Details: Prague to Budapest. EuroCity 275.
Travel time: 7h.
Seats: I had all six seats of the first class compartment to myself, with ample leg room and overhead storage. The soft, leather chairs were ideal for a mid-journey snooze, while the wide windows made it easy to admire the scenery.
Food & drink: I was regularly asked if I’d like a tea or coffee, and my ticket came with a free bottle of water. The restaurant car served reasonably priced lunch, drinks and snacks, where you could either sit in and eat, or take food back to the carriage.
Service: The staff were polite and attentive, even guiding me to my seat when I got lost after boarding the train. I was offered a free (Czech) newspaper and the chirpy train guard woke me up once we reached Budapest.
What else: The wi-fi wasn’t working but the comfort and beautiful scenery more than made up for the lack of connection.
Tickets: Buying tickets from the official Czech Railways website is straightforward and cheaper than other train websites. It allows you to choose your seat, clearly showing whether it comes with a view and power socket. Tickets arrive either via post or email.
Last word: A much more enjoyable and scenic alternative to flying.
By Farida Zeynalova