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skippy777
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Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:54 am

Last Month we where trying something new.
We want to get with 4 guys from Tilburg The Netherlands to London and meet up at the Big Ben.
As I always fly I asked my friends I want to bet that I am faster by train than you with the plane.

They told me ok we will win.
So one of my friends joined me with the train and the 2 other friends took the flight from Amsterdam to London Heathrow.

But I know that when you are at LHR, it still takes a long time before you will leave the airport and get the tube connection to the Big Ben.

Well we ended up arriving 1 hour and 56 minutes earlier at the meeting point than our friends.
We where relaxed but they had a lot of stress.

Here is the article including movie http://www.btmagazine.nl/?p=8977

Why don't travelers take more often the train as the plane, especially for shorter distances.
I think you are also faster from Tilburg to Paris by train than by plane.

I would say a destination shorter than 1000 km's take the train !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

[Edited 2012-06-19 04:55:57]
 
dc9northwest
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:07 pm

How about taking a flight to LCY?

How about a trip from Amsterdam (which is a better comparison, frankly, for business travellers)?

This reminds me of Top Gear challenges, where the journey is always designed so that the car wins...

You don't "have" to be at the airport 2 hours in advance, you can get there 45 minutes before if you don't have bags and check-in online...

A nice idea, to test this, but frankly it doesn't really say much, I'm sorry to say.

Anyway, you're right, some journeys are better left for the train. If you're in Germany, Spain, France, Japan, China and a handful of other countries...
 
ozglobal
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:09 pm

Quoting Skippy777 (Thread starter):
Here is the article including movie http://www.btmagazine.nl/?p=8977

Why don't travelers take more often the train as the plane, especially for shorter distances.
I think you are also faster from Tilburg to Paris by train than by plane.

I would say a destination shorter than 1000 km's take the train !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Absolutely, given:

1/ You are Western Europe, Japan, China, Taiwan, etc and there is a serious HSR network
2/ Your destination is not right next to the airport

I live in Paris and it is amazing to me still that there are such regular flights maintained from PAR to LON. Eurostar now has about 70% of the O&D market. Few people would have faster trips by air. Even Paris - Zurich is now pretty much the same by plane or train. The train is infinitely superior in comfort, stress and productivity to the plane over short haul journeys !
When all's said and done, there'll be more said than done.
 
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Aquila3
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:11 pm

Depends where you are and where you go.
For my experience in Italy, airplane works quite well, even if you are forced to choose Alitalia.
Train, on the other hand is a disaster, with maybe the exception of the direct Milan Rome line, that, having to serve the for "important people" that ve elected to the the Parliament and so is quite decent, while expensive.
In Switzeland and France, with the due differences cause by the completely different size and kind of Countries, trains are fantastic and planes have hard time to compete, when they choose to do it at all.
chi vola vale chi vale vola chi non vola è un vile
 
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skippy777
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:20 pm

For this test we used our home base Tilburg.
We are exactly in the middle of Schiphol Amsterdam and Brussel Zaventem.

If you say Amsterdam as starting point its very easy, you will be airborne in 2 hours.

But I have to say the trip by train was very comfortable and relaxing.
You have more space to work during the train ride.

If a destination is further than 1000 km I would say take the plane.
But with all the security issues flying is not that nice anymore as it was in the past.
There is also a security check at the Eurostar but that is easy and fast.
Also you have to been checked in 45 minutes minutes before your train will leave, so that is the same as with the plane as they say 2 hours before.

