KrisYYZ From Canada, joined Nov 2004, 1575 posts, RR: 0 Posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 5890 times:
I’m planning to visit my family in Budapest in February 2009. Since MA does not offer direct flight from YYZ to BUD anymore, I will have to connect via a European hub. I also plan to spend a few nights in the city were I make my connecting flight. My options are:
AC/LH via Munich
BA via London
AF via Paris
I am asking the well-traveled masses on A.net to provide some insight and opinion on which of these options I should choose. Which city is worth seeing the most? Which city have you had the best experience in? I’m also open to entertain any other option that you may know of.
Ayubogg From UK - Scotland, joined Mar 2007, 216 posts, RR: 0 Reply 2, posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5881 times:
Without thinking about airline/airport/alliance logistics, it's really tough to pick a city, like the post above me says: MUC would be the best option airline-wise but all three cities have incredible things to offer.
London is still my favorite city in the world, I feel you can do close to anything in London. It's not a cheap city, but when you look back at all you did and saw, every pound you spent is worth it. The tube is VERY easy to use and certainly reliable. Also your options of paying for public transportation are good. The Oyster Card, I can't stop recommending this to everyone. I have never been to London in the winter but I would love to experience it with a little more crisp in the air. To get to LHR is easy by tube, LGW from Victoria station via the Gatwick Express is relatively cheap with fast and frequent trains making the journey. Food for the budget traveller is limited to fast food, Indian fast food, and Paninis. But if you indulge, I think you will find great bites all throughout the city. Don't miss a walk through Hyde Park, Kensington, and visit the Tate Modern, it's free and really tickles your head with all the modern art it showcases.
Paris... What an incredible city to see. Sometimes just walking around with no destination is a great thing to do (not to mention cheap!). It's a very monumental city, you don't have to look for landmarks, they find you. Paris is a great experience because it's such a feminine city. We are used to the manliness of Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, etc, but Paris just grabs you and keeps your senses entertained with sights and sounds (and sometimes smells). The Metro is very good also. You can buy a three day pass I believe for unlimited use of the Metro. Make sure to experience a cafe on the Champs-Élysées. Montmartre is a must also. The Luvre takes a while to see but when I visited, on a Thursday afternoon just before closing, a kind staff person let my brother and I in for free and we got to see some of the most famous rooms (including the Mona Lisa) all in about an hour. A night river cruise (which is very popular with couples) is very nice too. Even as a man, I can say that Paris really did make me fall in love with her. CDG is accessible by puchasing a ticket for the Roissybus that leaves near the Opera house (??) don't remember exactly where but somewhere around there. CDG as LHR, is not famous for ease and excellency, but I think CDG is more of a pain as a connecting passenger.
Munich!!! Bavaria is awesome! I was only able to spend two days in Munich but it was fun, fun, fun, and fun! Beer is a part of life in Munich. I found myself drinking my first beer at 11:00 am! Beer Gardens are a must, and do not overlook the English Garden. The Marienplatz is quite the site, and I loved seeing the Frauenkirche from different angles. The Hofbräuhaus, probably the most famous place to drink beer in Munich among tourists, is a lot of fun. It is challenging to find since it's not near a main road or landmark but just ask a friendly German to point you in the right direction. My German friends told me they never ever go there to socialize locally and so you will find a lot of tourists and not many locals but it's a great place to meet people from all over the world. The waitresses wear traditional Bavarian outfits, as do the Oomp Pah band members. The subway is again, easy to use even for a non-German speaker. Just take the time to read carefully the names of the stations so you don't confuse some adjacent stations with similar names. This city I found to be very safe to peruse at night. I drove to Munich so I don't know how MUC is in terms of traffic or commuting to the airport. It's, in my opinion, the cheapest of the three cities, and I found the variety of food more affordable. Do try a pretzel with beer, and have a white sausage for breakfast!
You can PM me if you want more info on specifics. I don't consider myself a specialist in any of these cities, but I do have great tips of what I did when I was there. Take lots and lots of pictures!
I hope this helps in any way. I would love to visti these three cities again and again since there is so much to see and do that I have yet to accomplish.
AirbusA6 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2005, 1907 posts, RR: 0 Reply 3, posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 5841 times:
If you were connecting directly to go to Hungary, then I wouldn't go via London.
As you're stopping over for a few days, then I'd choose London or Paris, buth wonderful cities packed with sights, culture and life. Munich isn't in the same league, though an attractive destination in itself. Munich will be colder than the other cities in February too - London tends to be dull and drizzly these days in winter!
it's the bus to stansted (now renamed national express a4 to ruin my username)
Viscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 21481 posts, RR: 24 Reply 11, posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5602 times:
Quoting Davehammer (Reply 10): Quoting B747forever (Reply 6):
Hope you will enjoy your flights with BA, and T5 at LHR is just great.
Indeed. If he was connecting through the other terminals then I'd say go elsewhere, but I'd recommend T5 to anyone. A very easy experience these days.
The terminals at LHR are not the only problem. It's the overall congestion and lack of runway capacity and frequent delays. LHR has the worse delay record of any major airport in Europe. For that reason alone I much prefer to connect at other hubs. MUC, ZRH and AMS are my favourites in that order, followed by FRA and CDG.
Davehammer From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2007, 472 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (4 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 5571 times:
Since BA have moved to Terminal 5, their delays have decreased markedly. As I commute to work every day I'm incessantly reminded by adverts that 90% of T5 flights departed on time that day. Yes, it's definitely not great but I've transferred at CDG and FRA before and I found CDG absolutely awful.