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i am planning to visit my friends in Bristol during new year 2016. What is the cheapest way to travel at that time from Köln? What can be the expected cost?

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    The cheapest train? Or the cheapest form of transport? (probably bus/coach) – A E Oct 12 '15 at 19:43
  • Bus or train will be prefarable. – Vessilli Zayetsev Oct 12 '15 at 19:44
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    Hitchiking would seem to be your cheapest option, possibly followed by a rideshare app like BlaBlaCar. Are they options? – Gagravarr Oct 12 '15 at 19:57
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    Check out the option of flying to one of the London airports and then a bus direct from the airport to Bristol. Heathrow is on the right side of London to bypass most of the London traffic congestion. The bus travel time should be about 2 to 2 1/2 hours. My experience of flying from Amsterdam or Brussels to Bristol usually seemed to involve delays (of an hour or longer) or flight cancellations. – alephzero Oct 12 '15 at 23:49
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    @alephzero I've found Bristol to have better cheap connections than Heathrow, as the cheap flights to London go to Stansted or Luton (and to a lesser extent Gatwick), all of which add cost and a lot of time going to Bristol. In this case Düsseldorf-Bristol, but it won't beat the bus for cost. – Chris H Oct 13 '15 at 9:03
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You should be able to get there for £23 or less by bus.

As the different bus companies release tickets for booking they'll get cheaper, I work on Busbud where we've done some investigation into how far in advance to book to get the absolute cheapest bus tickets, you may want to wait until a month or two in advance to book if you aren't seeing a super good deal now.

You may want to look at breaking it into two or even three tickets since there'll be more options and competition than with a through ticket but you'll assume the risk of missing your next bus due to a late connection but you might get your tickets for much cheaper.

  1. Cologne - Brussels is currently around £12.
  2. Brussels - London comparing to leaving this month (£10), you'll see most bus companies aren't offering booking on this route for New Years just yet.
  3. London - Bristol £1 if you book now.
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Megabus does Cologne to Bristol.

£27 each way, takes 14 to 18 hours, change at London Victoria.

Tickets for December don't seem to be available yet.

NB: KLM will fly you via Amsterdam for £117 return, according to skyscanner, which looks like a better deal to me because it only takes 3.5 hours including the 1 change, so the round-trip difference between this and the coach journey is £63 for which you save 20+ hours travel, i.e. you pay £3 or so for each hour of travel time you save, so you'd do better financially by working even a minimum-wage job for the difference in travel time and then flying rather than taking the coach. (That's assuming that your travel time is non-productive).

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    Good point on the cost of time. Also very important is the cost of food on longer travel - if you're going to be eating from fast food joints, then an extra day's travel is going to cost you about £20 in food (at a rough guess). Of course, if you make a day's worth of sandwiches and take them with you, it wouldn't cost much. – AndyT Oct 13 '15 at 9:49
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Most likely by bus but you will need to make a booking and compare several different companies at the time you are ready to book. As usual 'cheapest' depends on a lot of things which makes it hard to give a detailed answer.

If you book three months (or more) in advance you can get much better prices for flights and for trains than when you are nearer the time of travel. The higher the demand for the travel date, the more likely you end up with high prices and even an hour earlier or later can make a lot of difference at times.

Prices can run from 15 pound one way on a low demand date, but I am afraid that during New Year 2016 will not be low demand. If you wait with booking till the day of travel you might find bottom level prices nearer 200 pound.

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    Will you please suggest some bus or train? – Vessilli Zayetsev Oct 12 '15 at 19:46
  • Try searching for London-Cologne coach. And of course, Bristol-London. Megabus, Eurolines, but there might well be more. – Willeke Oct 12 '15 at 19:58

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