But last I flew with Lufthansa Business Class and missed my flight once because the screen still said delayed will the plane already left the gate and Nearly missed it again 3 hours later with the same problem.
But there was a fault in the computer system at Frankfurt Airport. Lucky we where with 6 pax and showed the staff at the gate that the TV screens still said delayed while they wanted to close the gate>

They really looked weird at the TV screens when we showed them  
 
imag
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:05 pm

Sometimes it's cost. I've had a situation where it was quite cheaper to fly from LHR to Manchester on BMI, than taking the train (of course, that also helps explain why BMI got where it got to). Times that by 2 people and it's quite a saving, including getting from Manchester airport to the city centre. As it's domestic, it's theoretically less time at the airport. Fly with just hand luggage and it's even shorter. And you get to watch planes from the terminal. That's what life's about isn't it???
 
vinniewinnie
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:10 pm

There is a standard rule in transportation: Rail competitiveness decreases as travel time increases. Up to 4h it has a fair chance below that it gets peanuts in terms of ridership!
 
skyhawkmatthew
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:13 pm

Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 2):
1/ You are Western Europe, Japan, China, Taiwan, etc and there is a serious HSR network
2/ Your destination is not right next to the airport

Exactly. Here in Australia I regularly fly on a 350km-or-so sector to visit home. The flight (Q400) takes around 40 minutes - total time from college to home can be under 3 hours easily. By car it's about 5 hours. Rail in Australia is a complete joke: it'd take me about 8 hours to get home by train! Here, flying wins hands-down for anything more than a few hours' drive - forget rail.
Qantas - The Spirit of Australia.
 
ZRH
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:18 pm

Here from ZRH it very much depends on the destination. To Paris for example the train is better, from city center to city center (BTW I don't like CDG). But for example to VIE or TXL I always take the plane which is still much faster.
 
PanHAM
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:21 pm

OIt is always an individual calculation. I had a meeting at BER last week which was scheduled 3 months ago. I should have bought an LH € 99 ticket straight away then. Instead I bought a train ticket a day ahead with my 50% half tax card whoich still cost e 200,00 return, FRA-BER. I left home at 7 am and was back at 10 pm. I could have saved at leat 2 hours in the morning and same in the afternoon, or spend some leisure time at BER.

Check in in the internet allows you to be at the gate 30 minutes or less b4 departure, BER is still security at gate.

Same last week I had a Monday meeting in Austria, rail via MUC and SZG and Bischofshofen took 7 :30 all in all. Flying FRA-SZG would ave been much more expensive on a short notice, so you make it a 2 day trip starting on Sunday.

The 1000 km diustance quoted here is irrelevant, it can be 300 or 400 km from which flying is quicker and better. 1000 km by train can take a whole day, by plane it takes 2 hours and in a Schengen Europe with hand carry you are in the taxi 10 minutes after laning, at small airports.

Can even happen at FRA depends where your aircraft docks. Gate A11 for instance I was sometime sback home 40 minutes after touch down and I live 30 km from the airport.

.
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skippy777
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:22 pm

@skyhawkmattew Yes I tried once to take the train from Canberra to Sydney.
I felt like traveling back in the 40's
 
slinky09
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:26 pm

When a colleague introduced me to the Amtrak from New York to Boston, or say Washington to New York, that was then end of the plane for me.

Taxi from midtown to Penn, onboard in a comfortable seat, with WiFi, big windows, lots of luggage space, a buffet bar, nice views, and deposited at say Back Station with a walk to the hotel. Hands down beats a New York cab to the hole that is LGA, TSA, delays on the tarmac, and then whatever you have to go through on arrival.

But, as vinniewinnie says above, for example Boston to New York may not seem that far but the plane is better (especially a Jet Blue one into DCA)!

I generally agree that the train is better on such journey times, but then there are variables - it can be easier to get to an airport and leave your car than a downtown train station, and it can sometimes be much cheaper.
 
vinniewinnie
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:50 pm

Quoting PanHAM (Reply 9):
The 1000 km diustance quoted here is irrelevant, it can be 300 or 400 km from which flying is quicker and better. 1000 km by train can take a whole day, by plane it takes 2 hours and in a Schengen Europe with hand carry you are in the taxi 10 minutes after laning, at small airports.

It's about travel time not distance indeed. A 1000 KM brings you from Lille to Marseilles in 3h30 but takes 12 h from Munich to Florence...
 
