Considering going from Budapest to Rome by train. Any suggestions for how? Would it be better to go by train to Dubrovnik and then boat to Italy? I know I can fly, so am considering that also. Thoughts? Ideas?
Here is some ways to do it.http://seat61.com/international-trains/trains-from-Budapest.htm#Budapest-Italy
There is no train service to Dubrovnik. Bus from Budapest to Dubrovnik looks like it would take about as long as train from Budapest all the way to Rome if not longer.
It appears that the best train routing departs at 7:40 AM and gets you to Rome at 9:45 PM after changes in Vienna, Innsbruck, Brenner and Bolzano. Should be a very pretty ride most of the way, but that's a long trip!
Edited to add: Rome2Rio.com is often useful for laying out the basic transportation options between two cities, though it shouldn't be relied on for precise times or costs.
Seat61 will describe some preferences and issues, and Rome2rio can incorporate some other modes of travel, but to simply see accurate train schedules, go to the DB link at How to Look Up Train Schedules and Routes Online.
You can travel overnight with just one connection, departing Budapest in the afternoon and connecting to the overnight train at Salzburg. Or to make the trip all in one day by train, it can be done like this, in 15 hours with 3 connections:
Budapest-Keleti dep 06:40 RJ 162 railjet
Innsbruck Hbf arr 13:44
Innsbruck Hbf dep 14:49 S 4 S-Bahn
Brennero/Brenner arr 15:28
Brennero/Brenner dep 15:38 R 20729 Regionalzug
Bolzano/Bozen arr 16:59
Bolzano/Bozen dep 17:16 ES 8527 EuroStar Italia/Frecce
Roma Termini arr 21:45
If you love the romantic train ride, then bless you; do it. But when you can fly from Budapest to most every major airport in Italy (depending on the day of the week) non-stop, in 2 hours, for under $75, I don't think the train would be my first choice. But that's just me.
I'd love to be pointed to where a ticket can be had for $75 or less to fly from Budapest to any city in Italy, as I would much rather fly.
Skyscanner.com is a good source for flight schedules and fares. You can input Budapest as your origin and Italy as your destination, then select the month of October (or a specific date that month) to see what is available.
As James indicated, flights don't necessarily fly every day, but I found some availability of non-stops to each of the following cities for under $65 one-way: Milan, Bologna, Rome, Pisa, Venice, Bari, and Naples.
I prefer Google Flights. The search system and maps are great. What you do is you enter Budapest as the starting point and Europe as the destination, then choose non-stop and one way and then click on the map to see your choices. Remember with the discount airline they don't fly between every city every day and some airlines only publish their schedule 4 to 6 months in advance.
Click on a destination city and you will get your options.
AND, before someone points it out, that $38 flight from Budapest to Rome costs more than $38 unless you travel with the extra underwear in your shirt pockets. Here is an example: https://wizzair.com/#/booking/select-flight/BUD/FCO/2017-03-14/null/1/0/0
Cheap Flight with no luggage 16490 forints or about $55
Got a bag? Now the flight costs 24390 forints or about $82
and they will stick you with maybe $10 in various fees. Still a good deal if you ask me. But if you are going to fly, then do it good. From Budapest the same rates will get you to Kiev, Baku, Kutaisi .....
The train option I myself would do is this: take the Budapest-Munich night train, then Munich to Rome if you are not pressed for time.
You've got your choice of airlines to one of the Rome airports on Alitalia, Ryanair and Wizz.
I'm not much on taking a train over 3 1/2 hours with multiple route changes.