Is Flixbus Reliable? An Honest Review

Is Flixbus Reliable?

That was my first question when my friend Smoky suggested we use it on our European adventure.

Flixbus is significantly cheaper than taking a train or a flight between cities, so I was inclined to give it a try, even though the idea of taking a bus made my travel anxiety flare up…like a lot.

Would I be able to find my stop? Would the bus leave early? If it’s delayed, does that mean it’s actually going to come? Will the bathroom be clean? What if we get stuck in traffic and I lose a whole day in my destination?

Is flixbus reliable

Amsterdam…one of the many cities Flixbus serves

This stems from the fact that I took buses in college a lot. Usually from my sleepy Western Massachusetts campus into Boston or down into NYC. I found them to be kind of icky and delayed like seven times out of ten. Bus stations also tend to stress me out simply because of the mere chaos of it all.

BUT

Flixbus is all about rebranding buses.

Its team promises clean, eco-friendly buses with free wifi. The stops seemed easy enough to find and the prices (starting at 5 Euro!) couldn’t be beat.

So I bought my tickets and hoped for the best.

Here’s my Flixbus review: 

Berlin —> Amsterdam

flixbus berlin is flixbus reliable

The Reichstag Building in Berlin

Finding the stop: Easy

Punctuality of the Flixbus: Left on time

I took an overnight Flixbus from Berlin to Amsterdam because I wanted to save money on accommodations. It took about eleven hours and I was dreading it, but as we pulled into Sloterdijk, I actually said to the girl next to me, “Wow, that actually wasn’t as bad as I thought.”

It wasn’t bad at all, actually.

Flixbus Berlin to Amsterdam normally leaves from the central Alexanderplatz stop (among others in the city — including the most-used stop: Berlin Central Bus Station), but because of the Berlin Marathon, the stop was relocated. I got multiple emails from Flixbus with the exact coordinates of the “pop up stop,” so it was very easy to find.

I even tweeted them to confirm (hello, travel anxiety) and the social media team responded within the hour to put me at ease.

Munich —> Prague

Flixbus Munich

Oktoberfest in Munich

Finding the stop: Easy

Punctuality of the Flixbus: Left on time

After a little too much fun at Oktoberfest, Smoky and I were headed to the fairy tale city of Prague. The Flixbus stops at Munich Central Bus station are very easy to find. You can take the SBAHN to Hackerbrücke and then it’s like a two-minute walk to the stops. Everything is labeled and there are plenty of places to eat or shop while waiting for your bus.

One thing to note: when Flixbus is on time, it’s ON TIME. We rolled out of the station at our exact departure time and not a second later.

Prague —> Vienna

Flixbus Prague

Old Town Square in Prague

Finding the stop: Hard

Punctuality of the Flixbus: Left early

The Flixbus stop at Prague Main Railway Station was difficult to find. I think this because we came in the “grand entrance” at the front of the station, so to find it, we had to walk allll the way to the back of the station, and up some stairs. The actual stop is on a strip in the middle of the road behind the station.

We had to ask for lots of help and ran around like beheaded chickens for a bit, but we did eventually find it. If you are departing from Prague ÚAN Florenc, I wouldn’t worry as it’s small and manageable, but if you’re leaving from the station, give yourself some extra time to find your stop.

This bus actually left about six minutes before it was “supposed” to. Smoky and I figured it was because we were the only two ticketed passengers due to board in Prague, as there were only like ten other people on the entire double decker bus, so there wasn’t a point to waiting around.

Is Flixbus reliable? Not if you don’t have a ticket! If the driver doesn’t even know you’re coming, he won’t wait for you, so make sure to buy your ticket at least an hour or so in advance.

Vienna —> Bratislava

Flixbus Vienna

The Royal Opera House in Vienna

Finding the stop: Moderate

Punctuality of the Flixbus: Over an hour late, so we bailed.

The Flixbus stops at Vienna Erdberg are relatively easy to find, since we were dropped off from Prague in the same general area, but I say “moderate” because we never actually found our bus stop. We were only doing a day trip to Bratislava, so we didn’t have too much time to spare and it was FREEZING outside (the terminal is basically a wind tunnel), so when we saw that our bus was going to be over an hour late, we knew we needed a plan B.