JOYA380B747
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:22 pm

Europe - Air trips taking 1.5 hrs or less - Train - e.g London-Paris; Amsterdam-Brussels-Paris; Frankfurt-Berlin
Longer routes - Air - e.g Paris-Rome; Amsterdam-Berlin; Madrid-Paris

Japan - Train anyday

US/Canada - Train if between cities in East Coast or if you wanna enjoy the view

Indian subcontinent - Don't even think about train, no matter what the distance, if flight between cities available always take that. Rather drive your car but never ride the train.

[Edited 2012-06-19 07:24:37]
If it wasn't for AI and those money mongers sitting in the parliament, 9W would have been as big as SQ...:(
 
JOYA380B747
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:27 pm

Quoting slinky09 (Reply 11):
When a colleague introduced me to the Amtrak from New York to Boston, or say Washington to New York, that was then end of the plane for me.

I feel Amtrak tickets are more expensive than the high speed trains in Europe. And Amtrak usually does under 200kph on most routes, unlike the latter.
If it wasn't for AI and those money mongers sitting in the parliament, 9W would have been as big as SQ...:(
 
frmrCapCadet
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:05 pm

Generalities 'generally' LOL do not apply on this contest. It all depends, and depends on all the factors. Distance, schedule, distance from station or airport, how early do you really have to be/are you suppose to be, transportation at the other end. If train schedule is good, downtown to downtown tends to win. Bus and automobile bring in their own plusses and minuses. I try to assess the totality of it all. One thing here in the American west, is anything up to a few hundred miles is often easier in a car, sometimes several hundred miles. Over a thousand miles plane and car rental is almost always the winner. Exceptions apply.
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s5daw
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:03 pm

LJU-VIE takes 40 minutes by plane and something like 5-6 hours by train. The train is 10x cheaper though.
The problem in alpine countries is terrain and windy, slow railway as a consequence.
 
tk1244
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:13 pm

Quoting Skippy777 (Reply 4):
But I have to say the trip by train was very comfortable and relaxing.

Most of the domestic train trips I take (I'm regularly traveling by train) are a headache to me   If it is not snow or lightning, it will be a broken train, train crashed with a person or car, malfunctioning railroad switch, cows on the rail, etc...
"The future is in the skies. For any nation that cannot defend its skies will never be confident of its future." Atatürk
 
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skippy777
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:25 pm

At the link at the bottom of that article you can even see that you can travel 45 minutes faster if you use a different route.
So the advantage is even bigger.

Yes I will take the train for shorter destinations more often.
And the price for a Business Class Ticket with KLN was over € 451,00.
Business Class by train was € 251,00
 
brilondon
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:33 pm

Quoting Skippy777 (Thread starter):
I would say a destination shorter than 1000 km's take the train !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yeah, that is great. Then their are those of us who live on an island in the pacific where train service is non-existant and you have only one option. Also, in North America train service is crappy outside of the NE Corridor, there is little choice but to either fly, or drive.
Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
 
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seabosdca
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:36 pm

For me, in the United States...

Journeys between New York and either Boston or DC: the train. The train works well and all three New York airports are an enormous hassle.

Everything else: the plane.

We have many other corridors that could use HSR, but no willingness to pay for it.
 
aeroblogger
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:41 pm

Quoting JOYA380B747 (Reply 13):
Indian subcontinent - Don't even think about train, no matter what the distance, if flight between cities available always take that. Rather drive your car but never ride the train.

Why? I often take the train. Flying is a luxury - it's far, far more expensive. We have a great rail system, that is very well utilized. It's slow, yes, but it gets the job done.

[Edited 2012-06-19 09:42:03]
Airports 2012: IXE HYD DEL BLR BOM CCU KNU KTM BKK SIN ICN LAX BUR SFO PHX IAH ORD EWR PHL PVD BOS FRA MUC IST
 
JOYA380B747
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:10 pm

Quoting aeroblogger (Reply 21):
Flying is a luxury - it's far, far more expensive.

