How to Get by train or bus from Krakow to Prague, from Prague to Vienna, and from Vienna to Budapest?Russ Bily
If you are still thinking about where to go on your summer holidays, be sure that a trip to Eastern and Central Europe will give you an opportunity to experience the ancient architecture, immerse into the history, feel the flavor of national cuisine, and finally, find new friends.
People who are planning their trip through Eastern Europe, want to consider all the details to make their journey perfect. The first thing that you need to think about is transport.
In my previous articles, I touched on the topic of transport. For example, in the article “The Best Way to Travel Between Prague, Budapest, and Vienna,” I told you about five ways of traveling between those cities, that is, by train, bus, plane, by riverboat, and by private car with a local driver.
In the article “How to Get from Prague to Krakow and visit Auschwitz Memorial on the Way,” I assisted you in finding the best way from Prague to Krakow and back, as well as advise you the most exciting places you can visit on your way from the Czech Republic to Poland.
In the article “From Prague to Vienna by Car with a Stop in the Danube’s Wachau Valley,” I gave you some recommendations about the most exciting places to visit between Prague and Vienna.
In this article, I’m going to assist you in finding the best transport for you when you will be traveling from Krakow to Prague, then to Vienna and Budapest, mostly speaking about two popular among tourists ways of travel, that is, by train and by bus.
From Krakow to Prague
The distance between Krakow and Prague is about 480 kilometers. Communication between these cities is carried out by means of various modes of transport, each of which in particular circumstances has its advantages.
So let’s consider the main and the most popular ones, the train and the bus.
1. Krakow—Prague by train
The most comfortable direct train that departs from Kraków central railway station (Dworzec Kraków Główny) and arrives at the central railway station of Prague (Praha hl. n.) is the night express train. You will overcome the distance between the cities in this way in approximately 9 hours.
- a) According to the new 2017 schedule, the train EN 402 Silesia /442 2 departs at 22:02 from Krakow and arrives at 07:22 at Prague.
The prices of sleeper cabins vary from €60 to €116. For example, a couchette for six persons is the cheapest – €60; for four persons – €62; a bed for three persons will cost you €63; for 2 – €71, and for one person – €116.
You can also book a seat in 2nd class (€53). Discount is available for IN card holders. Booking is possible 65 days in advance.
- b) There is another direct train TLK 114 Cracovia. It departs at 10:20 from Krakow and arrives at 17: 39 at Prague.
To buy night train ticket, please, use the following booking form: http://czech-transport.com/index.php?menu_id=papertickets&from_city=49&to_city=1&lang=en. Train tickets are sent to the provided address (home/work/hotel) or delivered by courier in Prague. You can also pick-up the tickets in Prague office.
- c) You can also check for the fast train P200, which leaves Krakow at 22:25 and arrives at Prague at 6:48 at Smichov station. But remember that the train makes stops every half an hour.
- d) For those who don’t like to sleep on trains, I can recommend a trip on the InterCity Express IC402 Silesia, a train with seats. The same as a night train, it leaves Krakow at 22:02 and after more than 9 hours, at 07:22, it arrives at the central train station in Prague.
For the more detailed information, please visit the following website: https://www.intercity.pl
2. Krakow—Prague by bus
Finding the right bus from Krakow to Prague is a lot easier with online bus search engine http://www.checkmybus.com/krakow/prague. If you need to get from Krakow to Prague as fast as possible, pick the fastest bus, which will get you from Prague to Krakow in 7 hours 15 minutes. If you want to travel in the most economical way, go for the most affordable option, which will only cost you approximately €0,27.
Bus service between Krakow and Prague is carried out by several transport companies. Eurolines Suisse, Eurolines Czech Republic, SVD Trans, Movelia, PolskiBus, Jordan Group, FlixBus, Busfor, LUX Express, RegioJet, and Musil Tour, Intercars, Regabus, and some other buses depart from Krakow and arrive at the central bus station Prague Florenc.
I can also recommend you Leo Express or Tiger Express bus company. The buses depart from Krakow bus station Dworzec autobusowy and arrive at Prague bus station Praha hl.n. Wilsonova every day. A one-way ticket will cost you approximately 30-35 €. With Leo Express, you will overcome the distance in about 6-7 hours.
Related: Travel from Krakow to Prague
3. Krakow—Prague by bus + train
This will also be one of the most economical ways, yet not the most comfortable. You can go from Krakow to Ostrava by bus, and then from Ostrava to Prague by train.
The price ranges from 17 to 33 euros for a one-way ticket. Travel time is approximately 6-8 hours.
From Prague to Vienna
The distance between Prague and Vienna is approximately 300 kilometers. For Europe, this distance is small, so you can quickly overcome it by train or bus.
Prague—Vienna by train
It will take you approximately 4 hours to get from Prague to Vienna by train.
Eight direct trains run between Prague and Vienna. There are seven direct trains during the day and one at night. The trains depart from the central railway station of Prague (Praha hl. n.) and arrive at the central railway station of Vienna (Wien Hbf).
The central railway station of Prague (Praha hl. n.) is located almost in the very center of the city, not far from Wenceslas Square. The international ticket offices are on the second floor. You can purchase a ticket to Austria in advance, or before departure. Also, there is an opportunity to buy a ticket with an unspecified date, which is valid for two months. But since it costs more, there is no reason for buying it.
