flying into Stuttgart Germany. Have Friday thru Thursday for vacation. Someone said sleep on trains at night instead of using a hotel. Any ideas out there on which is best?
When I was 20 and using a railpass, I tried to stretch my $ that way a couple of times. Didn't work well. If you want to SLEEP, don't spend your nights on a train, not even in a berth or sleeping compartment, which will bust a budget anyway. If you're on a tight budget, pay for an inexpensive room in one or two different places and drop the railpass idea.
Trains don't make very good hotels. Unless you sleep sitting up or sleep in you clothes in a room with five stranger, trains are more expensive than hotels.I could see using one to replace a long daytime trip and recover the time for sightseeing, but you are in the middle of a rich touring area with inexpensive public transportation (You can get a Bayern-Ticket Single, an all day pass for unlimited travel on regional trains in Bavaria for one person for €21. Same thing for Baden-Württemberg). You don't need to go very far. There are plenty of things to see (Freudenstadt, Herrenberg, Tübingen, Hechingen, Heidelberg) right around Stuttgart the first few days when you are jet lagged. You have six nights. Get a hotel for two nights in Stuttgart, then go to Rothenburg for a night, then go Munich for three. Then you leave.
marie, I wouldn't suggest using night trains unless absolutely necessary. As mentioned in a previous reply, this is often not the most restful endeavor, especially in a Couchette with a bunch of strangers. I've heard a few reports of items "going missing" from luggage when travellers have left the Couchette for a short time to use the WC. It's also necessary to choose night trains carefully. If one has changes at 02:00 and again at 05:00, they don't get much sleep! Extra fees apply for Couchettes or Sleepers, so I doubt that one would save much money over using a budget Hotel. Cheers!
Marie, I wouldn't take the advice of sleeping on trains too generally. Unlike 25-35 years ago, you need to reserve just to get a seat on a night train. If you don't have a reservation and hopped on, then you pay the conductor, provided you're in a seat. Where do you intend to take night trains...any specific countries or routes? I can't tell you the general cost of reserving a sleeper or couchette as compared to spending the night in a hostel (as the cheapest option) because I don't need a couchette or sleeper to sleep in on a night train, and it's an extra expense. But that's only in France, Germany and Austria where you can sit in a general compartment of six or in the general seating area. Pay attention to the route the night train takes, the best option is to get one that is a straight shot until at least 06:00, if you need to transfer.