Please sign in to post.

Transportation options to get from Krakow to Prague, then from Prague to Vienna?

Wife and I will spend a week each in this order: Krakow (Sept 22, 2015 for 7 nights), then Prague (Sept 29, for 7 nights) and finally Vienna (Oct 6, for 7 nights). Already have the split-city tickets (USA to Krakow, then Vienna to USA), so we're locked into that order. Now we need to find out what the best ways might be to get from Krakow to Prague, and then from Prague to Vienna.

There seem to be no reasonably-priced one-way, non-stop flights between some of these cities ($600+ per person, times 2), and the one-way, one-stop flights between each two are more money than I'd like to pay ($300-400 per person, times 2, times 2). Train prices are harder to determine, but it seems they take a very long round-about way to go between the cities - 8+ hours each (and we just don't have that much time to waste). That leaves busses and shuttles (private car or small van). Busses also seem to take a round-about way between the cities. Shuttles may be the best trade-off between time and price, but it's hard to tell. Renting a car and driving could be a possibility, but I fear that getting in and out of the cities, when we don't know their layouts, would be a bear.

So you experts out there, any suggestions?

Posted by
11158 posts

A quick tip: you can change your heading title. When you're logged in, you'll see Edit | Delete under your name in your first post. Choose Edit, and you can edit the header as well as the text.

Posted by
1 posts

Hi
I just looked into this same route. The best that I found was an overnight train from Prague to Krakow. It was also the only non-stop option. Unfortunately it's not easy to get there. We are flying into Prague, we don't arrive until late and too nervous to think we can make the train that same night. Spending a day in Prague then the overnight train to Krakow and then an overnight train from Krakow back to Prague. It is the most reasonable option I've found. I also discovered that you can't buy train tickets online from the local train stations until 2 months before. They are much cheaper than the Euro Rail options and the are the same train.

Diana

Posted by
36 posts

Thanks, Diana. How long does that Krakow to Prague train take to make the trip, and what time does it leave Krakow? Have ANY idea of the cost?

Posted by
4637 posts

The fastest connection by train from Krakow to Prague is with two train changes: in Katowice and Ostrava. It takes 7 hours 10 minutes. Little longer with one change in Katowice. The only direct train to Prague is overnight. It is easier from Prague to Vienna. Direct train every two hours. It takes 4 hours 10 minutes. You will find the schedule on Deutsche Bahn website. The easiest to buy tickets would be once you get there. You should have no problem (perhaps with the exception of an overnight train if you decide for it).

Posted by
36 posts

Thanks, Ilja, great advice on the Prague to Vienna line, tho the Main Station in Prague is going to close down next week for 2 years for reconstruction...hopefully the smaller station can take up the slack. Do you know what the cost might be of the direct overnight Krakow to Prague trip?

Posted by
4637 posts

Are you sure about closure of the Main Station in Prague? It was just reconstructed few years ago. I never read or heard about it. I just checked Czech railroad websites. They don't mention it. However they are still building Main Train Station in Vienna. I don't know the price of overnight train. It's based on how many beds are in the compartment. I would not worry about it. The prices of train travel in Poland and Czech Republic are still significantly lower than let's say in Germany or Austria.

Posted by
36 posts

Yes, I read that (train station will close) on a CZ newsletter I get every day.

Prague's Main Train Station arrival hall to undergo reconstruction
01-02-2015 12:18 | Ruth Fraňková
The arrival hall of Prague's Main Train Station is set to undergo an extensive reconstruction, which is to start on Monday. The work will involve a complete replacement of glass panes and painting of the steel construction. Some 15 railway lines replaced by buses or redirected to Prague's Masaryk Station. The reconstruction, which is estimated to cost around five billion crowns, should be completed by May 2017.

Posted by
5354 posts

Vienna Hbf re-opened in late December -- very nice! Good metro connection.

Posted by
4637 posts

I found a website about the reconstruction. The website is in Czech. It is the huge roof above platforms. The reconstruction will affect commuter trains and some long distance ones. It looks like international trains will still arrive to and depart from the Main Train Station. Also long distance trains toward Brno and Ostrava.

Posted by
36 posts

Thanks, everyone! I may decide to bite the bullet and go by plane from Krakow to Prague (night train sound horrible and we don't have time to stop along the way).

Posted by
43 posts

Why does the night train sound horrible? You can book a Double compartment just for yourselves; it has clean sheets and bedding. The train slips out of Krakow at about 10pm. You sleep comfortably through the night (no border or passport checks), and the steward awakens you about 30 min. from Prague with free coffee or tea and a snack. Look out the window at the views as you drink your coffee and wake up. You are in Prague just after 6:30am.

Compared to the nightmare of air travel (getting to the airport, checking in, going through security, waiting--and changing planes if traveling Krakow-Prague), the train is a very civilized way to travel.

Posted by
36 posts

Thanks, Podroznik, I'll now consider that. The reason I wrote that is because one person here wrote that it takes "two train changes: in Katowice and Ostrava. It takes 7 hours 10 minutes. Little longer with one change in Katowice," and somewhere on the internet I read that the changes cause a lot of bumping and crashing, waking one up, but now you have me reconsidering. Do you have some ballpark figure on how much it has cost?

Posted by
4637 posts

Bob, overnight train is not bad if you are a good sleeper. I am not and I would get a little sleep. Therefore if I don't have to I don't use overnight trains.

Posted by
36 posts

Also considering the option of hiring a driver to drive us from Krakow to Prague. That seems to be as quick as a plane (plane requires getting to airport an hour before flight) and is actually a little cheaper, plus we'd get to see the countryside. Any thoughts?

Posted by
4637 posts

My educated guess is that hiring a driver with a car could be the most expensive option but the most convenient (door to door). You get what you paid for.

Posted by
36 posts

Car would be $440, so 2.5 times more expensive than the night train with bed for two, but we wouldn't have to stay awake until close to midnight, and sleep poorly, plus we could get to see the countryside in 5 hour daylight drive (maybe even stop at some neat little town for lunch). Still would be cheaper than a flight for two. Just a thought.

Posted by
12123 posts

"Why does the night train sound horrible?" A very good question.