How to travel cheap and green around Europe

Do you know what the biggest obstacle is for the green traveler ? Planes.

I mean, I’m not gonna lie to you, I love planes, because, you know, I’M FLYING ! But I’m also very aware of their unbelievably high carbon emissions.

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There are some things you can do when boarding a plane to try to reduce these emissions, like carrying as little weight as you can, traveling in economy class (less space, more people in one ride) and taking only direct flights (takeoffs and landings are the worst for carbon emissions).

I was once told that a real green traveler would never board a plane. Problem is that I, like most of you, have a job and only get very limited time for traveling. How am I supposed to go to Nepal, do something there, then get back to France in less than three weeks without taking a plane ?

But, in some cases, you can definitely do without, like in the case of a trip around Europe. There are four main options to travel cheap and green from city to city :

BUS

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Taking the bus is great. I think it’s a fun adventure to spend hours on a bus. Plus, if you take a night bus, it’ll save you a night in a hostel.

The best website for finding out how to go from one place to another is Busbud.

Busbud will show you which company are taking the route you’re looking for, but then don’t hesitate to check on these companies websites to see if you can find even lower fares than those announced on Busbud.

If you don’t find anything on busbud, you can also try GoEuro.

CARPOOLING

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Carpooling can be a great option when you’re leaving from or going to a small town. Plus, it’s a good way of meeting people, be they fellow travelers or locals going back home. The best website is Blablacar.

There’s a reference system so there’s no risk of finding yourself in a car driven by a mad man. Payments are made through the website, which adds a small commission to the announced price (no more than a few euros).

TRAIN

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Taking the train in itself is not a cheap option at all, but it starts being worthwhile if you use an Eurail Pass. This is by far the best solution if you are planning a lengthy trip around Europe.

If you are only going to explore one country, then take the time to compare the “One Country Pass” (only available in some countries) with bus fares and pick the cheapest !

HITCHHIKING

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Well you can’t do cheaper than free. I only use hitchhiking when I have a lot of time to reach a destination. I don’t like to depend on it, since it can work really well as easily as leave you stranded on the side of the road.

To use with caution too. I always take a good look at the car before showing my thumb, and even then, I don’t get in if I have a bad feeling.

With these options, it’s very easy to go from Paris to London for 20€, or from Munich to Constanta for 50€.

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It might take a little bit longer than a plane, but it’s way more of an adventure !

1 Comment on How to travel cheap and green around Europe

  1. Trains are such a great way to get around Europe – in fact, seemingly the best way to get around Europe if you’re traveling around the continent for quite awhile. The rail passes are certainly a great option.

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