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ALSA Bad reputation?

Hi there. I am wondering if the bus service is as bad as I have been reading on reviews on other travel sites? We are planning on travelling through through southern Spain in late May. We plan on taking bus from malaga to granada we have 3 nights there and then taking the train to cordoba and the train from cordoba to seville. We are only contemplating the train as the reviews are so bad. Are we being too cautious should we just opt for the bus? As the time slots available and frequency are also better with the bus?

Posted by
1132 posts

Alsa is fine. It's a coach service so don't expect luxury, but for normal people it's entirely acceptable.

Lots of people who go online to write negative reviews about things like airlines, hotels and buses are habitual whingers and can be safely ignored.

Posted by
286 posts

Ignore the negative reviews and take the bus. It's fine.

Posted by
90 posts

We used Alsa from Malaga to Seville and Granada last March and were happy with their service. We plan to use them again this year.
We found the times and cost to be much better than the train.
I looked at train prices from Malaga to Cordoba for this March and we will be taking the bus.

Posted by
569 posts

We used ALSA bus twice in 2017: from Córdoba to Granada, and then from Granada to Malaga. I highly recommend ALSA bus. The buses are modern, clean, comfortable and air conditioned. We have no complaints at all. They provided passengers with a small bag with a bottle of water and a cookie on one our of trips!

Posted by
1862 posts

I've never heard or seen any bad press about ALSA, they are a great service.

Posted by
6410 posts

I've taken ALSA
Seville to Granada in 2019
Granada to Malaga in 2019
Zaragoza to Madrid in 2020

The bus departed and arrived on time in each case. I did not hear or see any passenger complain about something that happened
You could be overly cautious.

Posted by
3 posts

Thanks very much for advice I am possibly being over cautious as has been said 🤗. I feel much better about the bus now and will book our ticket tonight 😊😊😊

Posted by
14 posts

Having just taken at ALSA bus today. Would thoroughly recommend. Book on line. seats 3and 4 are great for the view. Very relaxing.

Posted by
4498 posts

Another vote for the bus. You are probably seeing only those that had something to gripe about. I doubt people bother to post their positive experiences on the bus.

Posted by
3986 posts

We took the bus from Madrid to Granada and back again, and had a lovely experience.

Posted by
3 posts

Well, ALSA is a reliable company…
I traveled for about 3 weeks in Spain, and mostly using ALSA buses. They are very clean, punctual, and give good service as a whole.
Standard of bus travel is good. The better class has toilet on board and extras.
Buses are safe (as subway is too), but I think I'd take a taxi especially if it's an early departure.

Posted by
11153 posts

Remember that for buses, as for flights and trains and rental cars, most people don't post anything if they didn't have a problem. It's not a like a restaurant or hotel, where people will write about good as well as bad experiences; for transit, they almost always only write the bad stuff.

I've taken ALSA on various routes in Spain, and it was fine. On time, reserved seats (mine were honored, although I've seen reports that they are not always), and the other passengers were fine. In Spain, the train network is not as developed as in many other European countries, so buses fill in the gaps. So, buses are used by everyone, not just the stereotypical "bad element" we associate with bus travel in the US.

I actually did your route in 2006 in reverse. I took the train from Seville to Cordoba (faster than the bus since the AVANT is high speed), then the bus from Cordoba to Granada (about 3 hours) and the bus from Granada to Malaga (about 2 hours). Again, fine with no problems, and at that time, faster and easier than taking the train. (I know some of the train routes may be different now, since they've built more high speed lines in the area).

My ALSA bus from San Sebastian to Madrid (I got off in Vitoria) had Wi-Fi, as well as an AVOD unit at every seat. That's Audio Video On Demand, like on an airplane - movies, TV, video games. Plus there was a USB charging port at every seat and an electrical outlet for every seat pair. I hope at least one of your buses is as spiffy!