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Travel By Train From Prague to Budapest

One of the nice things about Prague being in the heart of Europe is that Prague is close to many great cities. One of them is Budapest. The trip takes just over eight hours. The trains are roomy with lots of luggage and leg room and compared to taking the cramped bus, it is a luxury cruise.

Prague Hlavni Main Train Station

Should You Buy Your Tickets Online?

Lots of people have asked me where they should book their tickets online. I always have the same response: Why do you want to book your tickets online? The best option is to purchase the tickets right at the Main (Hlavni) train station in Prague on the day you want to leave for Budapest.

Cost of Tickets - It Is Less Expensive To Buy Tickets in Prague

Ordering your tickets online is more expensive and sometimes a lot more. The cheapest approach is to simply walk up to the counter in the main station and buy your ticket. You can buy it for the next train or for any future train, the price is the same.

June 20, 2014 I was at the Main (Hlavni) Train Station and I asked them how much it costs for the next train to Budapest. The price is 1686 CZK or about $84.00 US dollars for 2nd class. The price is the same regardless of what time of day the train leaves.

Then I checked a couple of popular online Train Ticket booking websites. Here is a comparison:

Train Ticket Costs Prague to Budapest - June 2014
Purchase Location Train Ticket Cost US$
Prague Main ('Hlavni') Train Station $84.00
Website 1 $130.00
Website 2 $124.00
Website 3 $115.00

Buy Tickets in Prague - You Are Not Bound By a Train Schedule

If you book your ticket online you are bound by a schedule and you will have to be at the train station at a specific time. You never know. Maybe when you arrive in Prague you will find something that you did not expect and you will want to change your plans. But you already bought the train ticket so you must go or go through the hassles of rebooking online.

Instead of buying tickets from home before your vacation just wait and buy it in Prague. Your vacation should be based on your schedule – not by a ticket that you bought 3 weeks before.

Trains Go From Prague To Budapest Three Times a Day

A train leaves from Prague Main (Hlavni) Station to Budapest atleast ten times every day and seven days a week. If you miss a train, you can always catch the next one which leaves only a few hours later. I have been to Budapest twice and the train has never been sold out. Actually I arrive an hour before it leaves and never have a problem purchasing the ticket and getting a seat on the train. Of course if you need a window seat then it is a good idea to come a little early so that you have a better selection of seats.

Here is the train schedule for trains leaving to Budapest from the Main (Hlavni) Train Station: (as of June 20, 2014)

Train leaves the station at:
5:39
6:39
8:39
9:39
10:39
11:39
13:39
14:39
15:39
23:45

The travel time is around 8 hours and 10 minutes.

*New* Buy Your Tickets From the Official Czech Train Website

You can now purchase your tickets online directly from the Official Czech Train Website www.cd.cz. The prices are the same (and sometimes better) as buying your tickets in Prague at the station.

I have tried it and it works great. After you pay via credit card via their eshop you will receive an email with the ticket - print the ticket and take it with you. The only consideration when buying the ticket is if you want a reserved seat. A reserved seat costs a little bit more but if you want a window seat than it is worth it.

So should you buy your ticket in Prague or not?

All the above still applies - don't buy from third parties websites - now you have two options:

  1. Buy in Prague
  2. Buy via www.cd.cz

Am I Being Helpful?

I hope you find this website helpful. I created the website because I love Prague, I enjoy writing about it, and I get a weird kick out of helping you make your trip to Prague more enjoyable.

I wrote a book about local travel in Prague. The book is my pride, my joy, my unbiological offspring. It was written with a passionate heart. If you find this website helpful consider reading my book. You will receive an entertaining book full of useful tips that will instil in you the confidence to wander the local streets of Prague. The book is also included in the popular Prague Local Explore Kit Bag.

Thank you,
Roman : Prague 2017

Prague Local Travel Book