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Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

New York City, New...
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Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

Hello,

My husband and I are landing in Budapest late in the evening, around 11pm. We only have one day in Budapest, and then we are going to Vienna, also, only have one day here. Then, we go to Prague. We are trying to decide if we should stay at an airport hotel the night we land and then get up early and head into Budapest. Then, come back to the airport hotel and rent a car and drive to Vienna. We have read that traffic can be bad inside the city of Budapest, how is it outside? We like the idea of having a car for the flexibility, but want to make sure that we don't rent one to only find out the trip will take much longer due to traffic, etc... Please advise!

THANKS!

Budapest, Hungary
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1. Re: Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

Hi Smiles,

The first significant item you must note that if you rent a car in Hungary and plan on dropping it off in Austria or Czech, expect an expensive surcharge (think €500+ in my experience for the drop-off-in-another-country surcharge).

Upon landing, grab a taxi immediately outside the arrival hall and you'll be city center in 30ish minutes. The taxi will take credit card and it's fairly seamless. See he taxi representative at the taxi booth outside the exit doors and you're on your way.

I'd highly suggest taking a train to Vienna. And then from Vienna to Prague. You do NOT need or want a car inside of your 3 target destinations. The train stations are all city center and quite easy to maneuver through. Driving from Budapest to Vienna is about 2.5 hours door to door, to and from city center. And that's me driving who has done the drive countless times.

I notice only 1 day in Budapest. Search the forum for other travelers asking how to split days between the 3 cities. Many, including me think Budapest deserves the most days - or at a minimum equal to the others.

This should get the conversation started. Thoughts?

Jeremy

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2. Re: Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

Hi Jeremy!

Thank you for your advice! We are looking into the train as well, but we are just not sure of what to do. We arrive in Budapest August 16th in the late evening, and then fly home on August 22nd. We thought we should spend the most time in Prague, as there seem to be many trips to do outside of the city. I've been to all these places before, but my husband has not. Also, I've been over 9 years ago, so I don't remember everything! I do remember I LOVED Budapest and Prague.

I checked the rates out online and they don't seem that high for a drop-off fee. (around $300 US for 5 days) However, this is through Auto Europe, so I would have to see if the company the select for me would increase the price, as they are a large booking company.

Last year we rented a car in Germany and had no issues driving and parking. However, I am not sure how the roads there compare to the roads for our new trip.

So, as you can see, we are torn on what to do!

Thanks!

Budapest, Hungary
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for Budapest, Hungary
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3. Re: Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

Take Jeremy's advice and go by train. The motorway between Bpst and Vienna is nothing spectacular, so you won't be missing anything.

As you have such a short visit I suggest you limit yourself to two cities ot it is going to be like 'If it's Tuesday it must be Belgum' (personally I would ditch Prague, but suspect you may be flying out of there).

If you get an overnight train from Vienna to Prague, which I believe is possible, that would give you an extra half a day to sightsee.

Budapest, Hungary
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for Budapest
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4. Re: Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

Hi Smiles,

I understand the car desire to do some trips around Prague. I get that and no doubt a car will increase your flexibility. But, there is no need for a car in Bpest or Vienna - and actually in can be a pain in the wallet with hotels charging €25+ nightly for parking give or take.

How about renting a car once you get into Prague and want to begin exploring outside the city? Southern Czech and it's castles are really nice and scenic. And while in Prague, be sure to have a cold Pilsner Urquell and Beer Cheese bread. The best! http://www.upinkasu.com/pe-history/

The train may allow some down time to relax with your husband as opposed to focused on the motor ways, figuring out the cities and which hot to get to your hotel down the correct one way. I enjoy the train between Budapest and Vienna. It's clean, pretty quick and the fields offer glimpses of many species of wildlife (pheasant, deer, jack rabbits, etc.).

It's a tough one Smiles, but I'd bypass the car until you must. Have a great time and welcome back into the region. Budapest has gotten quite a bit cleaner (air quality wise) in the past 9 years and quite a few buildings have been cleaned and a few new ones have sprouted up. It's a nice city for sure.

Best,

Jeremy

Edited: 02 August 2012, 19:06
5. Re: Budapest Airport Hotel/Car Rental

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