Has anyone taken the eurail-bonus, free ferry ride from bari to patras and what is it like? if i know the word "free", that cant be good.
We took this trip about 10 years ago. We had a room but lots of college age kids just went deck passage. I'm not positive, but I think this included a seat inside like an airline seat. Some of the people had sleeping bags on deck. Just realize that it is about an 18 hour trip! There were free showers somewhere down below deck. Then there was a bus ride from Patras into Athens that I think took at least 2 hours. Our driver stopped so we could see the canal at Corinth.
Your Eurail pass gets you a "deck chair" which is literally just that, access to the outside deck and public areas where there are chairs and tables and benches. If you have a sleeping bag, you can stretch it out on the deck and get some sleep. Maybe late at night, you might be able to move inside and claim a more comfortable chair, or claim and unused "Airline Seat" When getting your ticket, you will be sold hard to upgrade to the Airline Seat, Dorm, or a room. If you can afford it, the dorm is probably the best option if you are in need of sleep.
Does anyone know what ferry line does this eurail-bonus pass use? Where can I access the time schedule for this ferry?
I know the details in the pass specifically mention which ferries honor the Eurail Pass, but I can't find my old one. If I remember, Superfast does, and I believe Blue Star does as well. What you will find for schedule is that during the main season, they sail daily, usually leaving late afternoon, early evening for a night crossing.
Jacob, I found my old Eurail book from 1999 and we sailed Brindisi-Patras on Hellenic Mediterranean Lines (HML) current web site http://www.ferries.gr/hml/ and we forked over the funds for the upgrade to a bed. It sailed from 8 p.m. to 1 p.m. and we didnt' want to arrive exhausted, but we were the oldest ones on the ship (I was 39 and my mother was 63). We also caught a train immediately off the ship and had a 4 or 5 hour ride to Athens. I've since learned that for the price of the upgrade rooms we could have flown Rome to Athens and saved 4 days of our trip getting to and from. If you have the time and don't care about the accomodations then go for the ferry adventure, but if you'd like to rest and see the place, I'd try to fly.