This article first appeared on 100 Nights of Summer, our mini-website dedicated to European festival travel.
When you want the flexibility of an open schedule combined with affordable prices, it’s time to consider catching the bus. For 100 Nights of Summer, I jumped on board with FlixBus, Europe’s premier busline with an absolute mind-boggling 200,000 daily bus connections to around 1200 popular European destinations in over 26 countries.
I took three trips with FlixBus this summer. A short jaunt from Barcelona to Nimes where I caught the indie rock This is Not a Love Song Festival. For my next fest, I caught an overnighter via FlixBus to Frankfurt, Germany and the Maifeld Derby, and finally one more from Germany to Belgium for Rock Werchter.
What I Love About FlixBus
Price, Price, Price: There’s lots of incredible travel deals on FlixBus that you just won’t find anywhere else. It was €15 for a five hour bus ride from Barcelona to Nimes with multiple departure times throughout the day. It’s easy on your budget — which leaves more money for festivals.
Schedules and Destinations: FlixBus has rides to just about every corner of Europe, and for someone living on a spontaneous (some might say completely disorganized) festival schedule, I require a travel partner that accommodates my half-baked plans and dreams.
Luggage: My backpack, absolutely stuffed full with essential gear, is weighed to the the nearest kilogram so I can sneak it past difficult airline baggage requirements. FlixBus? They had no problems with spacious luggage bays that can easily handle festival packing.
What I Like About FlixBus
No Power, No Problem: Dead phones are heartbreaking, especially on travel days, when I really need access to directions. Every FlixBus I caught a ride with featured a power outlet, which meant no problems binge watching Netflix shows on my phone or keeping my camera battery charged up.
Overnight Buses: It’s not the most comfortable way to spend the night, but after a long weekend of insane psychedelic rock, I can sleep anywhere. Taking an overnight bus from Nimes to Frankfurt in Germany gave me a free day between festivals to explore a new city.
Wi-Fi: Traveling to 15 different countries in 15 weeks makes it tough to keep with various data plans, so I’m always on the lookout for free Wi-Fi. While the connectivity varied over the course of my trips, I found it solid enough to catch up on emails, surf the web, and post photos to the FlixBus Instagram account.
What I Dislike About FlixBus
Late Buses: I had two buses show up late, with one being nearly an hour behind schedule. Nobody likes a late bus, but to the credit of FlixBus, they did keep me informed with text messages being pushed out to my phone.
Bus Stops: In order to keep prices down, FlixBus typically doesn’t have manned bus stations. Sometimes, the bus stop is outside the station marked with a simple sign. This can a little disorienting if you’re used to walking inside a station and finding information. Just make sure to download the app, which clearly marks the spot you should be to pick up your ride.
The Final Verdict
I would sum up my experience with FlixBus as affordable, flexible, and convenient. If you’re going to spend any time festivaling around Europe, this absolutely should be one of your go-to travel options.