Some tourists who want to save money and not to spend it on the hotel, choose a night flight to be in Vienna in the morning. As for me, this is not the best option, as you cannot rest sitting, and buying a ticket with a bed will be much more expensive. But it’s up to you.
So, you have the opportunity to choose among eight possible trains. Here they are:
RJ 71 Gustav Mahler train departs from Prague at 06:50 and arrives in Vienna at 10:49.
RJ 73 Bedřich Smetana train departs at 08:52 and arrives at 12:49.
RJ 75 Franz Schubert departs at 10:52 and arrives at 14:49.
RJ 77 Antonín Dvořák departs at 12:52 and arrives at 16:49.
RJ 79 Johann Strauss departs at 14:52 and arrives at 18:49.
RJ 371 Joseph Haydn departs at 16:52 and arrives at 20:49.
RJ 373 W. A. Mozart departs at 18:52 and arrives at 22:49.
EN 477 Metropol /407 2 departs at 23:58 and arrives at 06:55.
One ticket will cost you from €30. A bed will cost from €60.
Prague—Vienna by bus
As for me, this is the most economical way to get to Vienna. The following carriers work in this direction: Radina VIP, ArdaTur, MeinFernbus, EuroLines and Regio Jet.
- Regio Jet – 15 € (recommended)
- Radina VIP – 17 €
- ArdaTur – 22 €
- EuroLines- 22 €
- MeinFernbus – 26 €
You decide what company to choose. All buses are comfortable, equipped with air conditioning, wifi, sockets, and toilets.
The journey will also take about 4 hours. The first bus leaves at 3:30 in the morning, the last at 23:55. The direction is very popular, so the buses go almost every half an hour. Tickets for the chosen time are better to buy in advance. Morning buses are especially loaded.
Traveling by bus, thanks to frequency and convenient schedules, allow you to plan the most economical trip, according to your desires and possibilities. With a relatively small cost, you can visit many attractions not only in Prague but also in other cities of the Czech Republic and Europe.
Related: Travel from Prague to Vienna
From Vienna to Budapest
Connections between Vienna and Budapest, as well as with other European capitals is established in a right way, but it is still necessary to choose the best option. The distance between these two cities is 214 kilometers. So, let’s consider two most popular and economical choices.
Vienna—Budapest by train
If you are planning a trip from Vienna to Budapest, the Austrian Railways (ÖBB) are at your disposal.
Railjet trains run from Vienna to Budapest, on average, every two hours. Tickets can be purchased online, on the official website of the carrier or at the website https://www.raileurope.com/index.html. To do this, you need to enter the departure and arrival points, the date of travel, the number, and age of passengers. The system will offer you the options, from which you choose the right one.
You can pay for the ticket with your credit card, and the 10-digit code that came to the e-mail should be stored and entered into a special machine at Train station to print out a ticket.
About prices, classes, and tariffs, you will be asked to choose from the 1st and 2nd classes (the fare for both is flexible). The cost of a one-way ticket for a 1st class trip is approximately 62.4 €, and the 2nd class is 39 €.
Vienna—Budapest by bus
If the level of comfort during the train journey is high, here, it will be medium. However, the bus trip from Vienna to Budapest or back is, perhaps, the most economical way to travel. The journey will take approximately 3 hours. The train departs from the central station in Vienna, Wien Hauptbahnhof, and arrives at Budapest Keleti station.
All buses are equipped with individual power sockets and wifi. The snack and hot drinks are also offered.
I recommend you such buses as Orange Ways and Eurolines.
Orange Ways buses depart from the bus station in Vienna near the Olympiaplatz and arrive in Budapest at the station Népliget.
From Vienna, they depart at 11:30, 15:00, 19:30. A one-way ticket will cost you 15 €, and round ticket – 23 €.
Eurolines buses depart from the bus station Erdberg in Vienna and arrive at Népliget in Budapest.
They depart at 7:00, 11:00, 14:30, 16:00, 17:00,19:30. A one-way ticket will cost you 18 €, and round ticket – 27 €.
Tickets can be purchased at the ticket offices of Erdberg (Vienna). But it is more convenient, of course, to book them online. It is enough to enter the date of the trip, departure and destination points, number, and age of passengers. Payment is made by credit card. As tourists say, both companies are trustworthy: buses are comfortable, and the journey is not burdensome and quite pleasant.
Related: Travel from Vienna to Budapest
Krakow, Prague, Vienna and Budapest and the sites between them are so beautiful that you should visit them in any case.
As a summary, I can say that the most economical way to travel from one to another city is by train or bus.
For any information about tickets, price-lists, and availability of trains to all directions, to Prague, Vienna, or Budapest, please visit the website http://czech-transport.com, where you can see the detailed information and buy tickets for a train online.
If you select a night train, you will even save on the hotel, as you will spend the night on the train. However, it’s up to you, what kind of transport to choose.
However, if you want to make stops on your way to the capital cities, to find out exciting sights in Eastern and Central Europe, if you don’t want to hurry and have a lot of fun while traveling, you can also choose a private car with a local driver guide, using our service.