Traveling to a new destination requires a bit of research. My trip from Jacksonville to New York had a few options. I could have made the trip by train and travel from 5 PM to 11 AM the following day or by plane and travel for a little over 2 hours from Jacksonville International Airport.
But finding departure times, prices, trip duration information and comparing prices seemed complicated. Omio is the website that automated my research. All airplane departure times and train departure times where nicely published.
The website also shows bus routes with prices where applicable. On my upcoming Europe trip, I’m planning to travel from Paris to Brussels and I’m debating a train ride over a more affordable but longer bus journey.
Now, if the routes in the US are somewhat developing and you don’t have as many options, the website has plenty of listed transport companies in Europe. Rebranded from the former Go Euro, it now takes bookings for travel all around the world.
How to Book a Ticket
If you want to use the website for the first time, there are a few characteristics you should consider. The website is very intuitive. You only have the main search bar to enter your departure location and your destination at the top of the home page.
From here, you proceed to enter your traveling date. The website then shows you the results by 3 categories. These results are based on train rides, bus journeys, and airplane journeys. You can toggle between the results to compare fares and travel time.
In my case, it proved best to travel by airplane. Around Europe, I’m going to consider bus rides a bit more. I found the main European capitals are connected by busses which depart as frequently as 30 minutes.
When looking at bookings, you have the option of only viewing certain time intervals. However, I found that traveling early in the morning or late and night to be better for low prices.
Connecting routes might also be a bit cheaper. I found a few plane tickets without Europe with one-stop which were quite cheap. However, they might often take a bit longer than traveling by bus. Depending on your destination, it would be wise to choose the routes which are most suitable for you.
If you’re traveling to small cities, you’ll have real problems finding any tickets. However, you should be able to see a few different companies connecting large cities. In cities with airports, I find there is plenty of train and bus rides alternative so that you always have the best prices to consider.
To make a booking, you need to enter your personal details and payment details. You’ll also need to open up an account on the website. It’s here that you can manage your booking. You can later add a connecting bus ride or you can cancel the trip altogether.
Filters are also applicable when you search for a route. Popular filters include sorting by the cheapest price first. If you’re not in a rush, you can find fantastic prices at very low rates. It’s obvious that booking ticket months in advance gives you a bit more room for juggling low prices.
You’ll also be able to filter by the fastest route. As I said, its often the airplane route. But in some cases, there’s no direct airplane route and you’ll need to add a connecting flight. It’s worth checking all 3 options. For example, if I would be traveling with children, I’d pay more just to get the fastest route. Traveling alone is different and I don’t mind choosing the cheapest route.
Main Business Partners
There are a few businesses the website partners up with. They include Amtrak, Renfe, Via Rail Canada, Eurolines, RedCoach, and Easyjet. These partnerships are what enable the website to offer competitive prices.
Of course, you won’t wind many transport companies here. But you should be able to find those which offer a good price.
Some travel partners are not on the website altogether. Smaller European countries and destinations are not covered and no company shows up in the search bar. But popular destinations are covered. For example, Eurolines has arguably the largest transportation network in its category. It should cover the most popular destinations.
Another strong feature of the website is the app integration. The official app is very easy to use. It has a simplified interface that mainly focuses on your traveling destination. It’s here that you can also purchase tickets and download them to your smartphone.
I know some companies now accept e-tickets. Bust and train rides can be made with e-tickets. I’ve even traveled with Easyjet before with the ticket on my phone. You simply scan the barcode on the ticket from the smartphone at the check-in airport gates.
Customer service is as good as it gets on the website. I know most customers got their money back on canceled Coronavirus-affected flights. There is a special section on the website which deals with all types of cancelation and reimbursement claims.
You can also check all the disruptions in advance. In case your bus or train ride is canceled, you may also qualify for reimbursement or for another free ticket on a different date.
At the moment, discounts and offers are limited. The only discount I found was a 5% student discount. But since I’m not in college anymore, I’ll have to pay the full price myself. Traveling is not necessarily affordable, especially over long distances, but students get to save more with frequent travel.
If you sign up as a customer, you may also receive a discount or promo code to your e-mail address from time to time. But I find these offers are generally limited to an immediate purchase. You can get a 10% discount with the condition of purchasing a ticket within 24 hours. Still, some travelers have the freedom of choosing when their departure date is and such offers are made for them.
If you want to see the best prices, I recommend use sign up from the start. You may even get a promo code on your e-mail while searching for these tickets in advance. You can use the website from a computer via a web browser.
But I also recommend installing the official app where you can search for tickets at various times of the day. Prices change depending on many factors such as demand. You should look for the best price as often as you need with a smartphone.
If you’re traveling long distances, you should also check connecting destinations. If you’re not looking for the fastest transport method, you often find these alternative routes as the best method of saving. If you have any questions, feel free to call the company’s customer service. They offer dedicated help in 12 languages for ultimate customer satisfaction.