If you ever been in mainland Europe, you might have seen the name “FlixBus” around, a lot. Like a lot, a lot, a lot. It has been absolutely dominating the European market in the last couple of years, taking over other companies one by one. But just because it’s everywhere doesn’t mean it’s good. Ryanair is everywhere, and it isn’t great. That’s why I took it upon this site to test is FlixBus worth it in this Flixbus review done during a course of one year.
And, well, you will be surprised by the flaws and the benefits of taking a FlixBus.
Firstly, a little story…
FlixBus Saved My Life Many Times!
Russia. World Cup. I’m in Kaliningrad. Just over Poland. Somehow I miss my flight to Moscow.
The best way to get to Ireland where I was meant to go after Russia? By flying with Ryanair from Poland. This was like a one day later kind of flight, so everything was expensive.
I found a flight from Katowice at a very decent price though. The problem? Getting from Gdansk where my bus from Kaliningrad could bring me to, and getting to Katowice from there. FlixBus was there for me, at a great price, without worrying that I will be late, which was the case with my bus driver in Kaliningrad which led to me missing my flight…
I was returning flying from South Korea to France around two weeks ago. My flight got delayed to a point I would miss my flight second flight from France, and since it was with a different airline, there was nothing that could be done by the airline to help me. FlixBus got me to Germany at an affordable price, where I then got an affordable flight from.
It saved my life, but it does still have flaws, and during the one year of using it, I found some. But I also found what’s so great about it!
There’s Something About Driving at Night!
Plenty of FlixBus courses go through the night, and I just love that. There’s something about driving at night. There’s something about also driving during the day too. You can see some amazing things that an airplane doesn’t show. And that applies for all buses, provided you have comfort…
…While FlixBus does take bus comfort to the next level, not all of FlixBus buses are on that level.
This is the main reason this review has been in the making for a year and will be updated over and over again. We wrote plenty about FlixBus in the past, but when it comes to a review, we needed to be sure.
See, FlixBus doesn’t buy buses. It gets them from companies it is partnered with, and that sometimes is a problem.
While FlixBus has certain standards that all buses need to meet, for instance with air conditioning, sockets, and Wi-Fi, Flixbus uses a variety of different buses with different interiors.
And depending on where you are, you might enjoy your bus journey a lot, or not so much.
My biggest observations are that Germany, where FlixBus was founded, has the highest standards whether that’s comfort or space. Whether that’s Hannover, Frankfurt, or Hamburg, FlixBus has extremely high standards in Germany. But then again, Germany has pretty high standards as it is.
You will often see extremely new buses that you just can’t wait to get on.
France though? That’s not often the situation. While the FlixBus standard is there as it has to, the buses were often older. And once I did go on a bus without Wi-Fi which hopefully was fixed after, but when you are going on a bus that states to have Wi-Fi, you don’t care about the problem, you want Wi-Fi as perhaps you planned to work, and out of a sudden, you can’t.
My biggest problems with seats? Poland. FlixBus in Poland operates with buses from PolskiBus.com. And that’s my biggest criticism of Flixbus. Those seats are not fit for use. They are the most uncomfortable seats I ever used. Even for an hour. Never mind an overnight journey. Gosh.
They Have a Wi-Fi Limit Now Though
A year ago I did not see this. Recently, I did. 150MB. And I get it, people like me often abuse the internet. But 150MB is ridiculous. If anything, make it based on the duration of a trip.
Why should somebody on a 2-hour journey get as much as on a 12-hour journey? 150MB won’t last for 12 hours, even when used responsibly.
500MB would be fine. 150MB is not enough. That’s a very limiting limit if you want to work.
One thing I loved about Flixbus is that it was great for work. That’s not exactly doable with 150MB.
The Seat Reservation Thing Is Confusing
On some journies, you can reserve seats. Except, it seems like all the buses have marks for reserved seats. That is very confusing because you don’t know if somebody else is meant to be sitting in your seat creating stress.
On one side, I would like seat reservations as it would prevent people from rushing after giving their carry-on, but at the same time, I prefer first-come, first-served when it comes to buses as there will always be a person that won’t follow, and what are you going to do? Tell them to get off when they are sleeping at 2 A.M.?
Sockets Are Present, and Actually Work!!!
If you ever been to Ireland and tried Dublin Coach, most buses have sockets. Except they don’t work. And there’s nothing worse than sockets and them not working as that gives you false hopes.
FlixBus has either working sockets or USB ports, and most often both. The new buses have it all. Meanwhile, the older tend to have a socket, which I prefer as I want to use my laptop for work on a 10-hour journey. Like seriously.
They key to getting the most done is by getting the work done whenever possible. A lack of a socket would prevent that.
FlixBus Can Save Your Life If Your Airline Fails You
You land in Germany to go to Croatia but your flight doesn’t take off on time, and you know you will miss your bus? No problem. You can cancel your bus journey up to 15 minutes prior to it and get a refund in the form of a credit on your FlixBus account, right away, allowing you to book the next one, at a very similar price. Most often, it costs me at max €10 extra, with those being for 10+ hour journies.
And that’s one of the reasons I love FlixBus. It’s something you don’t really see on other buses.
The Booking Process Is Smooth, and You Can Track Your Bus
There’s nothing worse than not knowing where your bus is when it’s already late. FlixBus? It rarely ever is. It only happened twice to me, with delays of around 10 and 20 minutes which is understandable over long distances due to traffic.
The FlixBus app lets you check the exact location of your bus. Every bus company should have that!
Oh, and you never pay with cash which is part of a reason why Flixbus is so efficient.
When there are 20,30,40 people trying to get on a bus and pay, every person takes about a minute. That makes being on time extremely hard. FlixBus eliminates that. You pay online. And that’s it.
And payments are extremely easy and convenient as PayPal, and mobile payment via the likes of Google Pay is accepted.
It’s no wonder that FlixBus is taking over. Their system is so superior to others. They make life easy.
Oh, and it’s extremely easy to scan your phone with your ticket. I’ve seen many methods of ticket verification, and FlixBus has the best one I tried yet!
You Can Get Just About Anywhere with FlixBus, and They Are Also in the US Now!
FlixBus allows people in locations not around airports to get to locations with airports. It allows people to wander off to locations that aren’t that touristy due to lack of airports but are incredible. With FlixBus, you can get just about anywhere in Europe, whether directly or with stops, at just about any time, and without bookings too in advance.
Oh, and they launched in the US this year. Are they worth it there? I don’t know. That, I will test in the future!
Ultimately when asking is FlixBus worth it, pricing matters, and FlixBus offers Ryanair prices or better, with much more comfort.
Ryanair prices. Much better comfort. Most journies are insanely affordable. Sure, they take much longer than airplanes, but if you are wasting time at an airport anyway, then does it make a difference? All-night journeys are a great way of getting to your destination.
I tend to pay around €20 per journey of over 10 hours. Not bad at all. Of course, I’m a person that finds the cheapest way to get to places, and sometimes journies are more expensive and more expensive than flights, and that’s when I take a flight.
Is FlixBus Worth it?
Is FlixBus worth it shouldn’t even be a question. One year later, having tested FlixBus in Croatia, Poland, France, Germany, Austria, and Budapest, several times in most of these locations, without a doubt, I can say that FlixBus is the most reliable form of transport I found. The most convenient in terms of sockets and Wi-Fi even with that little issue of internet limits, and overall a bus that doesn’t make you feel as you are just getting from A to B.