That is definitely true about the high air fares, but especially for long distance routes, the delay the trains make for one is more than made up by the extra you would earn by working a day more and reaching destination day(s) before.
Short routes are fine, but think about Delhi-Mumbai/Kolkata for instance. A working man, if he earns enough by day to be able to fly, why would he waste a day by being on a train.
On that, note, one could only imagine what the scenario would be like had airfares in India been a cheap as lets say China. But no thats never going to happen is it? And thats just sad  
If it wasn't for AI and those money mongers sitting in the parliament, 9W would have been as big as SQ...:(
 
aeroblogger
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:28 pm

Quoting JOYA380B747 (Reply 22):

That is definitely true about the high air fares, but especially for long distance routes, the delay the trains make for one is more than made up by the extra you would earn by working a day more and reaching destination day(s) before.

I agree to some extent. I have no problems with taking the train on routes like HYD/BOM/CCU-DEL. I don't mind an overnight, because trains are more comfortable, and I can get work done on my laptop (with access to internet too).

But once you get over 24 hours, then trains do get tiresome (and delayed).
Airports 2012: IXE HYD DEL BLR BOM CCU KNU KTM BKK SIN ICN LAX BUR SFO PHX IAH ORD EWR PHL PVD BOS FRA MUC IST
 
dstc47
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:34 pm

Live on an island and want to get off?

No choice really. Different on the Continent of Europe.
 
EricAY05
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:34 pm

Nowadays I always prefer flying, simply because I enjoy airports and the whole process of flying. I don't find security checks particularly troublesome. There is though one VERY annoying thing about flying: you can't buy the ticket a few days before travel if you want to pay a reasonable price. Trains, buses and cars are so much more flexible and convenient when it comes to quick decision or uncertainty about on which day you want to leave a place.

I remember once, my gf took the train in NZ from Wellington to Hamilton. I took the plane. God, how much more stuff I did that day than her (including sleaping)! But she got to see all the beuatiful scenery, so I don't really know who was more lucky. The flight took under 1h and the train over 10h.

Even though I always want to fly, I admit that flying routes like BCN-MAD, PAR-LHR and domestic in Japan seems pretty pathetic, unless you are connecting to some other flight.
 
LOWS
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Wed Jun 20, 2012 3:06 am

Quoting Skippy777 (Thread starter):

Cool video, thanks for posting!
 
usflyer msp
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Wed Jun 20, 2012 3:08 am

I am an airplane fanatic but lately I have been taking trains more often for short trips (at least outside of the US). Japanese and western European trains are sleek and cool. Indian and eastern European trains are fun and you get to experience the culture. The only negative train experience I have had was from Durban to Johannesburg in South Africa...even though we left on time, the train arrived 7 hours late. There was no explanation from the crew and then somehow they "forgot" the dining car so we were starving and had passengers literally going into diabetic shock from lack of food for 16 hours. They suck. I would fly SAA over them any day.
 
nipoel123
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Wed Jun 20, 2012 5:30 am

Where you live is also a factor. It takes me four hours to get to Brussels by train, it takes 2 to go to AMS. If I was going to London, and the choice was either Eurostar or plane from AMS, I'd take the plane. Of course, NRN is much closer, with flights to STN, so that's my usual choice when going to London.
one mile of road leads to nowhere, one mile of runway leads to anywhere
 
ThirtyEcho
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Thu Jun 21, 2012 4:48 am

Quoting skyhawkmatthew (Reply 7):

Same here in the States. Outside of the East Coast corridors, train travel is a dirty joke. The train runs like, what, every Tuesday except for odd numbered months when it runs on Wednesday and backs up 400 miles, parks on a siding for 8 hours, without air conditioning, to let a freight go past that is, sometimes, a day late? When the microwave spaghetti and meatballs runs out, you can't get off the bugger to walk across the tracks to a McDonald's because you might get hurt, given your weakened condition.

Trains were not meant for big countries.
 
PanHAM
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RE: Do You Take The Plane Or Train

Thu Jun 21, 2012 6:53 am

For some funny reason it works in Russia on ultra long distances. Canada does better than the US.

As to the food, order by phone to a local restaurant and make them deliver it to the station. Promise a good tip.


Besides that, long distance Amtrak are scenic cruise lines, not meant for inter city travel except for people to whom time does not matter.
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