Thankfully, there was another Flixbus just sitting there that was also going to Bratislava, so Smoky and I decided to forfeit our orignial tickets and buy new ones. The 7 Euro for the new ticket was worth it to get out of the cold and get on our way.

Bratislava —> Budapest

Flixbus Bratislava

Beautiful Bratislava

Finding the stop: Easy

Punctuality of the Flixbus: Over an hour late

My travel anxiety flared up in a major way over this bus to Budapest, but it turns out it was for nothing. I wish I more like Smoky. Calm, cool, collected…confident that the bus would come. Because it did. It was reaaaaally late, but it came exactly when the app said it would.

The Most SNP Flixbus stop in Bratislava isn’t somewhere I’d like to be after dark, since it’s kind of just under a bridge, but as we were there during the daylight hours it was fine.

The Bratislava Central Bus Station, however, is really nice. Like really nice. Like free wifi, clean AF free bathrooms, and free luggage storage nice. I would almost consider it a tourist attraction on its own.

We did make the mistake of sitting across from the bathroom on the bus to Budapest. Don’t do this y’all. Every time we went over a bump, the door would fly open. It was almost reaaal embarrassing.

So, is Flixbus Reliable?

Flixbus Budapest

At the Széchenyi Thermal Baths in Budapest

  • Does the Flixbus Wifi Work?

Yes! It worked great on every single ride; however, to keep things moving quickly, Flixbus limits the amount of data you can use. Be sure to download your audiobooks and Netflix episodes beforehand, then put your phone on airplane mode and only use the wifi when you really need to. There are also power outlets on board.

  • Is Flixbus Dirty?

I didn’t think so. The buses I took were nicer than some of the trains I’ve been on. I even actually used the bathroom on the way from Berlin to Amsterdam. I remember being like “Wow, how suspicious. It’s really clean in here…too clean.” There was toilet paper provided, but you should always bring your own as well. On the way from Bratislava to Budapest, someone dropped the roll…wouldn’t want to use that one.

is flixbus reliable

The Blue Church in Bratislava

  • Should I use Flixbus? 

I would use it again! Yes, two of our buses were really delayed and we had some hiccups finding some of the stops, but Flixbus buses are just that…buses. They are subjected to things outside their control like weather and traffic. If the bus is going to be late, the Flixbus app lets you know and updates itself in real time. The drivers we met were kind and helpful. The buses were clean.

For me, that makes up for it. 

If you’re looking to save some money on your next trip to Europe, I would recommend looking into Flixbus. Just prepare to be flexible

  • Pin it:

Is flixbus reliable?

I didn’t partner with Flixbus for this review and received no compensation. All opinions, as always, are my own. 

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23 Comments

  1. November 4, 2017 / 8:19 PM

    I am glad Flixbus worked well for you but it was disaster for me. I made reservations to use it 4 times during my last trip to Europe (May this year) and it was late every single time (more than an hour). At one time, I waited more than 90 minutes and ended up leaving (and taking the train). They didn’t want to return the money and drivers cannot offer any information (or do not want to deal with people). I do not think I will use the service again.

    • November 4, 2017 / 10:02 PM

      Bummer! The two times it was late really stressed me out. We bailed the first time, so I don’t know if it arrived when the app said it would, but the second delayed bus technically arrived at its new estimated time. They were both on the same day, though….maybe there was lots of traffic?

      I had lots of experiences like yours in the states with Megabus, though. You can never be too sure with buses since they have to deal with traffic.

  2. November 5, 2017 / 12:06 AM

    I used Flixbus in and out of Croatia to Budapest and into Slovakia. It was terrific. The buses were clean, comfy and the wifi actually worked. It was much better than buses in America. Affordable too.

    • November 5, 2017 / 8:57 PM

      I’m so glad to hear that you had a great experience as well! I too was really shocked by how clean the buses were. I’m used to buses being gross.

  3. November 5, 2017 / 3:54 AM

    Whenever I am traveling on a budget and the train tickets are too expensive, I use Flixbus too. However, it’s always like you won the lottery if everything works out well. From Prague to Berlin, we had a 4h delay and were dropped off in Dresden. They told us we have to buy train tickets as there was no more bus going to Berlin this night (although we paid for it). Long story short, we complain as much as we could that they pay for the train ticket right away and we got a voucher for the amount of the bus ticket a few weeks later. The usual 4.5h ride took us like 10h though. And still, I would recommend it. Things like that happen everywhere (plane, train…).

