March 28, 2017

Train Travel a Thrifty Alternative

When veteran traveler Thursday Bram journeys by train, her packing list includes: food and motion sickness pills. Before a trip, Bram purchases simple snacks to avoid pricey club car dining. She also carries motion sickness tablets in two formulas:  non-drowsy tablets for short trips and regular formula to rest comfortably on overnight rides, which save her the cost of an additional hotel stay. Bottom line? Train travel can be a serious savings resource for the budget traveler.

Resources: Many cities in the U.S. and abroad offer budget passes for residents and tourists. Check out Eurail’s website for pricing and travel options on train passes valid across multiple countries in Europe. Similarly, Amtrak offers rail route service throughout the United States

Experiences:

We enjoyed value and comfort during a high-end bus ride from Ecuador to Peru. Perks included cushioned reclining seats with foot rests, on-bus restrooms, staff to guide us through international border-crossing procedures and a beverage service. A hot meal of chicken, rice and vegetables was also included, along with movie showings. But there’s also value in budget rides. In Thailand, we traveled from Ayutthaya to Korat with minimal perks. We shared a train car with locals and a few chickens to save money, and enjoyed a great view, plenty of leg room and breezes from open windows.

In many parts of the world where cities are easily accessed by foot and short rides on the back of a motorcycle, traveling between destinations by train saves not only time and money, but also allows location independent professionals to get a little work done along the way. What are your favorite money-saving tips for train travel? (See also: Entertainment for Business Travelers and Digital Nomads)

Photo Credit: Pictures of Travel Places