, 2014, 07:13 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 821
try www.rome2rio.com for some help.

There is also vuerling.com and airberlin.com
jan47ete is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 5th, 2014, 09:37 PM
  #4
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Thanks. Im not sure which website I looked at, but I believe the cost for 4 to take a train to Budapest was about 1200 euro while the cost on Ryanair was about 400. Switzerland is too pricey. Perhaps a flight into Vienna and then try to get to the high Tatras if no suitable hiking/mountains around Vienna.
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 5th, 2014, 09:37 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Thanks. Im not sure which website I looked at, but I believe the cost for 4 to take a train to Budapest was about 1200 euro while the cost on Ryanair was about 400. Switzerland is too pricey. Perhaps a flight into Vienna and then try to get to the high Tatras if no suitable hiking/mountains around Vienna.
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 5th, 2014, 09:48 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 159
These are two of my favorite cities in Europe. I would fly and split the days between them. You could fly Air Berlin to Vienna and take an inexpensive train to Budapest if you like.... Spending some number of days in Vienna.
JulieCallahan is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 6th, 2014, 05:30 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,606
No need to fly, the journey is as much part of the experience as the destinations.

Train travel is really cheap if you pre-book as early as you can, as western European train fares now work like air fares - cheap in advance, far more expensive full-flex if you buy on the day.

Paris-Munich on the 15:25 200mph double-deck TGV Duplex starts at 39 euros booked at either www.bahn.de/en or www.capitainetrain.com

Munich to Vienna starts at 39 euros booked at www.bahn.de/en or www.oebb.at

You can add a stopover in Salzburg for up to 48h at no extra cost by using the 'add stopover' feature on www.bahn.de and entering the number of hours in the hh:mm box. For a longer stop, you'd book two separate tickets at www.bahn.de German Railways then www.oebb.at Austrian Railways.

Or there's the scenic route via Switzerland and the Arlberg Pass:

Paris-Zurich from 25 euros at www.capitainetrain.com, the 200mph TGV takes just 4h05.

Zurich to Innsbruck starts at 19 euros, Zurich-Salzburg or Vienna from 29 euros, at Austrian Railways www.oebb.at

Vienna to Budapest starts at 19 euros at www.oebb.at, on-the-day fare 38 euros.
Man_in_seat_61 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 6th, 2014, 01:55 PM
  #8
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Thank you for the excellent ideas. Julie: I will look at the Berlin air website to see where they fly to and from and their costs. I have read that the budget airlines tend to upcharge a lot for extra luggage, etc. Does anyone have any horror stories as to how bad this can get, or is it something that, at its worst would only amount to an extra 50 euro per ticket? Man in Seat: Your response makes the train seem much more reasonable from a cost perspective. Do you have a rough idea of the time it would take? Also, if you buy tickets now, how hard is it to cancel them (over the internet(?)), and how late could you do so? Also, Im not sure how you would make reservations. Over the internet with a credit card? Where would you pick up the tickets, or is it similar to getting a boarding pass for an airplane over the internet? Also, you mentioned the scenic route thru Switzerland. Is it very scenic between Paris and Zurich and Zurich and Innsbrook? All of the websites that I look at dont seem to have any scenic routes that far north (for me, any mountains would be pretty scenic).
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 6th, 2014, 09:06 PM
  #9
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 159
I mention Air Berlin because historically that has been the cheapest for us and they don 't have the onerous baggage rules (we used to live in Slovakia and flew this route a good bit).

Beware of Ryanair as they fly into an airport way outside of the city which is quite inconvenient.

We have tried to take a train on this route but that solution has always been many times the price of flying.
JulieCallahan is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 6th, 2014, 09:39 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,609
Bloke - not to say there aren't viable alternatives, but be assured the Man in Seat 61 knows what he's talking about -

http://www.seat61.com

Fodors and the wider travel community have benefited greatly from his website and generous advice for quite some time.
farrermog is online now  
Reply With Quote
Apr 7th, 2014, 08:42 PM
  #11
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Thanks for the responses. I will probably look at Berlin air to see if they fly into Kracow. Maybe there are some cheap flights into Bratislava.
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2014, 03:30 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 4
Thought is was worth mentioning that Air Berlin and their counterpart, FlyNiki, are not considered budget airlines and, thus, do not have crazy rules. Ryanair, EasyJet are two examples of budget airlines which require a careful read of the rules.
CherriesJubilee is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2014, 10:41 AM
  #13
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,632
Easyjet's rules aren't "crazy". they are pretty typical, you pay extra to check a bag, and you can only carry one bag onboard.
Christina is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2014, 12:00 PM
  #14
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,340
The Man in Seat 61 is a huge train proponent. Fact is, you'll lose a full day of your trip en route if you take a train, and about 3.5 hours if you fly.

<< Does anyone have any horror stories as to how bad this can get, or is it something that, at its worst would only amount to an extra 50 euro per ticket? >>

The discount airlines are more in the "at worst 50E per ticket" range.

There is no vuerling[dot]com, the airline is Vueling and its website is vueling.com.
BigRuss is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 8th, 2014, 08:07 PM
  #15
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 12
Thanks. Time is definitely a consideration, but there is no doubt that trains will be a part of the shorter hauls. I suppose that there are nice areas on the Polish side of the Tatras also.
Bloke is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:14 PM.