Train travel around the world is getting more and more popular. It’s high speed and convenient, with a well-established network, often spanning multiple countries, allowing you to travel around at relatively low cost. Generally however, this is only a viable option for travel between cities and unless you are able to book your tickets a very far in advance it can work out very expensive. Remember that you aren’t guaranteed a seat and you will have to share the cabin with the general public; if you’re lucky this should be fine but if you’re unlucky, it could work out to be the most irritating few hours of your life.
Best for: city to city travel, when booked in advanced for the best fares.
Car hire is a great option for those with a bit of an adventurous side. Driving in a foreign country where road signs are likely to be in a language you don’t know and road rules are hairy, to say the least, can be a daunting prospect. For a group of travellers however, who plan to do sightseeing and day trips, it’s a fab option. With some research, you can get some cheap rates and enjoy the flexibility of your own transport. You can go wherever you want without restriction! With a company like Economy Car Hire, who operate as a broker, you get a choice of suppliers and even a free additional driver so you can share the driving throughout your trip. The cost of fuel is always rising so this can be considered a downside, however, if you plan to use the vehicle quite a lot during your trip, it will more than pay for itself.
Best for: Two or more people, short run-around journeys and getting off the beaten track.
In every country, bus journeys are long, often uncomfortable and shared with around 40-50 other passengers and limited to often bizarre timetables. Not a way to travel in style, by any means. The main lure however is of course the price. You can travel vast distances for a fraction of the price of other transport options. In Australia, the Greyhound bus from Sydney to Melbourne takes anywhere from 15 hours to a full day of travelling and will cost you around AU$100 depending on your dates of travel. That works out at around 8.78 cents per kilometre; pretty good value for money by anyone’s standards and that’s in a country that’s renowned for being expensive! As always, the further in advance you can book the cheaper it will be, but this is a great option for long overland trips.
Best for: Long distance, low cost travel if you don’t have a strict schedule.
Transfers are a popular option for those on package holidays. Usually this is an option that will be best suited for families, couples or groups of friends who are headed off on a cheap, all inclusive break. It’s very much a hassle free option that is often considered good value for money. Bear in mind however that for the service and depending on the destination it can work out costly as it’s usually priced per passenger. More often than not, you will have to visit several hotels as other passengers disembark which could mean it’s a few hours before you arrive at your own accommodation. Private transfers are also available however, they are much more expensive.
Best for: Travel between the airport and your accommodation for all inclusive holidays.
Taxis are ideal for short trips, especially when you need to get somewhere on the spur of the moment. Usually a stress free experience, taxis are a good option for that initial trip from your airport to your accommodation. One of the major downsides however, is the fact that taxis can work out to be rather expensive. It should be fine for the odd trip or two, especially if there are 3 or 4 of your travelling. Over an extended period of time however, it won’t work out to be particularly good value for money. For luxury or business use this is less of a concern and therefore, a taxi will likely be your preferred choice. You don’t have to share with strangers, you will travel direct to your destination and it will be a stress free experience. In some countries such as India and Thailand for example, this won’t necessarily be the case. Known for their bustling and chaotic streets, you might find it easier to walk to your destination!
Best for: Short, spur of the money city journeys.
Naturally, each destination has specific pros and cons to each travel method. You may find some destinations are better known for their local transport systems. Navigating Bangkok, you might opt for a TukTuk journey, where as in New York, yellow cabs are so frequent that you are certain to use one at some point.
What’s your favourite mode of transport on your travels? Do you have any funny stories or tips to share when it comes to getting around on your travels?
(Photo by Rennett Stowe via Flickr)