Prague, Vienna, Munich

we are a family of 4 (2 adults and 2 teenagers aged 17 and 15) and we would like to go on a week-long trip, arriving Munich on Oct 17, 2013 at 6am. Our teenagers like to experience local life, commuting, taking trains and buses, staying in apartments not luxury hotels. We would like to go immediately to Prague as our primary target destination Question 1: what's the most cost-effective way into Prague from Munich? Is it by train or Eurolines bus? Pros and cons of each? how do you reserve tickets for each (We are from Asia) We will spend 2.5 days in Prague and then off to Vienna Question 2: Best route from Prague to Vienna: train, bus or car service? We will spend 2.5 days in Vienna and still plan to see Salzburg for a day
Question 3:Best way from Vienna to Salzburg then to Munich? Is one day in Salzburg enough? thanks for everyone's advice!

Posted by Chani
Tel Aviv
3511 posts

You can find train schedules at the German website, bahn.de . If the journey originates in Germany, it will also show you prices and allow you to purchase online with a major credit card. I believe you can also purchase train tickets on the official Austrian site for trains originating in that country. Cheap train tickets go on sale between 120 and 60 days before the journey and are often non-refundable, non-exchangeable. There are a limited number of these tickets, so first come, first served. I would be hesitant to get tickets in advance for a train on the day of your arrival in Munich, in case the flight (or your luggage) is delayed for any reason.

Posted by Ilja
Seattle
1474 posts

All by train. From Munich to Prague there is a nonstop bus operated by Deutsche Bahn.

Posted by Naomi
Manila
13 posts

Thanks for the initial replies.. Any advantage of train vs bus from Munich to Prague?
Is it alright to just purchase at each station then on the day of departure from the city? Is one day in salzburg enough?

Posted by David
Bellevue, WA, USA
740 posts

Salzburg 2 days would be better than 1 day, but if you move fast the old town and the castle in 1 day should be ok. train is not crowded you can buy ticket 1 day in advance should be fine. bus from Munich to Prague is not as comfortable as train (German train is excellent, bus is good).

Posted by Emily
Vienna, Austria
320 posts

Many people would argue that the bus from Prague to Vienna is better. It is definitely faster. Look at westbus: www.westbus.at/en If you take the train, you will always pay more if you buy the ticket on the day of travel. Most economical is to purchase online, in advance. The exception would be on your Vienna to Salzburg route. On that route, you have two options - oebb or westbahn. Oebb tickets should be purchased in advance to save money. Westbahn tickets can be purchased on the train for 25 Euros; no need to purchase in advance, just hop on the next train so you have full flexibility. If you want to spend your whole time in cities (Prague/Vienna), then one day in Salzburg is fine. If you want to get up into the mountains and explore, then spend more time in Salzburg.

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
2702 posts

Hi, To allay any concerns about going by bus such as that by DB from Munich to Prague, no need for concerns at all. Going by bus operated by DB is a very comfortable and pleasant experience.

Posted by Naomi
Manila
13 posts

Thanks Fred. Do you mind telling us more about taking the bus from Munich to Prague? I found a site of "business class" Eurolines bus with wifi etc that leaves at 17:00 from Munich getting to Prague at 22:00. Is this the one you are referring to which is comfortable? Do we have to reserve in advance for this one? We are convinced to take it if it takes the same time as a train. To all
As for the the Prague to Vienna leg, if we would like to pass through Cesky Krumlov how much will a one-way car service be? We also heard that the bus is good and just as fast as the trains , though we won't be able to pass by CK. For the Vienna to Salzburg leg, thanks for the advice from everyone, we will take the train and since there are many trains to choose from we can be flexible and buy them while we are in Vienna.

Posted by Fred
San Francisco
2702 posts

Hi, I have not taken the DB bus Munich to Prague, but other routes, say, from France to Germany (Forbach to Saarbr├╝cken), and a couple other times elsewhere in Germany, I have gone by bus...always comfortable and pleasant. If you are familiar with Greyhound buses in the US, it's NOT like that in Germany.

Posted by Emily
Vienna, Austria
320 posts

If you are going to buy the Vienna-Salzburg ticket in Vienna, then travel with Westbahn, not OeBB. Westbahn tickets can be bought on the train for 25 Euros. OeBB tickets bought on the day will be much more expensive. Travel time and comfort are the same on both services (some would argue Westbahn is better as it as wifi). As for the CK to Vienna travel, you should know there is no easy way to do this. Most people use a shuttle for this route.