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I'm planning to a trip from Budapest to Amsterdam, then to Prague, and back to Budapest. It's very cheap to get from Budapest to Amsterdam using Wizz air, but the return flight is costly, so I was thinking of taking a train.

I know you can do Amsterdam to Prague via Cologne or Berlin. Which is better? What other options exist? I'm just trying to be as thrifty as possible.

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    What does best mean for you? I'm afraid this question is hard to answer without knowing budget and personal preference. – JoErNanO Jul 11 '16 at 12:13
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    @JoErNanO The headline question is the kind that usually deserves this type of comments but I think the text explains that in quite some details (Wizz Air too expensive - which tells a lot about both budget and preferences, specific question is comparing two train options w.r.t. to budget, being thrifty is paramount and hitchhiking is an option). – Relaxed Jul 11 '16 at 12:18
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    gannex, your best bet (I think) is perhaps some sort of cheap bus line? or, just try to find the cheapest train fare possible. Travel around Europe is not cheap unless (as you have) you just stumble on to a cheap airfare. Regarding hitchhiking I believe it is extremely unlikely, safe but unlikely. – Fattie Jul 11 '16 at 12:46
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    Was writing my answer as the question got closed, so here is a pastebin instead covering all your options: pastebin.com/dBkYTeVa – David Mulder Jul 11 '16 at 15:27
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    I think this question is clear enough. Voting to reopen. – Zach Lipton Jul 11 '16 at 16:28
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Bus services like Flixbus (And I believe there are many others, I see these buses often here) can take you from Amsterdam Sloterdijk to Prague. This will cost you from 45 euro to 65 euro, depending on how many stops you have. If you get the 65 euro, nonstop ride it will take you 12 hours. 45 euro and 1 stop is about 18 hours.

Amsterdam Sloterdijk is a trains station close to Amsterdam Centraal. Very accessible from Amsterdam Centraal and Schiphol Airport.

As requested; on the flixbus website you can find information about frequency and detailed pricing. The Flixbus buses leave about 5-6 times day, every day.

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    Can you add a link and/or information about the frequency/days-of-week at which this ride is available? – einpoklum - reinstate Monica Jul 11 '16 at 15:04
  • We aggregate the buses of Flix, RegioJet (new name of Student Agency), and a few others at Busbud, book in advance for cheap tickets. busbud.com/en/bus-amsterdam-prague/r/u173zq-u2fkbn – Carl Jul 11 '16 at 22:50
  • If I'm going to take a bus though, shouldn't I just hitchhike? – gannex Jul 12 '16 at 10:32
  • This certainly seems like a good option though, price-wise. – gannex Jul 12 '16 at 10:33
  • @gannex I doubt you'll have much luck hitchhiking, it's not big here and I've never heard of anyone picking up a hitchhiker here. Although I am not an expert on that matter. Maybe you can find info on forums or Facebook groups dedicated to hitchhiking. – Summer Jul 12 '16 at 10:37
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Deutsche Bahn has a pretty good connections finder (usually works in Europe pretty well), you can explore your train options there.

  • That's more of a comment than an answer, since you don't provide a specific train route at a known price (also, the DB site says "Fares not available" and "cannot be booked over the Internet" for many of the options). – einpoklum - reinstate Monica Jul 11 '16 at 15:06
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If you want to take the train you will have to travel through Germany, that's for sure. The Deutsche Bahn has a quite good search and as you can see the fastest connections are usually via Frankfurt and Nuremberg or Berlin.

If you want to be cheap, Deutsche Bahn has a Sparpreis (which translates to saver fare). The thing is that only one point of your journey (so either start or destination) can be in a foreign country. So what you could do is split up your journey into two tickets. For example if you search for next Wednesday you could search for a saver fare from Schiphol to Berlin), the cheapest being 44€:

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and then you search for another ticket, taking you from Berlin to Prague (cheapest for 39€):

enter image description here

So this would in total be 83€, but of course it heavily depends on your times and . Also it might make sense to also search via Nuremberg and see if it has any cheap saver fares.

  • It is easier to find cheap tickets when you book farther ahead. This is not just for trains but for most long distance travel. – Willeke Jul 11 '16 at 20:10

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