    • November 5, 2017 / 9:29 PM

      I so agree! delays are a part of travel. I paid over $100 for a train from Budapest to Salzburg and even then, it was delayed due to a technical issue and I had to get off and wait around in this rando Hungarian town for like an hour with no information.

  4. November 5, 2017 / 4:26 AM

    I was hesitant about bus travel as well since my experience along the East Coast from New York to Washington and South Carolina were totally uncomfortable, unreliable and just SUPER late I was skeptical when it came to bus travel in Europe. I, like you, was pleasantly surprised. I’ve traveled with Flixbus several times already and I would recommend them as well. Each bus I’ve been on was clean, Wifi worked really well with no limitations on how long you can use it. Bathrooms were also as clean as they could be. Thanks for sharing your honesty!

    • November 5, 2017 / 10:02 PM

      I’m glad to hear you had a good experience with them as well!!

  5. November 5, 2017 / 6:39 AM

    I once took an overnight bus from London to Austria and it was soooo uncomfortable to try and sleep on it, but other than that I don’t mind bus travel. This is a good un-biased guide, I never even heard of Flixbus before so might use it in the future now!

    • November 5, 2017 / 10:03 PM

      Yeah definitly check them out! The seat next to me was empty for most of the overnight ride, so that really helped with sleeping.

  6. November 5, 2017 / 8:37 AM

    I like the cheaper options when traveling in Europe as those high-speed trains take a toll on the budget. Wish I knew about these earlier. I’ll give them a try in my next trip for sure. ofcouse 7 Euro is a lot better than 30+ euro train ticket 😀

    • November 5, 2017 / 10:17 PM

      They really do! I had sticker shock quite a few times while purchasing train tickets!

  7. November 5, 2017 / 9:58 AM

    Agreed with everything! I found flixbus to be a great way to get around cheaply and reasonably comfortable. It was definitely late at times (and I also struggled to find the bus in prague!) But if you’re not on a schedule and are on a budget, it’s a solid option. I loved Bla Bla Car too though, and sometimes it was just as cheap as flix bus.

    • November 5, 2017 / 10:37 PM

      I’m glad to know I wasn’t the only one who couldn’t find the bus stop in Prague! We were realllly panicking! I’ll have to look into Bla Bla Car.

  8. November 6, 2017 / 2:00 AM

    Thanks for your review! I’ve only used Flixbus between London and Brussels and it usually gets delayed because of the Channel crossing. Other than that I’d say it’s better than Megabus, but also more expensive. Whenever I can, I take the train. You can save a lot of money on train prices when you book a few months ahead 🙂

    • November 6, 2017 / 6:14 PM

      I was trying to book trains for this trip, but some of them wouldn’t let me book online (at least in the Eastern European countries). I could’ve been doing something wrong, though.

  9. Lorri
    November 6, 2017 / 5:58 AM

    Can you comment on the comfort of the seats? What about leg room? I’m tall! Where do you put luggage? So many questions I have!

    • November 6, 2017 / 6:15 PM

      The seats were actually pretty comfortable. The sides of the headrests were a little raised, so you could lean your head to the side. There’s also little rests that come down off the seat in front of you if you want to put your feet up. For leg room, there was more room than on most airplane economies classes. Probably about two inches more than an airplane in between my knees and the seat in front of me, but I’m only 5 foot 6.

      • November 6, 2017 / 6:16 PM

        Also, luggage goes under the bus, but there’s room for small carry ons in the cain with you.

  10. Nina Danielle
    November 6, 2017 / 9:07 AM

    This is great to know! Still undecided on 2018 travel but Germany is a contender, so this is a great tip!

    • November 6, 2017 / 6:16 PM

      The German network is really strong since it’s based there.

  11. November 6, 2017 / 11:26 AM

    I hadn’t heard of Flixbus earlier and this is great to know of before we plan our next European adventure. Given all your experiences, we think it’s totally worth the money and must be given a shot!

    • November 6, 2017 / 6:16 PM

      Yeah definitly see if it works for where you are going 🙂

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