Fly Or Rail In Europe

Some of my friends do asked me about how to go around europe...whether its much more convenient to take flights or better as well taking trains...and i told them that its all depends on which country you are going and the distance between each cities...



Let me start with the most recent eurotrip that i had arranged for my friends...since i didn't manage to join them...i tailored the trips to be more convenient for them...so i arranged for them to have those cities to be travelled on train and flight...Paris-Brussels-Amsterdam-Geneva-London...for the first 3 cities in the list...it is more convenient to travel on train since the cities are near to each other...from Paris to Brussels by Thalys...and from Brussels to Amsterdam also by Thalys train...the cost for each train ride was around EUR40 per person...the flight is a bit cheaper than train but taking into accounts the waiting time and the return airport transfer...its not worth it...since the duration from each cities by train was about 2 hours...


But then...when it comes to Amsterdam to Geneva...its better to fly...for one thing...the time...and also train from Amsterdam to Geneva was costly and time consuming...another thing is...Geneva airport is within the city area and was accessible to the city centre...finally from Geneva to London...of course...fly ler...for both tickets Amsterdam to Geneva and Geneva to London...they fly via Easyjet...one good thing about Easyjet booking system is that you can do multiple booking for different cities at one go...less hassle and much more convenient...and if you pay by Visa Electron the price will be lesser rather than using the conventional credit cards...one thing about Easyjet...is that they are really strict on the one hand carry bag rules...have to be extra careful about this particular rule...i used to experienced seeing a lot of travellers re-packed their luggage in Venice before check in (us too)...better ask the officers at the check in counter of which are considered not to be hand carry (camera bag and laptop bag) and which are considered to be hand carry luggage (the cabin bag...shopping bag...hand bag...make up bag etc)...


That was just one of the few experience i had...i still remember last year...when we were deciding on whether we were going to take train or fly from Venice to Rome...for both options it differs...if you take train from Venice to Rome...it will take you directly into the city...otherwise if we fly...we had to go to Marco Polo Airport and from Rome Airport we had to take an airport transfer to the city...but when you take the financial implication as well as the time into account...train from Venice to Rome will take about 6 hours and cost about EUR50...and flight will only take a bit more than an hour and cost about EUR25...of course we took on the later option...this is one of the cases where to fly is more convenient than taking train...


When we were planing to go to Prague...we also search around the web of which airlines provide a good fare to Prague...Smartwings came into our search...the fare was EUR55 from Rome includes refreshment and luggage...the other airlines in the list was Czech Airlines and Wizzair...but since Smartwings is easier to book and Czech Airlines was way beyond our budget...we just stick to Smartwings...and one more thing...the flight time is also much favourable...its in the afternoon...so it gave us enough time to check out from the apartment and took the train from Termini to Fiumicino...


For airlines in Europe...one doesn't need to stick only to the budget airlines...coz sometimes premium airlines will be a good option...for instance when we were planning about which airlines to take from Prague to Milan...at first...there was two budget airlines...Wizzair and Easyjet...Easyjet was the main choice...since the main good thing about Easyjet is that they depart and touchdown in the major airports rather than the LCC airports...which can be quite convenient as most of LCC airports are way out of the city and the means of transportation can be quite pricey...as for Wizzair...the price was a bit cheaper than Easyjet...but one thing i have problem with was the online booking system...there's too many additional cost that ends up a bit more than Easyjet...furthermore...it does not land in Malpensa...but it lands in Bergamo...by the way...Milan has 3 airports...just make sure you pick the right one...hehehe...then when we done choosing Easyjet...there's one more problem...it doesn't fly on the date we selected...which left us quite at loss...the other airlines that fly to Milan from Prague back then (February 2011)...was Lufthansa and Czech Air...the latter was very expensive...can very much cover our one way flight back to KL...then Lufthansa came to the rescue...it was RM150 for one way from Prague directly to Malpensa...with luggage and refreshment...and that was a really good deal...who would have thought that premium airlines can sometimes beat the budget airlines fare...and most recently i came across promo fare from Amsterdam to London for GBP79 return via KLM...which cost almost the same with Easyjet for the same route and date with luggage...but no refreshment...hehehe...


For Scandinavian countries...Norwegian Air can be a good choice...the promo fares from numerous cities in Europe to Oslo...Stockholm and Copenhagen can be very tempting...try...EUR30 one way...and it was really a good deal...i came across this particular airline when i was arranging for the route to Budapest from Paris...seems like that from Paris to Copenhagen was only EUR30 one way and it cost the same from Copenhagen to Budapest...it was all a good promo deal...

As for Spain...Vueling Air is the one to be included in the list...when we were deciding to go to Madrid or Barcelona from Rome...we made a comparison between several airlines...and Vueling Air offers the best price...by the way...the airlines company is from Spain...


One thing for sure...from London to Paris...always take the train and Eurostar will be the main choice...easy...convenient...and if you book earlier...you can get a very good deal...and it took about 3 hours...before you knew it...you already will be in your destination...you can try taking the ferry from Dover to Calais...but you will have to travel to Dover from London...then to Paris from Calais...it can be a different experience going across the English Channel but it was time consuming...us...the budget traveller can't afford to waste that much time and not to mention the additional financial cost to it...hehehe...


I never had any experience taking Ryan Air...but my sister had...since i never experienced it myself...i just don't think i am qualify to comment on it...but one thing for sure...it is quite cheap...hehehe...one more thing...London has several airports...Easyjet flies to three of the airports namely Gatwick...Stansted and Luton...each airports will cost differently...choose well while you are at it...but one good thing that come along in these airports are that they have very cheap airport transfers to the city centre of London...starting from GBP2 one way...depending on the time of departure...via Easybus...

Owh my...i got carried away while writing this entry...there's more that can be shared about airlines and train in europe...but i think i just extracted from my own personal experience...last but not least...when you travel around europe...the mode of transportation will play a significant role to the total financial expenditure as well as convenience...have to choose rather carefully to ensure that you'll experience maximum satisfaction within the budget...its always goes down to...fly or rail in europe...

T.Y.S
p.s : logo pics are taken from google image

Comments

saerah80 said…
Akmal nanti nak mintak pendapat...cadang nak pergi Europe tahun depan. Cadang nak masuk dari London-->Belgium-->Amsterdam-->German-->Swiss-->Venice-->Paris-->London. Cadang nak amik train malam ke, ok ke?
Syahira :
Boleh...xde masalah...nanti kita bleh lepak sembang sembang...hehehe...

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