Cheaps trips across Eastern / Central Europe
May 26, 2011 7:35 AM   Subscribe

How do I travel cheaply from Budapest, Hungary to Kaunas, Lithuania next month?

I need to go from Budapest, in Hungary to Kaunas, in Lithuania next month for work and personal reasons.

I've found some flights online but I'm wondering if there's a cheaper option, e.g. train or bus?

It would be useful to know some good Internet sources for cheap Central / Eastern European travel methods anyhow as I will be doing a lot more in future so bonus Best Answers for that too.

I need to find English-language sites ideally!
posted by KMH to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total)
Seat64 is your friend here, at least for half of the journey, as the train route from Budapest involves a change in Warsaw. InterRail forum covers both legs. You can look at English timetables at

The sleeper to Warsaw is the expensive part of the journey, and looking at AirBaltic prices, it's probably not going to be cheaper.
posted by holgate at 8:11 AM on May 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

What Holgate said, also be aware that train travel has fallen out of favour in the Baltic countries and coach travel is much more popular, with more routes and destinations than trains (and it pains me to admit this, but there were better facilities on a coach between Vilnius and Riga than most trains I've been on).
posted by Helga-woo at 9:45 AM on May 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

also there is Eurolines for international coach travel

The have a connection Budapest -> Kaunas
posted by ironicon at 11:08 AM on May 26, 2011

Budapest to Vilnius, an hour's train ride from Kaunas, is $114 on 27 June (lots of other possible days), with two separate WizzAir tickets - one from Budapest to Eindhoven, and another from Eindhoven to Vilnius. Wizzair is much, much nicer than Ryanair as budget airlines go and has a much larger luggage allowance for your first (paid) checked bag - 32 kg instead of 15/20.

After departing Budapest at 0620, you'll arrive in Eindhoven around 0805. Grab bus 401 into town. You then have a seven-hour layover in Eindhoven - enough time to head into town, see these things, have a meal, relax, etc, and then get to Vilnius that evening, on a flight departing Eindhoven at 1510. Get a train from the Oro Uostas (Airport) train station to Vilnius Central (departs 1856, arrives seven minutes later) and on to Kaunas (departs Vilnius 1930) and you're in Kaunas by 2042.

Hungary, the Netherlands, and Lithuania are all part of the Schengen zone, so there's no passport control or immigration on any of these flights, giving you a bit more time to explore.

Is flying west to go east absurd? Yes. Is this a crazy-long day? Yes. But the train-to-Warsaw-onward-coach-to-Vilnius option would be far longer, and almost certainly close to this price.
posted by mdonley at 1:16 PM on May 26, 2011

Looks like there was no easy solution to this problem. A flight back home then to Lithuania was the eventual solution. Looks like cross-Europe travel is a pretty granular problem.
posted by KMH at 6:27 AM on July 25, 2011

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